This site began its life two years ago, and although the changes since then (both in the site and in my life) seem incremental to me, I'm almost afraid to read those first entries from October 2000, because I fear who that person was writing at that time, and what it might reveal about the person typing these words out now.
I remember these things: I found myself bored at work a lot and feeling I needed something more to do with my days (I can only wish I had that kind of time now). I remember feeling like time was slipping from me and that I needed to do some Big Things with my life, to write more often, to get noticed, I guess, to put something out there that people might respond to.
I was living in a small duplex, a lot of the time worrying about the month to month of rent, fearing that my landlady would kick me out at any moment because she had decided to sell the building, or had found someone willing to offer her twice what I was paying. (This was still at the tail end of the dot-com boom, so the idea of some slick Bay Area Web designer coming into town and having a spare-no-expense attitude toward tenant agreements was not totally unheard of.)
At least two or three times a week, I would go out; to happy hours, to Miguel's for some salsa dancing (no, it's true!), to work-related tech events like product launches or award dinners.
I didn't know my cat very well yet, so every time Cosa would bite at me or get annoyed, I took it personally.
It was around that time that I was starting to feel comfortable at work, competent to the point where I didn't think if I made a mistake, I'd get fired on the spot.
When people talked about "terrorists," you just had that mental image of hooded, bearded guys in Schwarzennegger movies, the ones who would get hooked on a missile and shot into an enemy helicopter at the climax of an action sequence.
A lot of my friends still lived in Austin. It would be another year or so before a good chunk of them would move away, and my communication with them would be limited to e-mails and Instant Messenger.
I was just starting to discover I'd had allergies all my life and could actually take medicine that would help it. All those years, I'd just assumed everybody woke up all congested and oogy and that it was okay to sneeze five times in a row all day long.
I didn't really think I'd ever be old. Not in any realistic way. 25 was old, sure, but it wasn't old old. 27 was starting on the path to old old and that was still a ways off.
I was reading a lot more books, mostly because I didn't feel as stretched-thin as I do now with time. There just seemed to be a lot more free time, and there were times when I was actually bored. The concept of boredom seems so foreign now that it's like a mythic city of gold. Boredom. Is there a map I can buy to find that? I hear in the city of Boredom, the clocks stop for and you can walk down the street without looking at your watch to see if you're late. In Boredom, people do jigsaw puzzles and knit things!
There was a need to connect, I think, to have a place to put my stuff and to have it where people could see it and where they could see a person behind the words. I write for a newspaper, I write for a Web site, but there wasn't a me behind the words that anyone could see or hear. There wasn't a great public filing cabinet to store myself.
I don't always think a lot of the stuff on this site makes sense. And I certainly don't think that by taking these two years' worth of entries, you can piece them together to create a whole person. They're still perceptions of a person, the stuff I let out, carefully censored and chosen by a steering committee of one. Nobody is their online journal, and the way I act in my life is probably contrary in a lot of ways to what the things I've said here would lead you to believe I'm like.
But the truth is, I've liked who I've been when I've written here. I've liked the responses, and the people who say they read and that it does something for them, in whatever small capacity.
There are people doing amazing things in their online journals. There are folks who bare their lives and tell you stuff you never knew you wanted to know. There are people who've let us in as they've moved across the country and started new lives. There are those who record history as it happens, or document a struggle with disease or with a hellish job.
I've put this place here because I wanted to amuse myself and others, but also because writing is what I do, what I've always done, and I wanted it to have a more immediate connection. I wanted it to be just me and you. No editors, no publication delay, no distance. Me, the words, and you.
For the last two years, a lot of you have been there, so thank you. Thank you for letting me do this; if you all weren't reading, I can't honestly say I'd have kept writing this. I'd have moved on to other things.
So thanks for keeping me at it. Thank you for your e-mails, thank you for making me feel like this has been worth it. If you'll have me, I think I'll continue.
Hey, look at this! Stuff to buy! Haaawwwt-Damn!
Even Emperor Fujimoto thought the eyeball tree was a little on the extravagant side.