The beauty in writing is unfettered, untainted, and unrestrained access to the single mind of a brilliant person. That mind may lead you on a humorous parade of clever fan fiction. Perhaps the author’s biting wit will make you laugh until your stomach hurts. Often, the writer’s life experiences illuminates an issue with an original perspective. If films are collective madness with a normally drunk director barely holding things together by a thread, then writing is the creation of a perfectly singular world. One vision. One creator. One creation.
However, it seems like it should make sense that two authors would be twice as good. After all, we know simple math. One plus one equals two. Two is more than one. Right? Wrong.
There is an ancient & wise Chinese proverb: how many chefs does it take to make microwave popcorn? The answer: one. And only one. If you get two Chinese chefs to make microwave popcorn, then in theory you’d hope that they’d make two bags or something. However, in reality, the Chinese chefs just try to punt responsibility, shirk their own duties, and then blame the other Chinese chef for the burnt microwave popcorn product. Hobbes would point, laugh, and say “I told you so.”
Sports, though, distracts and deceives us. Everybody loved the Bash Brothers in baseball, Jose Canseco and Mark McGuire. In soccer, we fall in love with electric offensive combinations, like Riquelme and Diego Forlan from the Villareal team of yesteryear. We also enjoy the classic holding/attacking mid tandems, like Makelele and Zizou for France. Thus, we truly deep down want to believe that a sports article can be improved with two authors. However, reality destroys our fantasy.
In an ideal world, the two author post could match the heights of the penultimate section of Ulysses: questions and answers could shed light in a blissful way. They could even replicate the parties and speakers in Plato’s Symposium. However, they too often turn out as transcripts of uninspired episodes of Pardon The Interruption. No yelling. No shouting. No conflict like what you get in a spicy interview. Rather, one person says something kinda neat and coo. Then, the other person says something somewhat related and also kinda cool. Repeat. In the worst case scenario, the two author posts mirrors the carousel of live game banter drivel. In the best case scenario, a neat motif unites the thread and the reader walks away feeling vaguely okay and thinking “meh.”
So remember, don’t be fooled by the mirage. You may think that a two author post is a great idea, but they normally end up like Tobias Funke’s open relationship in Arrested Development. 2 people may be satisfied, but 1 person is inevitably unhappy. And it’s normally the reader.