a lo-fi blog of modern Spokane life


SpoVegas is a blog with a long history. It originated after Doug Hughes (uh, that’s me typing in the third person) moved to Spokane after completion of law school to start study for the bar exam.  While in college at WSU, Doug may have coined the phrase “SpoVegas” to refer to Spokane. I certainly don’t want to sound self important, but friends have said that me using the term was the first use, and I honestly can’t find print or other justification for the use.

Anyway, while in law school I undertook publication of the law school newspaper. Due to financial considerations the paper had downscaled from a truly print weekly to a “made at kinkos looking like a POS” rag. The invention of the internet (“the web” as we used to say) made an online publication easy and more viable. The content focused on more social topics and use of the totally anonymous web posting that was in vogue at the time.  Talking about a professor or the dean showing up at a student party seemed far more important than discussing topics relating to the law. This wasn’t moot court or law review, this was intended to be information for the students to actually enjoy using and reading.  There was no name for this, as “weblog” and “newsletter” were all mashing around.  This was 1997 after all.

Anyway, it is now clear that the student newspaper turned into a group blog. It was hosted on the server of the school, then banned for a bit due to content issues, and popped back up off site at a private host, then updated back in. There is reference to The Dissent in the student bar constitution, but apparently the school has taken the site down and there is no other reference. Not even the wayback machine can dredge up this short-lived experiment. So, anyway anyway,

After returning to Spokane in 2000, I started to take a great interest in blogging. This was the early years and I should have left the law and started a tech company and got myself filthy rich. Alas…

I blogged with early tools and then taught myself rudimentary html. The first wayback machine entry is from December 2003. This is white text on a blue page trying to look like old wordperfect. this was the height of early blogging design humor. The old courier font wasn’t saved, but that was the intent. It was hand built with Microsoft Front Page 2000, with each update being a brand new coded html page, and each archive page being a newly numbered page. It was a labor of love, but for a single nerd in Spokane who was shy and enjoyed crazy politics, urban issues and reading british music mags like mojo, this was as good as you get. No wonder I developed an unhealthy pizza pipeline addiction.

By February 2004 the design shifted to a moveable type orange and tan thing. Then in December 2005 I had moved to typepad and started to design my own headers and stuff. Little did I know that as I was soon to be married and with children and family life. The time of being deeply involved in local politics and blogging about intensely urban and development issues was soon to drift off to other more adult pastimes. This is not a complaint, mind you, but a wistful remembrance of the things that were and how life and seasons change. Turn, turn, turn,

In fact, when I now read the archived entry on how a new watch that I bought while we were expecting our first child made me feel like a dad, I almost cry. Of course, I’m a cryer anyway.

After a period I did not have the $50 to pay for the hosting one year. So the site lapsed. To my surprise when my money rolled back in a few months later, someone had picked up the site as an ad drop due to my prior reader count of 30 or 40 hits per day. Sure, this isn’t exactly facebook but it was a respectable amount of old school RSS clicks for my random stuff.  This ad bait killed my site and readers. I went to www.Spo-Vegas.com for a while. But this was just a ruse. I waited out the ad computer and re-purchased spovegas.com when it lapsed. I have had a grand total of 4 visitors in the last few years. Anyway…

That is “about” this website. It started with the tag line “a lo-fi blog about modern spokane life”.  I have a weird habit of not wanting to post personal pics of kids/wife/home stuff. It was my work, and not realizing that the age of the oversharing facebook crowd was going to wash over my poor old “gen x” ways. Kind of strange. I was hip and cool for a while, then invited into the power structure, then in family life and then now focused on career and family. People who think a funny blog with 4 great posts a day is easy don’t know anything.

What’s an about page supposed to be about. That’s about how spovegas.com got here. There isn’t really a plan. It’s now more of a memorial. I have bout up my own name, douglasrhughes.com  SpoVegas.com may someday become sort of an adjunct of that site. Maybe post some personal pics on my facebook beyond what I have as an idea that privacy even exits in this old crazy world of ours.  It’s hard to write “about”.  This isn’t a mission statement. This isn’t a site that is made to monetize anything. I acutally thought the world was going to bloom with blogs and democrazy and move forward.  Then 9/11 and then life changes and then you get wise and then you get to realize that you’re never going to be wise.

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