Monday, November 8, 2010

Seven Years

Today marks the anniversary of Bark Bark Woof Woof. On November 8, 2003, I hit Publish and produced this post. Now, seven years later, two residential moves, two new computers, two presidential elections, one very nice template makeover, and some 12,138 posts later, here we are. As Sam says in Casablanca, a lot of water under the bridge.

First, I’d like to thank some people who were instrumental in getting this effort going, including NTodd at Dohiyi Mir, who counseled and encouraged me to get started way back when this form of communication was still considered a trendy fad. Then there was Kenneth Quinnell, who took an idea shared over enchiladas back in 2004 and grew it to become a force in Florida politics. Melissa McEwan at what was then Shakespeare’s Sister and is now Shakesville, dropped me an e-mail one day and in her gentle style asked if I’d like to become a contributor to one of the best-known blogs in America. And shortly thereafter I was invited by Michael J.W. Stickings to be a contributor (and later contributing editor) at The Reaction. In return, each one has been a very important contributor to Bark Bark Woof Woof; being a part of their blogs has taught me a lot about politics, human interaction, and how this new medium of personal insight and observation can shape — and sometimes warp — our national and international conversation. Thank you for giving me the space and trust. And a lot of people out there have given me links to their work and even cited me on occasion. I take that as a high honor and responsibility.

I suppose this occasion could be a time for some introspection and navel-gazing, but I really don’t think I need to do that. I’ve stuck pretty much to the premise I had when I started out: to look at the world with dry bemusement and not bump into the furniture, and I think I’ve done that. There are a lot of other blogs out there, including some who get more hits in a month than I’ve gotten in the last seven years. There are bloggers who make a living at it and some who have risen to national prominence. More power to them; I admire a lot of them for their writing and their insight, and I am glad to be a part of the mix in my own way. The honest truth, though, is that I really love writing. I’ve never sat down here and drawn a blank. I may have come up with some turkeys every now and then, but all in all, I’ve not regretted having the opportunity to see what’s going on out there and put something in pixels. (In the last seven years I have rarely missed a day without posting something; the only gaps have been when I lost power for a few days during the hurricanes of 2005, and when I was in a place where there wasn’t local internet service. With one exception, I’ve written every post, and that one was a message by my friend Brian who popped in during Hurricane Katrina to let you all know that I was okay.)

For that, dear readers, you have shown remarkable tolerance, and I appreciate that very much. I knew going in that I would be held up to some pretty high standards, but the one I held up for myself was the toughest: to never bore or disappoint the people who stop by here. I hope I haven’t. I also hope that as this little blog goes forward, you will help guide me, teach me, and inspire me. Thank you.

What’s next?