At the moment, my gout story is easy. Because I’m taking allopurinol each day. So gout doesn’t bother me personally. Although I do have visible tophi which I think will last for years.
But my GoutPal role is very busy right now. Because I’m moving servers. So I’m taking the opportunity to reorganize and redesign.
My reorganization includes terminating one site – The GoutPal Story. Because I never made time to keep that updated. So it’s best forgotten.
However, I have one post that I’d like to keep. So here’s a story from when I started GoutPal.com. Note that I’ve added the missing link to the rheumatologists’ recognition.
GoutPal – The early years
I’m Keith Taylor, and I was first diagnosed with gout 20 years ago. I can’t remember the exact date, but it was the summer of 1995. Almost ten years later, 6th February 2005, I registered GoutPal.com
Today, I’ve started to journal the changes. I will be looking forward to some planned improvements to my GoutPal websites. I will be journaling significant changes as they happen. Today, I’m looking back to the early years of GoutPal.
When I first got gout, I was working as a systems analyst and developer in the IT industry. I had been interested in the Internet for many years and dabbled in website development. My gout grew worse, and my Internet knowledge grew more. The turn of the millennium brought a massive reduction in IT programming jobs, and the only decent work for me was 200 miles away. Sick of the weekly commute, I took a local job as a finance and marketing manager.
That spurred me on to develop my website skills. Entrepreneurship never left me, and I researched my ideas of developing my own online business. As ever, I was bursting with ideas. I thought about my skill-set, my passions, and my knowledge. After researching several options, there was only one choice for me. I had to do a website about gout.
In the 10 years after my gout diagnosis, I took every Internet opportunity to find out more about the world’s most painful disease. I was led astray by mistaken professionals and misguided salesmen. In hindsight, my first serious website could have been much better. But if I had not taken the plunge in 2005, five million gout sufferers would now still be reliant on that old mistaken, misguided advice.
GoutPal February 2005
Here’s a snapshot of early GoutPal.com. I’d managed a whole 3 pages by 21st February 2005. This is how it looked at 10:48 on that day, according to GoutPal on the Wayback Machine:
Though mainly serious, I like a little fun too. Hence the song, to the tune of Food Glorious Food from Oliver! My version was Gout Odious Gout! It never raised the level of interest I hoped, so I eventually deleted it, in June last year.
Though my gout song didn’t fit with GoutPal.com, I personally wish I’d kept it for these archives. Just in case, I thought I’d search for it. Lo and behold, it’s been rescued and saved for posterity by 2 Italian rheumatologists! (Fusaro and Parisi – Progress in the treatment of Rheumatic Diseases Slide 34 archive)
I’ll revive my gout song in a later edition of these archives.
You can see an archive here.