Well, it’s mostly over now, but it’s appropriate to mark the day anyhow… not many can claim to have been blogging continuously for 5 years, even fewer in the emerging church conversation. Congratulations are due, Mr. Jones! Festivities over at Andrew’s blog have stretched through several posts, but the most noteworthy one announcing the event is 5 Year Blogiversary and the Downfall of TallSkinnyKiwi; several others led up to this one though.
In the interest of the continued bits of revelation of Brother Maynard’s true identity, I will let it slip that I ran a news aggregation site from May 2000 to March 2003 (with a few updates to November 2003), providing daily newsbytes with pithy editorial comment on each entry, an average of three per day plus the occasional full-length article. It was all topical, technology mainly with Internet and Linux as the main focus areas. This was back before blogging became mainstream, so the software that ran the site with a MySQL back end was all home-grown and is still running today though the site is no longer being updated. I started this blog at the end of November 2004, so in one sense I guess I’ve been blogging for four and a half years… but not continuously, and not on the same subject.
2001 was when the concept of blogging as we know it started really getting off the ground. It was going on before that, but it was just becoming popular and entering the mainstream in 2001; it would take a couple of years until 2003 before it really got going as a widespread phenomenon. Prior to 2001, what we would now call a “blog” often involved a lot of manual or close-to-manual work to update, and included portal sites running Slashcode and other similar alternatives… of which there were a lot fewer at the time.
So back in 2001 when Andrew Jones started blogging, I guess I’d been at it for a year, but in a whole ‘nuther world of subject matter and style. I didn’t discover his TSK blog until late 2004… and really I hadn’t been paying attention to the emerging church conversation before then either. But I can make two observations which set his blogging accomplishments apart from that of many others, including mine.
Firstly, it’s not a small matter to keep this up day in, day out, for years on end. Five years is a long time on the Internet. What’s more, to keep up with providing original content can be draining… and not just about what you ate for breakfast and what your cat did today, but something meaningful and insightful. Andrew seems to have the juju to produce consistent results here.
Secondly, the slender Kiwi has managed to stay on topic for five years. Sure, he gets off onto technology and other subjects like the rest of us, but in essence, he’s been blogging about the emerging church and his missional endeavours within it for five full years now. It’s the singlemindedness that stands out… and maybe that’s where the juju comes from.