Secret Pop

Sep 29, 2020

Why Not Two

I'm watching the first Presidential Debate in the year 2020.

In 2016, the first Presidental Debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump was held on September 26. It was not a great night for me. I had had a terrible weekend at the end of a difficult month. My then boyfriend came over to watch the debates with me. He wasn't nice. And a few days later, he wasn't my boyfriend anymore. Back then, while I wasn't pleased at how that outcome, I was hopeful about the presidency of Hillary Clinton.

And I guess we all know how that turned out.

And the ensuing four years have been – to put it mildly – fraught. And so, tonight, I'm at my parents' house. And it feels like a great deal more is at stake. And a great deal more is at the breaking point. And a great deal more is a little more than I can take.

Anyway, I'm exhausted. And I know I'm not the only one. We've been on quite an odyssey, haven't we?

Fresh Afire

About ten years ago (!!!), I realized I had missed a bunch of Google Domain alerts in an email address I was bad at checking, and I had lost access to the account that allowed me to manage the custom domain I had created for my blog. For some reason, this just plain undid me. Even as I'm typing this, it sounds like I was a moron. And maybe I was. Maybe I just didn't try hard enough to find a solution. I recall trying to use another route and being told there wasn't one. I told myself I would just migrate everything to WordPress and took one and half to two steps in that direction before giving in to my old friend lazy. I remember spending many hours trying to figure out how to get access back, being thwarted by a very contentious tech support person who may or not have been just some rando offering advice but not actually being affiliate with Google, and eventually settling for using the blogspot URL as an interim solution. And then that became the solution. A solution that was also a reminder of impotence and defeat and surrender. And somehow the failure to get things working the way I wanted them -- combined with a lengthy season of irritants and misery -- essentially defanged my passion for sharing longform thoughts on a platform without bluechecks.

You can see that I posted a few times, here and there. But the most recent post before this one is from 2017, when I was actually sitting in an armchair by the fire, trying to read something while listening to music, but getting ripped back into a tide nostalgia by a track from The English Patient. I reference it in the post as if it's a poetic possibility, but that is actually quite literally what happened. 2017 is a long time ago. And I have posted a great deal on Twitter since that time, but I haven't flexed these muscles there. Haven't even tried.

There's a metaphor in there somewhere. Something about wanting something so badly that compromise feels like apostasy, and giving up is so abhorrent that it chooses to be colored as opting out as a disguise for defeat. But always forgetting that there are myriad things to want, and fixation is for dummies. And if you return to the problem, oh, say, ten years later, it might be a simple cut and paste fix on a control panel you've had access to the whole time. But don't tell children that. It will diminish their capacity for grit.

I don't know that it means anything that I'm even typing this now, and it's appearing on the custom domain I so fervently sought to restore. But there are so few triumphs these days that being able to say I got my custom domain working again is a little bit of good, and I'll take it.