Unless one says goodbye to what one loves, and unless one travels to completely new territories, one can expect merely a long wearing away of oneself and an eventual extinction. - Jean Dubuffet
I loved The X Bridge the moment I created it. And I still do.
I've met a lot of people throughout the years, a handful of which I call acquaintences and an even smaller handful I call friends. One I hope to call more than just my girlfriend one day. I had a handful in creating a vibrant communities and helping create one of the biggest animation fan communities online, Toonzone Forums. It's something I could really look on with pride.
I've rattled a few cages, talked a lot of smack, and probably influenced a lot of people in the nearly 15 years I've been working on The X Bridge. But lately, that's a huge problem I need to rectify. what The X Bridge is and what it's not. And I've been beating myself up about what I want it to be almost to the point that I don't want to do this site any more.
I have nothing to prove here anymore in regards to Toonami. I thought I could rebuild it to become something greater than that, but the thing is, even if I create a great original series here, people will still see The X Bridge as nothing more than a Toonami fan page.
It's a double-edged sword that wounds me. I mean, granted, I still am a fan of Toonami. I appreciate what the block was, enjoy the current Adult Swim version more than a lot of people, and I look forward to what Toonami has to offer in the years to come. Unlike a lot of people who claim to be fans but hide behind anonymous masks and spew a lot of negativity their way, I do believe Toonami is in a stronger position in 2013 than it was in 2006, let alone 2008 when the original block ended.
I realize that I'm not the guy people want me to be .I'm not a news guy. I'm not a ratings guy, and I'm not one to speak loudly on top of each other on a weekly podcast. There are so many people more committed, more dedicated, more devoted to Toonami than I, and by all means, give the a look. I'm not passing the torch because there's no torch. I was glad to be one of the first webmasters dedicating itself to the better cartoon show that is Toonami, and I'm glad there's a generation taking control (and honestly, if you guys and gals need an elder statesman of sorts, let me know). I'm a historian and an opinionist, not a news guy, and people seem to rather have news than history and opinions.
Like I said in September, I'm not sure if there's a place for The X Bridge in 2012, let alone 2013. Everybody's doing videos of themselves, podcasts, and other more audio/visual productions instead of just writing. I'm a modest person, and I'm a quiet individual. I have a lot to say, and I feel more comfortable writing out how I feel rather than just saying it out loud, mostly because I'm chronically shy. I'm not a talker. I try to speak volumes with my words, and since this site launched in 1998, that's what I've been doing. Some folks remember this place as CNX: Toonami Revolution. Some even go back to my GeoCities days (and honestly, if you've been with me THAT long, from the bottom of my heart, thank you). Most often, I've written things more critical about things I know I cannot control and at times felt like I was speaking to a stone wall. I was angry, not only at the world around me, but, in the end, myself.
I've mellowed a lot. I'm not the same fiery twentysomething I was a decade ago frothing mad at moronic changes in programming I liked. I'm not the same guy that called businesses and individuals I thought was doing these acts "infinite losers" nor calling for them to be replaced. I'm not that person any more. Creatively speaking, I was not where I wanted to be in my life, and I was more disappointed in myself than the world around me so I put The X Bridge aside for a while.
I devoted much of the year trying to get back on my feet in the real world, finding love and a little bit of peace. I created a pair of pretty decent Tumblr pages (Thoughtnami and BFMC), but I keep looking back at The X Bridge figuring out what I could do with it. A lot of times I was thinking is there even a place for a site like The X Bridge, and for a while, I nearly considered shutting it down for good. I was going to make one last post reflecting on the past, talking about what I plan on doing next, and saying thank you to all of you who spent a portion of your time checking out the site in the past 15 years.
As I mentioned over at Thoughtnami, I'm working on a master plan. I know I want to do comics, original stories, and expand into other venues later down the line, but I'm not sure if The X Bridge is a part of that master plan. I'd like it to be, but I'm not sure if I could continue to be hosted here in the future. It's something I've been thinking about and considering for months now. If I can, all the better. If not, well, I don't see how much longer I could do this.
But as of today, starting now, I'm putting Toonami aside, seeing its strong legacy in the rearview mirror, and forging a new destiny to uphold and create and a new bridge to cross. It's scary, it's different, and I look forward to it all. If you're here for Toonami stuff, you're at the wrong place. If you stick around, I promise to make it worth coming to.
See you in April.
Create. And keep creating.
- Jeff Harris, March 9, 2013