My life took an unexpected turn in early 2018 when I was diagnosed with oesophageal cancer. It took an even worse turn not long after when it became clear that the cancer had spread, or as the medical types prefer to say, was metastatic, which is not a Good Thing at all.

All of which means that the focus of this site has shifted a wee bit, and mostly deals with fun things like hospital visits, treatment and the like.

But here’s the previous history:

This is probably the fifteenth[1] version of my personal site. Over the years[2], I’ve moved from a tool that shall remain nameless, through HomeSite and Dreamweaver[3], before moving to Movable Type for a while before settling on WordPress. I’ve been using WordPress since 2004, so it’s looking like a long-term relationship. As WordPress has developed, I’ve found that I need to do less and less in the way of tweaking[12], which leaves me more time to create actual, you know, content.

I started the weblog part of the site because I wanted an easy way to record my progress in losing weight and getting a bit fitter. But I soon digressed and started writing posts on other subjects, and the weblog took over the rest of the site. Several Numerous redesigns and several changes of host later, here we are with Losing it[1], a fully integrated WordPress site, now upgraded to version 4.x[7].

For a while, I used Gallery2 to handle my photos, but in Spring 2010, I made the effort and moved the lot into WordPress, where with the aid of a simple plugin, I can provide slideshows and window-filling pictures.

This is what you can find here:

  • Losing it – the main body of the site. You can read the daily[4] weight reports, exercise reports, my reviews of books, music and movies and anything else I happen to witter about. It’s about as exciting and interesting as most weblogs. You can add your comments to any post if you feel so inclined.
  • Lescam, the occasionally live webcam. When it’s not live, you can see the latest static image of me.  The software this depended on is no longer functional, so no more Lescam
  • Sounds, a small selection of voice recordings, mostly for the benefit of my American friends who sometimes need a little help in knowing how to pronounce things correctly.
  • Contact, a little form you can fill in if you’d like to comment on the site or send me a message without leaving it on the site where anyone can read it.
  • Plugins: links to my WordPress plugins. These are very simple things, but some people find them useful  As these are not being developed any further,I’m not rally drawing attention to them any more.
  • And loads of photographs. There are loads of galleries, and I like to add single images to each day’s “weight and stuff report”.

Who is this Les guy anyway? Well, I have been described as:

A clown, a nut, a punster, a jokester…as well as being sardonic, sarcastic, witty and twisted. Let’s not forget irreverent, satiric, and whimsical[5]

It has also been alleged that I

wield language the way a samari wields a sword

It’s possible that the person in question[8] meant “Samurai”, but I’d hate to make unfounded assumptions. Either way, I deny it, of course.[9]

Or to put it another way, I’m a forty fifty-something IT geek, originally from Cardiff :cymru: , living in the North East of England.

Why Losing it[1]? Well, I wanted to give the weblog a name, and the original subject was weight loss, so it made sense at the time. And I like to use footnotes, which completes the name.[10]

Why so many footnotes? Well, I like them. They suit my way of thinking. And if I didn’t use footnotes (like the ones below) I’d end up writing sentences (like this one) with lots of stuff in brackets (like these (or are they parentheses?) ones here). Personally, I think lots of nested (puts aside mental image of brackets snuggling (I like that word) together) parentheses are much harder to cope with than a couple (understatement) of footnotes. Some people think that my email with 174[6] footnotes was a bit too much, though. :rolleyes:

And what’s with the vintage picture in the header that hasn’t been there for a few years, so why would anyone ask about it?

What? This little thing?

Losing it Header

Losing it Header

Well, I handed over a moderate sum of money to Unbound in support of Adrian Teal‘s book The Gin-Lane Gazette, and as the campaign raised enough to get the book published, I not only got a lovely exclusive hardback edition, but I also had myself drawn as an eighteenth century “person of rank and quality”. I was so pleased with the result that I started using it as my identity on Twitter and assorted other places, including the heading of this here website.

The current logo was created using an online service and is intended to represent the photographic focus of the site. Though I left in the bit about rambling, as it’s only fair to warn people.

Losing it logo

If you’re interested in how various bits of the site work, you can have a look at the credits page.

And so that I can have links to things on Amazon that occasionally generate a small amount of income, I am required by Amazon to state:

Les Bessant is a participant in the Amazon Europe S.à  r.l. Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.co.uk

And for anyone who cares about such things, there’s a note about cookies, which is there to keep the odd people who regulate things happy.

Any major changes to the site will be mentioned here

[1] Number chosen at random :wink:
[2] My first attempt was probably in 1997 or 1998. Fortunately, it no longer exists :smile:
[3] Though I mostly hand-coded when using that
[4] Except when I’m away, or I forget
[5] © Twisty, 2006. Thanks, Twisty :wave:
[6] Since upgraded to a version with 240 footnotes :eek2: [11]
[7] Numerous upgrades have happened along the way
[8] Hi Twisty! :wave: :tongue:
[9] Rumours that I do that a lot will, of course, be denied
[10] Except it doesn’t now
[11] A revised revised version reached 300 footnotes
[12] Apart from the look of the site. I’ve lost track of how many different themes I’ve been through