John Brownlee, RIP

Sometime between the hours of 11am and 3pm yesterday, Associate Editor John Brownlee was hit by a train. A train called opportunity. Mr. Brownlee is moving on from The Consumerist to run a new site for Wired.

Though he never got his name in the big lights, Brownlee has been an integral part of The Consumerist since its inception, lending a voice and humor that was uniquely his. We wish him the best of luck in his new endeavors. Thee references to encephalitic babies, zombies and all things feculent, will be missed.

We haven’t yet decided on a replacement. For now, Meghann Marco will be sitting in. Make her feel welcome and send lots of tips.

Here are some of our favorite Brownlee posts.

The Oozinator Delights Children
Stupid Science: Make Ice From Fast Food Toilet Water
The Best Thing We Have Ever Posted: Reader Tries To Cancel AOL
Announcement: Ben’s “On Vacation” This Week
Outside Pride Lawncare Hates Faggy CBS
Disembodied, Baby-Feeding Gazonga Outrages Magazine Subscribers
The Second Greatest Thing We’ve Ever Posted: Crazy Cat Lady Telemarketing Call


Edit Your Comment

  1. Avery says:

    Don’t scare me like that!

    Scare me in the ways I am expecting from this site, like horrible tales of corporate corruption.

  2. TPIRman says:

    Wow, my heart jumped as well. But now that sanity has been restored, congratulations, Brownlee. We’ll miss you!

  3. Yeah…yeesh…I actually skipped a beat for a minute…people actually DO get hit by trains you know…although the chances of them being named “opportunity” are slim to none.

    Best of luck to Brownlee, Wired is a great site, and will be even better now I’m sure.

    And good luck to Meghann…Consumerists are notoriously efficient at hazing new blood…

  4. crayon: It’s only out of endearment.

  5. Drinker Nisti says:

    Mostly I’ll miss the input from Old Mother Brownlee…

  6. RandomHookup says:

    What, no more Mother Brownlee contributions? I must go hang out on her back porch to satisfy my Fluff jones.

  7. mark duffy says:

    Funny man. Go with Verizon’s speed.

  8. wyldhoney says:

    We will miss you, Brownlee and Mummy Brownlee.

  9. ckilgore says:

    Jeebus. My stomach jumped up in my throat for a second! Not funny.

    Best of luck, Johnny. Do remember the little people.

  10. ohnothimagain says:

    A nice guy, and good luck, but I won’t miss his overwrought attempts at sensationalism.

  11. AcilletaM says:

    Godspeed Brownlee!

  12. flyover says:

    Good luck!

    There goes the more (spelling/grammar) error-free writer of the site…

  13. Xkeeper says:


    This was not a good thing to wake up to.

    Oh well. Have fun at Wired, we’ll miss you, blah blah blah whatever.

  14. RandomHookup says:

    So will we now not have a half-dozen stories to wake up to because of the time difference? Can you maybe outsource the new job to India?

  15. Three cheers for Brownlee. Best of luck to you, sir. We will miss your rebellion against the editorial we. Please continue to refer your mom to Consumerist.

    As for Meghann — she’s clever and brings the funny. Keep her around, Benny P.

  16. Metschick says:

    Good luck on your future endeavors (blabbity, blabbity), Brownlee.

    Hi, Meghann.

  17. juri squared says:

    Good luck, Mr. Brownlee!

    Also, please don’t actually get hit by a train. I hear it hurts.

  18. Ishmael says:

    Hey – that was clever, but it still scared the shit out of me. I know a guy who drives a train (is that right? Do they drive them, or steer them, or what?), and he ran over someone not a week ago. Seems they had enough of life.

    We’ll miss you, Brownlee! Especially yo mamma!

    And man, what I wouldn’t give to edit Consumerist!

  19. GenXCub says:

    I will go on the bandwagon to say that the headline did give me a fright. Hopefully when Meghann assumes the reins after Ben gets impaled in a freak glory hole accident, she’ll not spare the details! Bye John!

  20. Trai_Dep says:

    Geez, I hope Brownlee doesn’t regret the “Ben Forever” scar he had branded into his bicep during the last Gawker World Summit (& Sleepover). Oh well -nothing that a good Brillo pad won’t buff out.

    Good luck and never forget the snark!

  21. benko29 says:

    best of luck mr brownlee!

    and btw ben, speaking of oozinator, whatever happened to the “longer ooze opus” that you talked about?

  22. AcidReign says:

    …..No more zombies? Brownlee never quite got to his eyeball scene here, I think. Still, he’ll be missed. And good luck to him! He should treasure his mom for as long as he can. She’s amazing.

  23. Magicube says:

    Good luck to you, Brownlee.

    Can we call Meghann “Ben” now, too?

  24. Triteon says:

    In the spirit of tabloid TV, can we cll the editors MeghBen?