In this white wave I am sinking
In this silence
In this white wave, in this silence
I believe
I have seen you in this white wave You are silent You are breathing in this white wave I am free
-- The Silence
by Delerium
The Link Farm

Goodness gracious, it's been nearly seven years since I updated this front page. I remember a few years ago Ezell wrote me and said, "Update Coldsmoke. It's like you've been in a coma."
In that time a lot has happened. On this page, of the original fourteen links in "The Link Farm", only seven still linked to opertaional sites. And of those seven, only one linked to a site which had been updated in the past year. Particularly poignant was the link to Spinks' old site that lived under his then fiancee's host. His site is gone; her's is still there, and it feels strange and voyeuristic to look in on it and imagine her without him.
There used to be a which would get confused with; I promised the owner back in 2002 that I wouldn't sell him this URL but would link to him, and now it's no longer extant., while still maintaining a web site, is long gone, shuttering in December of 2000 (you can remember what the site looked like by clicking on the invitiation to the 2002 reunion). Since then, I've chewed through six different jobs, gotten married, been to Italy, and swollen to an enormous size. For the past three years, I've been sacrificing my life to Warcraft as a main tank and raid leader.
Even the source of this site looks and feel differently. I moved the original site over to Dreamweaver in 2000 or so. There were some very helpful things (such as library items), but WYSIWYG editors were still terrible back then and I have not used it in years. At the same time, CSS was not viable at the time, so there was a lot of madness using tables and non-breaking spaces to format everything. It's a strong difference between this and the code at either the wedding site or ghostfence. Which reminds me to renew the hosting fee for ghostfence... heh.
The original spooky, smokey coldsmoke logo was drawn up my old friend, B.D. Buck. Brian died approximately three years ago, a victim to a nine year fight with cancer. When I built a new computer shortly after he died, I named it in honor of him. A fairly minor honor to be sure, but I think Brian would've appreciated the gesture.
Meanwhile, our mutual friend Jennifer is expecting to have a baby in a few short weeks. Jennifer is a single mom and has asked Michelle to be her "birth partner". There is something comforting in the thought; one soul is lost, another is born. Life continues unabated.
Here is the fundamental problem. After the last update, I started a very happy relationship with my now wife. When I look back on my journals, and on coldsmoke, I find that I have always been driven to write most when I have been least happy. Writing was always therapeutic to me; and writing on the web, what them kids call "blogging", was as good as talking to a therpist. The sense of invisible unknown listeners that could grasp the words tossed out into the void always added in an element of dialectic, if only in my own mind. Better than a diary, the vast and unseen presence of the web provided a link to both everyone in the world and no one at all.
So the fundamental problem is this: good times make bad stories. How do you preserve the urge to write while avoiding the urge to, ahem, bleed all over the page? I've written in fits and starts over the past 18 months. I don't often feel the irresistable toreent of words I felt at the height of when I was writing for this site. It makes me wonder if shall feel them again.
Enough of that. The site will either get updated or it won't. To get a sense of what I have updated in the long quiet times, look to the projects directory. The raid playbooks, the wedding website, and the 2007 Christmas letter are all there.
This web site was last updated on 1/1/2008. Unlike the song said, some things do change on New Year's Day.

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