Can you believe THIS was on my Twitter feed? (And the @jonimueller feed, no less; not the @pixelitadesigns feed, which would make SOME sense.) Atrocious grammar and all. Yeesh. “@jonimueller hello i am a graphics designer like you,but i just a beginner,can you teach me some of you’r portofolio, please follow back.” What happened to picking up a book, taking an online course?! What am I? Some kind of cement mixer you just roll up to and receive my brain contents? And why ME? Go ask Dan Cedarholm or Dave Shea or Jeff Zeldman. Leave me alone!
We are all damaged somehow.
My best friend uttered that statement in chat a few days ago. It broke my heart, but it also rang true. And it’s really true in the current Internet drama being played out at Itty Biz and elsewhere, involving internet marketers Naomi Dunford and Dave Navarro.
A few days ago, Naomi posted a hair-raising article on her web site about several men who, via their web sites, were cyber-bullying a successful woman blogger and even went so far as to say that the blogger had received death threats. She titled the article Death Threats and Hate Crimes, Attacks On Women Bloggers Escalating, making it seem as if many women bloggers were being targeted, threatened or bullied. And the fact is that she herself is the sole target of these threats, if I believe her. But to flag-wave as if this is a problem for all women bloggers, to make this a call to arms for all women bloggers does all women bloggers, all women, and especially all women who are legitimately being abused, threatened or silenced, a huge disservice. Thanks, twat.
Yesterday, something amazing and wonderful happened to my best friend. His internet forum got its millionth registered user. Considering that this forum is in a small country (Serbia) and that it started with a free domain and web hosting back in April 2002 in his bedroom, it’s come a long way, baby.
I am so proud of my friend and his accomplishment with this forum. Through the years, eight and a half long, grueling years, maintaining this forum as it grew to monster proportions has taken its toll physically, mentally and emotionally. But he’ll admit, maybe, that it’s all been worth the ride. 🙂
In fact, it was his essay in an online community that first caught my eye, that first exposed me to this amazing man. From that fateful post:
You get a chance to start, with your basic web skills, some website. Someone decided to award you with domain and hosting, [so] you give it a try. You create an internet forum so all your friends from all over the world can meet and talk to each other…. Your community grows[;] you build some reputation among IT people…. [Y]ou start spending enormous amounts of time working around your community[;] you place all your energy in that one spot  and finally make something good. [S]till no one says good about your work but you know that your users are grateful for every second you spend helping them.
[I]t grows[;] it becomes the biggest free cafe forum in your country[;] bigger than all those who had all kind of support…. [Y]ou work to cover expenses and then work to help it grow…. Your forum reaches abnormal number of visits and … users for a country in which [only] 2-4% of people use computers…. [E]ven though you are considered Don Quixote[,] just this time fighting web windmills….
From a recent article about this milestone (loosely translated from Serbian to English):
Internet community Burek.com yesterday welcomed its millionth member after nearly nine years of existence. Burek.com since 2002 successfully combined web space of the former Yugoslavia with the idea that its members freely share their experiences without cultural or historical barriers….
Topics that are represented in the forum include the internet, information technology, digital art, telecommunications, gaming, music, current events, television, politics, religion, history, psychology, art, literature, science, military, sports and more….
Since 2005, Burek.com has been available on mobile phones and is among the most visited mobile destination in Serbia with the trend increasing.
To me, one of the most amazing things about this is that my friend was merely 16 years old when he started this forum. And through all those years, he’s tended it, made it grow, shed countless drops of blood, sweat and tears, promoted it, felt like throwing in the towel on many occasions, and yet, he persevered. And has much to be proud of today. Ivan, I am so proud of you, your forum, and all that you have accomplished and will continue to accomplish. But more than that, I am so very proud to be your friend. Good work, old chap. Keep it up!
The greatest works are done by the ones. The hundreds do not often do much, the companies never; it is the units, the single individuals, that are the power and the might.
~~ Charles H. Spurgeon
How can so many silly, sophomoric, asinine, hateful, bigoted groups and pages exist unmolested, yet Facebook can shut down someone’s account for a week for a less offensive sin? Hmm? How? How does this shit slip past their radar? It really has to make one wonder.
I sat down with my morning cup of tea (Assam, from leaves, with honey and lemon, yumm!). And started reading the news of the day. It really got me down, nothing but sadness and grief and strife. Humans doing inhuman things to one another.
So I thought of one of the few things in the world that makes me happy. (Besides my husband and my chubby little cat.) My best friend in the world. (He knows who he is.) So this is for you. For all the times you’ve forgiven me for screwing up or making you sad or angry. For being patient with me when someone with less patience would have murdered me. For always being there for me, no matter what your mood is. For enriching my life in little ways, and in huge ways that you probably cannot even imagine. For teaching me new things. For loving me exactly the way I am, warts, faults and all. Most of all for being you. Gentle, sweet, smart, kind, brutally honest, talented …. There just isn’t enough time in eternity to list every wonderful thing about you… So in case you forget, or I don’t say it often enough: I love you immensely and thank you for being my friend. I’ll *always* be here for you.
And I’ll let Phil Collins fill (Phil?) in the blanks!