Really? This might be the strangest question or request that I’ve received (no disrespect). It just sounds like something that would interest absolutely nobody. Plus, “snarky”? When have I ever been “snarky” (I’ve never liked that word for some reason) or even a bit of a smart-ass when answering questions? I’m always very respectful and straight-forward. Even kind and gentle, if I say so myself.
Anyway, yes, I’ll grant you your odd request even though I felt like a total douche (unquestionably warranted) taking a self-portrait of myself. This is how I look when answering dumb questions:
I would like to take a moment to confirm that the rumors are true: Yes, today, January 20th, is my birthday (or, as the cool kids like to call it, my “birfday”). I appreciate all of the nice birthday messages that I’ve already received through Tumblr, Facebook, and/or e-mail. I’d also like to compliment President Obama for cleverly (and graciously) deciding to be officially sworn in for his second term today at noon in a low-key event and postponing the ceremonial Inauguration Day activities until tomorrow so that he would not be overshadowed by my very special day.
Now, I’m sure that many of you are looking at your computer or your phone right now and thinking, “Goddamn, I really love Anthony Bergen. How could I possibly pay back my all-time favorite Presidential historian with a birthday gift that would show my appreciation for everything that he’s ever done for me?” Don’t worry — many people feel the same exact way today, so you are not alone.
However, I am more than happy to share my stories with all of you and your support is the best possible gift that I could ever receive. So, instead, I want you to do something for yourself today. Instead of the $50-to-$500 that you intended to spend on me (and with good reason), I want you to spend $6.99 on yourself — the very best $6.99 you’ll ever spend. For my birthday, I want you to buy YOURSELF a copy of my recently-released book, Tributes and Trash Talk: What Our Presidents Said About Each Other, a candid look at how each of our Presidents was thought of by their peers in the world’s most exclusive fraternity. Over 350 pages of brilliant, poignant, funny, mean-spirited, contradictory, and petty quotes by American Presidents about every President from George Washington to Barack Obama, including Confederate President Jefferson Davis. For just $6.99, not only can you get a copy of my book instantly, but it’s a perfect opportunity to treat yourself on my birthday.
You can get Tributes and Trash Talk immediately and start reading it this morning. If you have a Kindle, iPad, or iPhone, my book is available right now via Amazon. Those of you who don’t have an actual Kindle device can download Amazon’s Kindle app for your iPad or iPhone for FREE and then read my book. For those who have a NOOK, Tributes and Trash Talk is available just as instantly and at the same low price of $6.99 via Barnes & Noble.
I’d have the most wonderful birthday if my wonderful readers (that would be you) bought themselves a copy of Tributes and Trash Talk today! I’d love to see 20 books sold today. Get yourself a copy of the book, for your sake and for mine. You won’t be disappointed!
I sincerely doubt any of my readers know or care about the neighborhood I grew up in, so this question is probably REALLY local.
Yes, I was born in Sacramento (Sutter Memorial Hospital represent!) and I grew up in North Sac — the Del Paso Heights neighborhood, specifically. It certainly wasn’t the nicest neighborhood in town and I kind of hate you for being from Granite Bay (which is really, really, really nice and wealthy for those who aren’t from Northern California), but it wasn’t the Garden Blocc either (that’s the place you REALLY don’t want to go if you’re in Sacramento). When I was an adult and out on my own, I mostly lived in the Natomas area and near Fulton/El Camino/Marconi/Howe Ave before I left California in 2010.
As for the last part of your question, I think one thing is certain: a person like me who deeply studies the Presidency, the Presidents, Presidential politics, and all aspects of United States History simply exudes street cred. There’s nothing more gangsta than a comprehensive understanding of the American Presidency. Right?