Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Everybody, this is newblog. Newblog, this is everybody.

I have referred to myself for some time as the godfather of Buffalo Blogging. Some people may not know the true origins of the original Well, you're about to: After ComedySportz, in the hazy time that was Mutant Rasputin! and the infancy of the Eclectic Co., someone (Don? Johnny K.? Adam?) started an on-line community that was somehow affiliated with aol or the aim service. I joined. A benefit of joining this group was a smidge of server space, with which you could do as you pleased. I cranked out a little blurb each week or so about what I was up to, and what strange and/or interesting things were happening to and around me at the time. Generally, the stories came done to how awesome I am. This page, which I named "Dave Hoffmann Kicks Ass", was only available (I think) to the other members of the community, ie. the comedians and actors with whom I spent the vast majority of my time. But still, they found it entertaining. I usually credit Johnny K. with the genesis of dhka because he was a vocal and dedicated fan right from the beginning. With encouragement, I leased the url, and rented some server space. The server came with some push-button publishing features which I used for a while, and the dhka was pushed out of the nest. Soon, a demand for more content than I was willing or able to produce created an opportunity for me to invite friends to join my site. Alex, Todd and Sarah were regular contributors, with Schoen and Goose making guest appearances. Starmer and Greg were practically contributors, thanks to the popular trivia feature, which Alex provided. (Answers to the Intellectual of the Week question may have been Garvey's first on-line publication.) My job at Canisius afforded me an opportunity to learn a little about web production and publishing, and gave me access to a couple of programs which I used to increase the professionalism of the site. At it's prime, the site offered 6 new articles plus trivia every Friday, and attracted over 200 hits a week. The site sponsored a band and a softball team. I had business cards. By now, rather than pay for more server space, I was posting the site on the Canisius servers, which is one of the main reasons I stopped doing the site. When I moved to Ireland, I left Canisius, and left my free servers and publishing software. I really didn't intend to keep it up from overseas, and when I got back, I had none of the necessary equipment or resources to start anew. This was the unceremonious end of

I always seem to remember being first. I call myself the godfather because I am pretty sure I was on the interwebs before the Royal Toybox or BA Start or the other half dozen friends of mine who are bloggers. There was, I think, some overlap with blogspot. I specifically remember discussing Alex and Sarah starting their own thing on my website. I don't claim that these guys came along to fill some void left by the demise of the dhka. But what blogger has become for me is one-sided way to keep up with my friends who I don't see nearly as often as I should. I still consider these people to be close friends, because they post what they are doing and what
strange and/or interesting things are happening around them. I read their blogs, frequently, and keep up with them. When I do see one of these people, I can immediately discuss these things, because I have been kept up. But I realize that they may not consider me as close a friend, since I have made no effort to keep them up with me.

The Royal Toybox is a shining beacon on blogspot. Not only is Mike brilliant and funny, but he crafts his posts in such a manner that the reader can really feel like they are keeping up with him. I talk to Mike maybe twice a year, but I feel as though I know a lot about his life and experiences. This is a great thing about blogging. I recognize that as time passes, we are becoming less and less likely to socializing more - and not just me and Mike, but all of us - this blogging thing seems like a great way to keep everyone up to speed, and make everyone feel like they are still included in our lives, even when we haven't the time or energy to do so individually.

With that, and prompted by the Toybox's BufBloPoFo challenge, I'd like to introduce everyone to

A couple of notes about the name:
dhka.blogspot was taken, and appears to be a blank page was purchased shortly after I let my lease lapse - presumably because of the high traffic. It is now the home to some weird travel package site or something.