Statistics Tuesday: What January Meant For My Humor Blog


And now, just a little late, I get around to reviewing my readership numbers for these parts (and parts of parts) for January (for 2017). It was a well-read month for Another Blog, Meanwhile. It may have shown me my true blogger-calling.

So in January 2017 there were, WordPress says, soem 2,340 page views from 1,361 distinct visitors. That’s way up from December 2016’s 1,396 views from 818 visitors, and November’s 1,219 views from 708 visitors. It’s my most-read month since the Apartment 3-Gocalypse and that time I got named in The Onion AV Club. (This is the sort of complicated, obscure thing I think is a good joke. The AV Club article didn’t name me, even though the article was written by a guy I knew from Mystery Science Theater 3000 fanfic-writing, but I used his offhand description of me to give this blog its name. Now that I have explained this you understand why it is appropriate to be amused.)

That fact, and the list of the five most popular articles this past month — four of which got over a hundred page views each! — tells me something important in what people like from me. January’s most-read articles:

Mark Twain I imagine popped up because it’s a pretty good piece people might have heard about but not known where to find. I’m happy to keep them from learning about archive.org if it’s any good to me. The Popeye pinball reappeared because a thread on pinball site Tilt Forums about awful, awful games referred to it. Popeye has a really crazypants backstory you have to see to believe, and then not believe.

But the rest is all me explaining story strips. Just like my Apartment 3-G narration. All told six of the ten most popular essays were explaining story strips. People want to know what’s happening in the story comics, without actually reading the story comics, for which I can’t blame them. I mean, I enjoy them, but they are a lot of padding and reaction shots and repetitions of what was already established and sometimes you just want to know why everyone is all tense today. I’m glad to discover this need and my ability to fill it. It’s just a shame I figure I’ve got two weeks before I run out of newspaper-syndicated story strips. I don’t figure to move on to web comics. There’s too many of them, for one thing, and nothing in Endtown needs explanation until that point two-thirds of the way into a story when it’s impossible to guess what’s going on or why.

Now to page views per country, so far as WordPress tells me anything:

Country Views
United States 1926
Canada 64
United Kingdom 57
France 35
Germany 35
India 29
Australia 23
Ireland 11
Mexico 11
Hong Kong SAR China 10
New Zealand 10
Philippines 10
Italy 8
Spain 8
Sweden 8
Vietnam 8
Netherlands 7
Singapore 6
Trinidad & Tobago 6
Finland 5
Israel 5
Japan 5
Argentina 3
Austria 3
Bangladesh 3
Cambodia 3
Norway 3
Portugal 3
Brazil 2
Egypt 2
Kuwait 2
Poland 2
South Korea 2
Tunisia 2
Armenia 1
Denmark 1
Ecuador 1
El Salvador 1
European Union 1
Kenya 1
Madagascar 1
Mongolia 1
Pakistan 1 (*)
Puerto Rico 1
Russia 1
Serbia 1
Uganda 1
United Arab Emirates 1 (*)

Pakistan and the United Arab Emirates were single-reader countries in December also. No countries are on a three-month single-reader streak. My “European Union” visitor is back, or replaced. I make this out as readers from 48 countries, with the United States strikingly dominant there. 14 single-reader countries. In December there were 42 countries listed altogether, 18 of them single-reader. So I suppose despite appearances the world is getting a little better, at least by that measure.

What else is there to measure … oh. There were 163 pages liked around here in January, up from December’s 137 and November’s 134. There were 39 comments, which doesn’t sound like many for the number of page reads, but that’s better than December’s 20 or November’s 14. I think the secret is to say wrong stuff about the comics and then people will come in to try fixing it.

February started with the page here having got 47,049 page views from some 25,045 distinct viewers or other. And WordPress claims I’ve got 711 followers on WordPress, plus six by e-mail. For at least the third month running the most popular day around here was Tuesday, which got 18 percent of page views. The most popular hour was midnight, 8 percent of page views, just like the last two months. I don’t know why Tuesday should stand out, but it’s only barely standing out.

Anyway, if you’d like to follow me, you’re probably reading this already. But there should be a ‘Follow This Blog’ link, for WordPress or for e-mail, somewhere around here. Probably on the upper part of the page, if I understand the theme right. We’ll see when someone complains I have it wrong.

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

The index rose two points today and someone pointed out that could be called a “safety”. No dice. The moment is passed.

104

The Eternal-Ish Question


Is it better when my mathematics blog is followed by some obviously non-mathematics-oriented site with a name like “CatsImitatingTerryThomas.WordPress.com” or when my humor blog is followed by some vaguely-STEM-looking site with a name like “ThermoplasticPhysics.WordPress.com”? Or does it matter since I know they’re just hoping I’ll follow them back and neither of us will ever read the other? Please reply care of my writing-advice blog, NebusForgottenNewJerseyHistory.WordPress.Com.

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

The index fell seven points amid continuing bickering about who was supposed to put the leftover Rita’s Frozen Ice in the freezer and while there wasn’t all that much left over everybody had been making elaborate plans about how good it was going to be.

115

Statistics Saturday on a Wednesday: December 2016 in my Statistics


So now I’ve had some time to look over my WordPress statistics for December 2016 and I can share them with you.

It was a busier month in December than in November and I have to credit my string of explanations of what’s going on in the story strips for that. You think of the story strips as the part of the newspaper comics nobody reads, but the Internet is so vast that even nobody is a lot of people. That came out to 1,396 page views from 818 distinct visitors. That’s up from November’s 1,219 views from 708 visitors. It’s down from the October figures, though, of 1,507 views from 974 visitors. I have no explanation for all that.

The number of likes was 137, barely up from November’s 134, and down from October’s 160. There were only 20 comments, which seems like an undercount. But that is up from November’s 14. And down from October’s 32. September had 69; I’ve got to go back and figure what the heck went on there. I don’t know.

As I say, what really brought people in for December was talking about comics. I’m a little surprised since it isn’t hard to find comics snark out there. But maybe just catching people up on what they’ve missed is of reliable interest. We’ll know when I try to explain what the heck is with Gil Thorp anyway.

December’s most-read pieces were:

Now for the ever-popular list of countries. There were 18 single-reader countries in December, down from 21. There were 42 countries listed altogether, down from 50. My readership in Singapore dropped 50 percent. C’mon, guys, I thought we were friends? Well, here goes.

Country Readers
United States 1160
India 40
Canada 36
United Kingdom 24
Germany 21
France 18
Philippines 15
Australia 7
Italy 6
Mexico 6
Japan 5
Brazil 3
Ireland 3
Saudi Arabia 3
South Africa 3
Chile 2
China 2
Ecuador 2
Finland 2
Greece 2
Netherlands 2
Russia 2
Singapore 2
Vietnam 2
Argentina 1
Bangladesh 1
Belgium 1
Colombia 1 (*)
Croatia 1 (*)
Hong Kong SAR China 1
Malaysia 1
New Zealand 1
Nigeria 1
Pakistan 1
Poland 1

Portugal 1
Spain 1
Thailand 1
Trinidad & Tobago 1
Turkey 1
United Arab Emirates 1
Zimbabwe 1

Colombia and Croatia were also single-reader countries last month. Nobody’s on a three-month single-reader streak. No sign of the mysterious “European Union” viewer.

The month started with my blog having 44,707 page views from 23,682 viewers. I didn’t keep track of how many people were following on January 1st and I’m feeling too lazy to work out how many added or dropped since then because guh who could? The Insights page … I’m not sure how to get the statistics for December alone. Right now it’s saying Tuesday was my most popular day, with 19 percent of views, a slight increase from November’s lead for Tuesdays. The most popular hour remains midnight, 8 percent of views, but that’s about what you’d expect if every hour of the day.

If you’d like to follow this blog, by WordPress or by e-mail, there’s buttons in the upper-right corner of the page to do that. They’re just underneath the search bar. My Twitter feed, @nebusj, is also sitting in the upper-right corner. Yes, I finally turned my vague and unfocused dissatisfaction with the “Truly Minimal” theme into actual switching to the “Twenty Sixteen” theme. This is because everybody loves when web sites just change their look. But I like what it does with comics images better. Oh, wait, it does different stuff based on how wide your web browser is. I didn’t know that. Well, it doesn’t seem to do anything bad yet. Will have to think about this more.

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

The Another Blog, Meanwhile index rushed upwards nine points, nearly making a first down, before being pushed back down three points by an aggressive ground game. Must admire the spunk on the opposing team, though. Good sportsmanship all around.

105

Meanwhile As I Scrutinize My E-Mail Like Every Five Minutes


I’m starting to suspect WordPress isn’t going to send me that “look how your 2016 was!” report with the animated picture of fireworks going off for every post and talking about how many people from what countries read my blogs. I hope it isn’t because of something I did, like keep on using the old-fashioned way of entering new posts. I tried, I really tried, using the new system but it’s designed the way web sites are done anymore, where everything is a bunch of floating loose islands and they’re all colored borderless rectangles and there’s no guessing what’s a button and what’s a label and what’s done automatically and what you have to find and press a button to do. I don’t want to sound prematurely old. It’s just that when I look at a web site and wonder if they’re trying to gamify my user experience I feel like I have to wash my hands. And I already do that like 260 times a day which should be enough except it never is and maybe I should go do it again. Anyway I liked the fireworks thing.

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

The Another Blog, Meanwhile index dropped back below 100 again, daring people to insist that it’s a psychological barrier or in fact any kind of barrier at all. “Ha, ha,” say traders, “we can go anywhere we want as long as it isn’t below 90 again,” and then curled up on the floor sobbing and declaring there’s no such thing as 89, there’s no such thing as 89.

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What November Was Good For In My Humor Blog Anyway


November was a less busy month around here than October was. At least as reading goes. It was less busy as writing goes too, although that’s just because there were fewer days in the month. Well, I ran more old-time radio bits than usual in the month too. Maybe they’re less-liked by readers than by me. It happens. The Index is a paragraph of fresh text every day, though, and I like it even though I suspect everyone is just wondering when I’ll get this weird thing out of my system. I don’t know either.

There were some 1,219 page views from 708 distinct visitors in November, says WordPress. That’s down from October’s 1,507 page views from 974 distinct visitors. But it’s a little bit up from September’s 1,130 page views from 697 visitors. I’m not sure what I did differently for October. Still, any month I stay over a thousand page views feels satisfactory to me.

Reader engagement drooped. There were 134 likes received around here; there had been 160 in October and 190 in September. Maybe I need to be more pleading. The number of comments was way down, to only fourteen. There’d been 32 in October and 69 in September. I ran a lot of short little list items though, and there isn’t much to comment on in them. I need more open-ended prompts. Also my long-form essays didn’t have any of the ones that stab at social commentary; they were a bunch of silly things. I like silly things, and wouldn’t give those up. But seven hundred words of silliness is also its kind of closed prompt.

Maybe that’s why November’s most-read pieces were older thing. Most of them were comic strip commentary, and one wasn’t even by me. The top six, since two pieces tied for fifth, were:

And the important thing is the list of countries sending me readers. Here it is:

Country Readers
United States 926
Germany 44
Canada 40
India 39
France 29
United Kingdom 24
Australia 18
Philippines 11
Brazil 7
Netherlands 6
Italy 5
Spain 5
Indonesia 4
Finland 3
Malaysia 3
New Zealand 3
Norway 3
Singapore 3
South Africa 3
Austria 2
Bangladesh 2
Belgium 2
Czech Republic 2
Hong Kong SAR China 2
Japan 2
Poland 2
Switzerland 2
Turkey 2
United Arab Emirates 2
Colombia 1
Croatia 1
Ecuador 1 (*)
Ireland 1
Kenya 1
Kuwait 1
Lithuania 1
Maldives 1
Mauritius 1
Mexico 1
Mongolia 1
Morocco 1 (*)
Oman 1 (*)
Puerto Rico 1
Serbia 1
Slovakia 1
Slovenia 1
Sri Lanka 1
Taiwan 1
Ukraine 1
Vietnam 1

Ecuador, Morocco, and Oman were single-read countries two months in a row. No country’s on a three-month streak. I don’t see the mysterious “European Union” listing there so I still don’t know what that was all about.

For the start of December my little Another Blog, Meanwhile has gotten 43,341 page views from 22,834 recorded distinct visitors. There are 700 reported followers on WordPress, up barely from 698. You can join the followers by using the “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile” button. Or follow me on Twitter, where I announce stuff over here and sometimes get surprised by stuff I forgot was on Peanuts specials as @Nebusj.

WordPress’s Insights say the most popular day for readers was Tuesday, with 17 percent of page views then. It had been Monday with 16 percent of page views the last couple months. But that’s close enough to one-in-seven I don’t suppose it signifies anything about my Tuesday publications. The most popular hour is midnight, with 8 percent of page views. That’s down from 10 percent in October. But since I publish at that hour every day of course that’s when people read here.

(I’ve always posted between midnight and 1 am Universal Time. I wonder if there might be a better hour for readers considering most of them are in the United States. On the other hand, midnight Universal Time is afternoon-to-early-evening United States time, which seems like it should be pretty good. Lousy for European readers, though. Might need to experiment.)

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

OK, so this time the alternate and the mainstream traders for the Another Blog, Meanwhile index are sure they’re going to get things organized and re-merge the trading floors. And it happens that the indices were unchanged today, which makes it easier for everyone to say they’re getting all this organized just like they hope.

96

Statistics Saturday: Some Unpopular Prime Numbers


  • 1,361
  • 15,460,187
  • 2,029
  • 4,637
  • 6,379
  • 61
  • 613,651,349
  • 647
  • 7,741
  • 715,229,467
  • 8,513

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

You know everybody was happy when the index was sitting at 100. That’s exactly where it started, and then yes we all got a little loopy when it was sitting way above 100 for so long. And everyone was feeling so bad when it dropped below 100 that I thought traders were going to call the whole thing off without losing anything. But no, they had to carry on and now they dropped ten points in the one day. It could be worse, it could be down twelve or even thirteen points but still. Oh, this is just reporting for the alternate index, but you know this whole plan to separate the main and the alternate indices isn’t doing anything for anybody, right?

90

Statistics Tuesday Eventually: October 2016 For My Humor Blog


Now finally I can get to considering what October meant around here, readership-wide. I’m sorry for the delay but I have good reason for not getting to it sooner: I didn’t get to it sooner.

It was a busy month, though! WordPress reports that I had some 1,507 page views from 974 distinct visitors over the course of October. That’s much more than in September (1,130 views, 697 visitors) or August (1,416 views, 779 visitors). It’s the largest number for either since last November and the Apartment 3-Gocalypse. There haven’t been any other major comic strip collapses since then and I’m glad for that. A couple of strips have ended but none that went out in any bizarre ways that needed updating and gawking.

But it’s probably not just people reading my witticisms around here and being thrilled that got my readership numbers so high. The most-read post of the month was from July, Does Mary Worth Look Different?. The answer’s simple; they have a new artist. Joe Giella retired after a career of drawing comics and comic books to roll around on the piles of money he surely made doing that. June Brigman and Roy Richardson have taken over the art, daily and Sunday.

I don’t know why this question got to be particularly urgent this month. I’d imagined it might have been a spurt of interest in the strip after last Friday, when longstanding amiable sandwich-eater Wilbur Weston announced he was taking a year off to finally wed mayonnaise.

Wilbur says, 'Mary, I hate to ask ... can you continue doing 'Ask Wendy' for another year?' 'Another year? I'd be happy to do it, Wilbur. I enjoy advising your readers. But why can't you do it?' 'I have news ... '
Karen Moy, June Brigman, and Roy Richardson’s Mary Worth for the 28th of October, 2016. While it’s polite of Mary to wait for Wilbur to offer her the advice column, I have questions. Like, Mary Worth is definitely collecting the addresses of people who write for advice so she knows where to go to meddle people into having severely heteronormative relationships, right? Also she has a list of over four hundred reasons she can’t give the column back anytime this lifetime?

Not so, though. The most intense interest seems to have come the weeks of the 10th and 17th, when nothing very much was happening. I suspect some popular blogger mentioned me without my knowing it.

Readership engagement figures were way down, as will happen. I have no idea how to keep them steady. The number of ‘likes’ was at 160, down from September’s 190 and August’s 187. The number of comments was 32, way down from September’s 69, but up from August’s 24. I need more Caption This! contests.

So what was popular over the past month? … None of my long-form pieces, which, all right, I can take that. My bit about not knowing what to dress as for Halloween made the top ten, which is doing pretty well for a piece that only had three days to gather readers. What did make the top five:

My most popular day of the week, with 16 percent of page views, was Monday. Mondays got the plurality, 16 percent of page views, in September too. Midnight was the most popular hour, with 10 percent of page views. That must be Universal Time. And that was up from 8 percent of page views so clearly WordPress isn’t just making these numbers up.

November starts with my blog having 42,091 page views from 22,156 distinct visitors. WordPress figures I have 698 followers on WordPress plus over a hundred via Twitter. That’s up from 687 at the start of October. You can follow this blog by using the “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile” button. You can follow me on Twitter over as @Nebusj, where I post not too many times per day. I promise.

And now for the truly popular thing: the roster of what countries sent how many readers.

Country Page Views
United States 1219
Canada 47
India 39
United Kingdom 30
Germany 29
Australia 20
New Zealand 18
France 16
Philippines 9
Sweden 8
Mexico 6
Norway 4
Brazil 3
Finland 3
Greece 3
Ireland 3
Japan 3
Kenya 3
Netherlands 3
South Africa 3
Ukraine 3
Argentina 2
Colombia 2
European Union 2
Italy 2
Spain 2
Bahrain 1
Belgium 1
Ecuador 1
Israel 1
Malaysia 1
Morocco 1
Nigeria 1
Northern Mariana Islands 1
Pakistan 1
Poland 1 (*)
Qatar 1
Singapore 1
Switzerland 1
Turkey 1
United Arab Emirates 1
Uruguay 1

Poland’s the only country to have been a single-read country last month. Nobody’s on a two-month streak. The European Union rose from one last month. Yes, I’m hurt that Singapore was a single-read country. There were 42 countries listed as sending me any readers at all, if you pretend the European Union’s a country and I still don’t know what the designation’s supposed to mean.

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

Maybe it’s not that the Another Blog, Meanwhile index is getting stuck. Maybe it’s the whole rest of the universe that’s got stuck and the index is just reflecting that fact. General relativity implies that if you had a spinning bucket full of water it’d be impossible to know whether the bucket or the water was spinning unless there was other stuff in the universe, so why not this with the index? Ever consider that? Why or why not?

97

Statistics September, Or, Getting Around To This Finally


OK, finally I can go look over what WordPress thinks my readership was for September. It wasn’t as many people as in August. I bet that’s because I didn’t carry on with pointing out more comic strips people should read. That seemed popular in August and why would I do more of what works?

WordPress records my blog here as having got 1,130 page views in September, from 697 distinct visitors. That’s down from August’s 1,416 page views from 779 distinct visitors. It’s up still from July, some 1,087 page views from 549 distinct visitors. I don’t know how many of them kept over month to month.

I stayed about as likable as ever. 190 likes were clicked in September, barely up from 187 in August and down from 206 in July. Comments were way up, possibly owing to how much interesting stuff there is going on about model railroading in Lansing and New Zealand. 69 comments for September, compared to 24 in August and 41 in July. It’s my highest comment count since I changed my internal linkings so those links wouldn’t count as comments.

My top-five posts for September include one of the long-form posts I generally work the hardest on, so that’s gratifying. They also include a three-way tie for fifth place, so let me just toss them all out and see what you make of them:

So, if nothing else I’ve learned that people like seeing their countries mentioned. So I’ll just list all the countries that WordPress says sent me readers the past month, along with however many readers that was. I don’t know why that works, but it does. I’ll take it.

Country Readers
United States 808
India 53
Canada 46
United Kingdom 34
New Zealand 24
Australia 23
Germany 18
Philippines 17
France 9
Argentina 8
Spain 7
Brazil 6
Singapore 6
Kenya 5
Switzerland 5
Austria 3
Denmark 3
Indonesia 3
Italy 3
Netherlands 3
South Africa 3
Uruguay 3
Bulgaria 2
Croatia 2
Cyprus 2
Greece 2
Israel 2
Japan 2
Malaysia 2
Mexico 2
Norway 2
Puerto Rico 2
Sweden 2
Turkey 2
Costa Rica 1
Czech Republic 1
Estonia 1
European Union 1
Hong Kong SAR China 1
Hungary 1 (*)
Mauritius 1
Poland 1
Portugal 1
Romania 1
Taiwan 1

Hungary was also a single-reader country in August. No country’s been a single-reader country for two months running. The European Union dropped from five in August and I don’t know what to make of that. At least Poland’s back again.

October starts with my blog having got 40,586 page views from 21,183 distinct visitors. I don’t know which page was view number 40,000 but can that compare to which page was view number 40,001? Easily. WordPress says the most popular day for reading was Monday, with 16 percent of the views. That was true in August too. The most popular hour was 12:00 am, with eight percent of page views. That’s also exactly what the August insights claimed. I double-checked; it doesn’t look like I just read August’s figures again. I don’t know.

WordPress says I have 687 total followers, up from 681 at the start of September. You can be among them by clicking the “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile” button in the upper left corner of the page. There’s also a button to get posts e-mailed to you although there’s not so many people looking for that. I’m also @Nebusj on Twitter, because I couldn’t think of a better name. Maybe you can think of a better one, but a better name for me? My parents weren’t able to find one so I don’t know why you’re so optimistic.

Another Blog, Meanwhile Index

The Index dropped two points today, reflecting investor confidence that it wasn’t really going to use those points anyway. “We probably would just leave them in the junk drawer,” they said, “or maybe even the Scary Drawer in the kitchen that has all those dusty old metal-covered things for home projects we never built and, like, coupons from the Ames Department Store that we’ve moved to four different houses since Ames closed down in 2002.” The wild, starry-eyed, mad fools.

129

Statistics Friday: How August 2016 Went Around These Parts, Thanks Mostly To Mary Worth And Funky Winkerbean


I’m beginning to think I must acknowledge the truth: that I’m never going to be very good at visiting other people’s WordPress blogs and commenting on them, and that I’m also kind of lousy at writing the sorts of posts that encourage cross-talk around here. I talk monthly about how I mean to change that, but I don’t actually, and that must mean something. I could resolve to work out what that is, but I’ve seen what happens with my resolutions to this sort of thing. You have too, if you’ve been around in past months.

That said: August was a great month for me, reader-wise. My best since the Apartment 3-Gocalypse, in fact. WordPress reports some 1,416 page views from 779 unique visitors over the course of August. That’s way up from July (1,087 page views, 549 visitors) and June (1,063 page views, 606 visitors). The number of likes fluttered around its typical levels. Likes were down to 187 from July’s 206 and up from June’s 180. Comments dropped to a mere 24, down from July’s 41 and June’s 52. I just don’t think I have the knack for picking subjects that draw out responses. Maybe I need a blog icebreaker course.

I don’t have an obvious single source behind all these page views. I suspect the cause, though. It’s all my comic strip talk. My most popular article of the month was one I kind of expected to draw in lost souls. Next-most-popular was complaining about Funky Winkerbean of course, and the rest — well, here’s the top five:

I admit being a tiny bit sad the best any of my original long-form pieces does is eighth place (When Should You Wash Your Hands?, followed closely by What Constellation Am I Looking At?). But at least I can be useful, if not actually funny.

The countries sending me the greatest number of readers in August were:

  • United States (1112)
  • India (46)
  • Canada (40)
  • Germany (32)
  • United Kingdom (28)

And there were fewer single-reader countries than usual this time around:

  • Bangladesh
  • Belgium
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Finland
  • Hungary
  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • Russia
  • Thailand (***)

Thailand’s been a single-reader country for three months now. Nobody else is even going on two months. Singapore sent me seven readers. Portugal four, so I maybe don’t have to worry about them so much. The European Union sent me five, even more than last month. Still not a country. Still a mysterious listing. No sign of Poland. What’s wrong, guys?

The month starts with the humor blog having 39,455 page views from some 20,485 distinct visitors. WordPress said this month the most popular reading date was Monday, with 16 percent of page views. July the most popular day of the week was Tuesday, with 18 percent of page views. I suspect there’s no actually significant difference between reading days. 12:00 am is still the most popular hour, with 8 percent of page views. That’s probably Universal Time. I mostly post in the 12:00 hour, Universal Time.

WordPress says I have 681 total followers, which is up from 671 listed at the start of August. If you want to be among them, there’s a little blue button in the upper left corner of the page, “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile”. And under that is a button to get posts e-mailed to you. I don’t want to brag about the number of e-mail readers I have, but I did promise my father I’d get him added to that list. And I’m on Twitter also, and getting ready for a massive livetweeting of that He-Man DVD I bought at the other independent video store’s going-out-of-business sale.

Thanks for being around, all of you. I’m glad to be here.

Statistics July: How My Humor Blog Did After All, If You Worried


So my humor blog settled back to roughly normal in July. I’m an optimistic sort of person and I can credit that as a striking success anyway. Mostly that’s because over the month I had two weeklong breaks that kept me away from commenting in an even remotely timely manner or visiting other people’s blogs. In that light, having 1,087 page views from 549 visitors is not bad at all. It’s slightly more page views than in June (1,063), although from fewer readers (606). But I also set up a gimmick that encourages archive-binging what with spending a week bringing stuff up out of the archives and putting them on my front page. Maybe I should do more of that. Both are down from May, when there were 1,198 page views from 677 visitors, but I did spend more time visiting other people then.

Two of the top posts in July were about Mell Lazarus, which shouldn’t be a surprise. I talk about comics a fair bit considering this isn’t really a comics blog, and Lazarus’s death and the possible end of Momma are identifiably news. The most popular stuff the past month were:

On to the countries list. The countries sending me the most readers in uly were:

  • United States (812)
  • Germany (58)
  • Canada (52)
  • India (30)
  • United Kingdom (30)

I worry I’m losing Portugal: only five page views from there in July. The European Union, really not a country, sent me four page views. Singapore sent three. And in single-rader countries were:

  • Austria
  • Belgium (**)
  • Chile
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kenya (**)
  • Malaysia
  • Pakistan (**)
  • Poland
  • South Africa
  • Suriname
  • Thailand (**)
  • Tunisia
  • Ukraine (***)
  • United Arab Emirates (**)
  • Vietnam

Belgum, Kenya, Pakistan, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates are on two-month streaks. Ukraine’s on a three-month streak. That Austria appearance I don’t believe for a moment. I don’t know what to make of WordPress’s statistics.

The search terms WordPress was willing to admit brought people here were few and must be said boring. Mostly they were for comic strips: Momma, Funky Winkerbean (to wit, “funky winkerbean depressing”), Mary Worth (and the new artist question), Apartment 3-G, and Krazy Kat. At last I have my niche and I’m not really in it.

The month starts with my blog having reached 38,039 page views from some 19,706 logged distinct readers. I’m looking forward to whenever unique-viewer number 20,000 gets in. WordPress says my most popular reading date is Tuesday, with 18 percent of views. The most popular hour is 12 am, with 11 percent of page views. I think that’s probably Universal Time, since I mostly post stuff between midnight and 1 am Universal Time. There’s 671 listed WordPress.com followers, which I’ll guess is up from what I had at the start of July because I seem not to have logged that.

The number of page likes rose from 201 in May and 180 in June to 206 in July. The number of comments dropped again, from June’s 52. But that’s still up from May’s 25. And it’s close to the number of comments I got when I was using the cross-linking stuff that inflated my comment count in a process I described at one point and can’t figure is interesting enough to describe again. Just it’s all not bad. I credit the Dustin Hoffman question with getting people to say stuff. Many people want to say something about what they remember of Dustin Hoffmann.

If you aren’t a WordPress follower, or an e-mail subscriber, you could be. Double-check. There’s a little blue button to “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile” at the upper left corner of the page, to the left of the headline. Under that should be a Follow By E-Mail button. I’m on Twitter, also, although I haven’t been doing much this past week because I was busy with competitive pinball.

Personality: Can Something Be Done About This?


It’s a common longing. You run across a WordPress blog that’s thanking its 10,000th subscriber and its millionth page hit. The blog’s been around almost three months. You look at your own, soldiering on for years now and sometimes getting a comment besides your father saying “it’s great, I wish I understood a word”. I don’t want to sound like I’m complaining. I’ll explain.

I know why some blogs, some performers, some experience providers catch on. It’s personality. We pretend “personality” is something everybody has, but we’re fibbing. What we mean by “personality” is “stuff somebody does that other people wouldn’t choose to do themselves in that position”. It’s easy to form one. Just pick something other people wouldn’t do themselves, and do that. Then keep at it.

For instance, I like my mathematics blog. It’s comfortable writing and sometimes I do something I’m proud of. But I know it’s got this pleasant air of something safely ignorable all over it. If I wanted to change that I could. I’d use squirt mustard to write every equation on bread, and post photographs of that. The end of each post would be me eating this. Suddenly I’d have a blog people found interesting, if only to see when I eat enough mustard bread to regret my life. It would be a quarter of the way into explaining the Fredholm Alternative. I’d leave my readers in suspense about whether the Fredholm Alternative is a real mathematics thing or if I’m writing a 1970s political technothriller about fascist clones with space computo-germs. It’s both. INCLUSIVE OR! IT’S AN INCLUSIVE OR!

I won’t do that. Mustard photographs lousy and it’d be too much work to fix. And that’s part of why having a personality sucks. It’s a lot of effort to keep up. Edwin Land said, “do not do anything that anyone else can do readily”. While he was talking about making consumer cameras he’s right about making personalities too.

Even achieving personality isn’t an unvarnished good. When we say of someone, “he’s got quite the personality” we’re using all our available politeness. We’re trying to not continue, “that he’s using to bring the conversation back to common yet mistaken beliefs about the manufacture of float glass, again”. It’s fascinating, sure, but watching people do stuff we would rather not always is. It doesn’t matter whether it’s dressing in a bright green outfit so eye-catching you can be seen through walls — “all part of my Chroma-Key cosplay, my dears”, you absolutely purr — or grabbing live porcupines and zerberting their bellies before they can file a stiff letter of protest. It’s thrilling to be part of such exotic goings-on, by which I mean being the part that watches without affecting it.

We like this sort of thing when we’ve got a safe distance from it and can flee without social penalty. It’s why personality does so well on stage and TV and online and in other places that have comforting, safe borders. When they venture outside those borders we’re dazzled and then disappointed, even if we’re smiling in the selfie they let us take. Too much personality’s a hard thing to take. If you have to deal with it all the time it gets to be kind of a prison.

But it’s a prison having a personality too. Once people know you’re going to react to something a particular way you have to keep doing it. A normal person can hear that chemists have discovered a new kind of industrial-grade blue dye and think anything they want about that. Someone with personality has to fit this news into what everyone expects. Suppose you’re the guy who knows a Yes song for every occasion, including karaoke night and the debut of new Tron movies. You know exactly what everyone you meet will talk to you about, forever. What if you somehow don’t have a Yes song relevant to industrial-grade color dye technologies? You’re doomed, or have to guess maybe They Might Be Giants have something on point. They don’t.

There’s some good news, anyway. If you show personality long enough it sustains itself, without your involvement. I know at least two people with such renowned interests in squirrels that they get every bit of squirrel-related toy, news item, or movie or TV show forwarded to them. Their friends do all the squirrel-appreciation for them. They don’t ever have to think about squirrels the rest of their lives.

So that’s why I’m not complaining about other blogs being way more popular, way faster, than mine. I didn’t even say I felt that. I just said it’s commonly felt. I don’t want to contract personality for that sort of thing. Should I have a personality at all? I don’t know; I’m doing well enough as it is. But then look back to Edwin Land’s advice, and consider the fate of Polaroid. It’s universally beloved and doesn’t really exist. How many of us will ever achieve that much?

To sum up: the concept of “personality” is a good idea, but it needs considerable work before it will be practical.

Statistics Friday: June 2016 As It Was For Humor Blogging


So the easy thing to conclude about my WordPress readership statistics from June is that my becalming has continued. There were 1,063 page views around here. That’s down from 1,198 in May, but kind of up-ish from April’s 1,043. The unique visitor count dropped from May’s 677 down to 606. But that’s still up from April’s 583. And down from March’s 632. Doesn’t seem like a lot of progress, does it?

Page likes were down to 180, which completes this strange little parabola the past five months. Both May and March had 201 likes. April, in-between them, had 213. And February? … had 178. I’m not sure whether I’m more bothered that two more people didn’t like me back then, or that two fewer people didn’t like me in June.

The ever-erratic comments count was up again. It popped back to 52 comments in June. Since that doesn’t count internal links I know that’s 52 times someone said something around here. I think most of that was talk about video games. May, my first month without internal links being counted as comments, only had 25 comments.

Ah, but here’s the exciting thing: for the first time in maybe a year none of my most-read posts were about Apartment 3-G. Coverage of that strip’s sad collapse was still in my top ten — people never tire of watching slow-motion, sad, confusing disasters — but I’m not looking for another comic strip to snark about relentlessly. Funky Winkerbean is already well-covered. 9 Chickweed Lane is just too awful to read on purpose. And, anyway, for the first time in I don’t know how long all my top five entries were things I had written, not public-domain Robert Benchley pieces or pointers to Vic and Sade episodes or the like. I’m glad when people read those, mind, especially since they’re fairly easy writing. But it’s gratifying to be read for my own voice whatever that is.

The most popular posts around here in June were, apparently:

There’s soe nice interesting search terms that brought people here. Among them:

  • why is funky winkerbean so depressing (Oh, gads, you could guest-write a blog.)
  • why does mary worth look different in comic strip lately (New artist for the Sunday strips is why.)
  • famous non functioning clock stuck at 10:06:26 (I never heard of it, myself.)
  • is someone else drawing mary worth? (Looks up two items. Um. Yes, Sundays.)
  • ants in the plants cartoon (?)

The month started at 36,952 page views, and 19,157 recorded unique visitors. WordPress also says there’s 664 WordPres.com visitors, which isn’t much up from the start of June’s 660. Maybe I need to advertise or something.

Now for what people really want: a list of countries. The greatest number of page views came from mostly the usual folks this past month:

  • United States (677)
  • Canada (57)
  • Germany (52)
  • Portugal (46)
  • India (31)

I don’t know why Portugal’s liked me recently. I have faintly nice thoughts about it, I guess, mostly based on grand strategy games and how convenient it is having Portugal on yourside. But I can’t imagine Portugal folks would single me out for appreciation based on that. It’s not like you can’t go it without Portugal if that’s what happens, for example. And why should anyone in Portugal care about my game-playing since I don’t do multiplayer grand strategy gaming?.

Single-reader countries this time around include:

  • Angola
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Colombia
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • Georgia
  • Greece (**)
  • Hong Kong SAR China
  • Hungary
  • Kenya
  • Luxembourg
  • Macedonia
  • Mexico
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Norway (*)
  • Pakistan
  • Singapore
  • South Korea (*)
  • Thailand
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine (**)
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Zambia

The (*) countries were single-reader countries last month. (**) countries are on three-month streaks here. Nobody’s on a four-month streak. But things are looking good if I attract just a tiny bit of kind-of interest from Greece. … Also, hey, Singapore, what’s the deal? Poland at least sent me four page views. European Union, 2, and let’s just set aside the standard comment about that in light of whatever the heck the deal even is there.

If you aren’t a WordPress follower, or an e-mail subscriber, you could be. There’s still room. There’s a little blue button to “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile” at the upper left corner of the page, to the left of the headline. Under that should be a Follow By E-Mail button. If there isn’t, nobody’s told me, possibly because they don’t know how to get my e-mail. And I’m on Twitter, where I don’t have to go looking so old-fashioned by including the – in “e-mail”.

Statistics May: What WordPress Thought Of Me Last Month


I did it! I managed to go the month without obsessively watching WordPress’s daily statistics report. But also, I got to see, for the first time since the Apartment 3-Gocalypse, some growth in readership figures again. I’m going to credit this to finally acting cool enough people don’t suspect how needy I actually am.

But the numbers speak for themselves, once someone says them. In May there were 1,198 page views around here. April had a meager 1,043, and March a less-meager 1,107. The visitor count was up also, to a not-so-meager-exactly 677 from April’s 583 and March’s 632.

The number of likes isn’t changing much, one way or another. It was 201 in May, compared to 213 in April and 201 back in March. I may have hit a plateau.

The number of comments was way down, but part of that is an accounting change. I worked out that, apparently, WordPress counts it as a comment if I make a link to the full URL of something, nebushumor.wordpress.com/etc. But if I use the short URL, wp.me/etc, that doesn’t count. So I tried doing that to see how many people said stuff without counting my own cross-linking. This suggests there were 25 for May. And while that’s technically down from April’s 50 and May’s 36, I don’t know how that compares in actual comments. Shall have to wait and see.

And what was popular around here in May? Of course, the lead article was something written by a guy who died when I was seven:

For the monthly list of countries:

  • United States (834)
  • Germany (78)
  • United Kingdom (35)
  • Brazil (27)
  • France (24)

I apologize for putting all that in a bullet list when one sentence would do, but I read that it somehow makes readers happier to see bullet lists of things. I don’t know why either. Among my special interest countries: Singapore gave me five page views, India 23, and Poland none at all. Poland, is everything OK? Also the European Union somehow is listed with three page views.

Single-reader countries this time around were:

  • Bahrain
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Denmark (*)
  • Greece (*)
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Malaysia
  • Mauritius
  • Nigeria
  • Norway
  • Qatar
  • Romania
  • Serbia
  • Slovakia
  • South Korea
  • Tunisia
  • Ukraine
  • Vietnam

The (*) countries were single-reader countries last month too. Nobody’s on a three-month streak.

Search terms bringing people here include:

  • challie chaplin quat about laying woman (I dunno, quat about laying woman?)
  • what kind of an essay a winter tree please help me i’m stuck? (Again I dunno. Maybe try scattering some sawdust and that’ll help traction?)
  • a cartoon comic strip of two scientists fighting that one believes in the progression theory (This suggests that there weren’t shorter search queries that could turn up any pages which were relevant, and he got mine instead, which wasn’t?)
  • cartoon of kid swipes a pirate peg leg (I dunno, but it seems like if you just watch any syndicated panel strip for a couple weeks they’ll do this.)
  • mary worth artist change? (Oh yes! Mary Worth has got a new artist for the Sunday strips. The Sundays are now done by June Brigman. The Monday-to-Saturday strips are still by Joe Giella. And yeah, the current story is what you think it is from reading any given day’s strip.)

My humor blog starts June with 35,889 page views, from something like 18,551 distinct readers. While it’s overtaken my mathematics blog in visitors it’s still behind in total page views. WordPress says there’s 660 WordPress.com followers, up from 652 at the start of May and 647 at the start of April.

If you aren’t a WordPress follower, or an e-mail subscriber, but have been convinced by seven hundred words about numbers about other readers to follow me, please sign up! There’s a little blue button to “Follow Another Blog, Meanwhile” at the upper left corner of the page, to the left of the headline. And beneath that should be a Follow By E-Mail button. Or you can follow me on Twitter, where I post announcements of these things and also sometimes livetweet the awful cartoon I’m watching for some reason. That sort of thing.

Statistics Saturday For April And How That Went


So, yes, I need to find a new weak comic strip to pick on. The humor blog readership continues to recede. Part of that I blame on my mathematics blog. I spent a lot of time the past two months focusing on its A To Z glossary project and that required a lot of writing. I didn’t tend things around here as much as I might have.

Here’s the sorry numbers. There were 1,043 page views here last month, down from March’s 1,107 and February’s Also 1,107. If you look at it as views per day, that’s still less than March. But it’s not so noticeably less than March. The number of unique visitors dropped more noticeably: 583 in April, down from March’s 632 and February’s 629.

I’m a bit more likable, though. There were 213 ‘likes’ clicked in April. That’s up from March’s 201 and February’s 178, but it’s still down relative to the height of the Apartment 3-Gocalypse. Comments were also up, to 50 from March’s 36. But that’s just to about February’s 52.

The most popular stuff the past month was, as usual, mostly little stuff I dashed off. In the top five were:

My favorite piece for the month — to write, and also what I think was my best — was When Do I Get To Sing _My Way_?, a brilliant expose of karaoke night culture and that was just my eleventh-most-popular thing of the month. Although that is out of 184 different things people looked at, so that’s not too bad. And I don’t know how many people read it as the item that was on the front page of my blog; all those readers get jumbled together.

I confess, I have enough childhood fantasies of being a humor columnist that I think of my long-form weekly things, usually 700 to 800 words and posted Thursday night/Friday morning, as the real meat here. But maybe there’s something connecting far better with the short little 200-to-300-word bits that make up the rest of the week. Maybe the medium works better the more spontaneous it feels. Or maybe I just do.

To the ever-popular listings of countries. The United States, 698. The Canada, 51. The Germany, 47. The United Kingdom, 32. That’s a fair number of page viewers. India had 22 for me. I had five from Guadaloupe; I don’t remember seeing any from there before.

Single-reader countries for April were Angola, Argentina, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Guatemala, Hong Kong SAR China, Hungary, Jamaica, Lithuania, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Venezuela. Bulgaria and Turkey are the only countries there last month too, and nobody’s on a three-month streak.

There’s not a lot of interesting stuff in search terms that brought people here. But here’s some:

  • vic and sade (Good, glad to see that.)
  • paul rhymer writer (See above.)
  • betty boos boyfriend cartoon (Yeah, ‘boos’. She had some boyfriends but who caes about any of them?)
  • months of the year in alphabetical order in afrikaans (I … might use this for Statistics Saturday sometime.)
  • obsess and picturing after cheating (I don’t know.)
  • semalt expert (I even more don’t know.)
  • kangaroo’s folding wooden chess set with magnet closure (I love the idea but I don’t know so much harder with this than I didn’t know what was going on before.)
  • world end 2016 yes or no (I vote no; I’ve got some projects I’m still working on.)

The month starts out with 34,691 page views total so it still hasn’t overtaken my mathematics blog there. It has got 17,874 distinct viewers recorded and that does top my mathematics blog. WordPress claims there are 652 WordPress.com followers, up from 647 at the start of April, and I’ll try not to think what it means that it tells me seven people started following in April.

But there is the follow-me-on-WordPress button, in the upper-left corner of each page. If you wanted to do that and haven’t already, please, give it a try. It might work.

Statistics March: In Which I Just Have February All Over Again


Well, that’s novel. For March, I had 1,107 page views. This is just what I had for February. I guess at least the decline in readership since the end of Apartment 3-G has stopped. The visitor count crept up, in the most strict of technical senses, from 629 in February to 632 in March. (There were 1,211 page views in January, from 645 visitors.)

Clearly I need to find some hook that’s as good as reporting that Apartment 3-G doesn’t make any sense, but who’s got time for that?

Anyway, the reader-engagement measures are ambiguous as ever. March got me 201 “likes”. That’s up from February’s 178, but down from January’s 272. There were only 36 comments, though, down from February’s 52 and January’s 66. I need to do more stuff that gets people to write back, but I admit I don’t know what that might be.

I can’t fault people for not writing, though. I rarely know what to write when I read and really like someone else’s humor writing either. “That’s great!” feels shallow somehow. Trying to follow up on the original writer’s joke makes me worry I’ll sound amateurish. Worse, I might make a joke the original writer had considered and rejected not funny enough, and then I’d ruin my image in front of everyone forever and have to hide under the bed and set my socks on fire. I understand if other people get seized with the same fear writing to me, although it seems bizarre. It takes at least four lousy jokes before I think ill of a person.

So what’s been popular here? The most popular stuff for March began, of course, with Apartment 3-G and then got into stuff that wasn’t the long-form pieces I try to post on Fridays:

The United States gave me the most page viewers in March: 769 of them. The Canada gave me the next-most page viewers, 65. The Germany came in next at 43, and then the United Kingdom at 28 and the Brazil with 25, which surprised me. India sent me 15. Singapore didn’t send me any, which, aw. What’s wrong, guys?

Countries sending me only one reader were: Bulgaria, Egypt, El Salvador, Indonesia, Israel, Macedonia, Mexico, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Sri Lanka, Turkey, and Vietnam. El Salvador, Israel, Portugal, Qatar, and Vietnam are on two-month streaks like this.

The month starts with me having 33,648 page views, from 17,291 separate viewers. I’m surprised that it hasn’t overtaken my mathematics blog in page views (it’s got about a thousand more), although the humor blog is about four thousand ahead in visitor count.

WordPress claims I have 647 followers on it, which is up from 639 at the start of March. This might not sound like much, but I made the “Follow Me On WordPress” button a lot more prominent. It should be at the upper left corner of the page, at least as long as I stick to the current theme. I forget what it’s called. I’m also on Twitter, as @Nebusj, because I got assigned that screen name by my grad school when I entered it so many years ago and I’ve stuck with it because what would I do that’s any better? Jnebus? No, that wouldn’t work at all.

What You’ll Be Sick Of This Month


So what’s coming to the Internet to make you sick of things being on the Internet this month? Here’s our exclusive sneak preview.

Baby Guinea Pigs. It’s two minutes and forty-five seconds of baby guinea pigs sneezing. It’s a cute video but isn’t there anything else to do the whole weekend of the 5th? It’s cute but … oh, awwwww, the long-haired one has like five inches of hair trailing behind her.

Fabio. Remember Fabio? Back in the 90s he was kind of a celebrity because he looked good on romance books. Romance books are a lot like regular books except that people read them. And this made him famous even for people who don’t read romance books, because they figure they would read better stuff than that if they had time. Anyway, he looked good and this made him famous for some reason and we never really understood it then. He didn’t seem to understand it either. He spent 1991 through 1996 looking into cameras with the smile that says, “I have no idea why I’m here but I’m happy to be invited”. You know, the way two-toed sloths always do.

We haven’t heard from him in a while. Has he started saying things that would make us sad? Will it spoil the memory of a fondly-for-some-reason remembered celebrity? Has he got himself into personal or financial crises that make us sad to hear about? We don’t know, so the Internet is figuring to spend about two weeks studying whether we do want to know. Maybe he’s been all right. I mean, Dolph Lundgren’s in good shape, as far as we know without looking. Anyway, you are going to be so sick of the “Should we check in on Fabio” question before the 14th.

Kiss-guises. You know that thing of people dressing up in outfits to sneak a kiss in public? Of course you don’t, because it’s not a thing. But starting this weekend a strong contingent of the Internet is going to try insisting this is a thing, so they can say what a stupid thing it is. It’s not a stupid thing. Kiss-guises aren’t even a thing at all. But we’re all going to get so sick of the attacks on kiss-guises that people are going to go out and start getting kiss-guises out of spite and to get kissed. Look for it the 17th through the 27th.

Podcasts. You know how to tell when your podcast edits out the little silence between when the hosts are all laughing at each other and when they start saying something else? “Wait,” you protest, “what do I care about the secrets of editing audio recording?” You don’t, unless you’re listening to professional sound-editor podcasts. But don’t worry, come the 20th through 25th the Internet is going to make sure you can’t avoid learning, and can’t stop hearing these edits on all your favorite podcasts. This will be followed by a search for the podcasts where they don’t edit. They’re 12 percent silence and “uh” by content. Not hearing your actual favorite podcasts is a small price to pay for not hearing the time when your favorite podcasts don’t have anything to hear.

Pens. You know the bad thing about being the person who’s always got a pen? It’s the time you happen not to have a pen on you. Your whole social media microclimate will not shut up about how you’ve decided you’re tired of being the person who always has a pen to lend them. And you’ve figured to enact this decision in the most passive-aggressive manner possible. It’s not, OK? You just left the pen on the dining table for no good reason, it just happened. This one’s rolling out at different times all over the Internet. For me it’s this past week. I just forgot the pen, is all, it’s not anything more than that.

From our best projections the Internet should be at its peak tetchiness over all this from the afternoon of the 19th through the morning of the 22nd. You’ll maybe want to instead just take in a movie 36 times in a row. Or maybe the guinea pig thing 1,568 times in a row which isn’t enough.

Statistics February: And What They Are And/Or Were


And now to review my readership statistics for February 2016. They should be a touch better than those of February 2012, what with this blog not existing back then.

So the key statistic: 1,107. That’s down from 1,211, and from 1,593, and from 4,528. That’s the number of page views the last several months. I would characterize this as recovering from the Apartment 3-G death throes. This is back to just below what the readership was in July and August of 2015. And let’s not forget, February was a much shorter month than July and August. If we prorate the daily average to a 31-day month that suggests 1225.6 readers. That last three-fifths of a reader would be someone just here for the pictures.

I know some of what I need to do is chat more on other people’s blogs and do some proper reblogging or posting more headsup. It’s just so hard what with that being kind of like human contact-ish and all. But it’s also the … what’s the word … decent thing to do. Fun and all that, even, once it’s done, which is probably enough reason to do it.

The number of unique visitors, says WordPress, dropped to 629, down from 645 in what WordPress calls janvier because that’s all it remembers from taking four years of French in high school, and 785 in decembre. That’s again getting back to pre-3-G-ocalypse levels. There were 178 likes in February, which is down a fair bit from January (272) and December (278) but maybe everybody was in a fowl mood. There were 52 comments, down from 66 but up from 40, because the number of comments obeys no known rules.

For the first time in months the top five posts of the month were not dominated by Nothing Is Happening In Apartment 3-G. It was only two of the top five posts. But I can still look over what was popular here, and it was dominated by … stuff … I … didn’t write. Okay. Often read in February were:

The United States sent me more readers than any other single country in February. It always is. 834 of my page views were for there. Second place went to Canada, with 47 page views. Then Germany with 34 and the United Kingdom with 27. Then we get into countries that don’t have English as a primary language, such as France, or that don’t have a language, such as Australia. Singapore sent me two viewers. India sent me four.

Single-viewer countries this time around were Albania, Algeria, Austria, Bahrain, Belgium, China, Curaçao, El Salvador, Ethiopia, the European Union, Greece, Ireland, Israel, Kuwait, Malaysia, Moldova, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Serbia, Sweden, Switzerland, and Vietnam. The European Union isn’t a country. Ireland is the only one that was a single-viewer country last month and nobody’s on a three-month streak.

Among the search terms bringing people around here the past month were a lot of Apartment 3-G as ever. Among the intersting terms were “new penny 2015”, “celestial seasonings blackpool”, and “zippy the pinhead i promise not to invade new jersey”, along with “make a comics strip about cosette side by side with the stranger in the dark”.

The month starts with 32,541 page views in total and some 16,659 unique viewers. There are 639 people listed as following me on WordPress. If you’d like to, I’ve now figured out how to make sure there’s a little sticker at the upper left of the page to make it easy to follow on WordPress. There’s another button a bit below that to follow by e-mail, if that’s your fancy. Or by RSS, if that’s your other fancy. And I’m on Twitter, also, as @Nebusj, if you want to follow that too. Look, just find something and follow it. That’s all I ask.

Also, 2015 And All That


Since I shared this for my mathematics blog it’s only fair I share this for the humor blog too. WordPress put together a little fireworks-display statistics report for what happened around here and if you’d like to see it, please, go ahead and enjoy.

I did have a very popular year around here, with about 18,000 page views. That’s more than double 2014’s total of about 8,600. That growth mostly because of my incessant and unstoppable reporting that Apartment 3-G had gotten really bad. But it’s something. Surprising to me is that I put up 150 pictures over the course of the year, about three a week. I’d have guessed one, maybe two a week.

The number of countries to send me readers went up from 81 in 2014 to 89 in 2015, so that’s a trend, surely. That’s an even more impressive growth when you consider that in 2015 I got no page views at all from Kazakhstan, a nation that sent me two page views the year before. I don’t know why Kazakhstan is upset with me, but that does mean I picked up ten countries at least. Also the WordPress map of countries doesn’t zoom in close enough to see Singapore.

Click here to see the complete report.

Returning To Sad Normality: December 2015 On My Humor Blog


I need to stop hiding from it. I know the readership statistics for my freshly-named blog here for December 2015 are going to be much, much lower than they were in the Apartment 3-G boosted November. But how bad can they be? Just a second while I check.

Hm.

Hrm.

Sniff.

OK, no, I have not been off weeping because I knew this would happen. Still, normal: what is it anymore, even?

Well, it’s somewhere around 1,593 page views, from 785 unique visitors. That’s down a bit from September, when there were 1,687 views and 888 unique visitors. But September was aided a bit by the engrossing strange story of Apartment 3-G‘s final collapse. And none of this compares to the October readership (2,204 views and 1,242 visitors) or November (4,528 views and 2,308 visitors) but it wasn’t ever going to.

Apartment 3-G coverage remains my most popular stuff around here. It made three of the five most-read posts for December. Grouping all those into a single category, though, gives us this as the most-popular spread:

Yes, all this does suggest my readers want to see me talking about comic strips instead of trying to be funny in my own right. See if I learn anything from that.

By the way, my friend Thomas K Dye’s Infinity Refugees, his new series in the Newshounds universe, is back from its work-and-holiday induced hiatus. Please consider reading it if you’re interested in story-driven web comics.

As ever, the country sending me the most readers was the United States and 1,273 page views. Canada came in a distant second with 75, and Germany third at 41. The United Kingdom had 33 page views for me. And now I’m not sure whether it’s stranger that I have so many United States readers — I am in the United States, after all, and schedule most posts for an early-evening United States time, or so few from elsewhere among the English-speaking nations. I’m curious whether a different posting hour would make things more convenient for folks. Maybe I’ll experiment in the coming month.

The single-reader countries were Albania, Algeria, Austria, Belarus, Bermuda, Brazil, Colombia, Hungary, Israel, Kuwait, Norway, Pakistan, Poland, Puerto Rico, South Korea, Sweden, and Taiwan. Austria, Norway, Pakistan, and South Korea are repeats from last month, and nobody’s on the three-month streak anymore.

Among the search terms that brought people here were:

  • apartment 3-g decline
  • sphinx pinball (Sphinx pinball? I’m curious)
  • spandex forum troi crusher (I know what they’re thinking of: that time Next Generation “Martianed up” their workout gear by having Troi and Crusher wear leotards wrong.)
  • the great bathtub hoax h l mencken
  • jack kinney filmation
  • popeye star wars parody
  • why is apartment 3-g repeating itself? (this is one I can answer. The online comics service that sends King Features Syndicate comics to newspapers’ web sites has, for some reason, got stuck posting the final strips. So if you read the comics through your preferred newspaper’s web site, it likely still lists the comic strip and it shows the most recently updated strip, which has been rerun into death already)
  • secrets of the moon (don’t ask! You can’t un-know them!!)
  • people moving closer to a tv screen when they see a woman strip (pretty sure it’s not all people who move closer to a TV screen when they see a woman stripping)

So, January begins with my blog having gathered 30,223 page views from 15,383 unique visitor. It’s got 630 WordPress followers, as well.

How Apartment 3-G November Apartment 3-G Treated Apartment 3-G My Apartment 3-G Blog: Apartment 3-G Edition


So, readership-wise, November 2015 was the best month I’ve ever had. By far. Indeed, “by far” is too short for how good it was, in terms of attracting readers. Cut November 2015 in half and would still have been the most popular month I’ve ever had here.

Of course I have two things to thank for this: my decision to track how much nothing was going on in Apartment 3-G, and the comic strip shutting down entirely. The strip’s descent into baffling, dadaist dream-logic brought many people over here trying to learn what had happened, and then The Onion AV Club mentioned my blog as one of those writing about the strip’s collapse.

So here’s the final tally. According to WordPress there were 4,528 page views here in November. There were 2,308 unique visitors. The previous records had been set in October, with 2,204 page views and a mere 1,242 visitors. Yes, I’m staggered by that too. And before that as Apartment 3-G Bafflemania heated up, September 2015 gave me a then-record 1,687 page views and 888 unique visitors. If I could have a longrunning comic strip come to a sad, pathetic conclusion every month I might be able to make a go of writing blogs.

Almost all of that is the AV Club side effects, of course. WordPress says there were 1,042 referrers just from that one article. There were 1,316 from Google searches, almost all of them about the end of Apartment 3-G. (There were 108 hits from Yahoo, Bing, Google Image, AOL, and Ask.com searches all together, revealing that Ask.com is still around.)

There’s essentially no point my listing popular articles this month. Apart from “What We Found In The New 2015 Penny” all the top ten articles were Apartment 3-G related. Expand to the top fifteen and we get more 3-G and finally “when I Gave Up”, which was more of me mocking clickbait. Down in the dregs of the top twenty we start getting more distinct stuff I wrote, like “What I Think Of The Peanuts Movie” and “What Amazon Think I’ll Buy” and the surprisingly durable “Local Architecture Critic Derides Seasons, Nature”.

November ends with my having 622 total WordPress followers, WordPress says. December opens with the blog having gotten 28,629 page views and 14,600 unique visitors.

Statistics that suggest reader engagement were up slightly. I suppose most of the AV Club readers aren’t sticking around. But the site drew 299 Likes in November, up from October’s 279 and September’s 281, but down from this time last year. Ah well. WordPress recorded 45 comments, down from October’s 65 and September’s 56, and well down from early in the year when a hundred or so was common. I don’t know what to do to draw in more comments.

Countries sending me the most readers were, as usual, the United States with an unusually high 3,861; Canada with 225; the United Kingdom with 121; Australia with 64, and Germany at 24. India sent me 12 readers, technically up from eight. Singapore sent seven, up from two.

Single-reader countries were slightly more numerous than usual: Austria, Bangladesh, Chile, Czech Republic, the European Union (?), Indonesia, Malawi, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, Venezuela, and Vietnam. The repeats from October were the Czech republic, and Norway. The Czech Republic is on a three-month streak here.