School’s Out For Summer

I found out the other day that my old Primary School turned 100 years old in 2015. Pity I didn’t get an invite to the celebrations, if there was any.
Anyway, it got me thinking of all those memories from primary school, and I thought I would share them with you now.

  • Getting told off for drawing tyres on a car incorrectly, because I had wasted crayon by not drawing them as perfect circles.
  • Walking past the Milk Bar next to the school to see the newspaper masthead “Lennon Dead”.
  • Only ever being picked last, if at all for play time sports.
  • Having to walk on an imaginary tightrope, while only wearing my underwear. Not sure what that one was about.
  • Finding part of a gold sticker box, which had been stolen from some classroom. I reported it and got accused of stealing it in the first place.
  • The multipurpose room, and playing a reindeer in a school play.
  • Christmas beetles.
  • The library being burnt down by someone.

Yeah. Great memories indeed.  

Unsafe Schools

The government inquiry into the Safe Schools programme has really got my goat up. As much as I try to remain calm in all walks of life these days, I seething at this and the attempts to shit the programme down by hook or by crook.
Now it may seem strange, given I finished my formal education nearly 25 years ago, that I would be so cut up about this. But it’s not just about the school years, it’s about the ongoing affect of not having something like a Safe Schools programme.
Before I started school I knew who I was. I knew who I identified as. I also knew that it was wrong, that I was sick, that I could never say anything to anyone, and that if anyone ever found out, then any harm that came my way, was entirely my own fault. I hadn’t even started school and I already knew that I shouldn’t exist.

All through my schooling I had this burden hanging over my head. When I got called phobic things, my head went into overdrive wondering if they actually knew, or if they had somehow found out. What was it I was doing wrong? Did I pick up my pencil the wrong way. Did I answer a question in a way that was unacceptable? Did they notice how I was ashamed of my body when getting changed for gym class, and how I dare not look at others, in case that awkward split second where I accidentally made eye contact with someone else was read as me trying to pick them up. Every single moment I spent at school was filled with worry and doubt, and the fear of when the next bashing would take place simply because I was “odd”. All these things made me hate being at school. All these things made me despise education, the learning process, the interaction with my peers, and it certainly showed in my grades, which lead to even more issues on the home front. My childhood was not filled with opportunities to soak up information and explore the world around me and become a better person. No, I was living day by day in absolute fear, having to sweat out the small things, having to make sure that closet was firmly shot, the doors bolted, and nothing could get through, because if it did, it would be a fate worse than death.

Safe Schools is not about teaching how to pick up people of the same sex. It is not about showing kids 17 different ways to bump and grind. It is not about converting kids to same sex attraction, or to question their gender. It is about one thing, and one thing alone, education.

Education that being different from others is ok. Education that others being different to you is ok. Education that words and actions can have an affect on people not just at the time they are spoken, but for the rest of their life. People may say that it’s just kids being kids, and it will all wash off like water from a duck. Yet here I am all these years later and I am still fearful of people I went to school with, despite not having seen them for 30 years. Oh how I wish people had been educated in my day, so they wouldn’t have done and said those harmful things. Oh how I wish I had learnt to be able to accept myself, so that I could have gotten on with the stuff that mattered in school.

Reading today about some of the achievements of Safe Schools has been heartening. A school which I know has had LGBTI phobic staff in the past, is now lauding it’s students for telling off another school’s students that homophobic remarks are not welcome on the footy field. Of schools where a primary student will now be attending as the boy they are, and all the students celebrating with a cake, before getting on with learning and no big deal about any of it, just pure acceptance. Where students now feel as though they are welcome at school, and are now shining at learning. Where young people are no longer suicidal simply because they know they have somewhere in their life that is safe.

I have to say, regarding that last point, that is one thing that has really annoyed me with all of this. Reading the articles about the Safe Schools programme, and seeing at the bottom of the page the links to LifeLine, Kids Helpline, and Headspace. It has to be there because these kids are under attack simply because they exist, and it is making them suicidal. People against programmes that aid LGBTI kids often blurt out the old classic “Think of the children”. Well why on Earth don’t you do the same thing and stop putting your own prejudices ahead of these children, and their human right to exist. Seriously people! Do you really think that some kid being LGBTI and feeling safe is less important than your worry that people like this exist, and because of your worry that they exist means they should think being dead is the better option?

You know, if your little Johnny gets told by little Timmy that Timmy finds him attractive, surely little Johnny should be comfortable enough to say that while he is thankful for the compliment, he doesn’t have the same feelings for little Tommy, but that’s ok, they can still be friends. You know when your little Johnny grows up and is out partying with his drunken mates, he isn’t going to go bash someone because they look Gay, because they have known all through their schooling that Gay people are no threat at all to him. You know, little Johnny may end up successful, and may end up running his own business, employing a lot of people. At some point in that business, when one of the employees makes an absolute arse of themselves by being LGBTI phobic, little Johnny will know that’s bad for his business and will have the knowledge, the education, and the experience he needs to deal with it appropriately. In other words, your kid will grow up to be a far better person that you will ever be. Or is that really offensive to you, and how you think the world should be, simply because you lack the knowledge, the education, the experience to not be an arsehole?

Safe Schools is not about harming kids. It is not about making kids think they are Gay. It is not about breaking down the very fabric of society as we know it. The programme is simply a way to let every kid know they are valued, regardless of if they are LGBTI or not. It is about making society a better place at a grass roots level, not just for the school years, but for lives. The same way we have educated ourselves about so many issues over the years, this is just another example of that happening, so why would we want to stop it? Gee I really wish this had existed when I was at school. I know it would have made a huge difference to my life, and to how I am today as a person.

Housekeeping!

maid

Digging up this blog again was not without issues. Many of the links are broken. Many of the back room elements no longer work. But the biggest problem of course is the MOEs, or Massive Operator Errors that are being caused by myself.

One thing that I know may be annoying some people is having to log in to make a comment. There is a very good reason for that. In the past I have been trolled in online terms, and publicly attacked in real life terms. So despite any protests, the log in requirement will stay, as will the moderation of all comments before they are posted. This isn’t to censor anyone, and let’s face it, if people want to write or say nasty things, I can’t stop that from happening. What I can do though is stop it from happening on my blog, and that’s something that will stay.

I’m still working on getting posts to happen regularly, and with some certainty. I’m learning all of this blog stuff again, and I also have decided on a day that posts will happen regularly. What I’d like to do is have it that posts go up on a set date (easy to do), but also have it that a link is generated to the facebook group for this blog, and my twitter feed. Give me time, and I’ll get there.

I use to have a little chat box off to the side, but that got filled up with spam, so not sure if that will return. I’m not sure if there is a point to it these days either.

Content is the big thing of course regarding this blog. I’m still sorting that one out. Most of what I write has a link to something that has been happening in recent times, but I’m undecided if I should make these links public. It’s a double edged sword, because sometimes it helps people to make sense of what I’m writing about. But on the other hand, by not posting the links, minds run and people make up their own mind (often wrong) as to what I’m referring to.

The other thing is the title of posts. In the past I’ve used some random comment from the post, or a song lyric I think has some kind of link to the subject matter (often cryptic) or just filled in the blank space with nonsense. Not sure if I should keep doing this, or come up with something more random.

While some of you are accessing this blog through a Facebook link, you may also find that I will put up posts that aren’t linked, like the post that’s before this one. That post was a ramble during a moment. Good luck working it out. These kind of “unlisted” posts will happen from time to time, and I may also do a secret section, if I can work out how to do it.

So that’s housekeeping for now. Don’t expect big changes around here any time soon, I’ll just make the changes slowly, if at all. It’s a bit difficult when your computer is on it’s last legs, but that’s for another blog post.

Enter title here

Get down, put down, negative narrative.
Self worth is no worth when acceptance of yourself leads to rejection.
Rejection by those with the power to reject and harm, who glorify themselves in the pain of others.
They say it is love, to be tough is to grow and nurture.
But how can a tree grow to be itself when it is constantly pruned?
When it is denied soil in which to stand. When it is denied water on which to nourish?
How can that tree grow up to be all that it can, when it much conform to another’s view?
Looking into the eyes of a new born you may see blankness and lack of understanding.
But they see and accept everything simply because it exists before them.
They do not deny out of fear and hate.
They do not seek to denigrate.
They do not remonstrate against that that is.
Hate is learned.
Hate is welcomed.
Hate is preferred by those who wish not to be part of this world, but want to destroy it for their own desires.
How you dress, how you react, how you accept your body.
How dare you go against the narrative, how dare you be positive.
You can not challenge what has been decided for you, not by who you are, but what others decided in a split second.
If you don’t tow the line, the line will be used to break you.
And when you snap it is all your fault, never the fault those with the power to break you.
So you must be punished.
You must return to what others desire.
They ignore the cracks, the rift, the shattered pieces, that they created.
It is all your fault for not being able to conform.
It is all your fault that the broken branch bares no fruit.
The were just trying to help.
It’s all your fault their desires don’t work for you.
It’s all your fault the world is not exactly how they desire.
Regather the line, more breaking is needed, repeat the cycle, increase the hate.
The more the hate grows, the more the desires will be realised.
Gather up the line again, more breaking until conformity.
And even when there is nothing left to break, continue to break.
Break in your mind, in your memories, in your words.
Make sure the hate is known, the hate is right, keep telling yourself.
Keep the negative narrative alive, denying true is worth it, that’s what you remind yourself.
Putting up that will is better than accepting the truth.
Justify yourself through the small pieces of the broken mirror, from the reflection you destroyed.

Blood Red Moon

I know I’ll never be a singer, songwriter, or musician. But it doesn’t mean I can’t stuff around with dreams.

… and, we’re back!

Well, sort of. Oh where do we begin.

So some of you may have noticed that the website is now a dot net, instead of being a dot com. Long story that.

The old domain was up for renewal, but it got stuffed up by the company I was with, who failed to send out the bill. You see, they were purchased by a bigger company, and some things got left behind in the old office. My account was one of those things. So they locked the account. After some phone calls, they unlocked the account so that I could move it to another company.
But when the other company tried to move things, the old company blocked it, then said I would have to pay them over $200 to make the move, because the domain had now expired. Turns out they didn’t have a record of the deal we had sorted out on the phone the previous day. Talk about useless.

So then I had two options. Pay out the money to the old company, despite having already paid the new company for the domain. Or I could wait until the domain expired back into public domain, and snap it up again, before a domain sitter got it.

Well the domain sitter got it first.

So then I needed a new address, and the dot net was the next best thing. Thankfully now, things are just about sorted out, there is just the need to get all the links sorted it. It will take a while though, as I now have no internet at home. But that’s a whole new issue, for another day.

A decade on….

Today is the day. Gee it snuck up on me quickly. Ten years ago today is when I drew a line in the metaphorical sand, and decided to live my life as me. Seems weird I know, after all, how can you not be you when you are you? Well think of it this way; Ever been to a black tie event? You know, something where there is a dress code, and you have to present yourself a certain way, and it made you feel uncomfortable? You knew it wasn’t you, but you did it because it was expected of you.

 

Well that was my whole life.

 

So a change had to happen, and a change did happen. It was both the best and worst thing I could have done with my life, and it’s very interesting when you look at the standpoint of who is deciding if it was the best or worst. For me it was the best, but for everyone else in my life at the time, it was considered the worse.

 

You see, everyone puts expectations on other people as to the way they should be. Sometimes with reason, sometimes for nothing more than self vanity. If you’re the coach of a sporting team, putting expectations on people to perform or be a certain way is justifiable, to a certain extent. You can set a minimum standard for while they are on the field, set goals for them to achieve, even get players to aim for the stars. Off the field you can say how you would like them to be, but you have no real control over it. Sure there are consequences of off the field indiscretions that lead to on field penalties, but at the end of the day people get to make their own choices.

 

You may the be boss of someone in a workplace, and you can set the standard for what they have to achieve in order to keep their job. You have a little bit of say in their out of work activities (don’t turn up to work drunk), but no real control until they get into the workplace.

 

I was raised in a family that had certain beliefs. Nothing unusual there. But it was more a case of an existence without individuality than a life. I couldn’t be me, because it didn’t suit their image of me. If I had wanted to be me, then obviously I wasn’t doing it in my own best interests, I was doing it as a way to punish and hurt those around me. My core beliefs were not in alignment with theirs, and because of that mine were wrong. There was no discussing the matter, as I already had two options. I could tow the line and do what I was told, or I could be me, and I could be punished for the rest of my life for that.

 

So I towed the line.

 

The problem with towing the line is, over the years the line gets heavier. It picks up added bits and pieces along the way, and it becomes more and more difficult. It is also rather pointless towing a line that gives you no benefit at all. It is like saying to someone “You can live forever, but only if you never take another breath”. Everyone knows you have to breath to stay alive, so to do otherwise is pointless.

 

Then one day, snap.

 

The actual snap wasn’t a sudden decision. I had made up my mind years earlier to be me, but I kept it hidden. After all, I had a line to tow, and it was more than enough weight on my shoulders with out being me at the same time. There was no way the two could co-exist. Instead “me” was more of a pot of water on simmer, just gently bubbling away with the lid on. Every now and then there had been a little bit of boil over, but the lid stayed on, the mess was wiped away, and back to towing the line I went.

When the snap happened, it was an amazing experience. I felt like for the first time in my life (at that stage 29 years) that I was seeing clearly. It was like going from having only ever seen in black and white, to suddenly realising there are colours. While at the time I was still attached to the rope I had been towing, I was at least seeing a clear path to get away from it. All the fears I had had were gone, now there was only purpose and direction in my life. Finally I could see a life and not an existence in my future. But this all came at a cost.

 

To dislike is easy, to hate takes commitment.

 

The people in my life didn’t like me one little bit. Over the coming months as more and more people found out that I am now me, they turned. They turned nasty. They turned away. They turned hateful. They turned others against me. They turned the reality into a warped pseudo reality that this was all about them and not me.

It was an interesting time in my life. At the time I could have used a bit of support and understanding, but it was not to be. People don’t like it when they lose control of something they have always had, and so they fight it. This wasn’t a fight over an inanimate object, or money, or anything like that, no. Instead they were fighting against me being me, instead of their opinion of how I should be. It all seems rather silly doesn’t it.

Unfortunately instead of enjoying my life, and learning more about me, instead I was having to fight for the mere right to exist as me. The punishment dealt out by those around me certainly wasn’t fitting of the crime, not that a crime had been committed in the slightest. No instead of agreeing to disagree, or even just walk away, those around me decided they had to do everything possible to get me to tow the line again, and make sure the load was heavier for me even thinking that my life was my own.  What the hell gave them the right to do that, other than their own self appointment?

So I did the only thing I could. I got on with living in reality, and making the best of things the best I could. The funny thing is, I have gotten out of life what I expected I would get out of it, despite their song and dance carry on.

The unfortunate thing is, all but one of the people in my life at that time who tried to control me, are still living in that pseudo existence, denying reality and recreating history so that in their own minds they won. It’s a shame because there was never anything to win, but they still live that way, even now.

 

Summing up the last decade. Well I can really put it into three parts. The first few years were the hardest. Every time I felt like I was taking a step forward, I was knocked down again. It seemed like my decision to be me was the worst decision I could have made. I attempted suicide during this time, because it doesn’t matter how strong anyone is, you can only take so much. When I made the decision to turn my life around and be me, instead of what I was expected to be, I was already in a bit of a ditch. Getting to the point of attempting suicide really was hitting rock bottom. For anyone who has never attempted it, and failed, you will never really understand how embarrassing that is. When deciding to take your own life, people only see the negative, with out seeing the statement being made. “Taking your own life” is a very profound statement to make indeed. You are not looking to kill yourself, you are looking to take control. There are a variety of reasons as to why you would want to take control, and even though I have been in that situation, I wouldn’t even know where to start with the many reasons someone could be in that mindset. All I know is, for me at that time, it was the most logical and best solution to me taking control of my life, and I failed at it. That’s what makes it so embarrassing. I needed support from those around me, no one had the time to support, only to hate. I was even told to go and do it, to put everyone else out of their misery and to stop wasting their time.

Before I decided to be me, I thought I was already at rock bottom. It certainly was a learning experience. These tough times helped to define the person I am today. I know there is a lot more to life than that I can control. There is more to life than that I can see. There is more to life than I will ever know. What I can do though, is choose to either accept things as they are, to have nothing to do with them and let them go about their business, or I can learn from them, and in return teach them, and together we may find a common ground.

The next few years were the years of the dust settling after the war. Sure the conflict might be over, but there is a lot of cleaning up to do and a lot of redefining of boundaries, while there are still tensions in the air. It was during this time that I really started to enjoy life, or at least learn how to enjoy it. Learning is always a difficult thing to do, and it takes time, making a lot of mistakes along the way. I guess this was the time in my life where I had always dreamed my life would be, but now that I am here, I don’t know what to do. As I write this I think of the line said by Heath Ledger in Dark Knight, where as the Joker he says “I’m like a dog chasing a car…, I wouldn’t actually know what to do if I caught one.”

It was during these years that I think I really started to find myself, and it was also the time where I actually had the freedom to do so. It seems unusual to be in my mid thirties and finally getting the chance to discover myself, but then again, I had to spend a long time searching for myself. It was also a very depressing time, as I looked back on all the years I had wasted in my time, and how if things had been different, if I had only stood up for myself ten years earlier than I did, then life could have been a whole lot different.

 

The last few years have been an interesting time in my life. I feel like I am finally finding my place in the world, now that I know myself better. It hasn’t necessarily made me a better person, but with understanding comes opportunity. It is much easier to plan things, when you have a clear road ahead of you, and I feel like I am now in the position to start down that road. Sure things may change as I go along, but now I can make decisions and know they are my own to make, with out others having a say in what the outcome will be. This is not to say that I an in the position to be selfish, or to put my interests ahead of others. Nor to even say that I am in the position to be controlling of the direction of someone else’s life, something I would never want to do anyway. It means instead that I am able to accept the decisions I make as being in my own control to make, with out the influence of others, because they believe their self interests come first. It certainly is a nice position to be in. It’s my own little patch in which I can feel safe, in which I can gather my thoughts and energy, in which I can be me.

Having my own little patch is comforting. I can invite others in, to stay for as long as I choose, and while they are here they don’t control me. I am at a stage in my life where I feel like I’ve been in a cage all my life, and now I am walking in the sunshine, on freshly cut grass, for the first time. It’s a new sensation, and I really don’t understand it, but I am enjoying the experience, and no one else is deciding how much of it I can enjoy, or for how long.

 

For many years I fought to have freedom of my mind. For much of that time I didn’t know what I was fighting for. Then when I did know, I didn’t know how to fight for it. Then when I did know, I needed to fight the battle with other people who wanted to deny I even had a fight at all, despite it being them now throwing the punches. Then I had to fight with myself again to realise what I had achieved.

These days I don’t need to fight at all, but I do still need to keep on my toes. I’ve seen the darker side of life, both internally and externally, and it’s not a good place to be. Being in a place you feel comfortable in, both mentally and physically is a difficult thing to do, when you haven’t only experienced it in your life. You fight to keep it, because for some reason those who have always had it in them, see what you are trying to achieve in yourself as taking away from them, when nothing could be further from the truth.

 

I wouldn’t say I am happy with what I have achieved over the last decade, but I am at least proud. It doesn’t matter in the slightest what other people think, or how they think what I have done affects them, good or bad. At the end of the day all you can be is yourself, and be the best you that you can be. I had to fight the fight. I had to take the long road. But at the end of it all, I can safely say,

I am proud to be me, and no one can stop that.

Knowledge is wonderful

I hadn’t planned to blog today, but after tweeting the following statement, I thought I should expand on it:
I will never mock lack of knowledge, because people can and do learn. But I will always mock stupidity paraded as knowledge.

So what does this all mean? Well I’ve been told many times, both online and in person that I am a heartless bitch. It comes across as the last straw in an argument, when all else fails, do a personal attack. But when someone doesn’t have knowledge, I will not mock them, I will instead work with them to educate them. If people insist they are right, in the face of proven evidence against their beliefs, then I will mock them.

Let’s look at this a simple way. Say 2+2=4, then you would be correct. If someone says 2+2=22, well then they are wrong, but you can see the logic in how they got to that answer. Once you teach them that adding two numbers together doesn’t work that way, fantastic.

But if someone insists that 2+2=5, because the + symbol has mystical and ancient powers that just can’t be explained by modern science, well they are an idiot and should be called out on it.

Now that’s a very simplistic explanation, but the same still holds true for all kinds of things, that unfortunately many people hold as true. Even when they contradict themselves, they still dodge the truth, often with the excuse that if they don’t understand it, then no one can understand it, so we have to just accept it. That is blatant stupidity.

So what kind of things am I talking about? Well it’s things like religion, chiropractic, alternatives to medicine, anti vaccination, psychic powers, basically any kind of woo.

[Admin’s note: Just found this unfinished blog, time to continue it]

People who peddle this kind of stuff fall into two categories:
1. They are a scam artist, in it for the money.
2. They have no idea of reality, and truly believe something works beyond all proof that it doesn’t.

The first ones are easy to spot. When you challenge them to prove their claims, they usually get hostile, or threaten legal action, or even try to become violent.
The second ones will contradict themselves, and then when it is pointed out to them, they will just throw out a line like “Science can’t explain everything. It’s impossible to know everything, so we have to accept it.”

This type of statement really annoys me. Yes it is true science doesn’t know everything, but not knowing something isn’t grounds for proof that something unknown is happening.

United States Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld was ridiculed when he made the statement:

There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don’t know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don’t know we don’t know.

But he was actually very smart in what he said.
“There are known knowns”, the sky is blue, we all die at some point, and coffee is way to expensive for what you actually get.
“There are known unknowns”, the universe is full of things we have yet discovered. The same applies to the bottom of the ocean floor. We know they exist, but we don’t know what we will find there.
“There are unknown knowns”, every day new discoveries are being made. Every day we discover new things about stuff we thought we knew everything about. As scientist explore things in new ways never previously thought possible, it opens up new avenues of discovery, in areas we didn’t know about, or hadn’t previously attempted.

So while science doesn’t know all of the unknown knowns yet, they are being worked on. But at the same time, there are many things that are known and set in stone. A hologram in a plastic band. Doesn’t have mystical powers that make you more powerful, that’s easy to prove. Someone saying it is mystical, or ancient, or that “the powers that be know this, but don’t want you to know it” is just utter bullshit. If someone had made such a remarkable, unbelievable, almost too good to be true, statement, would they really be selling it in a supermarket, or online, or on the telly? No, they would be claiming a Nobel prize in physics, and making millions off it that way, as it would open up a whole new world of discovery. The simple fact is, if someone throws in a lot of science sounding words, and then backs them up with a testimonial, then all they are doing is ripping you off.

So getting back to the original statement. If you make a stupid claim, I will mock you and continue to mock you. If you make a discovery that is world changing, I will herald you from the top of the highest mountain I can climb.

So much fun in the bed.

So recently the other half and I got a new bed. Well secondhand, but pretty much new. We upgraded from a Queen size to a King size, and got something called a Sleep Number bed. I’m not one much for doing the whole brand name thing on the blog here, but it kind of has to happen for this story.
For those who don’t know, these beds have an air pocket, that you can adjust to your own liking. It’s not like sleeping on an air bed in the slightest,unless you set the pressure really low. Think of it as having a nice car, but if the tyres are set to 10psi, it will handle like crap.
This particular bed is a top of the range model, but was for sale for $100, because the owner just wanted it out of their house. We looked at the reviews online, which were pretty mixed, but figured for that price it was worth a punt. After all the mattress we had was giving us both back pain, so why not try something else?

The reviews as I said were pretty mixed, but one thing that was often repeated was “the divider in the middle is way too hard”. Now this divider is a light to medium density foam, with a zig zagged edge. It’s about 30mm wide, and runs the length of the bed. It’s only function is to keep the two sides apart. How anyone can think this divider ruins the feel of these beds I do not know. Having a feather gently stroked down your thigh would leave more of an impression than the divider, but for some reason people opinion this makes the bed unsleepable.

So the missus and I, being the immature people we are, have used this divider as a comedy tool, and it has rewarded us with gold. When we are in conversation about anything, and I mean anything, one of us usually works in a reference to the bed divider, and how we will have to leave a review on a website about it. Not just any website, but any website. Four Square, Facebook, LinkedIn, Urban Spoon, iTunes, IMDb, caravan parks, etc. you name it, it’s been suggested. Two girls, one foam divider was one of my favourites, and we have even suggested the JFK assassination wouldn’t have happened, if the bed divider wasn’t so damn hard. (He could have rolled back, and to the left to get a better night’s sleep)

It may be a really silly thing but seriously, who would have though a bit of foam could bring so much joy to a couple of girls who like to sleep together?

Oh yeah, I remember them.

Last night I remember the name of someone who had helped me years ago. It was about a decade or so ago, when I was going through a really bad time in my life, and needed some help. No one I knew could help me, or were even there to talk to about it, so I turned to the Internet.

Now these days you can google, Facebook, twitter, Wikipedia just about anything, sometimes with alarming results. But all those years ago, in the ale 1990’s and the early 2000’s the Internet was a very different place.

Not only was the Internet finding it’s feet, but so were the people who were using it. Many people were putting every single detail of their life out there, as if to say, “I now have access for the whole world to hear my voice, and hear it they will”. I was thankful for their decision to do this, and I made friends with a few of them.

One of those people is the name I remembered last night, so I googled them. The results showed millions of people with that name, but not the one I was looking for. So a bit more searching, with more refinements, and eventually I found them. Well not really, it was a page archived from 2003, and the only thing more recent was from 2006, where someone else asked what happened to them.

But this wasn’t a one off. After searching for this person, a few other names from back then started to show up, and it was the same case with all of them. At some point or another, they had all gone off the net, or had decided to go private with their details.

This got me thinking today. We are basically now moving into a new generation of Internet users. People who were never there during these early days of the net, who never experienced Netscape, GeoCities, etc. Yahoo Groups is quickly fading, and MySpace has been and gone like the uncle you only see at Christmas time.

For me, those times were the Internet being a kid, exploring the world, just before puberty happened. Now, it’s definitely self aware, more mindful of itself, and is thinking about it’s future. People today still post a lot of stuff on the Internet, but they seem to not be as open publicly. I know that’s the case with myself. My old blog use to have photos of me on there, and I was very open about my life. These days, I rather not let the world know the real me, so instead present a sanitised, more joyous, persona of myself. In a way the Internet is not so much a personal diary that I like to share, but more like a job where I have to be mindful of the content I write, or I get fired.

So on the off chance any of those people who helped me so long ago are still around, thank you for being there, and doing what you did, when you did it. I guess I lucked out being in the right place at the right time, when things were better, back in the good old days.