pencil The Greater Boston Graphite pencil

Evan Lee

A Brand New Archaic Blog

= Est. 2023 =

A Brand New Archaic Blog
= Est. 2023 by Evan Lee =

Brand New Archaic Blog
= Est. 2023 by Evan Lee =


Hello World!

The Greater Boston Graphite’s first blog post

By: Evan Lee
Sept. 24, 2023 | Website News, Personal Life

GBG Round Logo

I'm a bit embarrassed to say I've waited three years to write this.

My website was supposed to be up and running by the summer of 2020, right after I graduated college. But then I found myself in an essential service position and everything just fell behind.

Thanks Covid.

But nonetheless, my small string of the world wide web is finally online - a place to host old writing portfolios and also publish new work.

So, with this being my very first post here, let me take the opportunity to introduce myself and cut the ribbon to this somewhat 2008 looking blog.

photo of me

Who are you

I’m a Letter Carrier for the United States Postal Service who previously wrote for newspapers during college.

So, call me a writer delivering other people’s literature for a living.

Formerly, I wrote for The MetroWest Daily News and Milford Daily News, covering the onset of COVID-19 as an intern reporter. I also served as the news editor of my college’s student paper, The Gatepost.

In 2020, I graduated with a B.A. in Political Science from Framingham State University.

So, how did I end up delivering the U.S. Mail then? Well, chalk that up to Covid. There just wasn’t a lot of opportunity when I graduated, it was the peak of the pandemic and USPS was one of the few places still hiring.

The job is mentally and physically demanding. For the longest time, I’ve felt too drained to even think about doing anything else. But, at least I can say it’s pretty nice to be out on my own delivering the routes.

Sometimes I feel like I’m on auto-pilot, working in the background while I tune into whatever stories or songs I have queued up for the day.

There’s no radio in the truck, but a portable speaker fits snuggly behind the dashboard. I like to listen to news on it, of course. Stations like WBZ 1030 and NPR or podcasts like NYT’s The Daily and Playbook Deep Dive by Politico.

I also love music. My absolute favorite thing to bring to work is a Sanyo M-G55 “Walkman style” cassette player I repaired last year. It clips right onto the dash, fittingly since the truck is from the 80’s too, and I can spend the whole day spinning mixtapes through it.

Cassette Player Grumman LLV Postal Truck

Throughout the pandemic, I’ve had little opportunity or motivation to write. I remember working 10-to-12 hour shifts, six-to-seven days a week as a third of our office went down with Covid.

But after the virus cooled down in 2023, I’ve finally been able to enjoy a much more normal schedule. Guaranteed days off, for one, allow me to regain focus on old projects and set my goals for the future, like finally launching this website.

Here, I have a platform that encourages me to write again - a passion of mine I’d like to eventually find a career in. But in the meantime, I'm happy to just blog about things I enjoy or find important.

What is this

The Greater Boston Graphite -

My self-made blog. Lovingly, and frustratingly, hand typed in HTML, CSS and touch of Javascript.

What kind of nincompoop makes a non-generated, static website in 2023? ... Oh right, me.

Now obviously, a modern website builder like Wix or Wordpress would have been far easier to work with, much more so than raw Notepad++ files anyway. But, creative freedom will always be limited to their templates and themes.

I wanted to break away from that. Like the Geocities and MySpace blogs that pioneered Web 1.0, here I can have a design that’s truly my own.

Welcome to my website!

... Mostly

My blog takes inspiration from the iconic look of old print newspapers. Off-whites, smudged grays and faded yellows make up my primary color palette.

But form follows function, and this site puts ease of navigation above all else. I've spent a lot of time modernizing the entire layout and menus for mobile responsiveness, so no matter how big or small your screen size is, the content will always adapt to it.

Try it out by resizing your browser or turning your phone sideways!

website screenshots, browser vs mobile

Left: desktop browser screen | Right: Mobile phone screen

I’m not gonna lie, it was a struggle to make any of this work. Sometimes I’d go to fix one issue in my CSS - the style sheet language that gives content its appearance - and I’d find a whole other section of the website broken as a result.

But, there are some benefits to building it the old fashioned way, even beyond stubborn pride.

The site is fully static, meaning everything loads the moment you click onto a new page. It’s also tiny, the entire file system takes up just under 25 megabytes of space. Combined, this affords me super fast load times compared to even professionally built, modern dynamic sites.

It’s also dirt cheap to host. Being under one gigabyte, I can host it freely on GitHub Pages. The only thing I actually pay for is the domain, That will cost me roughly $14 a year through - truly living up to their title.

Now, as far as where my site’s name comes from, I live in Greater Boston and like to scribble my notes down with graphite pencils.

That’s how I came up with it, anyway.

But as a symbol for the site, graphite really does reflect my writing style.

Because by design, a pencil encourages writers to look back on their work and revise, revise, REVISE until perhaps every single sentence from their initial draft has changed.

Does this word make sense here? Will the sentence I'm writing now conflict with what I've written before? Is there a better way to get my point across?


I ask myself these questions and many more like them every time I sit down to write something.

Of course, I'm not scribing out full drafts on lined paper like a grade schooler anymore - I only jot down thoughts and ideas. But whether the words are by pencil or pixel, the writing process is the same.

Nothing is perfect, you can always strive to make it better.

The humble pencil respects that.


And that about wraps up the tour.

If you’d like to know more about me or the website itself, head over to the About Page where I’ve expanded further on this post.

Or, if you’d like to get in touch, feel free to shoot me an email or a DM through social media. Find my contact info in the Contact Page.

And be sure to follow me there too if you’d like updates on my posts! I’ll be sharing links on Twitter and Instagram.

Looking forward to writing again!