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A Damn Shame

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I first entered the W3 sometime in the late 90s. I didn't do much... I think the first attempt at a "serious" endeavor was Yahoo! Chat RP (as embarrassing as this is), some DBZ message board and, of course, MDbMB. These were the first places where I stuck around for longer than a few minutes at a time. Places where I actually got to know the regulars and made some friends that I still have to this day (I still have an online friend from that DBZ message board, none from RP). Naturally, since my time on the MDbMB led me to the Battle of the Posters, this includes you guys. You're some of the oldest online friends I have. I still talk to a lot of you regularly. Hell, SimBen and I talk pretty much daily, despite his leaving the community. I know I'm not online (on messengers, anyway) as much anymore, because I've pretty much switched to MSN entirely. However, I've been on the cyberspace frontier for ages now, and I've been to bigger communities, made new friends, and, as Doc Brown would put it, seen some serious shit (some I wish I'd never seen at all).


However, I find myself thinking of my origins more and more. My e-home, so to speak. If I had to claim an internet hometown, it would be InfiniteUnreality. Not 4chan. Not SomethingAwful. While those places were fun, my interest in them waned, as I realized more and more that they weren't homes. They were malls. Huge expanses of everything and nothing that anyone could want in ten lifetimes. They weren't places I could stumble into drunk and be forgiven. They weren't places I could mess up, big time, and still be welcome to stay. I met a few good friends from these places, but you guys are my crew. You're the guys I come home to. If it wasn't for BOTP sparking my creativity, I doubt I would be who I am today.


That being said, it's a damn shame that the community is as despondent as it is. There are posts now and again (yes, I do check this site sometimes, I just almost never log in) but the spirit is gone. The sense of community is gone. Everyone moved on to their own things, mostly school or jobs that take up a lot of time. It almost reminds me of the high school gang that all end up in different colleges or universities (see the cartoon Undergrads) only to keep in sparse contact over the course of their lives. Aside from Sasuke, perhaps, nobody wants to do BOTP anymore. Myself included, sadly. I have brief moments where the novelty hits me, and I get that BOTP feeling again. The drive to create a character sheet and fill it to absolute bursting. However, I know how I am. This is where it ends.


I know that, if there were another BOTP, I would more than likely lose interest immediately upon submittal of said character sheet and feel awful about it. Why does this happen? I don't know. I wish I could've been different. I blame myself for ruining the BOTP spirit. Not to say that I was the glue holding everything together (this would sooner be Sasuke), but I can't help but feel partly responsible for the mass exodus of BOTP interest, as I became a recent-addition third pillar in both its cyclical creation and administration, only to quickly abdicate duties as soon as I realized the work involved. I think that, once I became disinterested, others felt it was okay to feel disinterested as well, and nobody tried as hard anymore to keep the machine running. This may or may not be the case, in actuality, but I wish to apologize for it regardless.


Of course, the real reason is probably closer to the fact that we all got older, most of us have lives now (I sure as hell don't) and nobody can afford the time investment of a BOTP. Still, it's what kept us together, for the most part. We were a common interest group. Once the common interest was gone, three-fourths of the group vanished. Is this true? It doesn't feel that way to me. I like you guys. Hell, I love you guys. You are all friends, in my book. We've had disagreements and even full-blown arguments, but I still think of you guys, wonder what you're up to, and how you're all doing. I don't think about 4chan that way. I don't think about SomethingAwful that way. Just you guys. You're special. If this forum ever goes down for good, will be as if someone bulldozed my childhood home to the ground. First as Black-Blade, then renovated into InfiniteUnreality, it's still the same place to me.


I guess what I'm trying to say is that I miss you guys, and I miss BOTP. I miss the fun we had. I miss the wacky stories and insane fight scenes we used to write together. I miss your characters. I miss the way this place used to be.


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I'd have to agree about the part where we got older. You pretty much summed it up: jobs, colleges, and lives. I'd have to disagree with what you've said about yourself not having a life, because that honor can only fall to me. I've only had one real job ever, I'm still in a community college (one course away from just an Associates), and am still living at home. And I'm 24. There are people my age, people that are YOUNGER, who have already made it for themselves, have started families, or at least lived. Partied, dated, you know the deal. But hey, this isn't about me, yo.


In all honesty, I'm afraid some of my BOTP glow has also faded (in truth, I haven't had much passion for anything these days, it feels like). I'm trying to do something to at least make 9 end on a better note, since, as stated elsewhere, I am not all too keen with how I 'resolved' it over a year ago. If I had the same passion I did in the glorious past then I wouldn't stand for notion of there not being a BOTP, probably making some crazy metaphor to try and urge people on, but right now I can't be sure if that's still here. Back then there were people around to listen, but now... well, like you said, not many others come here anymore, but they all have their reasons. (so much for this not being about me : P)


But this place does have a place with me, and is certainly something I wouldn't want to forget. The same goes for a lot of the people I've met, even if I didn't get to know them as much as I might think. There'll always be you, Badge, along with Sword, OV/Neko, ISH, Glitch, and Ffej, Sid, and KingPhat, whom I've known in person. But I also think of some of the more distant sorts, such as Simben, who I still see on AIM now and again, Cap, nameless, Yamato, chris4rsox, billy chilly, Booky, Fire Nexus... sorry if I'm forgetting any, but that's just how my memory works nowadays. Things crop up and disappear.


The IU, back when it was the Black-Blade, will probably always remain as my homepage, and has been that way for years now (though not interrupted, due to some obnoxious installs and such). I keep it that way because its familiar, and because of the memories I have of the place. Even if it vanishes, which I would rather it not since I come around, I would still try to hold fast to the relationships that were maintained. Letting those vanish too would be a stupid thing to allow.


I miss a lot of the old things, too. If things could be made like how they were then, that would be awesome, but some of myself would have to be drawn back from the past, too. Growing up kinda sucks.


Thanks for stopping by to make a post, though, and a good one at that. And I'm sorry to anyone reading this if it doesn't say much... I can't really think of anything else I could say right now.

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What is and has always been the problem about making IU nee BBN a real community is that we did and do know each otehr too well. Anyone that didn't roll with the punches real good had a hard time keeping up, and that investment in each other really prevented new blood from being infused. when the few people who had been around finally tired, the whole thing became just a skeleton. Really, the board is and should continue to be about fucking around with our friends (that means y'all guys). It really doesn't need to be administrated to hell.


I still visit here once in awhile, but there are largely better ways to communicate with y'all, for the most part. At one time I felt like this place was good for archiving and really cataloging a variety of creative output; from pictures to stories to ideas. Really IU should be a creative outpouring where we critique each others work. It doesn't really work as a long standing place to place ideas, since we all know the the various histories of BNN have disappeared at one point or another, through no one's fault. But aside from the select few who still brush by there's nothing to it.


And I agree it's always been a shame how BoTP sort of fell through as what we once understood it to be. I think it again became. We knew too much, or thought we did, or didn't want to learn what we knew was a big back story. Not only that, attempt to make it simple were addressing a symptom but not a problem, that being that we really didn't feel like writing about people all that much. I always thought the bar yarns might have worked better if we kept closer knit, since we at this point have a lot of respect for each others characters, and we can write our own alongside each others without it feeling particularly hackneyed.


But I dunno. At this point it feels sort of moot. That's the rambling start of my two cents. anyway.

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