Sunday night around 7 p.m., Kamran just happened to be napping, and I just happened to be wasting time with my Google Reader when I happened upon this article from “Huffington Post” about Geocities shutting down on October 26th, the very next day.
Horrified, I went to the Geocities website and read the entire FAQ where they said something to the effect of if you don’t right-click on each of your individual pages and save them to your hard drive, your information will be lost FOREVER. Not for a second did I think about how annoying that was going to be or how a much better use of my time would be creating a new website, because my Geocities homepage was my LIFE from 1998 to 2002, and the Internet would be a sad, sad place without pages such as
the one in which I rate facewashes by how gross they taste,
the very first “blog” entry I ever wrote online in 1998,
and the one in which I have potential suitors fill out an application to marry me.
So I went through each of my maybe 100 pages, right-clicked, saved, and breathed a sigh of relief knowing that someday, I’d be able to go back and read the online diary that used to get me in so much trouble in high school whenever someone found out I’d called her a skank in it. Only when I got about 30 pages in, I started getting an error on every page telling me that it couldn’t load. I started flipping out again, searching the Geocities website for an apology about their overloaded servers and the promise that they’d keep the sites up for an extra day so everyone could have time to save their PRECIOUS MEMORIES. What I found was that Geocities had an hourly download rate, and that I’d surpassed it and had to wait to access more of my pages. I was prepared to sit in front of my computer until midnight on the dot, still downloading as the clock ticked from 59 seconds back to 0.
Hours later, I finally finished grabbing everything I could, including the pages that weren’t linked from anywhere and that maybe two people in the entire world had seen accidentally via a Dogpile or Metacrawler search back in the day. I started thinking that maybe it was a good thing the site was disappearing. Maybe I didn’t want the world knowing how I referred to myself as The Katie™ not infrequently or how I had an entire series of connected pages chronicling how perverted Mister Rogers is. Now that everything was safe within my hard drive, it didn’t matter that no one would ever fill out my Application for Husbandry again.
But then I woke up on October 26th, and the site was still there. I kept checking, and it kept being there. I almost got pissed off. That’s my private writing! Who does Geocities think they are, keeping that stuff around?! Ten minutes ago, in the midst of writing this, I checked again, and sure enough, there it was. I typed my address into the historical record of Geocities, and it was there, too.
But two minutes ago, I checked again, and now it seems to be officially dead. The historical record is showing the first page and then “Not in Archive” error messages when I try to click on anything from there.
I’m relieved. I’m saddened.