This is not the first attempt at writing this post. Over the past few months, I've stared at a blank page on this blog a number of times. This is, however, the first time I've actually known what I wanted to write. It's taken a few months and some searching, but I've finally decided what I want to do with this blog moving forward. It's time to reboot the Swimbrief, and I'm excited about it. But first I owe an explanation of how I got here.
I started blogging about swimming on a whim in the fall of spring of 2008. Like many people in the swimming community, I had fallen in love with the first really big new media swimming site: floswimming. I was amazed by the content and just crazy enough to think I could make a contribution. I ended up being a regular on the site and it took me farther than I ever could have imagined. I made a lot of friends in swimming that I never would have met otherwise, completely changed the path of my career, and got the experience of a lifetime being media at the 2008 Olympic Trials.
I started blogging because I saw roles being unfilled in swimming media. In those early days it was hard to find much of anything about swimming on the internet, so I could be reasonably sure that whatever I wrote about was fresh and necessary whenever I made a post. As I've written before, we are unquestionably living in the best time period to be a nerd about swimming, no longer subjugated to being a loner on your local team.
Eventually the blog became more than just an outlet for my own nerdy feelings- I felt the pull to use it for improving the culture of the sport in the wake of revelations about sexual abuse in swimming. I wrote passionately on the topic, culminating with a face to face meeting with undoubtedly the most polarizing figure in the entire debate, Executive Director of USA Swimming Chuck Wielgus.
Websites have come and went, and the pace of change has never abated. As I sit here in 2014, the best site out there is unquestionably Swimswam. No longer is there a void of introspective writing about swimming on the internet. Swimswam seemingly has an army of young and passionate writers taking a deep and objective look at many things.
I also struggle to find what I can contribute on the topic of sexual abuse. That topic is also well covered by outlets including Swimswam but also more doggedly by people like Irv Muchnick at concussioninc.net.
In the meantime, my life has had it's own twists and turns. I moved to a foreign country for what I thought was my dream job- it quickly turned into a nightmare. I took another job (it's going much better, thanks for asking) but have been busy settling into yet another new situation.
I became a father.
I can honestly say that never during all that time did I consider just "quitting" this blog altogether. It's been too much fun and far too healthy and engaging for me to have this writing space. So, from this point forward I am going to get it back going, although it will be quite different from what it has been.
This blog is going to go a bit more personal. It's going to be more about "me" than it ever has been. I have mostly avoided writing about my own experience, probably out of my innate low self-esteem. Who would want to read about me? Well, I'm not writing for anyone else now, and I'm not going to put a lot of effort into publicizing what I write here. I'm just going to write about my experiences as they come- about being a swim coach in a half-foreign land, trying to be a good father and husband and everything in between.
Here's to the new Swimbrief.