Thursday, August 5, 2010
I knew Google blogger’s introduction of a “Stats” feature would be a colossal waste of time destined to compound another colossal waste of time.
That would be this blog.
Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy blogging and the great feedback I hear from so many friendly readers here and at www.redroom.com. It keeps me going when all the people with real jobs coldly ignore my heartfelt petitions for real work.
I used to say blogging was the journalistic equivalent of running a lemonade stand. Then it dawned on me even 8 year olds know enough to charge a quarter for a glass of lemonade.
So why blog?
Well, ideally to build an audience so vast and enthusiastic that prestigious editors will pay to cannibalize our blogs for their readers and that publishers will be forced to recognize our work because of the sheer power of the readership we bring to bear.
We seek validation.
After two years, I have found it. And it was in the last place I would have thought to look.
Thanks to the new weeks-old stats feature I can track how many people are reading my home blog, where they live and when the last time any of them engaged in anything the right wingers on the U.S. Supreme Court consider deviant (your secrets are all safe with me, my friends).
So now I spend about an hour or two every other day or so writing a post and the remainder of my waking hours checking to see who’s reading what and if any of the real deviates live near to invite over for high tea.
And the most astounding thing I’m learning is I’m a global phenomenon. I have readers from all over the world. I have scores of them in South Korea, Australia, Brazil, the U.K., China, Thailand, South Africa and Lebanon -- and I mean the Lebanon with Beirut, not the Pittsburgh suburb of Mt. Lebanon where I grew up, the one with Carbonara’s Restaurant on Mt. Lebanon Blvd.
And I have at least one reader in Luxembourg.
I’m ashamed of my ignorance of these distant lands. For instance, all I know about Luxembourg is that is one of the smallest independent nations in the world. How small I have no idea.
For all I know, maybe there are just five people there which would mean that 20 percent of the population reads “Eight Days To Amish.” Who knows? My one reader might be Grand Duke Henri, the nation’s beloved monarch.
And wouldn’t that be cool!
Let’s assume it is and here’s what’s odd: I know that at 6:45 a.m. Henri (he’s so omnipotent he has just one name) was reading my blog, but he wasn’t reading a current post. No, he was reading “WeatherMan is my Superhero,” a post dashed off on June 22, 2009.
Why anyone in Luxembourg would be reading a 13-month-old post from an enigmatic blog purporting to be approaching Amishness is baffling.
I for the life of me have no idea how on earth anyone stumbles onto a blog called “Eight Days To Amish.” Really, calling it that was a very bad idea.
I thought it reflected just how desperate my financial situation had become (and still is). Heck, some days I’m about four days from having the electricity shut off and doing this like churning butter and trading kids for cattle.
And that brings me to Denmark, pop. 5,540,241.
For reasons I cannot fathom, I have 68 readers in Denmark, second only to the 1,718 of them stats says I have this month in the USA (I invite you all to “follow” the blog by posting your picture to the right. I futterwacken anytime someone does -- and that’s the dance Johnny Depp does in “Alice in Wonderland,” not something deviant).
So, finally, after two years I know my target audience. I know the people who “get” my stuff.
Here they are straight from Wikipedia: “Denmark, with a mixed market capitalist economy and a large welfare state, ranks as having the world's highest level of income equality. Denmark has the best business climate in the world, according to the U.S. business magazine Forbes. From 2006 to 2008, surveys ranked Denmark as ‘the happiest place in the world,’ based on standards of health, welfare, and education. The 2009 Global Peace Index survey ranks Denmark as the second most peaceful country in the world, after New Zealand. In 2009, Denmark was ranked as one of the least corrupt countries in the world according to the Corruption Perceptions Index ranking second only to New Zealand.”
I have found a home. So I’m going to do everything I can to court these happy, virtuous liberals in the hopes they’ll welcome my humble little blog into their mixed market capitalist arms.
That means you’re about to be deluged with musings on Tivoli Gardens, 12-time world champion windsurfer Bjorn Dunkerbeck, and how I pine to have a Carlsberg beer to wash down my hearty frokost of frikadeller with a side of Sol over Gudhjem.
I’m going to focus on cultivating every last Danish reader from Abenra to Lolland, from Copenhagen to Esbjerg and clear north to Skagen.
But it won’t happen overnight. It’ll take time.
Until then, I’m eight days to Danish.