The Obligatory First Post

There’s a problem with first posts to any content-driven website, be it a blog, online magazine, or whatever its readers call it on their end. The first paragraph, like the one you’re reading now, doesn’t tell you jack about what follows, what to expect, or anything useful that a reader may be able to glean about the site’s content. This is no exception. In fact, it was pretty much written to get that whole first paragraph jazz out of the way.

But now that we’re all here, let’s just get formalities over with and allow me to welcome you to The Lazy Hunter. I hope you dig it, and I hope this isn’t the last time you drop by. The site may be sparse now, but that will change as time moves forward.

At this point, I suppose I should introduce myself. My name is Rich Manning, and I’ve been doing the professional freelance writing thing since 2004, although it wasn’t my full-time gig until 2010. Past and present publications I’ve written for include Gayot, Tasting Panel, Somm Journal, and a bunch of local Orange County magazines and websites. That’s the glamorous stuff. The ad copy and web content development that I also do is considerably less glamorous, unless an “About Us” page for Minneapolis plumbers somehow quickens your pulse.

More to the point, I’m a guy that’s grown tired of what has become of food, drink, and travel writing since it has migrated online.  A lot of what passes muster on these topics these days is either hyperbole-driven sensationalism or shiny, happy quasi-advertorial slog; bad trends made worse by the presence of ghoulish typos and mixed metaphors. It drives me a bit bonkers. Not because I want to say I’m better – I’m a writer, therefore I’m in constant fear that someone will discover I’m nothing more than a hack – but because I want something more as a reader.  It’s my sincere hope that I can provide you with something extra.

The concept of The Lazy Hunter is to share essays, stories, and news about food, drink, travel, and the ethereal spirit that somehow joins them at the cosmic hip. At their best, these stories will not break the cardinal rule of “show, don’t tell.” At their worst, they will hopefully be compelling enough for you to revisit here to see what may be next. For better or worse, the articles will not be clickbait. I’m not a fan of the style, and I will admit to having daydreams of it resembling a shadow in the shade one day. However, I resided myself long ago that those kinds of sites are here to stay, and their content will remain embedded in our social media feed because we have loved ones in our lives that enjoy sharing that kind of slop. I’m merely seeking out a way to co-exist as an alternative for those that want a little more substance out of what they read digitally.

It’s an alternative that doesn’t seek to tell you about food, drink, and travel.  Its aim is to show you why food, drink, and travel matter so much.  You’re not going to get beat over the head here with Instagrams taken from a media dinner so I can tell you how everything was amazeballs. What you’ll see instead is a dive into the observational and personal side of things, because those are the elements where passion and life experiences originate. These tales could be built around a conversation with a local chef at a farmer’s market.  They could touch on an annoying drink trend that is inexplicably ripping through the bar community.  They could convey the feeling of joy that can only come from accidentally stumbling into a nondescript hole-in-the-wall joint in some unfamiliar city in the midst of uncomfortable circumstances.  These are the things that stay lodged in our minds for decades, long after the edible elements of a quasi-unforgettable five course meal start to disappear.  These are the things The Lazy Hunter intends to share.

Some of the posts you’ll read here will be short and sweet.  Others may fall into the “print it off and go to the bathroom” length.  Regardless of length, I promise to be as genuine as possible at every turn. All positives and negatives will be organically cultivated and presented as such. Praise will be given to something or someone when appropriate and earned; criticisms will occur when necessary, but they’ll be bereft of needless bashing and self-righteous snark. Okay, maybe just a little snark. It depends on how warm my air-conditioner-free office gets.

The Lazy Hunter isn’t going to be the “next big thing” or some such poppycock. It’s simply a place where stories can be told and news can be shared. Please enjoy.

Rich Manning

Founder and Chief Dork

The Lazy Hunter