October 27: Bored one weekend while his girlfriend and roommate are out of town, college freshman Scott Hardie who had only first visited a web site two months earlier decides to learn HTML. By the end of the two days, he has created a simple page on his student account, uncreatively christened Scott's Home Page. With no idea what to put on it, he adds a information about Street Fighter II and a list of Steven Wright jokes he was forwarded in email. Finished on Sunday night, he happily shows it to his roommate Matthew Preston and emails the URL to a few high school friends including Lori Velàzquez (later Lancaster).
November 16: Photos of Scott's friends begin to decorate his site, grainy grayscale thumbnails acquired with a cruddy handheld scanner. Yearbook photos are the first on the site, but it's the addition of large, colorful Halloween Party photos that truly kick it off: Kelly Lee dressed as a wolf, Jason Fedorow dressed as a Star Wars guard, and Scott Hardie dressed as Jason Fedorow. From the beginning, Scott's friends are a big part of his site.
December 14: Scott discovers Photoshop, or rather the cheap imitator that came with his scanner, and begins tweaking photos of his friends' faces to humorous effect. One friend is a Pulp Fiction fan and asks to join Samuel L. Jackson, Uma Thurman and Bruce Willis in a photo from the film. Another friend replaces Arnold Schwarzenegger in a shot from Terminator 2. His love of distorting photos would eventually drive the central focus of the site.
December 16: Fandom bears its influence: Scott creates the first of several fan pages he will eventually make for his adored Metallica. Not having anything original to contribute, he types up and publishes the liner notes from a fan-made bootleg of Garage Days 3, including a typo of "Rob Haldord" that would lead a Judas Priest fan to send him his first nasty email because of the site. Scott's fandom would eventually inspire numerous other sections of the site including movie reviews.
When a section of the site has an anniversary, the sidebar element announcing it now appears in the gray section of the site as well as in the section itself. The 20th anniversary of Thorough Movie Reviews came and went a few months ago without me saying anything because I didn't look at that section that day and I missed the message.
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