It was a shame that Zeldman didn’t seem interested in giving the initiative much attention, if any at all, even though he so eagerly promoted Blue Beanie Day itself. Instead of sharing the site with his audience, he preferred them to purchase some merchandise.
Zeldman provides a comprehensive, if strongly worded response in the comment section that ends in:
Your project looks cool and could benefit from outside help, but I won't be helping because you are an asshole. You are, I think, the only asshole I've met in 20 years of doing web work. Fuck off.
No one comes out of this smelling like roses. Ultimately, I have to side with Zeldman, only because I know more about Jeffrey's personality through reading and listening to his work while I'm generally ignorant of Irish's countenance (although I am a fan of his work). Zeldman's typical candor and humility is not on display here, which leaves me to believe that this exchange is just the head of a long simmering frustration (as Zeldman notes in his comments, go read the whole thread).
Watching this sort of exchange is fun in the same way that seeing two cars collide is fun. No one says you can't dislike people in your profession. But there's rarely an occasion in which expressing so publicly and on the internet is going to going to be constructive in the least.