This is a fair warning to all other users of this wonderful little slice of the internet – I am about to hop on a soapbox. mk, you jumpstarted a wonderfully horrifying essay – I hope you’re ready.
I recently posted a question on Hubski, asking the rest of the community a question that’s been percolating in my mind recently, namely: How do you use Hubski? I asked this question because I needed affirmation – proof that what I hoped Hubski would become for me exists outside the realm of my imagination.
Hubski used to be in my rearview mirror. According to my username stats, I joined over 300 days ago – almost a year now – and yet I could probably count the days I sat down and tried to engage with other Hubskiers on my fingers and toes. I felt left out of Hubski –it’s not the fault of how Hubski operates or how the userbase acts. I felt left out because at the end of a school day (mind you, I’m a high school junior) the least I wanted to do was to write out another paragraph of my thoughts to respond to a community generally more mature and older than I was. I’ve come to see the error in my ways.
Hubski is a community filled with meaningful people – filled with relationships and appreciation not found in other, darker corners of the web. The meaningless, easy-access content I used to be content in viewing (looking at you, Reddit), had turned my free time into pointless consumption. Gone were the days that I would approach reading with endless resolve (sidenote here – I spent the summer of my third grade year eating Cheetos and reading the unabridged Iliad, not that I understood much but I enjoyed the story) and the days where I would plunge into my writing and get lost in the sea of type and imagined fantasies. Over the summer and especially during my recent jaunt with my family up the coast to Seattle and Vancouver I have rediscovered my love of reading.
I finished Stephenson’s Cryptonomicon, Stein’s The Art of Racing in the Rain, Gladwell’s David and Goliath, and Howey’s WOOL series (books 1-5). I began writing again, especially poetry – developing curriculum for a couple of writing camps I was working at along the way. This Δ/t shift inspired me to take a more proactive approach to life. On one of my last days in Seattle, I visited the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Visitor Center after lunch at the Space Needle. It was a humbling experience to see all the active work they do to improve the lives of people around the world, and it put my resolve over the edge. If it is possible that I can improve the thoughtstream of the human collective, I’d like to begin my journey down yet another pathway where I can add a few of my own thoughts to the fray.
This is a delicious cup of coffee I had at Seattle Coffee Works – to keep you going as you slog through this essay.
I’ve always wanted to be a part of a wonderful, diverse community filled with friendly people who could hold intelligent conversations and where my ideas could flow freely along a river and into the collective ocean of consciousness. When I arrived here at Hubski creek, I was intimidated by the clear waters, free of turbidity and rushing by at a tremendous rate. Now, though, is a different story. As silly as it sounds, I feel as though now I understand that this torrent of people and knowledge and collectivity has a place for me – it is a place where (as an extension of what kleinbl00 said) opinions are valued, where values are questioned, and where questions are loved.
To the users who responded to my question, thank you. Special thanks to mk, for jumpstarting my brain. Thanks to zonk, for giving me perspective. Thank you, kleinbl00, for your one-sentence answer on why Hubski?.
So, I guess this is just to say: I have decided to
come back to Hubski where the waters run clear and in which thought is essential
Forgive me for the time I was away and accept me for who I choose to become
(structure loosely adapted from WCW's "This is Just to Say")
I’m home, Hubski – the soapbox is yours.
PS Anyone feel like populating a #coffee tag?
I wrote this on an Airbus A320 returning to San Francisco from Seattle with a stomach full of Forté El Salvador single-origin coffee roasted in Seattle and a mind full of unwritten ideas and raised eyebrows.