The 4th Blogs With Balls conference took place this past weekend in New York City, and while DK Wilson dissed the event as the “annual circle jerk of self-congratulation for sports bloggers who protect the ideals of mainstream sports media,” surely dozens of less uptight individuals were thrilled to consider such hot topics as “Brands With Balls” (“looking at the brands who do the best job of reaching the sporting audience,”). Cynical types like me, however, cannot help but be nauseated impressed by the perspective of BwB participant / Bleacher Report featured contributor Dan Levy, who couldn’t help but embrace an opportunity…to tell you what a wonderful world we’re living in. Well, some of us, anyway.

After each BwB event, I feel like I sit at my computer and do that Doogie Howser “what did we learn today” post, so that’s probably what this is. I learned today that I have some great friends in this industry, but more than anything I learned that I belong in this industry. Floating around as a free agent for a while before this Bleacher Report situation, I felt about as disenfranchised as one could feel. The one thing about writing on the internet that people may not realize is that there is no safety net. You have a job, and the next day you don’t. Even from the basement, that fall can feel precipitous. I spoke to a lot of great writers and a lot of talented folks in media this weekend. Not all of them have jobs, but they have the talent to do great things. I hope some of them will think about doing them with me, here. At the very least, it was an honor and a privilege to share the stage with them for a day.

For me? Well now I write for a site that gets a ton of traffic and work for people who seem to like what I produce in an industry full of folks who put up with my nonsense because they know, in the end, I’m trying to help the industry grow.