Anyone who has visited here over the years has watched my website undergo a number of previous renovations.
Those changes and renovations have ranged from the design of the page, to the topics emphasized, to the actual name of the page itself.
It began with “Philly Cops” all the way back in the late 1990’s. That first site was created as an early place for police officers, especially Philadelphia Police, to get information and news regarding our department and profession.
Within a couple of years, another site called “Domelights” had been developed. ‘The Dome’ dealt with the same topics. I liked it’s format and the dedication of its founders and managers, and so decided to direct my own efforts in another direction.
Sometime around 2004, I decided to direct my efforts at politics. “The Right Way” was a short-lived effort that presented my opinions on various political and social issues from a conservative perspective.
About a decade ago, I decided to check to see if my own name was available as an internet domain. It was, and the “mattveasey.com” site under my own name was born.
Over this past decade the emphasis of the site has changed a few times. At first a continuation of the political and social direction of “The Right Way”, I began to incorporate pieces written on any topic that sparked my interest.
At one point, I tried to turn the site into a purely family site. The intent there was to make it a place where our extended family of kids and cousins, aunts and uncles, could catch up and stay in touch with one another.
Then along came Facebook almost immediately. So many family members joined up and got in touch with one another quickly that it became a perfect place to stay in touch.
Over the last half-dozen years there have been three major changes in direction. The first was to a religious and spiritual emphasis. Next came a change to baseball, specifically my hometown Philadelphia Phillies. Finally over the last year or so, to overall baseball coverage.
It was the fall of 1997 when I purchased our first home personal computer and logged on to the internet through the AOL service. Amazing to think that it was a full two decades ago. I began writing soon after. Most of those early pieces are lost to time.
Thankfully when starting “mattveasey.com”, I was able to recover a number of pieces dating back as far as 2004. Those are now available here. If you flip through the “Archives” in the left sidebar, you can see the evolution of the topics and direction.
Another thing that I hope you can see is the evolution of my own writing. It is an old axiom that “writers write” – it’s in the doing. I enjoy the writing, the self-experession and sharing of ideas.
I’m a writer, whether ever getting paid to do so professionally or not. And so I have to write. I’ve learned a great deal along the way, and believe that both my style and presentation have improved over the years.
To that end, I have undertaken the project of re-designing this website. That project is taking up my extra time right now, and will continue until I am ready for a formal re-launch. It could take weeks, could take a couple of months.
In January of 2018 there will be a major change in my life. On January 20, I am scheduled to retire from the Philadelphia Police Department after nearly 28 years of service.
Along with all of the things that my wife, Debbie, and I want to enjoy together in retirement, my intent is to increase my writing efforts. I also intend to take more time in actually crafting the pieces, making them better in quality. Too often in the past, I rush a piece just to get my ideas out.
The re-design of this website will make my past pieces more accessible. Not only will they be available chronologically through searching via that “Archives” method, but they will also be available topically through a sectional toolbar at the top of the page.
Current toolbar sections being developed include the following, though those could change slightly as the site is developed:
“Commentary” is the Editorial section. Here I comment on a wide variety of topics, such as my opinion on the NFL player protests involving some players ‘taking a knee’ during the playing of the national anthem.
“Faith”, “Politics”, “Sports”, “Terrorism”, “Baseball”, and “Phillies” are fairly self-evident as to what you can find covered under those topics. Within the Faith section you can find the regular ‘Sunday Sermon’ series, which will resume soon. In the Terrorism section you will find the ‘Islamism Series’ features relating to aspects of Islamic terror. That series will also be continued. The Sports section covers everything other than baseball.
“Philadelphia” covers non-sports pieces that specifically deal with issues and personalities involving the city where I was born and raised, still live at this point, and to whose citizens I have given decades of service. Here you can also find items related to my experiences working with the Philadelphia Police Department.
“Reviews” contains book, film, and music reviews that I have done over the years. It also includes a “TV Watch” series of television program reviews. That series will resume in 2018. There will be many more book and film reviews into the future. The reviews will always come with a link to the original featured work.
“History” covers pieces that deal with topics that I feel have a historic relevance, such as Benghazi or Hurricane Katrina. However, a number of series that I have run over the years can be found here. “American of the Year” comes out at the end of December and announces a high-profile American who I believe was most influential during the year. “Real American Heroes” is a bio series on winners of the Congressional Medal of Honor. “Rock and Roll Heaven” profiles musical personalities lost too soon.
Each of these series will be resurrected in 2018, and I may introduce a couple of new ones as well. There are also pieces in the “History” section revealing some of my own personal life story. I’ll continue to share more of that personal history as time goes by in this section.
Important to note in navigating around the site: click on the “labels” below any piece to find others relating to the same topic. For example, check the bottom of this article to get a look at some of those featured series already mentioned.
If you do bother to explore back through pieces from the past, you will notice a couple of things in some of the older pieces. There are some with no formatting, meaning the sentences all run together. There is no paragraph separation and no accompanying cover picture. There are also some references to links that no longer exist.
These issues are mostly found with pieces seven or more years old, and not every piece is affected. This resulted from a technical issue involving the transfer of those pieces from their original web hosting service at AOL to the current Google service. I will be slowly going back as a separate project and cleaning up those old pieces one at a time, over time.
NOTE: the project to clean up format and picture problems in the old articles was completed on November 15, 2017. If you ever find an old article with formatting problems or a missing feature photo, please let me now.
The more recent baseball-themed pieces utilize features that will become regular going forward. These included the incorporation of related videos and links to more information on the topic.
As we move into the future, who knows what developments might occur in web publishing or technology? Those might again spur a change in the presentation and design.
As far as the topical emphasis and direction, I intend to write on any and every topic that interests me. From the point of the re-launch and forward you will start to once again find news, events, sports, politics, media, faith, family, and more.
Hopefully someone else out there, ideally many folks, are enjoying my writing and are interested in another opinion on these issues. If so, please feel free to let me know. You can do that via the email link available here, on social media, or by leaving comments below individual pieces.
But the fact is that I have always written for myself, for my own pleasure and enjoyment. It’s been a means of self-expression, of getting out my inner voice, and of leaving a legacy.
I will announce on my social media feeds when the actual re-launch occurs. In the mean time, there are more than a thousand pieces available to look back through over the last 13 years. Enjoy!