In my continuing quest to fill in the data blanks between 2004 and 2012 for the journal here, I’ve been examining various Internet services that were available in the early 2000’s that I may have used.

The big problem I’m running into is when I find something that seems likely, getting access restored is unbelievably difficult.

Email addresses have been the keys to the proverbial online kingdom since shortly after email was invented, and I still have my mac.com / me.com / icloud.com email addresses from 2000 for this reason. But I’ve kept them pretty private to prevent a spam flood and started using gmail as the general use mailbox when it became a thing in 2004.

In December 2010 Gawker Media was hacked and my gmail account was instantly the subject of hundreds of spam emails per hour – so I cancelled it.

Roll the clock forward a decade: Google doesn’t restore old email addresses, ever. And they don’t ever release the old user names either – so I simply can’t get access to that email address.

Occasionally I’m successful in finding an actual human at some tech company I used to use way back when, and they help me out… But more often than not I have to talk to the customer support robot and the customer support robot doesn’t care if I can’t access an email account from over a decade ago.

Anyway, last evening I was perusing the dimly lit alleys of a Jeep forum I used to frequent back in 2009, and noted a link to an old image. That old image was hosted at livejournal, but from an account I didn’t remember setting up…

A little digging around on the Internet and presto, there’s the old account and, as an added bonus, several old photos of my 76 Jeep Cherokee.

I called it “The WarWagon” because of it looking like it drove off the set of a Mad Max movie. This is from 2008, in Conifer.

Left to right: Scott’s Liberty, Max’s XJ, and my SJ – the WarWagon. And the back of the house in Conifer, circa 2009.

The account at Livejournal also shows some 40 posts, but they are all set private so I cannot see them without logging in…

Unfortunately, while I was successful in digging up the password, it’s ‘old’ and LJ wants me to refresh it. But to do this the customer service robot wants me to respond to an email it’s sending to gmail which I cannot do… And the robot offers no alternatives to its programming.

So I’ll just take the small win of getting some photos I guess…