Today is no different from any other. Here in Westport you’ll crawl behind a school bus. Your dog will take you for a walk. You’ll click on “06880” to see — well, you never know what you’ll see.
If you’re not in Westport — but somewhere else on the planet — you’ll do your own thing. You too will click on “06880” to find out what’s happening in this wild, wonderful and only slightly weird place you’ve somehow come to know.
That’s the way it’s been since March 6, 2009. For 9 years, I’ve covered it all.
Our beautiful beaches — and their growing crowds. Our wonderful schools, the amazing kids there — and the enormous pressures on them. Entitled drivers, and unsung heroes. The renaissance of Saugatuck, the rise of Bedford Square, and the tumbleweeds on Main Street.
The only sure things in life are death and taxes. I write about them too.
Here’s something you may not know: Since that very first post nearly a decade ago, I have not missed a day.
For over 3,200 days — and through nearly 7,800 stories — “06880” has been here. On your desktop, laptop, iPad, iPhone, iWatch, whatever.
The tagline “Where Westport meets the world” means I write about organizations, events, politics, real estate, recreation, people who live here, people who once lived here, people who want to live here, even TV shows about people who live here.
You’ve made nearly 90,000 comments. Together, we’ve made “06880” — the blog — into a true, online community. Every day it lives, breathes and grows.
So does my commitment to it. And to you.
Once a year — on my anniversary — I put out my tin cup. I ask you to help sustain this blog. And me.
You see the stories I write. But you don’t see the research I do. The interviews I conduct. The comments I moderate — and the private emails I respond to. (I answer every one — even from the guy who asked me to post fewer stories, because his inbox was getting full.)
You don’t see the hours I spend scouring the interwebs for photos, the time I spend taking my own — or the photo editing that follows. (You think the latest feature — Pic of the Day — just falls from the sky?!)
You don’t see the money I spend on “06880.” I pay to keep it ad-free. I pay for domain mapping. I pay for software upgrades.
And you don’t see that “06880” has become, basically, my full-time job. I’ve gone from a full-time freelance writer to an (almost) full-time freelance blogger.
So: If you like what you read, please consider supporting “06880.” Scroll down — details at the bottom!
Am I worth $1 a month? $1 a week? Perhaps (my choice!) $1 a day!
If my 7,800 stories have been worth a penny apiece, that’s $78. If half them are worth a dime each, that’s $390. I’ll leave other calculations to you.
I hope that if “06880” has ever
- made you laugh, cry, think or wonder
- spurred you to go to an event, read a book, try a restaurant or patronize a store
- helped you meet a neighbor, or connect with an old friend
- kept you up to date in a blizzard, hurricane, windstorm or power outage
- made you feel connected to your new town (or the place you grew up)
- alerted you to a new housing or zoning development
- provided a forum for you to rant about an issue, rave about a place, or complain about my own personal politics
- delivered news about a favorite person, place or thing
- galvanized you to support a cause
- publicized your event, book, appearance or concert
- published your photo
- honored someone you loved or admired
- connected you to your hometown from many miles away
- saved you time or money
- opened a window on Westport’s history, helped you think about its future, introduced you to someone in town you never knew, or helped you look at someone or someplace in a new way
- inspired you
- made you sit up and say “Wow!” (or “Holy f—!”)
— you will consider tossing something my way.
Everyone can contribute — politics be damned. Sure, you know where I stand. But I’ve always given you a voice too.
Thanks for 9 great years. I’ll keep doing what I’m doing, whether anyone sends an anniversary gift or not.
We’ll still have our summer “06880” party at the beach — and I’ll still cover both the beauty and the changes of Compo.
It’s all part of “06880.” It’s my honor and privilege to help share it with you.
You can donate by PayPal: click here. It’s easy, safe — and you don’t even need a PayPal account. If you get an error message, go to www.PayPal.com; then log in (or create an account), and send money from the dropdown menu by entering this email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. Or click the “Donate” button on the home page of “06880. You can also donate using Venmo!
Checks can be mailed to: Dan Woog, 301 Post Road East, Westport, CT 06880. Put “06880” on the memo line. It won’t do anything for the IRS, but it may help you remember at tax time why you sent me something.