Some Numbers for May 2014 (“14” Excluded)


Since Saturday was a day for statistics of general use, let me make this Sunday one for talking about how the blog is doing, and let’s never mind that it’s actually Monday according to the WordPress Server Clock because that’s getting too confusing.

I had my most popular month of all time in May: 571 page views, up from 396 in April, and pretty convincingly more than the previous record (468, in March). The number of unique visitors is up, too, from 167 in April to 186 in May, although that’s the fourth-highest number of unique visitors on record. It is by far the highest views-per-visitor ratio, 3.07, that I’ve had; it’s up from 2.37 last month. I also had my 5,983rd page view, so I missed the big six thousand just barely, for May. Ah well. At least I got it somewhere around the first of June, which is pretty neatly organized.

The most popular articles the past month were:

  1. Math Comics and Ziggy for some reason; it’s just pointing to mathematics comics and mentioning a Ziggy that mentioned Popeye.
  2. After Our Pet Rabbit Had A Day Outdoors, the stirring true story of the aftermath of letting him in the yard a little.
  3. Math Comics Without Equations, which is an even more mysterious entry because it’s from January and it’s again just a pointer to the mathematics blog.
  4. Five Astounding Facts About Turbo, That Movie About A Snail in The Indianapolis 500, of course. Hey, are they having the Indianapolis 500 this year?
  5. Popeye Space Ark 2000 Pinball … I Don’t Even Know, the engagingly deranged story which the late game designer Python Anghelo (best known for Joust) dreamed up for, alas, one of the least interesting pinballs of the mid-90s.
  6. About the Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame, which I just really like myself, so I’m glad it’s well-received here.

The countries sending me the most readers the past month were the United States (478), Canada (15), and the United Kingdom (10). Just a single reader each came from Cyprus, Finland, India, Italy, Slovakia, and Spain. Fewer countries sent me a single reader each last month, but Italy and Spain were among them.

Among search terms that brought people to me:

  • socrates chewed gum
  • meaningless awards
  • chase nebus
  • comic strip “unstrange phenomena”
  • s j perelman counter revolution

Good luck, whoever was looking for things.

About the Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame


Since my recent mention of the Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame there’ve been a number of inquiries directed to this office asking for more information about this Hall of Fame, such as where it may be found and whether I made the whole thing up, and what sort of person gets inducted into the Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame. The last is easiest: it tends to be people who draw feet, although there are exceptions made for people who have made great advances — strides, to use the industry jargon — in public awareness of foot-drawing and its associated fields, such as sock envisioning or the composition of toenail apologias.

The Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame as we know it was inspired by the opening of the Baseball Hall of Fame, as many Halls of Fame were. Every baseball player of serious note has or at some point had feet, or knew someone who did, and yet did they get any mention in the Hall? Not a word, and P K Shrelk couldn’t help wondering where all these players would be without their feet? Down a couple inches, was his conclusion, and that was good enough to search out a way to celebrate the drawing of feet, because when he looked into the whole foot there was too much to consider. Just thinking of all the bones alone could make someone have to lie down and come back later. He imagined someday a network of foot-related halls of fame might allow the understanding of the foot in all its complexity for the interested foot viewer. Shrelk died a very tired man.

The Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame opened in 1967 in Sick River Junction, Missouri, making use of the famous sanitarium which was once the Missouri State Home for the Tall. One needn’t worry about the former residents of the home. Medical advances and changing social attitudes allowed Missouri to sort out the patients who could be readmitted to society from those who were incurably tall. Those unlucky persons were few enough that they could be placed in more general-care institutions with cathedral ceilings. Indeed, Anthony Millest — one of the last children to be taken in to the Home for the Tall — was found to be not just healthy but to have a foot-drawing talent great enough that he became one of the earliest docents at the museum. To this day he’s three days a week, greeting kids and sharing stories of the museum’s goals and accomplishments and plucking things off the top of the refrigerator.

The first artist admitted into the Hall of Fame was one Pelter Rebleat, who was of no particular renown in the field of foot-drawing, truth be told, but the directors felt they needed to start with some impressive names. Rebleat was surprised by his induction, as the letter of invitation had been addressed to Peltier Rebleat (arguably the more impressive name) and because of what he described as the kidnapping which brought him to the opening ceremonies. Since then the policy of “once-famous, always-famous” has blocked all attempts to remove him from the hall, and people bring him fresh clothes and adequate food. He often gets together with Millest to play checkers and agree that things have changed and there’s probably not much of a way to stop that, especially on the web sites they use all the time.

Besides hosting the third-largest collection of drawings of feet among states whose names start with M, the Hall of Fame offers informational classes designed to help would-be artists overcome their natural fear of drawing feet. According to longtime museum defender Anabess Sweetkludge, the most common thing artists do wrong in drawing feet is begin too far up the leg, so that the feet fall out of frame. This can be overcome most easily by getting a slightly larger sketchbook or, for those artists who work digitally, holding the drawing tablet closer to themselves. A more complicated solution is to engineer an artistic movement by which ankles and their environs are regarded as the true measure of artistic accomplishment, but that’s regarded as too much work just for some pictures of feet.

I hope this answers some of the more serious questions. If it doesn’t, perhaps this answers some other ones instead.

How It Being Barefoot Weather Changes The Sense Of How Clean The Floor Is (Illustrated)


A foot, in a sock, as drawn by me.
Figure 1. A foot, in a sock, as drawn by me.

Figure 1 shows a sock-clad foot. With the sock on, the floor feels clean, smooth, almost like that little ice rink that Jerry and that Other Mouse made out of the kitchen in that Tom and Jerry where they go ice skating to the tune of that music they lifted off Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. It’s hard to resist gliding around the living room and tripping over the fence used to keep the rabbit out of the dining room. You could imagine the floor to be liquid helium for all the friction you feel on it, except for not actually falling over.

A foot, not in a sock, as drawn by me.
Figure 2. A foot, not in a sock, as drawn by me.

Figure 2 shows a sock-unclad foot. It … hey, come to think of it, these are some pretty good drawings of feet. I mean, the leg in the first is clearly better, but the foot in the second is nothing to sneeze at. I’m not saying that I expect an invite to the Foot-Drawing Hall of Fame, not on the strength of these drawings alone, but I am saying that for someone who’s in my skill grade of foot-drawing, that’s doing pretty good. I mean, you can mostly tell what all the major parts of the foot are without labelling, and there’s even toenails and there’s that one where you can see the little bitty toe knuckle or whatever they call it when it’s on the foot. I’m not bragging here, I know there’s friends of mine who could draw a foot that so evokes “foot” that it would smash my drawing flat, I’m just saying that is definitely a drawing of a foot, and it came out way better than I figured it should, and I’m just awfully proud. And it’s not just a side view, this is in kind of an isometric view or something like that where you have to see things from a tricky angle, and it all works out basically all right. That’s pretty good stuff. Thanks for putting up with me. Is the big toe on the correct side of the foot there?