Teh stupid out there is wearing me down right now. The lure of this machine in my lap is in hiding or so faint I can’t even hear it.
Not surfing. Not bookmarking. Not posting (maybe some easy stuff). I will avert my eyes and hope for a refresh – I will define success as expelling (or at least containing) knee-jerk, reactive outrage that these days rises too quickly, too often and causes me to make rude noises.
BUT BUT BUT . . . in lighter news: Whatever Works will soon be handing out spare keys to two friends who’ve shown some interest in co-blogging.
They’re both male. They’re both actors. One is 18 and a bit bent and quite liberal. The other is 40, very bent, and very very conservative. Both are fun. And smart. And I like them a lot. And if we pull this off, I hope you do too.
(Hellooooo, Orhan . . . your key still works, if you want to, ya’ know . . . )
WordPress has now sent the 2012 blog stats to its users. Allow me to share.
Whatever Works is into its fourth year; my first post went up in September of 2009. (Here it is.)
Since then, there have been 213,000 unique views. They came from 174 countries.
Here’s the history:
- 2009 (partial year) – 4900
- 2010 – 35,000
- 2011 – 63,000
- 2012 – 110,000
And there have been 2800 posts generating 20,000 comments.
As nice as this is, smug satisfaction from your bloghost is tempered by a less than glorious fact: the most viewed Whatever Works post of all time was, well, this. It got 2181 views because people were looking for that appalling photo. Humility is served.
I want to thank you all for visiting, for reading and for engaging in dialogue. Any blogger knows that over time, commenters become friends. And that’s the best part. Without you, this place is just noise. Just noise.
2013, here we come. . .
First WordPress shut me out of multiple functions, something that’s been building over the last few days. I couldn’t even access the WP help forums and found no solace in outside forums. Deeply frustrated, I turned away and decided to make some calls.
Uh-oh. Dialing yields only a dial tone. I unplug and replug, I reboot, I turn off, I turn on. I change clothes and even re-comb my hair. Nothing. Nada. Sorry. Have a nice day.
So it was on to MagicJack live chat help – for a 53-minute long chat. That’s 53, as in fifty-three. They sent a few updates and did some remote resets. Once again there was much unplugging and replugging and even more rummaging around in Device Managers and such.
But they did it. Those sweet sweet kids in Bangladesh or wherever, fixed it. I am grateful.
So now one thing is fixed, but the WordPress problem sits there, waiting. More tries but it was just hitting a wall.
And yet here I am. Posting - because I decided to try the desktop. And voila! Everything works fine over here!
So the problem is in my laptop somewhere. And it is something beyond my ken. This may require a visit from the good Todd, he who fixes all things.
It is now four hours since I sat at my desk, four lost hours.
I’m going to have a Diet Coke.
I called in the cats, but it was too late
Light blogging . . . busy busy weekend and now swamped with work and two deadlines looming, tasks made more interesting since my printer breathed its last a few hours ago. HP says 4 days till new one – maybe I’ll get lucky.
Ive been doing a little blog housekeeping today and see that youtube is again taking down more oldies videos, and instead of replacing them with the ‘video no longer available’ message, they’re replacing them with other videos. ‘Short Shorts’ and some Jackie Wilson stuff now appear over and over here.
I’ve tried to keep up and fix things by using different versions of the original songs . . . but it’s too much. So be it.
I just want y’all to know that Who Wears Short Shorts is not my favorite song.
A retired person like my esteemed self is not supposed to be overwhelmed with what we once called ‘work’. But I am.
It’s not the house or yard or other personal projects. It’s the damn volunteer affiliations, where I regularly over-commit, not yet having learned the obvious lesson.
And so I have my piles again, each demanding attention. There’s the newsletter for one board I’m on. And for that board, because I’m now able to remotely access the organization’s servers, I’m suddenly the go-to person for membership and other miscellaneous information as well.
There’s the unfinished grant application for the beach trust where, even though I’m no longer a Trustee (term limited), I seem to have become an ‘advisor’. As such – lucky me! – I get to do a lot of what I did as a Trustee – at least the responsibility no longer rest with me.
So, like Bart Simpson, it’s to the blackboard for me: must learn to say ‘no’. must learn to say ‘no’. must learn to . . .
And then perhaps some ice cream. It all looks better after some ice cream.
Plus the world out there offends me. And it sucks too. So there.
It is my habit at breakfast to keep a pen and notepad at hand along with a small pair of scissors. While I read my paper and sip coffee, glorious coffee, I jot down thoughts to perhaps follow up on later, and often – too often – clip articles with interesting passages highlighted. (I tried that underlining thing – did you know that ball pens often cut through newsprint?) And thus do I seed posts for Whatever Works.
After the ritual, I drop the morning harvest into a wire basket in the office. If the basket starts to fill up, I do some aggressive weeding, which isn’t hard since much of this is far less interesting at second look.
Right now the basket is full. It is overflowing. It is intimidating. It has become the enemy. It mocks me mercilessly. And it impedes blogging.
I’ve learned that some things can be left unexamined without doing any harm. So it shall be and so shall I be unbloggy until I face down that nasty basket and strip it of its power. The wastebasket and I shall overcome. Soon.
Meanwhile, it’s summer, the pool and grill beckon, the days are blessedly slow and quiet time is here for the taking, not stolen as in other seasons.
This may be over tomorrow – hell, it could even be later today. So this post shall serve either as explanation for why no blogging, or a return . But that’s summer: non-committal, and that’s okay.
Still having problems inserting videos. Been going back and forth with forums, even cleared out the cache and cookies (what a pain that is!). But no solution yet. So, why don’t you go here and choose one for yourself.
This is the image I used in my own ‘tanning lady’ post - back when she was still a story. It turned out to be quite popular on teh google and lo, thus did those seekers-of-wisdom-and-truth come right here, right to Whatever Works. And lo, they left their delicious digital signatures, and lo, they did cause my May site stats to soar and climb to a great big number. (It was an outlier. I know. I know. But still . . . )
So now, as an experiment – only an experiment of course, there is nothing blog-whore-ey about it – I’m re-posting that very picture (or ‘gooble-bait’ as I call it) to see what happens.
I myself see this as important research that must be done, so yup, I am so doing it.
Six posts in the last six days – sparse (and one was a Friday oldie, published with a single click so it hardly counts). Very very sparse.
I conclude therefore that I am very very unbloggy.
(In other news, it’s reported that a member of the British House of Lords thinks Bush and Obama are bad guys and has offered a bounty of ten million pounds to get the two. Can it be worse? Yeah, he announced it during a visit to Pakistan. I must say that was quite bold of His Lordship.)
I’ve heard from a few readers that they’re not able to comment . . . if you’ve had the problem, please email me at my already hopelessly public address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted in blogging
WordPress bloggers: my comment notifications are acting weird today. Anyone else??
Understand this, Yoda would. Lately my blog posts have been either derivative or stuff I’ve posted because I think I should post. My heart is perhaps tired. I’ve even just re-blogged for the first time (new WordPress feature that is very very easy and very very tempting).
I’m not going to go dark here or get all unbloggy . . . but nor am I going to just toss stuff up. I must set out to find my mojo. It may have been used up for now by the astonishing tone of the GOP race and the more astonishing and bold steps by Republicans to reign in we ‘uppity’ women.
Find it, I will. Lost, it is not. Hiding, it is.
. . . from Las Vegas’ 8 News NOW: “Trump to make ‘major announcement’ on presidential race” He still thinks we care. I think that’s kind of cute.
In other newz, my new shiny silver laptop arrived today as did my all legal-like, brand spanking new Office 10 Professional Suite. Tomorrow is a big day as my digital life finally will come off life support and be born anew.
And once it does . . I will immediately and completely re-organize every single thing in my life to absolute perfection, put everything I own in the right place, rearrange the contents of the bookshelves as they always should have been, begin blogging on a strict schedule (probably after my 45 rigorous minutes on the elliptical – and the protein shake), never again handle a piece of paper more than once, and feel secure in the certainty that I will never ever misplace anything again. Ever.
Ah, the power of the new ‘puter.
Lessons in spam: How [not] to Sound Like A Person:
I had been questioning occasion you ever considered altering customized for specific cultures of the website? Its really correctly created; I adore what youve obtained to say. But possibly it is possible to small a lot more when it comes to content so males could interact with it greater. Youve obtained a terrible total lots of text for only finding a single or two images. Maybe you’ll manage to area it out greater?
We all get robo-spam, those announcements of the latest ‘enhancement’ drugs or miracle weight loss systems. For every one that gets through, 100 others are probably kept out of your inbox by a blocker.
Same with blogs – Aksimet on WordPress does a fine job for
Whatever Works. (It’s blocked almost 14,000 spam comments from making it through, but does hold them for review, just in case.)
Robo spammers (see above) have been working at creating auto generated and specific ‘comments’ based on the content of a post. Sometimes they’re even successful, but not often. Sheer awfulness still reigns supreme. It’s a Beta world so far.
But that could change. I notice lately that the language is a bit sharper, the comment itself more relevant, almost believable.
The goal for now is commercial, to encourage a blogger to click through. Which means of course that the goal is to deceive.
I do wonder about future implications for us all when deception is run by software, is automated, targeted and widespread.
Lately, especially in media where they really ought to know better, I hear ‘blog posts’ referred to as ‘blogs’.
A post is not a blog. An article is not a newspaper. A story is not a magazine.
Please stop it.
Linda Holmes at NPR’s website had some fun yesterday, inventing 20 ficitonal commenters and their comments. They’re right on. Here are her “20 Unhappiest People You Meet in the Comments Sections of End of the Year Lists”:
1. The Poisoned. “The fact that you included Adele on this list of 100 things you like makes it a total joke.”
2. The Really Pretty Sure Person, Who Is Really Pretty Sure. “I’ve never seen Game Of Thrones, but I’m really pretty sure it’s not as good as Boardwalk Empire.”
3. The Person Who Is Exactly Right. “It really seems like this list of things you thought were good is just your opinion.”
4. The Surprisingly Lucid Narcoleptic. “ZZZZZZZZZ” is the classic. “SNORE” and “YAWN” are acceptable variants.
5. The Mother Of Tim “Freckles” Matterley. “There is a musician in Ann Arbor named Tim Matterley who is better than all these songs! You would like his music. He has a web site at FrecklesMatterley.com, and you can get his songs free on your computer! Please check out Tim Matterley, who does not have a big record contract YET but is very very good!!!!” Two comments later, she will often come back. “Also, Tim Matterley is in this YouTube video where he plays ‘Imagine’ at a children hospital. I am just one fan but I think he is great and he will go far!!!”
Snipped this from my site stats page, just now. As I write I expect the clock will turn.
Posted in blogging
That Christmas tree? The one in a pail of water out in the carport? That one? Intact, looks lovely, has perky, sweet smelling pine needles. And it would be perfect if . . . . now I’ve bought trees for that spot for 17 years and I know the right size. I can pick out the right tree four rows in under the tent - from the street. That’s how well I know the right size to buy and lug home.
I bought the wrong size. Yesterday’s curse was strong.
The holidays have started to intrude on my prefered pace of life, which is slow. Very, very slow. There’s likely to be light blogging till I put my foot down or have a burst of energy.
Meanwhile, you’ve heard this:
ONE of the great tropes of Republican criticism of Barack Obama is that the president goes around the world apologizing for America’s past misdeeds. “Have we ever had a president,” Mitt Romney asked in a foreign policy speech this summer, “who was so eager to address the world with an apology on his lips and doubt in his heart?”
But did you know this?
In a major speech in Cairo in 2005, Condoleezza Rice, then Mr. Bush’s secretary of state, said that “for 60 years, my country, the United States, pursued stability at the expense of democracy in this region here in the Middle East — and we achieved neither.” What was she doing if not apologizing on behalf of the United States — and vowing to put an end to a pattern of misguided policy?
Maybe it’s a black thing.
Posted in 2012 Elections, Egypt, George Bush, Government, History, Holidays, Middle East, Obama, partisanship, Politics
Tagged blogging, Christmas trees, foreign policy, George Bush, Holidays, Obama, Politics
WordPress (this blogging platform) has a comments spam blocker called Akismet which historically has been very good. But in the last weeks, more and more are getting through - 78 just this morning, all of which I will review before deleting because maybe, just maybe one of them will be legit.
The life of the stat whore.
Posted in blogging
Tagged blogging, spam
You may have noticed my mug has disappeared from this page and in its place is suicidal Barbie (who knew Ken was gay?). She landed here (no pun intended) quite by accident, but I’m kind of liking it. Thoughts?
I just noticed that sometime last week I put up my 2000th post at Whatever Works
and comments topped 13,000.
Further, it seems that with just 170 more visits before Monday, October 2011 becomes my all time big time mostest bestest ever ever EVER month.
Teh busy is easing up at last.
Friday oldie is forthcoming (it’s Thursday, isn’t it. Yikes. Again.)
Meanwhile, a ‘like’ on my last post just led me to Psilomelane. Stop by for some fascinating miscellany. It’s fun. I especially liked this:
Not unbloggy, just that this week has been chewing me up like bad scenery. A convergence of obligations that isn’t likely to slow down till the middle of next week. And Orhan is going to be traveling . . . ergo, blogging will remain light.
But Friday is Friday. After all. So here are the Teddy Bears; this one is kind of lame but has a place in musical history because one of the original Teddy Bears was Phil Spector, who went on to an outsize career as an R&R impressario. But that was before he shot his girlfriend. So Phil is singing in prison these days.
Till tonight? Till tomorrow?
There is work on my desk whispering in my ear and making veiled threats. So . . .
I really didn’t, at least not until I noticed I actually was on vacation. But it is August after all.
So I’ll throw up an oldie and not worry about this place for a few more days. Friend Shep sent this last week. The voices, the music, the lyrics – as good as America ever produced.
For well over a year, the top search term that brings people here is ‘scalia’. I don’t know whether that’s a function of how frequently people enter his name into search engines or if there was something particularly delicious about my one and only (I think) post about the good Justice. If that is the case, I wish I could find the damn thing and figure out what was so enticing about it!
I was just at Whatever Works - yup, there is a blog sharing my name at Blogger. I got there while googling to see if either whateverworks.com or whateverworksblog.com was available. They weren’t. (The first is a pest control company!)
I tried to leave a comment for the proprietor but failed. This has happened before with Blogger; it seems to resist comments - from me anyway. Can’t sign in via WordPress (refuses my URL). Can’t sign in via my Google account either.
So I shall link to the blog here. And hope she stops by so we can get acquainted.
My brain whirls, my outrage grows, my humor is dampened . . . but none of this translates into actual words. So Whatever Works shall vacation for a few more days and I can only hope Orhan feels inclined to toss something of substance up here.
In Miami, where the AC is temporarily off line at my brother’s beautiful 17th floor condo, we have open windows on three sides overlooking upper Biscayne Bay. The brisk breezes off the water cools us. Not bad.
Tried to catch up on comments this morning but I didn’t get very far. I’ve also got half a dozen post drafts that just need some polishing but their call is weak.
So. Unbloggy. Back at’cha soon.
I’m going to my quiet place.