In 2004 I was fresh out of my first degree, and had no idea how to function as an adult. I had to buy a suit to wear to my first professional job, and had no idea about makeup, having schlepped around in jeans and skater-trainers for my entire teenage life and early adulthood. I showed up to my job in ill-fitting, mix-and-match polyester and felt like the worlds biggest impostor. A woman there took sympathy on me and introduced me to the Vogue Forum. My world opened and changed and suddenly I was surrounded by women of all occupations and personalities and passions and it was amazing. I learned how to buy a suit. How to wear makeup so I didn’t look like I’d been hit with Homer Simpson’s slap gun. How to argue for more money, change careers, buy a house. I. Loved. It. And later when I changed careers, there was more support, and even applause. There were famous threads, famous users, and it was even in the news a few times.
And then it started to fade. The post’s grew less. The forum was redesigned and lost screen real estate. Some of the most famous threads and users were deleted inexplicably. We all got busier as our careers progressed.
Later on I had the privilege of being asked to be a moderator which I gladly accepted, but the combination of medical school and subsequent training with my own life stuff in between (and consequent total exit from the Internet for a couple of years), the soul crushing amounts of spam that had to be binned in the background, the time poor moderators, and the unfixeable things like the deleted users and threads and lost screen real estate all conspired against us and now it’s a graveyard.
Except I don’t want it to be a graveyard. And somewhere in all of that, my moderator privileges remained. And suddenly now that I’m part-time, I have some time. Not a whole lot of time, but I have some to write, and interact, and stick up for people and posts from being deleted. So I’ve decided to out myself as a mod – not one of the earlier ones with the cool and funny jokes, or the later invisible heavy handed ones, one of the newer ones who has so much to give back to the forum.
If anyone reads the forum, please come back. If anyone reads this blog, give it a go. I’d really love to pay it forward to the new generation of early 20 somethings who have no idea about the world. I’ll make sure status-anxiety doesn’t result in the deletion of a $10 a week on food thread or any great arguments in the current affairs section get shut down. Vive la Vogue!