A Little Blog Redesign

Earlier today I put up a bit of a bleg (now taken down). I was trying to install a more modern commenting platform (Jetpack) that features things like users being able to log in with various accounts they have elsewhere, like Twitter, FB, G+. Problem is, it uses different stuff to call up the form, as well as display comments, while my old Cutline theme uses the old way.

Initially, I figured I’d get in and futz with php (I suck at it for all but very basic shit) to edit the old theme files. Ended up I could get the comments to display but not the new form, or vice versa—not both at the same time. Got a few tips that didn’t pan out either. In the end, I just bit the bullet, went all in, and spent the day completely rebuilding the site under the Prose Theme on the Genesis Framework (which is cool, because Prose is a child theme and that has a lot of advantages I won’t get into).

Anyway, not a huge number of changes in terms of look and feel. Frankly, I don’t like a lot of very modern designs, many that strike me as style and design over function and content, and I’m old school. A blog should be about content.

So there it is. I have a few things here and there to touch up, like the display of images I had as a global hack on my old theme. Lots of the stuff on my old theme was hacked and in this new environment, most stuff is a bunch of pointing and clicking and picking fonts and colors. Since I built fresh and from scratch, and the tech is more modern, hopefully things load faster.

I’m shot, so I’m just going to put up some funny shit. This is just hilarious.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More


  1. Christoph Dollis (@ChristophDollis) on April 7, 2014 at 22:08

    If you’re using JetPack (and I prefer the prior commenting system, but you didn’t ask me!), you’ll want this: Manual Control for Jetpack (Jetpack auto-activates new modules, without asking your permission. This plugin stops that.)

    You may also need to disable various SEO features in JetPack, such as OpenGraph, if you have SEO plugins like WordPress SEO by Yoast.

  2. Ellen Ussery on April 8, 2014 at 06:00

    So you can’t subscribe to comments without commenting anymore?

    • Richard Nikoley on April 8, 2014 at 09:15

      Ellen, yea. I tried that plugin but since it manages all subscriptions it gets overridden buy this one. Tradeoffs. People have been asking about social account logins forever, so I kinda have to take the tradeoff favoring those contributing to comments.

      I am going to make some suggestions to the developers though, and having that feature will be on the list.

  3. brazilbrad on April 8, 2014 at 11:02

    I still don’t get why you don’t allow people to edit their posts or delete them if they want. Is that a limitation you chose purposely?

  4. Richard Nikoley on April 8, 2014 at 15:26


    It’s complicated. I would if I could but there are many tradeoffs, including having a “free blog” where other people own your data (the biggie: I have paid since 2003, so I own all my data). Did anyone notice how Google just got tired of Google Reader and just shut it down? What happens when they do that with Blogger, and it costs people hundreds to move someplace?

    Anyway, there are no solutions out there that offer all I want, while not sucking the bandwidth life out of the blog.

  5. bob r on April 9, 2014 at 03:51

    Any chance of having the “comments” link at the bottom of the post (in stead of or addition to the top)?

    • Richard Nikoley on April 9, 2014 at 08:06

      I’ll add it to the list. There are a bunch of little things that are not part of the standard global settings, such as that and the way images are handled. For now, I have to get to the book and I think things are pretty good and it sure loads faster.

  6. AmyW on April 9, 2014 at 19:25

    I had brought up your first post on resistant starch and was going through each of them over the course of the last week by clicking the next post title at the top of the page. I had gotten up to early September 2013, and then all of a sudden that feature is gone. It would be really nice to have those “next post title” and “previous post title” arrows back.

  7. Guttural on April 9, 2014 at 20:11

    Suggestion: Get rid of the background for children comments to make it easier to tell where threads end/start.

    e.g. .children .comment { background-color: #fff; }
    and perhaps .comment .comment-author-rnikoley { background-color: #ddf5ee; }

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