Site News

Broken Links Corrected

I did a design theme update to the site, so it looks a bit different these days. There will be some more tweaks as I customize the theme a bit more, but it looks a lot more simple than it did. I have also gone through the entire site and updated all of the broken

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Online Housecleaning

I’ve been doing a lot of housecleaning, site-wise over the past several weeks. I’m in the process of converting over some of my older blog sites to wordpress, shuttering others, and putting up fresh new “coming eventually” pages at all of the URLs I own. I’ve been playing with Foundation by Zurb as a CSS

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Well, Howdy

Hey, I finally got my site all moved over to my host and just as importantly, to my new content management system. The design is quite different, and not yet mine. I’ve done some customization of the theme, but I have a lot more work planned on that end. And there’s a lot of clean

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Goodbye, Movable Type

Pardon the dust, please; I’m moving this site out of Movable Type and into Word Press, and from an old-school host to Media Temple. I took the week off to make this move because I have to configure Word Press and get plugins in place, and I have over 6,000 posts and hundreds of images

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Strange Search Terms

I have an rss feed of my site log so I can see the activity people are doing on my site, and it sometimes shows some strange search terms people run through site’s search function. Sometimes it’s obvious people have confused my site with google (although I can’t imagine why) and sometimes it’s just plain

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IE7 Fixes

I figured out my IE 7 display issues finally. Sorry for the delay – normally I don’t let problems like that linger, but I was having trouble finding a free hour to troubleshoot. Thanks to Wil for helping me pinpoint the problems.

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Drop-Down Fly-Out Navigation on my site

I’ve been dissatisfied with the navigation methods here on my site for a long time – I was very frustrated by the long, unwieldy category list from the sidebar – I’ve always organized by category, but the display of that navigation sucked, because it was hard to tell that there were categories and sub-categories, and

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Blogiversary?

Way back in the dark ages when I started this site, I didn’t manage to keep track of the date. It was before blogger software, and before it was even affordable to own a domain name for a personal site (it cost in the $200 range to purchase one). I believe – but am not

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So NOW they create a sandbox template!

After I pretty much got everything in place, Movable Type comes out with a plugin and set of sandbox templates — similar to what WordPress has — that allows you to install a really basic default set of templates and then create your own design on top of the template elements — similar to what

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More site updates

I’ve been doing some further site tweaking over the last several days. The major thing I accomplished was getting my Big Things photo galleries into the content management system, which will make it infinitely easier to edit the content on those pages. Which I desperately need to do. There are lots of new photos I

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Movable Type 4.2 upgrade recap

I’ve got my Movable Type software upgraded to 4.2 and replaced my old templates with default ones, which I’ve done some customizing on, with more to come. So far, so good. It’s MUCH faster – my faith is restored. For the most part. I started by installing the Professional Pack templates, and after I got

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blog software update day(s?) – AKA ‘wreck stuff day’

A while back I put off upgrading my blog to Movable Type 4.2 because the upgrade would break the site, according to my webhost. Well, now I’m on a blogging vacation, and I’m ready to blow this puppy to smithereens. Because my custom templates are centuries old now, I’m going to install default templates and

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Dealing with some denial of service attacks on the site

I have been dealing with a denial of service attack on my site recently. I suspect that I’m the target of some unethical behavior in the gay Republican base in Indianapolis politics, specifically because of this post I wrote about Marion County’s special election to replace Julia Carson. It’s been almost exactly a year since

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Back end problems

Boy, do I have have them. No, I’m not talking about my butt here. (and you shouldn’t be, either!) I’m having some frustrating problems with Movable Type that my site hosts can’t seem to solve, and Movable Type doesn’t have answers for either, despite me spending about 10 hours with both trying to figure it

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Gee, that sounds familiar…

Remember a couple days ago when I said If it were up to me…. and I proposed a new way of doing the primaries that would be more fair? That post did get linked to by about 40 sites… but apparently not everyone likes to give credit. Check this out on Shakespeare’s Sister: It wouldn’t

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Blast from the Past

Normally when I upload a bunch of older photos to my flickr account, I turn off the splice between my flickr account and my RSS feeds, so those who read my blog via a feed reader don’t get a massive influx of my photos in my feed. However, last night, I forgot to do that.

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Big Things Photos – Back up and Running

My “Big Things” photo galleries are back up and running, finally, after some coding goofiness. In going through all the new photos, I realized I have hundreds of new ones to put online; I’m further behind on this project than I thought. But I have much easier ways to get them online, so that’s good.

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Working on my “Big Things” photo galleries

The lack of posting around here lately is because I’m reworking my “Big Things” photo galleries. I’m reworking the thumbnails to make them larger, but with smaller file sizes. I’m reorganizing them and making it harder for people to hotlink to the photos and chew up my bandwidth. I also have a bunch of new

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OMFG – I’m on Joe.My.God.

This tabloid magazine photo I snapped on a knee-jerk reaction and then blogged about has been making the rounds of the internets; I swore I wasn’t going to do a “oooh, look how popular I am! I’m famous!” post, because that’s so lame. Plus, I’ve had other things to worry about. But today it’s on

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Social Networking

All the social networks I’m on. The list was getting too long to keep it on a sidebar anymore, so it’s getting its own dedicated page. Obligatory My Flickr Photos [Link deprecated – http://www.iconbuffet.com/] Me on Icon Buffet [Link deprecated – http://www.facebook.com] Me on Facebook [Link deprecated – http://www.myspace.com/] Me on MySpace [Link deprecated –

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Leviticus in My Spam Filter

I was going through a site migration checklist of things to remember when you move your site from one host to another, and one of the items was to remember to look at your comment spam filter keywords, to make sure that additions you’ve made stayed in the list. Which made me remember a conversation

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Getting there

I’m somewhat up and running. I’m still missing some files that need to be transferred over to this new server, and my comments aren’t working, but at least the site itself is up so people can see it. It’s possible that the domain name still needs propagate everywhere…

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Changing Hosts

I’m going to be migrating my site to a new host over the next several days, so fewer posts and updates, and probably some downtown. I’ll be back up as soon as humanly possible.

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Blogroll and Charity Links

While goofing off this weekend, I added a blogroll to my site, including some of the blogs I read every day. What stays in my feed reader can vary depending on my mood, but these links are ones that I consistently check all the time, including my friend’s sites. Any recommendations on sites I should

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Comments Feed

I added a comments feed to my site last night, in case some rare person out there might be interested in hearing what others have to say about my site, like the homophobes and weird flamers who occasionally troll by and leave hate messages that I promptly delete. I don’t get too many comments on

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I hate spammers

Ugggh. I’ve had tons of comment spam lately, and a ton of spam come through my contact form. I wish someone would track these guys down and wrench their computers from their evil, annoying hands. “No more computers for you! Ever!”

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Updating

I realized earlier today that my bio page was horribly out of date. I hadn’t added any information about our new house, there were no photos on it, and according to the outdated page, Annabelle and Huckleberry were still kittens. So after some massive re-writing and cross-linking, the page is all up to date. 2019

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More Designy Goodness

I’ve tweaked my new design here and there, made some color use more consistent and added some extra flair. There are still some css layout changes that I need to make to fix a couple of pages, and I have a one-off template or two that need some work here and there. I must say,

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New Site Design

As you may have noticed (or maybe not, if you read via a newsreader) I installed a new site design today. This is one that I’ve been tinkering with for awhile, and it’s not perfect yet, but because I started it in February, before the house buying and other life events occurred, I decided it

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All my friends are bloggers, too

A long while back, I deleted my blogroll because the software that I was using for it was causing my site to hang while loading. I never got around to researching better software and putting it back, which I’ve always felt kinda guilty about. Lately I’ve noticed some of the big league bloggers are doing

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My “Friends” Map

I’ve been playing around with “Frapper” which is a Googlemap application that lets you create a google map of your own, letting friends add themselves to the map. So here’s mine, and I’d be much obliged if you would add yourself to it. Your e-mail is hidden and your location is based on zipcode, so

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Weekend Update 2006-02-20

What I accomplished this weekend: Comment Code – I worked on the comment code on my site to accomplish: Cleaner xhtml and css. This was hard, but I got it working well. Displaying the number next to the comment. This wasn’t hard. Displaying comments from me in a different color than others. This seemed to

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Quiet time

Sorry about the lack of new and unique writing over the last week or so. I’m writing a couple of long book reviews that are still in draft form, and doing a lot of heavy lifting behind the scenes on the site design to get everything cleaned up, so things have been quiet ’round here.

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Rough Cut: My New Site Design

[/my_design_work/prototypes/commonplacebook/homepage.gif] Here’s what I’ve been working on all weekend. It’s quite rough, still, and needs a lot of refinement. I haven’t picked the correct font for my new logo, and there’s a lot missing and lots of little stuff that still needs cleaned up. But you get the general idea of where I’m headed. [/my_design_work/prototypes/commonplacebook/homepage.gif]

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Oldest Blog Ever

I signed up for Media Matter’s Blog Registration the other day, and the sent me back an e-mail saying I had the oldest blog they’d every seen. (I have entries dating back to 1995). Yup. I’ve been around that long, keeping my journal online, using BBEdit, long before blog software was invented. Most of the

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Reassessing Priorities 2

I decided against moving my site to a different URL or restricting access for the time being. Either of those defeat the purpose of what I want for this site, and to me the site is more important than other stuff. I did make a small change that I hope isn’t noticable, and there might

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Reassessing Priorities

This website is one of the the most important things I do. I’m sure no one in particular cares much about it other than me, but for me at least, it’s a creative outlet that I need to survive. I don’t think I could have gotten through this past year without it, and as far

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Welcome, WISH-TV Viewers

If you’re here because you saw Dick Wolfsie’s report on the news this morning, thanks for thinking of me. My pictures of “Big Things” are here. I think when I talked to Dick I mentioned some “Lost Big Things” that I took pictures of at one time or another which are no longer around. I

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I’m going to be on TV Again

I’m going to be on WISH-TV’s morning news on Friday morning for my “Big Things” photographs again. I did an updated interview with Dick Wolfsie a few weeks ago, and it will air then. So check me out being all famous and stuff. On top of that… I won first place in the Nuvolab 2005

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CD Mixes converted

In my continuing quest to move my static html pages into Movable Type, early this morning I finished up entering my CD Mix Playlists. I also added a number of playlists that for one reason or other (mainly because it was a pain to do the old way) I never made a page for. 2019

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RSS feed changes

I switched my RSS feed over to a feedburner feed, which will be more robust and will tie in my flickr photos into my feed. So if you’re subscribing to my RSS feed already, you might want to grab the feedburner link instead. http://feeds.feedburner.com/electrasteph Also, I’m converting all my old static content into Movable Type,

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Testing, 1, 2, 3

I may or may not have my Movable Type upgraded. I have to check everything out and see if it works. Yep, it seems to be functioning. Hmm. Now I can see if I can install the photo gallery templates for a photoblog, and see if I can get that up and running. MT has

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commonplace books

Years and years ago, (1998) I was sitting around reading my copy of Benet’s Readers Encyclopedia, which is a somewhat obscure reference book. I came across a passage about “commonplace books” which described them as a type of journal from the 1800s where people would collect scraps of poetry, ideas and their own writing along

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commonplacebook.com nominated for a journalism award

On November 5th, 2005, Nuvolab XII will announce the top two Journalism Award winners. The best independent blogs will be awarded for promotion of equality, political insight, creativity, and presentation. Award winners will receive custom award images to display on their site, as well as permanent recognition here on Nuvolab. Third, fourth, and fifth place

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Howdy, Mumbai!

I upgraded my google vistors map to include the last 100 visitors to my site. Yea! Australia, Australia, Australia, we love you, amen! Crack two! Hey, whomever it is in Hong Kong — e-mail me. I want a pen pal from Hong Kong. Antartica, however, is sadly not represented.

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Commonplace Books

About nine years after I did, the editor of technology review suddenly realizes the parallels between “Commonplace Books” and personal websites and weblogs. Too bad he came late to the party and didn’t get the URL he wanted, and had to settle for “New Commonplace” instead. Sucker.

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Guest Blogger

Just testing — I’ll be guest blogging and providing updates while Steph is in the hospital. Looks like my new laptop works just fine at Steph’s house. Woo hoo!

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Blog Frustration

I have Movable Type up and running on my site, and this blog you see is in it now. However, I’m still working on moving my old blog posts from Blogger into Movable type, and I’m only about half done. The difficulty is with Blogger, not with the new content management system. Within Blogger, I

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Movin’ on up, to the east side…

I’m getting ready to convert my blog over to the Movable Type publishing system, from Blogger. MT is much more customizable and robust, and I’ve learned how to bend and shape it to my will in creating IndyScribe, so I’m hoping the transition will go smoothly in moving this blog. (Oh, it never does, does

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My Shirt Designs

The Official Commonplacebook.com Shirts and Gear Store. Now you to can campaign for truth, justice, the American Way, and no illegal left turns on Meridian Street during rush hour.

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The Nuvo Article

We went to Shalimar at lunch and grabbed copies of Nuvo to read while we ate…. The article turned out very cool. Dan Rafter is a great writer and did a great job making sense of my answers to his questions. I have a feeling my girlfriend might have something to say about the headline

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Big Things Updates

In preparation for the Nuvo article coming out this week, I’ve been working on and updating my Big Things web pages. I added photos of the big things I took in Valparaiso over the holidays, and updated and added some other photos. The only thing I haven’t added are the pictures my brother Todd gave

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Big Things Updated

I’m being interviewed by a reporter from Nuvo tonight about my “Big Things” Photo Galleries, so in honor of the occasion, I’ve added tons of photos to the galleries. I’d been behind in adding things for awhile, even though I’ve been taking photos constantly over the last year. Now all my new pics are added,

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Finally! I was able to fix my blogger templates

Sometime back in May, blogger stopped supporting my archive index page, and they failed to tell me about it. So since then, my archive pages haven’t been updating. I noticed the problem two weeks ago, and since then have been struggling with blogger help to figure out how to solve the problem. I finally got

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Comments Enabled

Blogger did some major updates to their technology, and now I can allow comments on the site without having to use a third party. So I’m going to turn on the ability to comment on some posts on my site, just to see how it goes.

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Note to self:

start here: Week of April 20, 2003 end here: Week of June 15, 2003 Just editing some stuff and making notes for myself. Not too important really.

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Well, it’s getting there…

I was able to upload all my big things pictures, but now I’m discovering other stuff that’s missing. I configured a new guestbook, but it doesn’t look like my site, so I have to tweak it. And I’m starting a redesign that will hopefully allow me to redo the site using cascading style sheets and

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Technical Difficulties — Please Stand By…

I just transferred webhosting to a cheaper service, so there are some aspects of my site that aren’t currently functioning, like the guestbook, and unfortunately, my big things photos. Give me a day or two to get everything set up, and hopefully, everything will be back to normal.

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Crap. I hate that.

I hate it when some people are much funnier than I am. Miscellaneous, etc. does their version of the friday five, and it’s much better than mine. As if I needed to be reminded that I suck after getting stood up Sunday. Thanks. Plus, for more things that make me feel inadequate, check out the

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New “links” on my blog

Check it out — I added a link to the bottom of each post, which you can use to link to a specific blog entry if you wish. I probably could have done that a long time ago, but this is the first time I’ve actually taken the time to look up how to change

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Site Related News

I’m messing around right now with cascading stylesheets, testing how they work with the navigation links on the left of this page. So far, it’s working well. Now I’m looking at different sections of the site, and how to streamline using stylesheets so the pages will load faster and be lighter. The basic design will

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Shamless Self-Promotion

Download the Alexa toolbar: http://www.alexa.com/. (PC users only; there’s no Mac toolbar at this time. Dammit!) Then spend some time clicking around my site looking at all the stuff on it. This will boost my traffic ratings. Update: Lori e-mailed me to tell me that Alexa is considered to be spyware. Technically, it’s not. Spyware

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Change of Scenery

It’s been pointed out to me, and probably rightly so, that I write a lot about our Stupid President. Well yes. And I write a lot of mean things. Well yes. And the person pointing this out mentioned it not because she likes the Stupid President (she doesn’t) but because she was concerned about how

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Photos of My House

Reorganizing my photos is taking longer than I thought. I’m trying to organize them by room/area of the house, so you can see a progression of the work I’ve done in each room, but there are a lot of photos. I’ve got them all sorted out, but I threw away the original thumbnails, not wanting

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I’ll be a fireman when the floods roll back

I’ve been going through my web links and bookmarks and compiling everything/weeding it all out to just the sites I think are really cool. It’s gonna be a long process. I also have some ideas for redesigning the entire site. Yikes. Wonder when I’ll have time to do that? (update: march 2005) Hmmm. I keep

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weekend update 2002-08-19

It wasn’t the best weekend I’ve ever had. My sister’s going back to England to live, and I had to say goodbye to her Saturday. I’m happy for her that’s she’s going back, because she really likes it there, but I’ll miss her. On Sunday, I went to Kokomo and Peru Indiana to photograph big

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House Photos

I just finished updating all of my photo galleries: both the regular gallery , and the house photos. I finished the thumbnail pages so you can see all the photos in a section at once, then click for the large photo. I was a bit behind (6 months) on doing that! UPDATE: I later took

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Happy Birthday to me

Happy Birthday to me. Happy Birthday to me. Happy Birthday, dear me. Happy Birthday to me. In case I hadn’t mentioned it, today is my birthday. Yesterday, I had someone come up to me and say “I recognize you from somewhere.” And after we went through a big list of places (work, college, high school,

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Webby Awards

Hey, write me in as a candidate in the “personal website” award section of the Webby Awards. (2014 update: Ha ha ha ha ha. Right. Good one.)

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I can’t tell an anecdote anymore

Okay it’s creeping me out a bit the number of people who I’ve started to tell a story to, and they say, “yeah, I read that on your site.” First because I’m scared that my friends actually check my journal regularly, and second, that I’m ruining all my small talk. I can’t tell the same

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I’m Going To Be on TV

So, yes, I’m going to be on television at 5:50 am tomorrow morning, on channel 8 Daybreak news, with Dick Wolfsie and Barney the Dog. He’s interviewing me about my Big Things Photo Gallery from the Ralph’s Muffler shop on 16th street where Mr. Bendo is located. Set your VCR!!!

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My Photos

I’ve been updating and posting my entire photo galleries over the last few days. With the exception of three new galleries (work, places I’ve lived, around Indy) everything is out there and everything is new. Check them out. UPDATE: I’ve since relocated my photos to Flickr, with selected photos of them posted here occasionally.

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Stupid Spam

Here’s some great spam of the sort I get all the time: Subject: Hello Steph. Date: Thu, 10 May 2001 01:23:07 -0400 (EDT) From: ETM Dear Steph, My name is John Barister and I work for a company called Electronic Traffic Management. Our Company has done a large amount of market research that has brought

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blogger is set up

Okay. Blogger is set up and I finally got it working the way I want it to. I only hope that I can figure out how to archive stuff the way I want. Tonight is the big Buca de Beppo Xmas bash/White Elephant party. Should be very interesting. UPDATE: Prior to this post, I had

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About This Site

Commonplacebook.com has been in existence since 1994. Originally, the site was up at a URL at my service provider because it was really expensive to own a domain name in those days. In 1996, I bought the URL – commonplacebook.com. Commonplace book (n.): an edited collection of striking passages noted in a single place for

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