Well, my programming skills have definitely atrophied. It's been a while since I've tried to put a website together, but I finally got it to look the way I want it to. You just have to experiment with the programming language and figure it out, relearn ftp and how the server's file manger works. It all comes back after a while.
Then once everything is set up, naturally, you get a little writer's block and time flies by. Now it is time to write again and get this blog going. I find it interesting now, that I'm in the mood and have all these thoughts I wish to put down, that the computer is having a hard time connecting to Blogger.com. I think it is a problem with their end, as they were 'down for maintenance' yesterday. The universe seems to conspire against me at times, but that is a subject for another blog.
Two things to deal with in this inaugural post. A mission statement and what is a Prairie Islander?
A mission statement: You see it up over at the upper right hand corner of this page, but I'll expand upon it more for you. The first rule of blogging, they say, is to pick one topic and stick with it. You'll see some of my favourite blogs to the lower right and the majority of them stick to that rule. Calgary Grit is all about Liberal Politics, Blue Tory the other side obviously, The Mess that Greenspan Made is all economics, while Andrew Coyne is politics in general, etc. . . they all stick to one theme. . . But I cannot, it just isn't me.
I intend to write, mainly, about current events and public policy, but I am more than just an obsession on one topic. I have other passions and other interests which I wish to share. I love film, art, history, the human condition and irreverent humour. So, I intend to break the first rule of Blogging with the Prairie Islander. . . And probably a few grammar rules too, inadvertently, while I'm at it.
There are a few things I want to do with this blog, other then just voice my two cents in the public common. Soon, I will be posting and archiving my Canadian Election Observer emails (Research Articles on election news) which I wrote during the 2005-2006 Federal Election and I think I'll start up a Prairie Islander Observer, an indepth research article on the issue of the day with a similar format to the Election Observer, to keep praticing those internet research skills I have and keep everyone well
informed. However, I'll post them, probably, every few days or once a week instead of doing it daily, unless I can figure out a way to get paid for doing them daily. Also, I'll have a link to some of my creative writings (short stories, poems, Wesmerité) that I wish to share, and show off my CV for friends and potential employers.
Now, what is in a name? Why call it the 'Prairie Islander' of all things? When I was thinking about creating a blog I wanted a name that described who I was, was short and memorable, and was elegant. Take 'Calgary Grit' just as an example. Very simple name with, Calgary, a location then 'Grit', the Canadian nickname for a Liberal Party supporter: Describes the Blogger, on some many levels, to a tee. Now the name I picked doesn't evoke the same sharp image as 'Calgary Grit' does and in Canada, 'Islander' , can belong to a few off-shore landmasses, but for me it summed up beautifully who I am.
I was born on Vancouver Island and when I was young, my family moved to Alberta and I was raised on the Canadian Prairies. I feel at home in the wild, green embrace of a westcoast rainforest just as much as on the open plains. I see beauty in the rolling surf and in the windswept grasslands. In the grey drizzel of a Victorian winter and the brilliant, -20 white of Edmonton's. I know just about every small town from Ucluelet to Roblin, from Peace River to Cardston. I am cursed, always missing the sea when inland, and missing the flat open space while on the coast. I am a Prairie Islander. That is who I am, a traveller, familure with ferries and rodeos, little bit this and that whose world spans both sides of the Rockies and beyond and because of that, that is why I'll call this blog: The Prairie Islander.