On Dec. 5, 1998 I started blogging with these inspiring words:
So I’ve decided to cement my daily thoughts in immortal type, and plaster them here on the world wide web for all to read. What kind of an idiot am I?
Ten years later, I’m still an idiot. In that time:
- I’ve written 2,537 posts, which works out to an entry every one and a half days.
- I’ve received approximately 2,700 comments. My banana allergy post is still the all-time winner with 263 comments. (And to be fair, I’ve only had commenting for five years.)
- The blog has been hosted on five separate sites: Bethel, ReAL Magazine, Blogger, Monkey Outta Nowhere and now KevinDHendricks.com.
- The blog has had four different names: Daily Ponderings, ReAL Thoughts, Thoughts and whatever the heck you want to call it now (Kevin D. Hendricks? Worst name yet.)
- The blog has been powered by five different platforms: NotePad with straight HTML (shudder), Dreamweaver, Blogger, Movable Type and now WordPress.
To celebrate one decade of blogging I was going to comb through the archives and pull out some gems. But that’s a lot of work. Besides, nobody wants to read the introspective and completely incoherent ramblings of the early years, or sift through the years when I used only Simpsons quotes as entry titles, or have to struggle with the countless typos, botched em dashes and half-missing entries that come from switching platforms multiple times.
Mike, The Cat
Instead I thought it might be fun to share my first ever book: Mike, The Cat. I’ve talked about the book before, but now I’ve made it available in PDF in all its terrible glory.
I wrote it in 1986, nearly 22 years ago, as a first grader at Scotch Elementary School. I hope you’ll forgive me for reveling in the past like this, but it seemed more entertaining than just digging up old entries.
Thanks for reading my blog. I should give a shout out to Ben Tramm who inspired me to start blogging in the first place. Yes, you can blame him. I should also give a shout out to anyone who’s been brave enough to read along since the very beginning (fess up in the comments—we’ll get you some therapy).
It’s been a fun ride. Let’s see if this thing can survive another decade.
Last night I read a Wired magazine article about how Twitter, Facebook and Flickr have killed blogging. The article starts with this anti-blogging sentiment:
“Thinking about launching your own blog? Here’s some friendly advice: Don’t. And if you’ve already got one, pull the plug.”
I’ve been blogging since 1998 (coming up on my 10-year anniversary!), so this is an interesting discussion for me. I definitely agree that Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube and all the other content-publishing tools out there have changed the face of blogging. My own blogging has changed drastically since I began using Twitter.
But I don’t see the blog going away.
Continue reading Is Blogging Dead?
My blogging of late has felt a bit disconnected. Like I’m not fully communicating what I want to say, or at least not communicating it well. Maybe it’s more that I’m blogging just to get the ideas out and written down, rather than working on effectively communicating those ideas. That would make sense, as I feel like I’ve had a lot of thoughts and ideas lately that have slipped away without being captured in a blog post (not that all ideas need or should be blog posts, but many of them were ideas I wanted to share).
Bleh. I don’t like blogging like that. It’s not fun to read and it’s not much fun to write. I’ll see if I can find a bit more focus.
Blogging has definitely slowed lately. I blame Twitter—I’ve been enjoying its strength as a place to make temporary, pithy comments that don’t require much time or thought investment. Maybe that says something about how valuable/worthless my Twitter posts are, though I do try to avoid the Twitter equivalent of the cat blog and at least keep my tweets entertaining. Not sure if I’m accomplishing that, though 191 people don’t seem to be too bored.
Our big Memorial Day weekend was spent helping my brother’s family move. This is a borderline psychotic admission, but I think moving is kind of fun. Yes, it’s incredibly stressful (for those moving). But it’s an interesting opportunity to cram all your stuff into the back of a truck and redistribute it into a new space. It always makes me realize how much crap I own and wonder if I really need all that crap (and hopefully I spent enough time minimizing the crap before the move). All that said crap also makes me realize how unorganized I am, and how stuff I thought I needed so dearly I really don’t need. There’s plenty of stuff I haven’t touched since moving into our current home a little over a year ago, and that helps me let go a little bit.
Continue reading Twitter, Moving, History & Art
I’ve been blogging for nearly 10 years and read a lot of blogs. Over those years I’ve been and read a lot of different types of blogs. Many of those types have been explained before, like the political blog or the niche blog or the insult blog. But I’ve seen quite a few other, much less famous types. So the question becomes, what type of blog is yours? (a not-so-complete list)
The Cat Blog
The blog that covers the mundane, like what your cat is doing.
The Bitch Blog
The blog that’s nothing but bitching, damn it!
The Mom Blog
Much like a cat blog, this type covers mundane things your children do.
The Introspective, What the Hell are You Talking About Blog
The blog that no one understands, except maybe the writer.
The I Have an Opinion About Everything Blog
I think the title says it all.
The I Haven’t Blogged in a While Blog
The blog with infrequent updates, all of which apologize for not blogging in a while.
The Ooh Shiny Blog
The blog that posts every new video, link or web trend, with no original thought of their own.
Kevin D. Hendricks is now officially dot com. After nearly 10 years of having my blog hosted on other sites and being stuck in a secondary directory, I’ve finally moved out on my own with my own site and my own url: KevinDHendricks.com.
It’s a little new, a little scary.
I’ve also switched from Movable Type to WordPress in the process. So far so good, though I’m sure much will be broken (and ugly) for a while until I get it all sorted out.
Update: And I hope the RSS feed works. It should subscribe you to my FeedBurner feed, http://feeds.feedburner.com/kevindhendricks. So far I can’t tell if it is or not.
It only took four and a half years, but my blog archives are now complete. All 2,370 entries going back to Dec. 5, 1998 are now available right here. No more going back to the hand-coded pages on the utterly defunct ReALMagazine.com (may it rest in peace).
It’s kind of weird reading blog entries from nine years ago. Back then I didn’t even know what the word ‘blog’ meant.
Continue reading Blog Archives Now Complete
My biggest blogging pet peeve is when a blog doesn’t point you to more content. Blogs typically post entries in reverse chronological order, meaning the latest entries are first. That’s great for delivering new and timely content, which is what blogs are for.
But when you first check out a blog you may not necessarily care about the latest and greatest entries. You’re trying to get a feel for the purpose of the blog, what they cover, the breadth and depth of what they cover. It’s often hard to get a feel for that from the entries on the front page.
And sometimes you just get sucked into a blog and want to keep on reading. So what happens when you get to the end of a blog’s front page? On too many blogs, nothing happens.
Continue reading Point People to More Content
I kinda went on a blogging bender last week. That’s pretty standard before I go on a trip. For some reason I have this urgent need to get all the thoughts out of my head before heading off on a new adventure and filling my head with all sorts of new thoughts. Same sort of deal here before my trip to L.A.
And now I have the post-trip blog rush where I have all sorts of stuff in my head, but I’m a bit too overwhelmed to jump back in and make sense of it all as it spills out. We’ll what happens.
I was importing some old blog entries this evening (something I do from time to time when I get bored–even though I jumped over to Moveable Type years ago, I still haven’t converted all my old entries. I still have about 9 months worth to import) and I came across a few interesting entries:
- Prayer as an Act of Spiritual Defiance – The entry isn’t that brilliant, but I love that thought.
- Hard Work Comes Crashing Down – The subtext of this post (I did this a lot back then, talking about something but not really talking about it) was that the company I spent a summer working for was going under and none of my work would see the light of day. But I speculated it wouldn’t be for nothing–that God might have an ace up his sleeve. It turns out the relationships I made that summer are still helping me today. Thanks Brad.
- The Six Billionth Person – We passed that milestone back in 1999, and I think we’re pushing 6.5 billion now.
- Sedgewick: Three mini stories featuring one of my favorite characters who went on to star in his own novel.