Words worth a thousand pictures.

Thursday, January 9th, 2020

One of the things I used to rely on: when I wrote lots of posts for this site, they would get safely tucked away as a form of digital memory, so that later on I could search and find out what I was thinking so many years ago.

I wrote a post on the first day we got broadband (DSL, in 1999, from a once-huge company called Mindspring.) I wrote about the day a squirrel took out the power in Midtown for hours, some 12 years ago. I wrote about our planned purchase of an iPhone in 2007, because we had up until that point stayed away from having cell phones of any kind. I even wrote briefly about the Atlanta Braves winning the World Series in 1995 because that seemed like such a novel moment, and back in 1995, not that many people in our town had a website, a blog, a whatever-you’d-like-to-call-it.

Yes, that is correct, Positively Atlanta Georgia has been around for something like 24…almost 25 years. Longevity! The key to…being around for a while?

But the past few years, I’ve been much more sporadic in my writing, in part I think because I was struck by how unimportant a lot of what I had to say seemed once it was cast in the electrons of the database that holds this site. This may or may not be empirically true—but it’s certainly the feeling I had as I stepped away from making words appear here.

More recently I’ve been posting photos like this one of our christmas ‘tree’ because I figured a picture is worth some vague multiple of unimportant written words. I pointed the reader’s attention to a larger collection of my photos uploaded to Instagram and Flickr, and I’ve been pretty good about posting a lot of pictures to Instagram…and yet it feels as if in some ways I’m not really working in the spirit of the site. Some of the pictures are posted days, even weeks after I take them. They almost are never of me or of people in general—and trust me, I do know and care for a fairly normal-sized cadre of humans. I try (tried?) to post stuff that is powerful imagery in a square format that maybe punches through the day to day noise.

But there are cats and cheeseburgers too.

Scrolling back through the over 3000 images I’ve tossed Instagram’s way, I feel as if I’ve reached a point where, OK, I’ve visually said a lot of what I’d have to say. Old TV gear, coffee, newsboxes, Macs. Yeah, got it. Although it’s great to see what friends and loved ones are taking pictures of, even that experience is becoming more problematic for me. After all, as I have known for as long as it was true, Facebook owns Instagram. This experience is serving them more than it does me.

So I come back to words, expressed in chunks significantly larger than 280 characters, owned and owned up to by me and hosted right here on a site I have carefully crafted and maintained—although ‘maintained’ might be a bit charitable—sure seems as if it’s time to change the environment that presents these words and pictures because I am a graphic designer and that’s what we do after some time has passed.

I’ll be writing 500 words about the sublimities of cats and cheeseburgers, just you wait.