It's been an exciting few hours as I've sat here troubleshooting what turned out to be a database access issue. Turns out, when the Ghost blog service restarts on the server, it establishes a connection with the locally installed MySQL instance. Makes sense, now anyway, but hindsight is always 20-20. When I first tried to pull up the blog this morning, I was presented with an alarming message, thus prompting me to title this blog the way I did. Having formed an immediate thought on what I might have done to cause this, I immediately began digging in.
Now, when I launched the Ghost blog by Bitnami from the Amazon Web Services marketplace, it seemingly handled much of the configuration automatically, with the exception of my URL which I had to manually set up via command line. Few more days had gone by when I discovered purpose built ghost setup commands meant to really get things going. Since this blog had been running smoothly up until then, I was hesitant to really change anything but would've liked to customize things closer to what I'd want to see in a production environment. So unbeknownst to me at the time, when I reconfigured the MySQL username and password, I was effectively breaking access to the database, instead of creating a new password which I believed to be the case at the time.
After learning various MySQL commands and adjusting some config files around, service was restored! The master configuration is now pointing to a user that exists using a password that is correct! I'll be marking this unplanned downtime as a lesson in managing services that talk to one another. Also, I'm just glad it wasn't DNS.