Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Why I Keep Embarrassing Blog Archives

"Once it's on the internet it's there forever" is probably your parents favourite misguided impression of how the internet actually works. See it's only there forever if you're popular enough to have things copied and pasted then stolen and put on 9gag. (I hate 9gag so much for stealing my art but that's another story). See if you're relatively unknown like me, despite having a steady internet presence since 2008, people don't notice or remember thing things you used to do only what you're doing now. Even then not everyone notices. I could delete a lot of this blog and I'm guessing a lot of people wouldn't notice, and even if they did there'd be no way for them to recover those missing posts for their own purposes.

Once they're gone, they're gone. Even for me. Sometimes that's probably for the best... who wants to re-read the poorly spelt sentences that start off with lowercase letters that talk about inane "random" things that my teenage self was interested in? Hopefully no one. But I might one day...

I keep things around. I keep up old videos that I wouldn't dare show any of my friends because I wrote and filmed them when I was 15 years old. I don't tell anyone about my blogs that I have long since disused... but they're there. Floating around in cyberspace, waiting to be seen again by me in the future like old photo albums left in pristine condition. No dust needs to be brushed off, just a few keys to be pressed to be treated to old memories immortalised (until I kill it) in text.

Partly because of the nostalgia value because re-reading an old blog helps me remember some event I'd completely forgotten and it's like discovering buried treasure in my mind. Partly because what I've made over the years is the only good way to really measure my progress as a person.

This blog has changed over the years from personal posts about my day like a diary, to comedic posts designed for no reason outside of quick laughs, to being treated like it does or doesn't have an audience, to tackling big ideas and thoughts as well as the former. My writing has improved, my expression has improved (I hope, though I'm not sure here is where thoughts go to be expressed in their finality but to be drafted and so forgive me if the things I say aren't quite developed) and the themes that I write about in my blog are more diverse. This demonstrates how I've changed intellectually, it also charts my changing interests, how I think differently. Blogs aren't just diaries, they're archives of the development of person.

Even if no one reads this blog I can still come back and cringe over the spelling mistakes and be comforted that because I cringe I have changed into a person who has reason to cringe. I've improved. Each post, whatever it is, is a message in a virtual bottle dropped in the sea of life to be found again one day by the future me so I can read it and remember who I used to be.

I hope future me is happy. Present you is. Past you was a doofus and you probably think present me is too... but you can see I'm getting better. I have to be. One day I'll become you.

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