I'm doing well but it's sure been a lousy week for Immortal Ephemera on things-and-other-stuff.com! If you checked in on the site itself over the past 5-7 days you would have found the home page down though all of the old site pages working. That's what I get for switching over to WordPress, right? Well, no, actually that's what I got for sticking with my hosting company for about three years beyond the point I knew I should have.
Here's what happened. Last week I received a couple of emails from my hosting company, the first stating they were having issues with all MySQL databases across their system, the second saying the issue was resolved. I don't want to get too techy here on a classic movie blog, but basically MySQL is the engine that powers the WordPress blogging platform and since I've gone with the new look over here that's what I've come to depend on. So anyway, about 8 hours later I move forward with my scheduled post, a new Photo ID Guide, and while I noticed things were a little slow on the backend everything appeared to be working.
Until it wasn't. And so we went down hard, at least the converted over portion of the website did. I shut off the newsletter, though subscribers may have received an issue saying something about the site had changed. I suffered in silence about 48 hours trying all the tricks I've learned over the past several years to get Immortal Ephemera up and running again but to no avail. Finally I enlisted the aid of Vince at GreenSpotting, a fellow Antiques and Collectibles dealer who happens to be light years ahead of me as far as working with these behind the scenes type website malfunctions go. Vince was awesome, spending a good chunk of an evening trying to figure out my problem and planting lots of ideas in my head about what possible causes and solutions. Thanks again, Vince!
In the end I still don't know exactly what happened but I think it had a lot to do with my old host. Yes, I said old host. That's how I got myself up and running again. things-and-other-stuff.com had been hosted by PowWeb since it launched in 2002 and I had several very happy years with them before they were sold and things turned kind of unhappy about once a year or so. This week I made the switch over to Dreamhost and I'm loving it so far. But with each passing day more and more of my business relies on WordPress functioning correctly and obviously I can't fall prey to my own technical ignorance too often, so I've applied with the new Vaultpress service and am waiting on my Golden Ticket which, wow, I really hope arrives before I press the wrong button and bring my site down again! Ha, that shouldn't happen now, but by following through with Vaultpress, a service which I realized I needed the moment I saw it and was likely just 48 hours or so away from signing up with before my crash, I feel I can be protected and not disappear from the internet for a week at a time ever again!
Boy, that was boring, but hey, I figured I owed an explanation for my disappearance. What's going on with Classic Movies and Collectibles now? We're into Day 3 of TCM's annual Summer Under the Stars, one of my favorite months of the year even if I didn't record any Julie Christie movies. My tech problems of this week really cut into all of my blogging, but I did manage to post a Basil Rathbone Found! post on ClassicMovieSearch.com Sunday. Sure, Sunday's past, but I linked out to three excellent Basil Rathbone posts from the past from sites inside the Classic Movie Search in that one.
My last review here before the crash was My Name Is Julia Ross, which I loved, but I didn't really get the chance to blog about any of the other classics I've seen since then that I really liked. Really liked may be strong, but for some reason 1930's Eleven Men and a Girl, starring Joe E. Brown, has stuck with me, not so much because of Brown I suppose but because of the presence of a 20 year old Joan Bennett. Another one I enjoyed more than I expected I would was One Way Passage (1932) starring William Powell and Kay Francis, it had just the proper Frank McHugh chuckle quotient to keep me smiling throughout, even as tragedy loomed for Powell and Francis' characters! From a little later on I also finally caught Powell starring in Life With Father (1947), which I'd previously seen a little at a time in several partial viewings, but finally had the pleasure of making it from beginning to end this week. Then there was Gene Kelly in non-musical offering Black Hand (1950), which surprised me as quite the entertaining little mob movie. That last one I've watched a couple of times already and if I give it one more viewing I may wind up reviewing it here as it had a lot to offer including way more J. Carroll Naish then I ever expected.
On the collectibles front I just published that 1934 Godfrey Phillips Photo ID Guide, which should go out to subscribers in the same mailing as this email (look just below, should be there!). At the bottom of that Guide you'll see some cards for sale and throughout the rest of the site you'll now come upon reference to the Immortal Ephemera Store. Well, I finally found a system I like and I'm in the process of loading products in. My store can now be found right on the site, interspersed throughout appropriate posts and standing alone as a full featured shop. Oh, prices are 20% below my eBay rates. Plus cut and paste the promo code Q1HQ5NBEQXN1 and enter it at checkout for an extra 10% off.
Over time I expect to end some of my eBay listings, perhaps beginning with duplicates and the really low priced stuff and only offer them here. But I want to get the Immortal Ephemera Store fully stocked first. While last week was a bit of a set-back in that regard things should once again proceed normally starting now. Speaking of eBay, the first couple of nights have ended, but this Wednesday, Thursday and Friday nights I'll be auctioning off the last three batches of a large group of 1920's Arcade Cards I recently picked up. Every card starts at just a $4.99 minimum bid, regardless of condition or who's pictured, and there are some big names still available: Our Gang, individual poses of Joe Cobb and Mickey Daniels, Tom Mix, William S. Hart, many other cowboys, the boxer Benny Leonard and much more. Here are all of my current auctions.
And that should about bring us up to date with things resuming as normally going forward. Let's just hope the site doesn't break when I hit publish on this one! Vaultpress, are you listening?