Bang the drum slowly

It’s October 26 here now, and I feel obligated to mark the day briefly, in public. To call it an important personal day would be a stretch, but it does bear some significance to me that Yahoo plans to pull the plug on GeoCities today.

Don’t misunderstand me: I am not now and never was so much a GeoCities fan that its passing becomes a heartbreaking event. But when I heard it was shutting down I had to take a moment and check a link that I hadn’t visited in almost a decade.

Yes, it’s shameful but true. A long time ago, when I was still new to these Intarnets, I tried to build a page or two on GeoCities. This was easily 1997 or 1998, and it was never more than a few scratchy HTML files linked with a random image or two. I never went so far as to smatter the page with rotating gif images, or embed midi tunes for my favorite TV shows. It was mostly an experiment, a sandbox, a place to dip my toes and check the water before getting serious.

Lo and behold, those cruddy little pages were still there. They hadn’t seen an update in a decade, and probably hadn’t been seen my any living being in almost as long (spiders don’t count 😉 ). It was embarrassing, but nostalgic at the same time.

I should probably pull those files off the servers before they’re deleted, but I don’t remember my password for the account. I looked at the plan to file all those sites away for “eternity,” but honestly, I could care less about my files. They’re a decade old, barely related at all to my life now, and I’d probably just throw them out anyway. Yahoo is doing me a favor, so to speak.

It’s still sad though — like your remembering your first bicycle, or finding an old teddy bear in the closet. Not so dramatic or serious as some other personal milestones, but I’m sure you understand.

Anyway, I’m probably not the only person to look back on GeoCities as an entry point to the 21st century. Maybe this is how future generations will mark their own maturation — by whether or not their first presence on the Web is still accessible, or if it was reset to a string of zeros on some corporate server somewhere. Welcome to the new human empathy.

P.S.: Link? Absolutely not. 😉


12 thoughts on “Bang the drum slowly

  1. Timmy

    Your stinginess regarding divulging personal information has paid off: I can’t find it with Google.

  2. Sam Weston

    Do you intentionally fail to mention where your home country is or does it just not end up in articles? I’ve been really curious for a while now. My current theory is the UK but that’s where i’m from so I would think that.

    1. K.Mandla Post author

      All the exciting details are here, the other information … just isn’t exciting, really.

      I have a strict rule about personal information on the Internet, not so much out of paranoia as just a preference for anonymity. I like to think that by leaving out things like gender, race, nationality, etc., I avoid any prejudices on those grounds that might otherwise qualify anything I say or feel or explain. There are people who are judgmental for superficial reasons, and I think keeping a complete nonpersona keeps me neutral, so to speak.

      I have made mistakes in the past and had to edit to correct them. I once used a phrase that alluded to my gender, and someone caught it, and I had to go back and edit it out. … 😳

      1. Sam Weston

        Fair enough. I’ve pretty much entirely failed at being anonymous on the internet but try to keep things such as my address/dob completely offline. Sorry I started a massive thread of speculation…I was just curious about where home was, but that’s none of my business at all 😛

  3. Timmy

    Summary of everything I’ve learned.
    *He lives in an apartment in Japan, but is not from there. I think he said he’s a journalist.
    *He makes reference to his “American friends” in a way that suggests he’s not American.

  4. Sam Weston

    Yeah I’ve noticed that, and I haven’t noticed any american spellings so that’s why UK is my theory. I also believe him to have some link to Birmingham (do some googling).

  5. Pointless_Conjecture

    For the record everything I’m about to type really doesn’t amount to a hill of beans as it’s this persons prerogative to remain anonymous. But as such as provided above human nature appears to be curious. Also my opinion is based on my neck of the woods only.

    As far as where K is from according to this blog K lived in America before taking a job in Japan. It was also noted that Ks parents lived in America as well[I think] (Even though in Ks Ubuntu interview K appears to be well traveled).

    As far as gender goes I’m leaning toward female. Why? [again this based off of where I live] I can’t seem to find the search box now so no links, but in the 15 sec boot video the timer is a light blue blackberry. Also in one of the pics of a laptop there was a female type brush sitting next to it. In Ks Ubuntu interview K references being a secretary in a past life. K also appears to be very passionate about the Ubuntu womans something or other or something to that effect. And last (that I can remember since I can’t search for links) always talking about gold stars and such.

    Now could the items have been borrowed/left by a woman? Absolutely. Can a man be passionate about womans affairs and and say things like you get a gold star? Sure. Even be a secretary? Not a problem. But around here seeing those things in a text only format without any type of context would lead me to believe that it’s either a woman typing it or or they play for the other team so to speak.

    And anyway at the end of the day all that will be gained out of any of these replies will probably be a smile on the other side of a computer screen.

    Now back to being one of the nameless masses that read this site for the content…

  6. Adrian

    Hahaha, the info about K has made me wonder for a looooooong time. I’d love to read a little biography about you, there must be something that makes you write this well.
    (As I’m studying to become a journalist, I’m very interested in this for myself..)


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