The Rickety Old Shack

Site News

Merry Christmööse | December 24th, 2018

It seems like every year passes quicker than the last and, here we are, 2018 is already in its final stretch. It's been a very productive year for this site, and I am actually a little surprised that I was able to keep up the flow of content. I managed to somehow do more than I expected and still not complete a number of projects I had on the agenda. Win some, lose some, I guess. I'll be making another post either at the very end of this year or the beginning of 2019, outlining some changes to the content that the site will be running.

This site has always been a vanity project, and I put zero effort into marketing it. Consequently, I don't get much reader feedback — probably due to a combination of low readership numbers and the fact seemingly no one writes emails these days. That being said, I am still enjoying the effort I put into this site and I'm looking forward to celebrating the 20th anniversary of the site. If you've read anything I've posted here, or even the dumb stuff I churn out on the Blog and my Twitter page, I would like to thank you for doing so. I hope you have all have a happy holidays and enjoy whatever vacation time you may have.
Posted by: Derek

The November Update | November 26th, 2018

The end of the year is creeping up on me quicker than I'd like it to be. I had a number of projects that I had hoped to complete by the end of 2018, but it looks like those will all be getting pushed back. The launch of the site blog has occupied some of my spare time, but it's honestly not that demanding — especially since no one comments on the posts yet. I'll be posting the usual assortment of music reviews and MMA content, while I hash out my plans for 2019's content focus. I'll be elaborating on the direction of future content a lot more in late-December, as right now I am mulling some ideas but haven't made any firm decisions yet.

Expect 1-2 music reviews each week, and a similar number of MMA posts. If there's anything you'd like covered or otherwise commented on, feel free to let me know. Thanks for reading.
Posted by: Derek

The Shack Is Back | October 22nd, 2018

I'm still not exactly 100% recovered, but I am almost there. As such, The Rickety Old Shack will be resuming its normal update schedule of 2-3 postings per week, and likely more. The UFC's schedule was pretty light for the past two months, but that's all over with — there is a UFC event every weekend until year's end. As a result, there will be the usual Pre-Fight / Post-Fight Thoughts articles about marquee match-ups and Fight Notes instalments. I'm also getting back to some reviews that I forgot about, so once I knock the dust off them — and refamiliarise myself with the subject matter — I'll have some TV and book reviews coming in the next month.

Also, don't forget the Shack Blog, which I've been keeping updated with at least one post per day — with only a few exceptions due the whole two weeks of plagues I endured.
Posted by: Derek

Almost There | October 9th, 2018

As per the last news update, life's been pelting me with curveballs in the form of a bunch of illnesses. I've mostly recovered from them, and managed to get my UFC 229 posts written up. I'm going to be traveling tomorrow, to see Wintersun perform in Montreal, and I will have a write-up for that show in the days that follow. I've also got more music reviews coming, and expect to get the site back to its usual schedule within the next 7-10 days. Thanks for your patience in the interim; I cannot wait to put this utterly humbling bout of ill health behind me.
Posted by: Derek

Be Back Soon | September 29th, 2018

When I posted the last update, as I headed out of the city, a few things weren't on my itenerary: the city I live in being waylaid by no less-than 6 tornadoes, and contracting an absolutely brutal viral illness. Luckily the tornadoes didn't damage my house or do much to inconvenience me beyond leaving a friend and I stuck on a highway for about an hour, but the illness really did a number on me. I am that annoying guy who never gets sick; the last time I was seriously ill from a flu or the like was 2008. I'm on the cusp of a full recovery, but life's been utterly miserable so obviously the site has gone unattended.

Thank you for your patience, I'll be back to normal within the week.
Posted by: Derek

Gone Fishin' | September 21st, 2018

I will be taking a very short break from the site, as I will be off in the woods for a few days — enjoying the last of the good weather before fall and winter slowly roll in. I will be back by Sunday, September 23rd, and have a few items in the works. I am taking a pass on this weekend's UFC card which looks abysmal, and that's being kind. I'll get around to watching it eventually — because I am crippled by my completist leanings — but the Fight Notes article for it will be delayed significantly.

I've also got a short trip in early October coming up, where I'll be catching a Wintersun concert in Montreal. I do not expect that to have any effect on the site's posting schedule, though. Thanks for reading, and I'll be back before you know it!
Posted by: Derek

One Year Later | August 25th, 2018

Wow, does time fly... It doesn't feel like it's been 12 months, but that's exactly when I re-launched this site. Re-opening on the eve of Floyd Mayweather taking on Conor McGregor in the biggest broad daylight heist in the boxing world. Since then, I'm pleased to say that I've managed to keep up a fairly steady pace of 1-2 articles, minimum, per week, since the re-launch. I don't get much direct engagement from the site, but I've never done it for page-views, or feedback, I keep this place running as an outlet for myself. That being said, I do hope anyone taking the time to read what I write here finds some value in in the site's contents.

I have no intention of slowing down, and have a lot of minor design tweaks in mind. For now, I am happy with the layout, but will be using this site to further hone my web design abilities. I've got a big retrospective project in the works, which The Shack will be playing a central role in. I will have more details on that as we get closer to the new year.

As always, thanks for reading!
Posted by: Derek

Official Blog Launched | August 25th, 2018

After having a placeholder on the front page saying "coming soon" for 12 months, the official Shack Blog has been launched. It's going to feature smaller posts than the articles that go up here, and some difference in topics — as well as a significant amount of overlap — from what is seen here. I may end up re-posting the contents of the other 3 blogs I ran prior to this iteration, but we'll see. (That's a lot of work for content that probably isn't anywhere near as good as I remember it.)

Anyway, it's live; bookmark the RSS feed, sign up and comment!
Posted by: Derek

Short Break Ending Soon | July 28th, 2018

The last few weeks have been more draining than I had expected, so I've been taking a break from working on the site. This place is not a job, nor do I ever intend it to be, so I figured that avoiding burn-out was the best course of action. We're less-than a month away from the one-year anniversary of this current incarnation of the site, and I fully intend to see that come and go with new content appearing on this site the whole time. I expect to have something up tomorrow, with updates coming in slowly until around the end of August.
Posted by: Derek

Upcoming Summer Schedule | June 26th, 2018

The next 3-4 weeks will see a somewhat reduced posting schedule. There shouldn't be too many large gaps, but posting frequency will be approximately 2 articles per week for the next month or so. I have a vacation coming up, as well as other personal commitments, and then everything gets back to normal. I've also got some non-music reviews coming, among other things. Stay tuned, and thanks for reading.
Posted by: Derek

Come Whatever May | May 29th, 2018

Another extremely busy month is almost completely in the books. There was a short spell of inactivity on the site, but things are mostly back to normal. I am on the cusp of the final entry in a short run of concerts I lined up earlier in the year. Unfortunately the Bloodbath gig was cancelled due to visa problems, but Satyricon was awesome (link), as was Aborted and tomorrow is the mighty Slayer. Once that concludes, my brief vacation will be over and the site will ease back into its usual update cycle.
Posted by: Derek

May Update - And Look Ahead | May 6th, 2018

I blinked and April was over, and May is passing by at roughly the same fast clip. The pace will be slightly more relaxed around here for this month, though there will still be updates coming. The fact the UFC gifted fans with a 3 week break was very much appreciated, though it did give me a little less to write about. (Leslie Smith's labour dispute with the UFC was the only notable development over the past couple weeks.)

There are quite a number of new music releases I intend to get around to reviewing. I will also be travelling to Montreal a few times, this month, for a number of concerts which I will be writing about as well. Despite the fact there will be a fewer posts over the next week+, I still have a lot in the works. I also found another archive, which I need to sort through. As with all the other old stuff I found previously, I expect nigh all of it to be unuseable but I won't know until I look.

Lastly, I have been inspired to write some retrospective articles on a number of subjects. As we move ever closer to the 20-year anniversary of this website — something I never fathomed seeing — it has stirred a lot of thoughts, as have my trips down memory lane via my archives. I will finally be adding movie reviews, and gaming content as well; there remains an almost endless amount of work I want to put into this project.

Thank you for reading.
Posted by: Derek

The Madness That Is UFC 223 | April 6th, 2018

Over the past few days, I have posted two articles about the events that have transpired around UFC 223. First, about the jinx on the main event (story) and then a follow-up, detailing the madness of Conor McGregor's actions after a press event (story). Now, today, the weigh-ins resulted in even more absurdity. I won't have anything new posted until tomorrow, when I intend to cover everything in detail — and whatever else might happen in the interim. This has been the busiest week for me, MMA-wise, in years, and all for the wrong reasons.
Posted by: Derek

We March Ever Onward | March 27th, 2018

It wasn't intentional, but the site news posts have become a once-a-month thing and I have decided to stick with that. The intention is to (eventually) re-launch my personal blog for small, mini-updates that would be too long for Twitter.

I have officially re-posted 99% of the old reviews I deemed worthy to put back up. There is a big cache of them left from the White Trash Devil days, and I will be going through them at some point — if only for posterity — but every time I haul stuff out of the vault I am dissatisfied with it. Some of my old material will possibly see inclusion in a series of retrospective articles I have in the works.

So far I've managed to maintain the 3 articles / week schedule I had in mind from the start. Posting frequency may increase periodically, but consistency and longevity are the main goals I have for this site. For now, expect more MMA and music content; thanks for reading.
Posted by: Derek

Yet Another Progress Report | February 28th, 2018

The past month has been quite good for keeping the site updated, making for a solid 6 months this place has been open without any long-term content droughts. There is a bunch of stuff still coming, and I found another archive of old reviews and articles I need to sift through. There is less old stuff I want to re-post than I originally thought; not that there isn't a lot of old, offline material, but you can tell it's 15+ years old. I do plan on posting a few old reviews, and contrasting them with my current opinions on their subjects, but the old op-ed columns and interviews are most likely never coming back.
Posted by: Derek

Site Progress Report | February 4th, 2018

There is still a lot of stuff in the works, but I figure I should post some sort of an update in the interim. As can be seen, the pace of updates has picked up somewhat, and I am looking to maintain this consistency for as long as possible. The majority of the forthcoming content is music reviews, as I continue to get the remainder of my archives online, and work through some newer releases I happen to feel strongly about.

I've made some tweaks to the HTML design of the site, and split of the new posts into the "article" and "review" categories. I may break things down further, when I get more categories, but for now those should suffice. Please let me know if the 3-column table doesn't render properly in your browser (include your browser and screen resolution), I tried to test it on as many setups as possible.
Posted by: Derek

A Very Quick Update | January 19th, 2018

Just a quick note that there is a bunch of stuff coming down the pipe. I have some articles about a number of subjects coming, as well as music reviews. Sorry for the delay, it's been a very hectic week.
Posted by: Derek

Ringing In The New Year | January 8th, 2018

The holidays are now rapidly fading in the rear-view mirror, and my schedule has reverted to a more normal configuration. I have a lot of work planned, and hope to be rolling out a lot of new postings in the next few months — and not just a continual series of "stay tuned" updates.

The first order of business is finishing the re-posting of archived material. That is going to continue to be a slow-trickle, as I compile reviews of newer material, and gives me a buffer for weeks where I end up strapped for time. I was shocked to realise that my "How To Make A Death Metal Band" article is coming up on its 16-year anniversary; I can't remember for certain, but I believe I originally wrote it for White Trash Devil, back in 2002.

If you're looking for more variety in the music I review, and articles on other subjects, then keep checking back every few days.
Posted by: Derek

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