m a r k a n d e y a

So, why the change?

Posted by Brian on January 28, 2006

Back in November, I took a hiatus from blogging for about a month and a half. I know I don’t get a lot of traffic so I doubt it registered with a lot of people, but I did want to take the time to explain what triggered my self-imposed blog-exile and my move to WordPress.

Part of it was the standard blog burn-out that I’m sure most bloggers deal with from time to time. But there was more to it than that, and I want to share this reason with the people who care enough about me to read the blog (as for the people who read my blog just to badmouth me, well…).

There was a point late last year when, after much reflection on my blogging until that point (I began blogging in the summer of 2003), I came to regret a lot of what I had written. I’m talking about politics mostly, but some of the Korea-bashing went a bit too far as well. I realized that my blog didn’t represent the real me, as I’m sure most of my friends will confirm (at least I like to think they will).

See, when I began blogging, it was fun to lash out. I’m usually a pretty mild-mannered guy, but with the blog I was able to vent and vent and vent. And then in 2004, with my business falling apart and dealing with other personal issues, I began taking my anger and frustration out in my writing. Frankly, I look back at some of the stuff I wrote from that time period and I cringe; it is that bad.

Things calmed down a bit after the 2004 election and the closing down of our cafe. A few months later I tried avoiding talking politics and at one point in 2005 I went some six months without mentioning President Bush. How’s that for self-discipline?

But despite my efforts to clean up shop and write a better blog, things never seemed to improve. Hits were down, comments were drying up, and I wasn’t getting any incoming links from the bloggers around me that I admired and respected. I felt like I had driven my blog and my reputation into the ground and no amount of clean-up could fix things. So at that point, I decided to hang up my keyboard.

About a month later, I began to think about the few friends and family members who were following my life through my blog. I didn’t want to leave them in the dark, and a regularly updated blog for your friends and loved ones to read is nearly as good as letters home, don’t you think? I began looking into a new blog at a new home, but this time with a much more personal theme. I considered Blogger, but decided WordPress looked like the way to go. And I here I am.

I’ve been going back over my Blog City archives and reposting individual posts that I think are worth saving to this account. Eventually, I plan on moving my entire archive over, if only as Pages with an entire month of posts and comments on one Page.

But with this blog, I want it to represent the real me. I’m not some crazed leftist, foaming at the mouth. I’m not some anti-Korea zealot. I’m Brian, a shy, easy-going guy with a sense of humor who enjoys books, movies, music, games, cooking, and home bartending. This new blog, I hope, will serve as a better reflection of the type of person I really am.

For the readers who know me and like me, thank you for your friendship. For those who have some grudge against me because of things I have written in the past, I can only ask that you read my new blog with an open mind and judge me on what I write here and now. Thank you.


6 Responses to “So, why the change?”

  1. Charles said

    I have only commented rarely on your blog in the past, and I can’t say I’ve been the most active of readers, but I respect the change you have decided to make. I look forward to getting to know the real Brian.

  2. Brian said

    Thank you, Charles.

  3. Kevin Kim said

    For what it’s worth, Brian, I think a lot of us write to vent. I never felt you were unfairly bashing Korea; you were expressing frustrations shared by a lot of expats.

    Having met you briefly, I agree you’re a laid-back guy, but I know plenty of people who are quiet in person but more outspoken in writing. That contrast doesn’t strike me as abnormal at all.

    Ultimately, though, it doesn’t matter what I think: if you look back on your own writing and feel it doesn’t represent the real you, then I guess a change is necessary. I’ve always been a regular visitor to your blog, and will continue to be, no matter what tack you take. Such is my loyalty to one of the Grand Old Men of Koreablogging!

    May the wind be at your back as this new blog sets sail.



  4. slim said

    I would steer you away from blogging on US politics, not because I don’t respect your views, but mostly because I don’t see you offering any analysis that there isn’t already a ton of out there (or here, in the USA). You are at your best when riffing on Korean pop culture inanities.

    Still I can’t resit sharing this with you:


    49. Michelle Malkin

    Charges: A curious case of racial Stockholm syndrome with a palpable lust for violent ideological oppression and displays of imperial power. Rose to prominence in conservative circles by congratulating white America for its most shameful chapter since slavery, and encouraging a return to form in her book, In Defense of Internment: The Case for “Racial Profiling” in World War II and the War on Terror. Malkin thinks it’s hunky-dory to detain an entire demographic indefinitely if it makes the rest of us feel more comfortable. Her newest, Frenzy, argues that liberals have lost their minds, because they are upset with the direction their country is taking. Her evidence is a carefully collected selection of the dumbest things liberals have ever said, as if she couldn’t have just as easily filled an entire library with the insane ravings of right-wingers. Her accusations of blind hatred and vitriol mimic soul sister Ann Coulter’s classic tactic of psychological projection: whatever Malkin is, she sees in her opponents.

    Exhibit A: Internment was so irresponsible that it prompted 40 history professors to sign a letter condemning it.

    Sentence: Detained indefinitely without charge and waterboarded hourly for looking at a cop “all slanty-like.”

  5. Brian said


    Thank you for the kind words.


    I’m way ahead of you. I stopped reading Kos and a host of other poli-blogs a long time ago. MY politics haven’t changed, but for my own sanity I realized I needed to get away from it all. And yea, I wasn’t offering anything new anyway.

    And yea, I saw that list of the 50 Worst Americans, and I do agree malkin deserves a place. Her style of blogging, such as it is, is really detrimental to state of politics in America. I’m amazed that otherwise reasonable bloggers find her site deserving of a link.

    Thanks for the comments.


  6. Brian:

    Good to get a link from you, and I like the new Cathartidae, but you might want to know that here in Tianjin your site is partially blocked. I can access individual posts but the index times out. I guess you’re using a word or phrase the Great Firewall dislikes.


    I’m not a huge fan of Malkin, but she was popular long before the internment book was published. What’s more, more conservatives have sided with Reagan than with Malkin in the question of internment, so I have to wonder where the writers get their ‘facts.” I read the whole list and while many of those names belong there, especially Pat Robertson and Jesse Jackson, the writers of the list are no slouches in the vitriol department, and probably belong on the list themselves 😉

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