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I have never done one of these daylog deals, but it's been 365 days since my last effort at E2 and I try to hammer out at least one node per year, whether I feel like it or not. Many people can function without an external framework of obligation, but I am not one of those people. The daylogs are often dismissed as the red headed stepchild of E2 because they pass mostly without editorial scrutiny, which is why they are usually the first things I read every morning. They are, like the Chatterbox, the extemporaneous cutting edge of this place and if they didn't already exist we would have to invent them.

My own personal E2 experience came full circle yesterday, with my publisher's permission to repost all of the essays that had been removed for a printed anthology. We had always planned to restore them eventually and I was delighted to find that they could be returned to the nodegel with the original dates, Ching!s, and hard links intact. Many publishers would wince at the idea of giving away stories with one hand that they're selling for top dollar with the other, but I have a unique relationship with my publisher. She makes me wash dishes and vacuum the floor when she's not giving away my stuff for free on the Internet.

There is often wailing and gnashing of teeth over the fact that people who were once avid contributors to E2 wane in their production of new work after a time. Speaking only for myself, the type of work I submit to E2 is necessarily limited in scope because I only write down stuff that I know for sure. When I've connected a couple of dots, I make a note of it. When I am able to go for a long spell without writing anything down, it simply means that I've already said everything I thought was important.

Even though I rarely add content to the site, I still log in every so often to read, or to vote, or to message a contributor with feedback, or to add a relevant softlink, or to help guide a new user, or just to stay in touch with the many hundreds of people I care about who frequent E2. The millions of passive readers directed to E2 via Google are swell, but an engaged, logged in audience is the primary appeal of this place. When we discourage people from making the scene because they don't churn out content, we throw ice water on the first few rows of our audience. When we chastise people for being chatty in the Chatterbox rather than adding content, we throw a pall over the entire scene.

E2 is life in microcosm and the learning curve is steep. We cannot at once have specifically high expectations for content and at the same time express impatience with people who just wish to hang out and get a feel for the place. The 20 names or so at the bottom of the user list are the most important people here. If that sentence sounds funny to you, it might be time for a little break from E2. It will still be here when you return, and unless you've pasted some kind of vitriolic rant on your homenode, everybody will be happy to see you again.

All of the people currently on the staff at E2 have several things in common. The most important trait they all share is that they answer their private messages in a timely fashion or direct you to somebody who will. If you ever have a question about E2, you can message anybody with a little symbol next to his or her name and they'll answer it for you. If you ever have a problem with one of the people with a little symbol next to their name, you can message dem bones and he'll straighten it right out for you. If you've got a serious problem with dem bones, well, you're probably at the wrong web site. (bones retired, but you can still message him for dating advice and that kind of thing.)

When something is really bugging you about E2, back away from it for awhile and ask yourself if you're not projecting a personal issue onto the big picture. A trip to the greatest museum on Earth can be soured if you are suffering from indigestion or diarrhea. The thing that E2 does better than anything else is to remember stuff and it would be a shame to mark your stay at one of the greatest museums on Earth with postcards that complain of a bellyache.

Everything2 has never been a better web site than it is this morning. It will be a better web site tomorrow than it is today, and the day after that it will be better still.

Kind of blows your mind if you think about it too much.