Who starts a weblog in 2019? This kid, apparently.
I’m sitting on my porch in Charlottetown on a sunny Sunday morning. It’s the first day I’ve worn shorts outside this season. Everything is fiercely green and the critters sing their existence from around the neighbourhood. Most I don’t know, but I can pick out squirrels, crows, and the grackles that have nested in our eves. Sam the cat kept me company on the porch while I set up a new VM, WordPress, Apache vhosts, and SSL certs – the method I’ve chosen to do this… new blog project thing. It’s not hard for me, I’ve set up websites before, but I find it hard to get through without a checklist – my brain doesn’t hold a stack well.
For the last two days I participated in a… human person meetup thing called an Un-Conference, hosted by Peter Rukavina. Among the amazing people, discussions, and activities, I heard a lot about blogging (and I apologize for not citing all the following thoughts appropriately, and they’re a bit disjointed because I’m following the cat around the yard now).
Blogging as a way to create community and make or maintain friends. Blogging as a way to think through things out-loud (Peter), to slow down and re-engage with the long-form, as a place to put down those thoughts that come when the mind has space to process (Steven), and to encourage thoughtful, meaningful discussions. Blogging as a way of crafting and owning a digital identity (Ton), and to craft tools and communities that support a social web that doesn’t rely on Those Platforms (IndieWeb, via Ton). As a place to share your own stories, and, albeit with some risk, to be vulnerable (Elmine). But that to maintain a blog, for a period like 20 years (!!) as Peter has, it helps if you’re writing for yourself.
So this is a project that I hope will improve my mental, social, and digital well-being. That will give me some brain space away from the constant distracted inattentive scrolling. That might make me better at wrapping themes into thoughts, and thoughts into stories, and stories into words. That might be a place to collaboratively make meaning, even though the world is burning. And maybe I’m finally old enough to do that thing cool people do.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go retrieve my favourite fearsome predator, who wandered off. The grackles are anxious, so I know she’s not far.