I’m back! For the folks who get e-mail notifications, I hope this was a nice surprise. For everyone else, new or old readers alike, welcome back.
Logging back in here was a trip. For two years, I have been inundated with spam comment alerts in my e-mail, notifying me that Russian and Nigerian bots post AI speak comments about self-help books, cryptocurrency, and still Viagra pills. In this way, the Internet has remained the same since I started using it…in 2000.
But so much has changed! super relax in all its manifestations (tumblr, blogspot, wordpress) is about ten years old ‼️‼️‼️ I pay for this domain + web hosting and I have let this space collect dust and then have the gall to repeat the perennial “I need to revive my blog/ i miss blogging / i miss writing for myself” on twitter. I spent this morning going through my old entries (soon to return here) with a lot of good memories, surprises, curiosity, and laughter. It’s good to return.
So here I am. I’m happy to revive the blog but I feel weird and uncomfortable. The discomfort is because I changed:
I do not really remember code anymore, which was integral to my blogging experience. Like right now, I just updated WordPress (I use WordPress.org) and I haven’t figured out yet how to make bullet points ;__;Never mind, I figured it out (took a while though) :/
- It’s not clear who is reading your blog when you revive it. Who reads long form shit in 2021 unless they are a professional writer, academic, or troll? Blogs died because the public sphere moved to social media, facilitated by the even quicker speed in communication and free “content” production (I H A T E this word). The people who read this blog in the 2010s now make newsletter formats (substack, medium, buttondown) and maintain a visible social media presence, notably on Twitter; utilize tumblr and Instagram as personal blogs, or have left the internet almost completely (pulling up once in a blue moon to send me an e-mail or text).
- I have aged. super relax began circa 2009/10 on tumblr, evolved into compact fuku on blogspot (with super relax still being on tumblr), then super relax became a permanent indy blog (my own web-hosting) sometime in 2015 or 2016. Over the arc of my late teens to mid-twenties, I wrote about internet subcultures (those I participated in and those I critiqued), visuals and designs, aesthetics, and cool shit I found on the net. I posted fragmented thoughts, discourse on discourse, self-help, playlists, and moodboards.
Funnily enough, I still do all of those things. I just spread it out across social media accounts for different publics. The topics I have discussed/documented/preserved in 2021 are those I explored in 2011 and before that. The only difference is age: super youth versus youth with time to cook.
What has changed is that I am no longer an anonymous person writing into the ether of the internet. I am a somewhat public-facing educator, scholar, and intellectual. People take what I say seriously. I am conscious that, even as I pretended not to know, the anonymous age of the internet ended long ago. Sometimes I feel self-conscious even tweeting.
Does some senior person in my field/adjacent field think I’m immature for tweeting about a new journal article one minute and then five seconds later retweeting “[Megan Thee Stallion throat effect]”? Do people think I’m making light of Brazil’s current crisis whenever I talk about Lula’s Scorpio tendencies in his tweets? Are the people who hate what I do waiting for me to say something so they can screenshot what I said and show it to my employer five years from now out of context so I can lose my job??? Do people notice the terrible grammar or mistakes when I write something????? Are they sick of me posting memes, even though that’s what they come to Twitter for?????? Do people even??????
It is what it is. I am still tweeting.
But most people read or follow what I say because I contain multitudes. I am abundant in what I contribute. So:
super relax is back! It is the Great American Blog™, meaning the blog is heterogeneous in material: academic, discourse, advice, documentation, resources, and whatever else of relevance. Think the modern newsletter, but not monetized because that is literally a blog. The Americas are messy and so am I. Welcome aboard.
In case you’re wondering: the name “super relax” came from Cibo Matto’s 1997 EP of the same name. “low femme theory.” is a reference to A Tribe Called Quest’s sophomore album The Low End Theory (1991), but replaces “end” with “femme.” My web moniker “tropigalia” is wordplay on the music genre “tropicália,” replacing the “c” with a “g.” I think of it as reference within a reference, as the artist Gal Costa was a heavy hitter and central contributor to the genre. I had an online friend who went by the username and lent it to me when she retired it. Thank you Mary ♥️♥️♥️