First post of 2012: The blog’s new look

Welcome (back?) to Following Pulitzer, the blog that attempts to answer a variety of questions about literature, America, life in the context of these two things, and many other sundry topics.  If you’re a regular, you may notice (unless you’re not particularly affected by visual cues) that the blog looks different.  I’ve been holding off for months now—the blog “theme” I built FP in, back in 2009, was superseded by a hip new update early in 2011, and WordPress has been “nudging” me to make the update ever since.  I haven’t wanted to, being the kind of guy who doesn’t like change even when he is sure it’s a good idea, and I wasn’t sure this was a good idea.  But it’s 2012, and the arrival of the new year is time to take a few leaps personally.  I know, I know: it’s a bit pathetic to suggest that adopting a slightly different blog theme is some kind of important step in my journey of personal growth.  But I take what I can get.

I do like some new features: it’s MUCH easier now to see how to leave a comment (instead of a tiny link, it’s a big button), and I think the blog’s tags are much more visible now.  It seems to me that there’s a lot less wasted space on the margins, and the right sidebar looks a little less cluttered to me now.

I also am not happy with some changes—I feel like the expanded top sidebar (it’s not a “sidebar” if it’s on top, is it….what, is it a “topbar”?  I am almost painfully unhip about these things) is cluttered and I can’t fix that without a major reorganization of the blog’s page structure…although that structure, admittedly, was merely designed to fit the last theme’s oddities, and not based on some cool and careful logic on my part.  The text of the blog’s subtitle in the header is in a wretched font that is far too thin and I can’t alter it in any way other than its color.  Blech.  And at first, I was getting weird giant tildes in the middle of posts that obscured the text—word to the wise: if this is happening to you, update your browser to solve the problem.  If you’d rather not update your browser, and find the tildes irritating and troublesome, I feel your pain, but I’m afraid I can’t do anything about it.  It’s one of the vagaries of hypertext markup language with which a mortal cannot hope to contend.

If other weirdness arises from this (or if no weirdness arises and you think the new look is wicked—that’s “wicked!” in a cool way, and not malevolent as though originating from an ancient evil), let me know.  I will say, though, the old theme is gone.  I took a leap knowing there was no way back up.  So it’s this or one of WordPress’s even worse free themes.  I’m hoping this will do well enough to allow you and me to continue enjoying this little dialogue we have (it’s a bit one-sided, I know, but such are blogs).  Cheers to you all, and welcome to the new year.