2020/7/15: statement of intent

I like messing around with rudimentary HTML as a hobby. There's something charming about the fact that if you strip away a lot of the aesthetic and functional patches-on of the last two decades of web coding language, everything still has the potential to look like a geocities site underneath. Lately I find myself nostalgic for that era of the internet (as evidenced by the look of the rest of this website, though that is also partially coincidental with the fact that I'm typing all of it out in a Sublime window myself after reading two pages of W3 documentation) - in an aesthetic sense, but also in asense of what felt like a more true internet 'web' of sites, rather than everyone taking their pick from 5 different advertisement platforms.

I suppose this is a clouded nostalgia. A lot of this web browsing happened when I was very young (somewhere in the ballpark of 10-14 if I had to guess), so I didn't really have a good sense of the world at the time, and my English wasn't too hot, which contributed to the wandering.

My three most distinct memories from that age of browsing are:

1. getting really embarassed because I emailed the author of a shockwave animated series asking him when the next "serie" of his cartoon would be (the Lithuanian word for 'episode' is 'serija') and getting a response to the effect of "well, uh, I only really have plans for this current series"

2. reading 8-Bit Theater and thinking it was the best thing ever because it was a comic and it looked like a videogame (one I wouldn't figure out how to play myself for another 5-ish years) despite not really understanding any of it

3. getting laughed out of the 8-Bit Theater forums because I posted my own attempt at a sprite comic which involved a sort of Rayman-style original character named Jarr (IIRC, the punchline of the first and only strip involved someone calling for him from off-screen, and then a giant jar of jam falling on his head)

Of course, just because my recollections are hazy and inaccurate, it doesn't make the feelings any less true. And recently there have been projects such as Hypnospace Outlaw or the sort of revival/reimagining hub of Neocities that let me know others have what feels to be a similar memory & fascination. More than that, I feel an obligation to my younger self to play around in this nostalgic-hobbyist space, especially since I have my own website with my very own domain - a pie in the sky dream for young internet browser titas.

I remember making my own "websites" in my dad's copy of Word or Powerpoint. The one I remember most vividly had this image as the tiling background, a ton of outset-style borders and a little clip-art image of a school next to the part where I wrote "My name is Titas, I am currently in 2nd grade in school". This might explain the current artistic direction for this site.

This entry might sound a lot like me talking myself into something. I'm a naturally incredibly flaky person, and it takes a lot of effort for me to motivate myself into maintaining a habit (if it doesn't naturally involve me receiving some sort of direct treat), so I suppose I am talking myself into something here. I don't really want to position myself too much in a state of opposition to a phenomena here (in this case, increasingly homogenised social media as a primary platform for self-expression online) because I worry it might shape the resulting object as a thing of in-opposition, rather than something of its own merits, but for now it feels unnatural to skip noting this stance.

I've kind of eroded my ability to read or write longform over the last decade or so, and I'd like to reclaim it. The skills I have feel vestigal. I wrote a long-form comic two years ago, but it almost feels like it doesn't count because a) it is a comic, b) it is mostly a biographical one, and c) my own writing in it feels rambling and meandering. Maybe this is a strength, and not a flaw? I don't really know right now - I haven't carved out a space to consider it for myself for a very long time now. I had some proto-blog posts lying around from a year or two ago, but they all feel really embarassing to read through again, though maybe that is in part due to me trying to be a very specific idea of "someone" that I have been letting go of. Who knows. Right now I'm thinking of the high school essay paragraph structure, thinking about how this paragraph is running on, and that I don't really have a conclusion sentence for it.

I don't have a conclusion paragraph either... Well, let's hope I feel motivated enough to keep writing (and finding things to write about) for at least a little while. Though having a website update that's like

2020/07/15 - Feeling motivated! Here's to a productive future! :-D

and then radio silence for a decade would be very in tune with the many archived Geocities websites that I am sort-of evoking the spirit of here. I suppose only time will tell.