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Hehehe, yes, I still have the original email saved! Of course, WebTV is no more and my email has changed formats a bunch of times over the years...but I never EVER deleted that very first story that I sent to Nifty! I was sooooo excited, and scared, and proud of myself for taking the leap of faith. I didn't know what to expect from any of this. I just knew that I wanted to take a shot at writing the kind of story that I wanted to see online...instead of waiting for somebody else to do it. The rest, as they say...is history. And a very LONG history, at that!
Yep, this is the email...
Since then...I've learned a lot. Loved a lot. Laughed a lot. And hurt a lot. But I wouldn't trade a moment of the life I've lived since that Summer evening when I typed that first chapter of "New Kid In School" into an email on an old 'dial-up' connection. Being around you guys has taught me so much. Not just about you, but about myself. Your support and love has helped me to become the man that I am today. So this is a celebration for us ALL today! Not just me.
We built a true 'family' in this place. Fights and all. The Shack has been a part of people's lives for 19 years now. That's older than HALF the Shackers that come here to read the stories these days! LOL! For some of you, it has been a part of your entire childhood. For others, it has been a part of your entire adulthood. Some of us have moved on to bigger and better things, some have retreated to the shadows, and others...we sadly lost to the inevitability of time and circumstance. But it still feels like home. It will always be home. For me...and for each and every single one of you. That was my promise to you from day one, and even though I stumble and fall from time to time, I plan to keep that promise for as long as I can. Because when I'm dead and gone...I want the example I tried to set here to stand for something. I want the people who come after me to know that a single scary moment of inspiration, a single leap of faith, and the heartfelt text on a computer screen...can truly make a difference. ((Hugz))
The person you are is defined by the things you do. So do good things, and always try to be at your best.
That said, happy 19th anniversary to you all! Let's have ourselves one HELL of a party this Summer, shall we? :)
This is just a short song, dedicated from me to those of you who I know are going through some difficult times right now. Many of you. I've talked to you individually in private, and I realize that I can't always be there for you when you need me most...but I assure you that I will keep you in my heart, and give you all I've got. Sometimes it's not enough. I get that. But it's not because I don't care. I always care. And when I'm not available...the rest of our family is here to help out too. K? We all need someone to lean on from time to time. Find that person. BE that person. ((Hugz))
(Sorry, Joey. I only found one lyric video, and the lyrics were way off. I'll try to send you the lyrics when I get a chance.)
I want some PARTY music from you guys today!!! Hehehe, this IS a celebration after all! It's Summer! The Boyfarm is open (Including the 'petting zoo'! Hehehe!), and we're turning 19 today!!!! In the replies below, post your fun music, your DANCE videos, your feel good music! No limit! As many as you want! (Four vids per post, of course!) Get naked, already! All this fabric is making me uneasy!
HAPPY 19th, Shackers!!!! :)
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