We’re Back After North Korea Shut Down My Blog!

Filed Under: Misc.

As you may have noticed, there have been no new blog posts since midday on Friday. No, I wasn’t out having fun for the weekend. After all, Hello Kitty Con isn’t in Los Angeles until late October (at which point all bets are off). 😉

The truth is we’ve had some serious technology issues at Boarding Area since midday Friday, whereby I literally couldn’t log into my blog’s admin page. The blog appeared just fine and people could add comments, but I couldn’t actually write anything.

Is it a coincidence that the blog stopped working shortly after I published a post about Air Koryo’s policy of allowing you to buy up to five seats per flight, and literally as I was drafting a blog post about an Air Koryo $9 business class mistake fare?


Kim Jong-un would probably say “no.”


Anyway, things should be back to normal now, and I have so much to write about, so stay tuned. I also wanted to provide a couple of quick updates.

New blog is coming tomorrow

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that the blog would be getting a serious redesign. Thanks so much for all the feedback you guys provided, as I’ve incorporated as much of it as possible. The redesign will go live tomorrow morning.

However, it shouldn’t result in any downtime, but rather there will just be a 90 minute period where I can’t publish anything and where you guys can’t leave any comments. I’ll post again tomorrow morning prior to the switchover, explaining exactly when and how it will happen.

Please bear with us during the transition. When the site goes live it won’t be the finished product. We still have a lot of changes to make to specific pages, and will certainly tweak things based on your feedback as well. Hopefully within a day or two we have the somewhat finished product, though.

As much as I’m excited to get a new look, the real benefit of the redesign is on the back end of things. Right now we’re so limited to what we can do, since the theme is so old. The options with the new theme will be endless, which is really exciting. But again, I’ll have more on that tomorrow.

I love blogging

Regarding this weekend, having the blog down for three days actually taught me a lot. I’ve always considered myself to be incredibly fortunate to do this for a living. I’ve written this blog for over six years now, and I truly think of it as my “baby.” While I’m so fortunate to be able to make a living writing this in the meantime, for the first several years I didn’t make a dime on the site.

What I realized from having three days without the blog is just how much I enjoy this community and this hobby. I really didn’t know what to do with myself. It’s not that I was angry about it being down, because ultimately that was outside of my control.

But, like, I actually didn’t know what to do with myself. I was so desperate that I almost turned on the TV or went outside… like, OMG!


I definitely don’t say it enough, and that’s in part because I can’t quite put into words how grateful I am for all of you. I’m so so fortunate to do what I love every day, and I owe it all to you guys.

I was the kid that just always wanted to do what I was passionate about and didn’t care about the “corporate world.” So when I graduated college and struggled to find a job, it just kind of dawned on me that maybe I could actually do this for a living.

Never in my wildest dreams did I expect the blog would grow to where it is today. And at the end of the day the blog isn’t about numbers or anything, but rather about the amazing people I’ve met along the way, and how you guys engage me, challenge me, and sometimes just plain call me out every day. I really do appreciate it!

Now back to the content!

  1. I think that it’s easier to fix the $9 mistake fare than to shut down your blog 😉

  2. We are still waiting for that long-promised “Kickstarter Reflection” post. I’m guessing you are hoping everyone quietly forgets the kickstarter campaign/request to have people pay for you to be pampered. I find it especially ludacris given you asked those who already donated to donate more 24 hours before the close of the kickstarter.

  3. I am glad you are back. I started to get worried when didn’t see any new posts for few days. Looks like its not only enjoyable for you to do the blog, but also very addictive for your readers.:) Thank you for being here for us.

  4. I was wondering what happened to you. Was worried that you had decided to try out Air Koryo.

  5. Can you provide an insight in your selfish kickstarter campaign failure as tyler noted above?

    You cant honestly think we forgot about it right?

  6. I wasn’t checking your site over the weekend until earlier this morning. (OK, summer began and after a tough winter, a blog-free weekend was called for) 😉

    I found it curious there were no updates (where’s Ben?!) but was also relieved I didn’t miss anything!

  7. PS Ummm really…can’t you guys write the kickstarter update yourselves?…It was a whim… I never expected it to fully fund… we got pretty close… you guys blew me away by supporting it as much as you did… I know some of you (haters) thought it was controversial… I hope you give the money to charity instead… who cares about a dumb apartment in the sky anyway…did I tell you i’m living in hotels? 😉

  8. @Tyler, I don’t think Ludacris would have found the kickstarter campaign to be ludicrous at all. I would imagine he enjoys luxury products quite a bit.

    I personally wanted Lucky to publish more about the campaign on his blog as the clock ticked down so he could make it over the hump. I was disappointed that he didn’t make it. What more is there to publish though? “I started a kickstarter campaign, some people hated the idea and others loved it but in the end we didn’t raise enough money.”

    Doing the kickstarter thing is no more selfish than having advertising and affiliate links on the blog. Lucky has a career funded by new media and he should use all the tools at his disposal to expand his blog, his career and yes, his profits. It’s just business. I think most of the hate comes from people who are jealous that lucky has been able to turn a personal hobby into a lucrative career. More power to him.

  9. @Tom-

    Ha, I thought Ludacris looked a little funny when righting it. I did talk to him (the rapper) though, and he did think it was absolutel ludicrous.

  10. hello kitty con – that’s awesome! and there’s a nice omni right next door to the moca – might have to go 🙂

  11. I thought Lucky decided to become a tour guide to Brazil for the duration of the World Cup after flying there so often 😉

  12. No, thank YOU Ben! I cannot stress enough how much I enjoy every single post you make and the countless hours I’ve explored every trip/lounge report dreaming abouth they say that I experience those adventures myself. Keep up the excellent work lucky. Cheers!

  13. Mistake fare $9 from pyongyang to beijing, check in counter at pyongyang will say ” I’m sorry Sir, your ticket is not valid, you can’t leave north korea” 🙂

  14. I am just wondering what is the point of posting this $9 business class fare on the Internet? Is this desire to explore Air Koryo website the ultimate in airline and mileage related OCD?

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