camcarlson

miscellaneous commentary

There’s a first time for everything…..

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Today is the 10th anniversary of the day I began blogging. I found Diaryland while searching for email addresses for ALPHA alumni I intended to invite to Damfest in 2002. I believe it was a blog for Adam Malgren, or possibly Ozzie, that inspired me to set up one of my own.

My first blog existed as a venue for my random thoughts and writings about my daily routines. It was updated on a near-daily basis for over eight years — 2,463 entries over 3,072 days. While I am rather proud of myself for maintaining the discipline needed to write on such a consistent basis, I concede I lost interest in the final years as my life fell into a comfortable routine that did not always make for interesting journaling. I wasn’t alone in that regard: time passes, people graduated from college, got married, move around the country, found full-time employment and entered the funk of day-in, day-out repetition.

Due to a technical limitation regarding how I archived my entries, I officially gave up on my first blog in September 2010. I took a month off to assess whether I still had the drive to write on any kind of regular basis. I found that I did, but I didn’t want to make a chore out of writing every day. I decided to write whenever the mood struck, whether it be daily or once a week, just so long as I was writing something more substantial than a “I’m still alive” post. With a few exceptions, I’ve succeeded in that regard with this new blog.

I moved to this site as my previous blog lacked entry-specific comments and had no easy way to post pictures or videos. I can’t say anything substantial on Facebook so I try to limit “status updates”, and I don’t have the interest to set up an account on Twitter or another social media site.

Back in mid 2004 I undertook the arduous task of backing up every entry from my first blog. Each month’s entries were saved into a separate word file. After failing to keep up with the offline archive for far too long, I rolled up my sleeves earlier this year and began where I left off. Copy/pasting a month’s worth of writing takes about 15 minutes. I debated whether the backup effort was worth my time, if I really needed an offline copy of eight-plus years’ worth of daily writing that is almost never re-read or referenced in any way. I decided to archive them anyway and worry about their potential use on a later date.

I have considered deleting the first blog after the offline archive is complete. Even though I haven’t updated it in over a year, I will probably feel some sense of loss, having finally, formally given up on a site that I visited and maintained faithfully for the good part of a decade. A site that served as my first social network, before the days of Friendster or Myspace or Facebook. A site through which several of my friends set up similar blogs, including BCF, who began his on the same day I began mine, and Blake, who regularly updated the blog I set up for him during his semester in Japan in 2003. A site through which I met Leah, the lady I met on my road trip during the summer of 2003 and briefly lived with during the first half of 2004.

But nothing lasts forever. That’s the internet for you – constantly in flux.

I’d love to write a now-&-then bit comparing my life at the end of my junior year at UNI with life today, but the daily grind has left me exhausted tonight. I’ll work on something for later this week.

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Written by camcarlson

April 24, 2012 at 10:15 PM

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