Sunday, January 4, 2009

A new day, a new blog for Owen Tew

With the demise of Journalspace, I've moved what I could here to Blogspot.

The Owen Tew online adventure began in 1997 with "Et Tu?" by Owen Tew on But I guess the real beginning was a religion column I wrote for my hometown newspaper after spending time as a reporter and wire editor there.

At the next newspaper I worked for I wrote occasional columns, some of them with a religious bent, and I also edited the Religion section, writing most of the local religion stories.

I pitched a religion column at the third paper I worked for, but the editor nixed it, so I tried syndicating, without success.

Then the Internet came along. Averse to technology, I bought a computer with the sole purpose of writing my column on the Web. It was a used 486 with a 28.8K modem, but it got the job done, albeit slowly.

I bought my own domain name and started to work away. I had chosen the pen name Owen Tew. (As a teenager I had wanted a cool nom de plume like Sam Celemens had with Mark Twain and found it when I heard baseball announcer Vin Scully say "the count is 0 and 2.")

I wanted to spell it Owen Tu, but was harassed by friends into changing the spelling since I'm not Asian. I argued that I am 1/16th Cherokee but with my pale skin and formerly bright red hair don't look it, so I could just as easily be 1/16th Chinese. They didn't buy it.

To make sure people knew how to pronounce it (It isn't TYOO.) I came up with "Et Tu?" by Owen Tew.

I ended up writing Owen as a fictional character who was a newspaper reporter five years younger than I was. (That made me able to be slightly wiser than him.) He had a girlfriend named Holly Gooden and a best friend he'd held on to too long named Tim Terry. Phil Durt became his friend after Owen covered a protest Phil led. Oh, and the next-door-neighbor temptress was Kate Forney.

I also wrote commentary on the site, but eventually decided I'd need to blog once that became popular. I moved some of the better stuff over to the blog site.

I tried several blog sites, including Blogspot, but couldn't figure out how any of them worked. Journalspace, on the other hand, was easy, so that became the new home of Owen Tew. The other characters faded, though I'd mention them as fake inspirations or tempters from time to time. And Phil Durt and Tim Terry would leave comments on my postings.

I made lots of e-friends on Journalspace, and, most importanly, met my wife there. That's the saddest part of it being gone.

Now that the incompetent owner of Journalspace has let all his data be lost, I've grabbed the best stuff out of the Google cache that I can. (Obviously, Blogspot has gotten easier to use.) I can't find the traducianism vs. creationism article either there or on the Internet Archive of I do have it on a hard drive backup, though, and on actual paper, as it was written for a college class. That article was cited in at least one post-graduate paper and on other Web sites debating traducianism, so I'll work on getting it back on the Web soon.