Sunday, April 15, 2007

500 Posts and Still Going Strong

Unlike the subject of the previous post, there is no disaster here. You may beg to differ; in fact, you're encouraged to. Just remember, no anonymous comments, and offline emails may be shared with the group. Of course, unlike those arrogant Edwardians, I'd never dare display the hubris to declare the Pop Culture Institute unsinkable either. I'm far too susperstitious.

Begun as the Pandora Institute on 20 January 2006, as a progressive think-tank with the mission to "let hope out of the box", the name and mission were later changed, but I'm unable to discover exactly when and where this occurred, though I may do so while conducting routine maintenance. I am still a passionate advocate for progress and hope, but within a wider milieu.

The 100th post was celebrated on 3 February 2007.

[100th post]

They say the first 100 posts are the hardest; if they don't they should. If they're actually not, they were in my case. I did a lot of soul-searching in that first 13 months, reading other blogs, tinkering with the tone and the range of subject matter in my own. Anyone who thinks a blog is built in a vacuum must only be reading Perez Hilton.

It turns out most of the necessary repairs were on myself. In this case (as in most), neurosis was its own reward, since by the 100th post the thing had pretty much jelled. Unlike Windows, I too had developed a more stable platform. So much so that the 200th post was achieved less than three weeks later, on 23 February.

[200th post]

The 300th post came on 10 March, following the decision made by me to try and publish a minimum of five posts per day. The entire enterprise also got more technically sophisticated during this period as well, as I gradually learned how to embed video, create thumbnails and links, and wrap text around photos. It was a steep learning curve, and feel I met the challenge.

[300th post]

On 25 March I reached 400, and by this point not only was it well underway, it began to feel damn near unstoppable.

Favourite features (On This Day, Spontaneous Brunette, Scrobbling) persist, as do features on royalty, sitcoms, and Vancouver. Others are tried and abandoned (Blog Fodder), in an effort to improve the overall mix. Though I consider myself an artist, I'm an entertainer first, and have long ago given up any charade that I'm not slavishly pandering to my readers.

[400th post]

Which brings us to today and number 500.

The road ahead will feature less drippy editorials about how much I hate myself and more shiny pictures of pretty things, as well as stories about those who've been left out of history. Having studied much about how a city like Manhattan brands itself, I will be applying these techniques to writing about Vancouver in advance of the tourist onslaught of 2010.

The next milestone to be celebrated, expected at the end of June, is the thousandth post. 600, 700, etc. will receive only tags, so I can find them when it comes time to commemorate number 1000. In the meantime, some of the archived posts may disappear altogether; others may be combined into super posts.

I'd like to begin reprinting the favourite posts of the past, as determined by me, which is not to say I wouldn't appreciate your feedback in this. In fact, many of the reprinted articles will be the ones receiving the most comments. Five such posts will appear today, as part of the celebration, in each case celebrating some pinnacle of technical or creative achievement.

Nostalgia is one of my favourite emotions, but no one could ever accuse me of being sentimental. I like to appreciate the past for what it was, not make a fetish of what I wish it could have been. In order to keep myself interested, I have to keep this interesting to myself. Also, it helps me to deal with the rut my life is in by decorating the walls of that rut in this way.

Henceforth, after the 1000th post, every hundred posts will also be designated only by tags, and a full commemoration will appear only every thousand. It is my intention to celebrate the dawn of 2008 with my 2008th post, a live-blogged party with photos, video, and surprises galore.

See you then! (Or not, as the case may be.)

michael sean morris
share on: facebook


Johnny Frem said...

Well done, Michael. I know you've always had a facility with language, but I'm sure at your recent pace you can achieve the same results much easier; your tools are sharpened and you can wield them decisively achieving wonders at will. I'm envious as hell, because my tools are rusty. It took me nearly half an hour to compose these few sentences well enough that I feel others can read them. And look! They're nothing much at all.

Keep it up. Thanks.

michael sean morris said...

Johnny Frem - the writing community in this city never had a better friend.