I have been brushing up on my wordpress knowledge (described here), and a facelift of this site is becoming inevitable. No telling on how long it will take, but I want it to look great, especially because next year I should be coming out with my essay collection Non-crappy things from my blog. It would be unseemly if the ebook came out and the website looked like crap.
WordPress has become a very complex ecosystem, and frankly the real action seems to be in theming or headless sites or even static site generators. Actually self-hosting seems awfully retro as well.
Some of these wp plugins are just loaded and add substantial cruft to the code. It’s hard enough trying to figure out the full site editor or modular CSS; but why should a human being have to deal with all the scripts that add minimal value to the site.
The block editor offers a lot of cool functionality, but it also makes layout somewhat cumbersome. Also, managing media and contact forms is rather cumbersome (though I finally figured it out).