A Neighbourhood To Call My Own…

It’s shocking to think about, but one of the greatest tools that gave people a presence online in the 90’s is now finally closing its doors, nearly fifteen years later. It was where I started out, and I have fond memories. GeoCities, though it ruin and downfall was its own, it shall be missed.

Nostalgia is a funny thing – it’s always there, and so much seems better than it really was, in memory, but when you actually sit down and examine in it, suddenly it’s not so rosy. Like watching that old television show you remember as a kid, it might have seemed fantastic, amazing plots, brilliant characters – but in the light of day it was actually pretty shit. Of course, this is not always the case, and when it is not, it is a wonderful thing.

Right now, I am watching Magnum P.I., which let’s face it, is crass populist television, but at its best. I remember watching this show as a kid, and I’ve got to admit the Ferrari helped (I loved cars as a kid, mechanics son and all that), but even now it seems quite fun. It has aged better than say Knightrider.

That is not the reason for this post however, I am sure I could fire up a poem – but I ended up watching it after flicking through the channels in the mood for something nostalgic. It all started with an email, from Yahoo, they are closing down Geocities, and it was their umpteenth reminder that I should go and download my website there, or transfer it to their paid for hosting service.

It is quite shocking to think about, I have been a member of Geocities since probably around 1996/7, it was a fantastic service in the beginning and was the host of my first ever website, launching me into the internet age in style (well how much style, or even content, was involved is an arguable matter considering I was fifteen at the time).

Over time, I’ve always had some kind of web presence there, even if it is just to leave an old site loitering about.  Back in the early days I used to have a site in Area 51, back when GeoCities was made up of Neighbourhoods, which I used to write about sci-fi television, but that site is long forgotten in the annals of history. The site currently there has not been touched since 2002, most of it since 2001. It was a site to host all my poetry and writings, and anything else of interest such as my studies into history.

I’ve been on this morning and downloaded all the pages, while I was there, I found a site from 2007 called Aspiring (which must have been when I was between hosts), which was a very early prototype of a site I wanted to do, it was going to be a poetry ezine, much in the flavour of the Creative Edge, (which many moons ago was the ezine created, and edited by Imdaewen for writers-ramblings.com forum – this site’s precursor). I would still love, one day, to launch an ezine, but one thing at a time. So, now I have the whole website saved to my computer, the big question is, what do I do with it? Well the poetry, though it is old (most of it from my late teens, early twenties), I’m going to put in a section on here. The stories, I’m going to redo them, from scratch. They are atrociously written, the level of spelling and grammar mistakes is appalling, and the concepts were born of an age of innocence about writing and storytelling – though one, which never really got past chapter three, I’m still quite thrilled with for all its faults.

Everything else, well I guess that goes to the scrap heap of history, though I am a hoarder so for the next decade it will probably drift around on this hard drive, or that hard drive, maybe a DVD backup occasionally – where eventually I’ll stumble across it, and have all these thoughts again. That is the way of most of my digital life, I am in fact loathe to delete anything. Ironic then, that this all started because I was doing the rare job of actually deleting some of the emails in my main account, when I noticed the previously ignored warning about my GeoCities account.

I’m off to go start working on an area on this site to archive my older poetry (hopefully without clogging up my journal, or my blog homepage).

And farewell GeoCities, your demise is the end of an era. From an old Homesteader, ta-ra.

Author: jllegend

Aye, there's the rub. Difficult to sum up succinctly. Crazy, most definitely. Funny, hopefully. Lovely, certainly. Interesting, essentially.

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