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Bloggers Anonymous

March 11, 2010

Featured Article, Words

I’ve been blogging regularly for several weeks now after years of wondering whether and how to start. I still haven’t figured it out. Figured out what? The strange, neurotic landscape that comes with hanging out your blogging shingle. I’ve taken to obsessively checking my hit counts. Figuring out what bumps the count upward by a few dozen pageviews. Why the angular graph tracking the counts daily in my WordPress.com Stats plug-in languishs or stalls out. What people react to. Whether I’ve become a cheap hit-count whore.

Part 2 in an ongoing, navel-reflecting, hit-count-hopeful, insomnia-driven reflection on the act of blogging. Part 1: ‘Blogging = Streaking.’

The bulk of bloggers, I suppose, command audiences that consist of handfuls of occasional readers and a sprinkle of devoted, faithful friends (Hi, Karan-a-go-go! Hey, Captain La La!). At this early stage and level of blogging it is perhaps presumptuous to call them ‘fans.’ Plus, a few pals or fellow travelers may be devoted as they are obscure bloggers, too, checking their own hit counts and wondering whether they are going to be epic fails like you as a blogger. So, it’s like a support group. Bloggers Anonymous.

That word, ‘anonymous,’ gets at some of the strangeness of trying to blog. The fact of the matter is that most bloggers are, for all intents and purposes, anonymous within the cavernous, cacophonous, 24-7 Wal-Mart of the Web. Really, when only 17 people check in with you all day on Feb. 28, 2010 (see graph below),  and one of them is your brother and the other is your fellow ‘epic fail-fearing fellow blogger,’ you can say any ridiculous old thing. It’s not like the world’s paying attention. But, see, that’s the rub. If you do go ahead and post something foolish, earnest and awful, the world or at least a colleague or your mother, (were she still on this mortal coil, God rest her soul), could be paying attention with just an e-mail or stray link (‘OMG, look at this...’). Foolishness and Ridicule are two louts always hanging around the corner in Blogland.

Of course, one’s hit counts, if they languish in numbers that reflect the candles on a teenager’s birthday cake, could have to do with the fact you publish a crushingly booo-o-ring blog. Or one that Doesn’t Speak to Me. Or that 65 visitors daily is better than the 32 when you first started and actually, quite a lot when you consider that that nice old lady, Myrtle, at the dry cleaners on the corner doesn’t have anybody reading her thoughts. Or that all of this is immaterial in the end, everything is an ever-dissolving mirage and that we are all really just ‘Dust in the Wind,’ yes, we are dust in the wind. I’m down with that; I get the whole annica thing.

But please, can more than 17 of you show up today? Thanks, man. (And good morning bro. And Karan. And Captain La La.)

Hit counts since the start of my illustrious blogging career. In my defense for today (which shows, like, 1 measly hit), I am writing this in the pre-dawn hours, stricken with insomnia. My friend(s) and whomever else will wander in today haven’t woken up yet. Though, if you live in France, you should be up already, having a croissant and jam and hot chocolate, and could be reading this blog were there anything about your world of interest in it. Perhaps there is!



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5 Responses to “Bloggers Anonymous”

  1. admin Says:

    It is humbling (and instructive) to note that the high-water mark in the graph above came after I posted a fun and remarkable OK Go music video to the blog and had not nothing whatsoever to do with my sterling prose and pithy ratiocination: http://hundredmountain.com/archives/1214

  2. Brad Mills Says:

    I stopped by today. 16 to go.

  3. Karan I. Says:

    Hi back. At least you’re posting. I suck. But am working on mid-life honesty as I have recently come clean to local artist re: my actual age.

  4. Dave Says:

    Me and my park coworkers once went to a “team building” laser tag (ie laser GUN) facility. A device strapped to your body records how many times you were “killed.” Tagged is just a politically correct euphemism. The “winner” was hit only twice. Most others were hit five or six times. I spotted one woman who had been giving me a hard time, and threatening to “kill” me over and over, hiding in a corner to keep her kill number down. I aimed, and shot, and shot, and shot, and shot. She had a kill number of 350.

    If I saw this post when it first came out. It would have been fun the next day to hit your site over, and over, and over to set a new daily hit record. Dang, another missed opportunity.

    • admin Says:

      Actually, I DID set a new daily hit count the next day. I think, 173 page views. Tiny still, but gratifying. The rising tide also has to do with linking Facebook and Twitter tweets to blogposts.