How long have you had your blog?

I was asked that question recently, and I realized it’s kind of a long answer … 

I have been blogging before we called it blogging. Well before blogging was anything other than just dumping your thoughts on a web page and maybe connecting with other people. Businesses didn’t blog, there were no personal brands, no weekly themes, no site stats. It was a simpler time.

In high school, I learned HTML for a class project. This was 1998, and a public school, so it was kind of progressive. It was a history class, and the project was turning our research papers into web pages. I enjoyed the turn-into-web-pages part so much more than the writing-a-research-paper part. I decided that I wanted to manage web sites when I grew up. (And hey! That’s what I do! Living the dream.)

Anyway, back to high school. I started “making web sites” for fun. On Angelfire. Eventually I started adding my sad (as in bad, but maybe slightly sad), angsty teenage poetry to my web site, and then I started writing a journal on it. A web log. Or blog, if you will. Luckily, I have lost track of my old web sites. It’s probably for the best. (I still have my paper journals somewhere, so I can still read all that cringe-worthy stuff.)

During my first semester of college (fall 2000), I discovered LiveJournal (LJ). WHOA. This site does the work for me. I no longer have to manually code my online journal. And I can read other people’s journals! So I created an LJ account and went to town. I let it all out, and made some “LJ friends” (mostly other young ladies also in college). And it was the early 00’s, so we didn’t really filter ourselves. If I wanted to share the details of being dumped, I put it all out there. If my friend was bugging me, I wrote about it (and sometimes got in trouble). To this day, I still keep in touch with a handful of my LJ friends who I have known for almost 14 years. (These days we keep in touch mostly via Facebook.)

Earlier this year, I met two of those friends for the first time. It was kind of random that I happened to meet them both in the same month. (And I met two other LJ friends years ago.) In all cases, even though it was our first time meeting, it didn’t feel that way. I’m sure most of you, having met blogging friends in person, can relate.

One of the friends happened to be passing through Chicago, and we were able to meet for lunch. Her husband is a musician with the travelling tour of a musical. She is a professinal ballerina (which is how she met her husband). We didn’t take a picture when we were together, but it was nice to finally meet! And it was kind of fun that she, the professional dancer, was impressed that I was taking burlesque classes. (Meanwhile, I stare in awe at her ballerina pics on FB.)

The second friend I met lives in Chicago, and it wouldn’t have been hard for us to meet sooner (than 14 years later), we just never did. We were recently chatting on Facebook about all of our friends no longer wanting to do fun things like stay up late dancing. So she invited me to join her for some dancing. And we’re both photobooth addicts.

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Anyway, back to my history of blogging. Eventually, [almost] everyone abandoned LiveJournal (wanted to be more private, started blogging elsewhere, or MySpace and Facebook filled that void). Then blogging as we know it now blew up, and in 2008, I started the blog that eventually became (It’s true, click on the Archives drop down on the right – but my oldest posts were short and random. I didn’t really get into this blog until 2009, when the hubs was away at Boot Camp, and it wasn’t until 2010 that I started running and therefore blogging about running.) And obviously, I’ve also met lots of friends through this blog. So, blogging’s been making me friends since 2000. Whoa.

Anyway, thank you, Internet, for being what you are. (And giving me a cool job.)

How and why did you start your blog?