October 24, 2008

An Open Diary Entry

Journal scan: Volume 3, bookcase.

Himself: Can’t find his coworkers work.

Herself: Lunch late at the Poetry lunch. They sliced and diced, and I learned.

Food: Green beans. Chili relleno and taco. Tai with MK.
The Page says:
“This week marks the tenth anniversary of Open Diary. Tell us about your OD experience - how long you've been here and how your life may be different because of OD.”

I started a diary in the 1950’s, when I was a teen and filled the pages with love, passion, angst, childhood abuse, and constant failure as the topics. I confess that I am forever grateful that this diary burned when my big house burned.

Though I don’t have to deal with that small diary, I do have to deal with all the subsequent years and volumes that once filled the big bookcase down stairs. The early volumes weighty with hangovers, kids, friends, and laughter. The later books filled with business, busyness, and photography.

Some time perhaps in the year 2000, we got an internet connection that would let us stay online and a browser that would actually browse. I began considering keeping my journal online as my hands began and brain began to fade.

Instead of writing happily from under my covers, I now had to put on warm clothes….most mornings at the beach are chilly, and take my coffee and me to the computer.

Oh, I researched. I found a site that recommended various journaling pages….among them Open Diary. I checked them all out, and Open Diary offered the simplest layout, it was free, I didn’t have to use the WYSIWYG editor…my computer hated those editors, and it seemed friendly. I joined and life seemed simplified.

Now I only had to learn to use coding….if I wanted all the little graphic touches I’d been doing by hand in my hardbound journals. I began by drawing a line…..

Notes? I hadn’t expected that. The first note I received was a nasty one. I deleted it at light speed and complained. Now I wish I’d left it alone. By now that kid has grown up and is maybe still here. Perhaps we could laugh about it now.

Slowly I made friends. I learned to leave notes. I met Blather and learned what a kind heart really was. I met all Blather’s friends, and learned how to make my own. Open Diary, as the Diary Master envisioned it was working. A community was created of not just like minded people, but of folks living life with a passion online and sharing it one byte at a time.

Oh, there were crashes in OD Land. My blog now begins in 2001 because of such a crash. Sometimes they were caused by hardware, sometimes software, and lately security issues caused crashes. Determined to keep myself online, I created a backup blog at Wire. He became unwired, and I decided I didn’t need to duplicate myself. I underestimated my addiction to blogging….as it was now called. Because of the vagaries of the internet, I find I still keep a mirror blog at Blogger called Postcards, and through this site have made other friends.

Photographs. That’s been an exciting journey. Once I discovered that I could put pictures up on my journal if I paid a pittance. Blather’s had been insisting that I join Pay OD, and the fact that I could post images banished my reluctance and made me number 459. No money is me, but images are me too. The images won.

But photo sites collapsed too. They vanished, they were beyond my technical abilities, or they changed to programs I couldn’t use. After more struggle, I ended up with three working photohosts to support my OD addiction. Gotta make those entries look just “right.” I had to change photohosts just yesterday when one stopped working.

Yes, I laugh at myself.

For there is no life without OD for many of us. It’s a tool, a leavening agent, a integral part of our lives, and gives us a family beyond family. Friends beyond friends. It gives us a special voice in the world.

Sometimes there are squabbles. Some of us leave….I miss my some of my early vanished noters. Some stay but stop writing like C and ~Voyageur. Other’s of us OD'ers die. Oh, I do so miss my friend Cosmo so very much.

Our unique voices sometimes blend, sometimes oppose, but we are united as a unique community of all ages and beliefs.

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