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.

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Statistical Insight


WordPress has been busy redesigning things. Web sites do that, whenever they hear enough people remarking, “I understand where everything is and it works about like I expect.” Among the redesigns this month they changed the statistics page so you can’t find the old, designed, statistics page. They’ve also added a new little tab called “Insights” that means you get to click another time to see your grand total number of page views. Also among the Insights is a visual record of Posting Activity. For example, for this little humor blog, we have this:

Tiny, vertically-aligned calendars with mostly the correct record of one post per day. 26 dates in the past year have the wrong count.
WordPress’s visual representation of posting activity here for the past year. Light blue is ‘one post on this day’; dark blue is ‘two posts’; light grey is ‘no posts’. Actual posting activity has been one post per day, up to the present day.

Now, if there’s anything this blog maintains, it’s “one post a day, thank you”. So there’s 26 outbursts of posting activity that it’s recorded wrong here. The lesson, surely, is: stop worrying about your WordPress statistics already, because even if they told you anything, they’re the wrong things, so what they would have to say doesn’t make any difference. Well played, WordPress Redesigning Things Master Command. That is indeed an insight worth having. I’d like to track how many insights that is you’ve offered, but the count of them keeps coming out wrong.

Robert Benchley: Noting An Increase In Bigamy


[ I’d like to turn again to the pages of Love Conquers All and Robert Benchley writing about … well, nominally, about a rash of bigamy reports that I suppose were current sometime around 1920. Benchley starts from that and follows a series of distractions that cause me to think he was self-satirizing. Benchley articles often pull in marginally related topics, and this reaches a relative extreme. The result is, despite a couple reminders that the article is from about 85 years ago, strikingly modern. Make a handful of edits to remove distractingly dated terms and it wouldn’t be hard to imagine Dave Barry submitting this same piece. ]

Either more men are marrying more wives than ever before, or they are getting more careless about it. During the past week bigamy has crowded baseball out of the papers, and while this may be due in part to the fact that it was a cold, rainy week and little baseball could be played, yet there is a tendency to be noted there somewhere. All those wishing to note a tendency will continue on into the next paragraph.

There is, of course, nothing new in bigamy. Anyone who goes in for it with the idea of originating a new fad which shall be known by his name, like the daguerreotype or potatoes O’Brien, will have to reckon with the priority claims of several hundred generations of historical characters, most of them wearing brown beards. Just why beards and bigamy seem to have gone hand in hand through the ages is a matter for the professional humorists to determine. We certainly haven’t got time to do it here.

But the multiple-marriages unearthed during the past week have a certain homey flavor lacking in some of those which have gone before. For instance, the man in New Jersey who had two wives living right with him all of the time in the same apartment. No need for subterfuge here, no deceiving one about the other. It was just a matter of walking back and forth between the dining-room and the study. This is, of course, bigamy under ideal conditions.

But in tracing a tendency like this, we must not deal so much with concrete cases as with drifts and curves. A couple of statistics are also necessary, especially if it is an alarming tendency that is being traced. The statistics follow, in alphabetical order:

In the United States during the years 1918 – 1919 there were 4,956,673 weddings. 2,485,845 of these were church weddings, strongly against the wishes of the bridegrooms concerned. In these weddings 10,489,392 silver olive-forks were received as gifts.

Starting with these figures as a basis, we turn to the report of the Pennsylvania State Committee on Outdoor Gymnastics for the year beginning January 4th, 1920, and ending a year later.

This report being pretty fairly uninteresting, we leave it and turn to another report, which covers the manufacture and sale of rugs. This has a picture of a rug in it, and a darned good likeness it is, too.

In this rug report we find that it takes a Navajo Indian only eleven days to weave a rug 12 x 5, with a swastika design in the middle. Eleven days. It seems incredible. Why, it takes only 365 days to make a year!

Now, having seen that there are 73,000 men and women in this country today who can neither read nor write, and that of these only 4%, or a little over half, are colored, what are we to conclude? What is to be the effect on our national morale? Who is to pay this gigantic bill for naval armament?

Before answering these questions any further than this, let us quote from an authority on the subject, a man who has given the best years, or at any rate some very good years, of his life to research in this field, and who now takes exactly the stand which we have been outlining in this article.

“I would not,” he says in a speech delivered before the Girls’ Friendly Society of Laurel Hill, “I would not for one minute detract from the glory of those who have brought this country to its present state of financial prominence among the nations of the world, and yet as I think back on those dark days, I am impelled to voice the protest of millions of American citizens yet unborn.”

Perhaps some of our little readers remember what the major premise of this article was. If so, will they please communicate with the writer.

Oh, yes! Bigamy!

Well, it certainly is funny how many cases of bigamy you hear about nowadays. Either more men are marrying more wives than ever before, or they are getting more careless about it. (That sounds very, very familiar. It is barely possible that it is the sentence with which this article opens. We say so many things in the course of one article that repetitions are quite likely to creep in).

At any rate, the tendency seems to be toward an increase in bigamy.

Statistics Saturday: The Most Common Days Of The Week


For Saturday or Sunday or what have you, I offer this list of the most common days of the week, as experienced by current territories of the United States, July 1776 – present. Accurate as of March 8, 2014.

  • 1. Friday
  • 2. Thursday
  • 2. Saturday [ tie ]
  • 4. Sunday
  • 4. Monday [ tie ]
  • 4. Tuesday [ tie ]
  • 4. Wednesday [ tie ]

Statistics Saturday: Hi, Dad


After a little chat with my father not related to his appearance in dreams of warning, I’d like to include a couple of numbers for Statistics Saturday or Sunday or Whatever which relate to him and to the humor blog posts from this month.

  • Number Of Entries That My Dad Thinks Were Funny He Guesses Though He Didn’t Understand Them: 4.
  • Number Of Entries That My Dad Didn’t Notice But Is Sure He’d Think Were Great: 6. (Thank you!)
  • Black Knight 2000 Lightning Wheel: 200,000 points.
  • Number Of Entries About The Scary Problem In The Basement I Needed My Dad’s Advice On Fixing: 0.
  • Number Of Things I’ve Done To Fix That Scary Problem In The Basement: 1, if going to the hardware store counts.
  • Number With No Particular Connection To My Dad: 2,038.
  • Number Of Times I Realize I Ought To Call My Dad In-Between Times I Actually Do: Like 8 or something embarrassing like that.
  • Year When My Father Revealed To Me That “I’m Looking Over A Four-Leaf Clover” Wasn’t A Little Ditty Bugs Bunny Just Made Up: 1979.
  • Number Of Times Out Of Ten That My Father Refers To It As “Ruptures” Instead Of “Rutgers”: 6.
  • Runs Batted In: 26.

Percentages of Things Ruined by its Fans


For Statistics Saturday (really Sunday) I’d like to offer a useful little guide regarding things to be fannish of.

Thing Percent Ruined
Monty Python 73
Star Trek 78 or 79, whatever
My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic 60
Football 22.5
The United States of America 37.5
Flowers 8
Typography Conventions 50
Firefly 84
Saying It’s “Sinister” Whenever Someone Mentions Left-Handedness 98
Dvorak Keyboards 22
Douglas Adams 45
Silver-Age Comic Books 38

Another View Of The United States


Based on the graphics I see passed around the friends of my Twitter feed, it’s really popular to make maps that equate states of the United States (America) to nations of the world, in terms of population, or gross domestic product, or area, or what have you. And since lists of statistics are unmistakably the most popular thing I write around here, let me get in on the action. For your convenience, here’s a list of the fifty certified United States matched up with one of the world’s nations that has just as many letters in the name.

United State Matches Nation
Alabama Uruguay
Alaska Belize
Arizona Burundi
Arkansas Kiribati
California Kyrgyzstan
Colorado Malaysia
Connecticut Cook Islands
Delaware Dominica
Florida Lebanon
Georgia Georgia
Hawaii Latvia
Idaho Japan
Illinois Mongolia
Indiana Romania
Iowa Peru
Kansas Mexico
Kentucky Portugal
Louisiana Nicaragua
Maine Qatar
Maryland Slovenia
Massachusetts Cayman Islands
Michigan Paraguay
Minnesota Venezuela
Mississippi Philippines
Missouri Slovakia
Montana Tunisia
Nebraska Barbados
Nevada Greece
New Hampshire Turkmenistan
New Jersey Singapore
New Mexico Argentina
New York Estonia
North Carolina United Kingdom
North Dakota Sierra Leone
Ohio Mali
Oklahoma Honduras
Oregon Jordan
Pennsylvania United States
Rhode Island Saint Helena
South Carolina Virgin Islands
South Dakota Switzerland
Tennessee Macedonia
Texas Haiti
Utah Oman
Vermont Nigeria
Virginia Djibouti
Washington Bangladesh
West Virginia Guinea-Bissau
Wisconsin Lithuania
Wyoming Jamaica

I just hope that someone finds this list and discovers how very much time it saves having it on hand.

Oh, I should have made this a picture, shouldn’t I? Too bad.

Statistics Saturday


The figures don’t lie, so, let me do another statistics post. Here, the good reasons for something versus the number of bad reasons:

Thing Good Reasons For Bad Reasons For
There Being 360 Degrees In A Circle 6 4
Discount Mattress Sales 5 3
Cement Repair Kits 12 9 [*]
Gerunds 3 8
Indoor Leagues 2 0
Needlessly Complicated Rock Operas 18 [*] 3
Parades 9 4
Ironic Dentistry 2 3
Search Engine Terms 4 2
Silicon Dioxide [*] 42 2.2
In-Jokes 2 6

[*] Not counting the obvious.

Oh, wait, by the Official WordPress Publication Date this is Sunday. Well, now I just look foolish.

A Few December 2013 Numbers


I really wanted to use this space to give a couple numbers about my readership for December 2013, but what with my living-ship for December 2013 I don’t have the chance to write that up so it’s actually correct, so, let me offer you this as a little placeholder while I try to catch up:

  • More than two-thirds of all numbers between 0 and 1 are greater than one-quarter.
  • According to the World Almanac and Book of Facts, in 1945 the United States produced what sure seems like a lot of both iron and steel.
  • No number, written in base ten, which ends in seven has ever been successfully sued for plagiarism in a United States civil court.
  • I read something like 25 comics through gocomics.com that can’t possibly exist because I have never encountered anyone else who has ever read them even when I’ve pointed out the links to them.

I’m sorry these aren’t very good numbers. It’s the best I can do right now.

Bookstore Numbers


14: the average number of minutes you have to hover around the History section of a bookstore before hearing some fully grown-up man explain in all sincerity to another fully grown-up woman that, actually, the United States was justified in getting involved in World War II. This is down one minute from the same statistic as measured last year.

Numbers the August 2013 Way


I said last month I was going to carry on tracking numbers, even if some of them are kind of disappointments, such as the square root of five. The big number according to WordPress’s statistics counters. The number of views dropped from 375 in July to 349 in August, and I don’t have the excuse of a shorter month for that. The number of visitors also dropped from 178 to 141. But this does mean the number of pages per viewer has risen from 2.11 to 2.48, which is the highest on record. I may not be getting many readers in, but they’re reading more of me.

According to WordPress, the top articles of the past thirty days were:

  1. You Can Send Me Any Obsoleted Bills For Responsible Care in which I do some thinking about how to arrange money;
  2. What I Notice In Every Old Picture Of Me and what’s horribly wrong about all those pictures, based on the real actual me;
  3. Community Calendar: Streetlight Counting Day for a little event;
  4. Getting Started and my troubles with that;
  5. In Which I See Through A Chipmunk and the odd story of the squirrels and their comedy club develops; and
  6. Some Parts Of The Horse, a quick useful guide.

None of these was a top-five article last month (the last two were tied for most views). S J Perelman: Captain Future, Block That Kick! was tied for tenth place, so it’s staying popular. My top commenter is again Corvidae in the Fields, whom I thank for loyal readership, followed by Chiaroscuro, who just edges out Ervin Shlopnick, all friends loyal, true, and talkative.

I learned also how to find the most-commented-upon articles, which do include backlinks or trackbacks or whatever the heck they’re called. For this month the top five of those were:

  1. In Which I See Through A Chipmunk (as above);
  2. You Can Send Me Any Obsoleted Bills For Responsible Care (ibid);
  3. Comic Strip Celebrities Named (one from late July that was liked);
  4. Some Now-Forgotten HTML Tags (one of last month’s most popular bits);
  5. Fly The Little Skies (a short bit from late May and about the tiny airport in Trenton, New Jersey).

Once again the countries sending me the most visitors were the United States (268), Canada (8), and the United Kingdom (7). Countries sending only one visitor include Singapore, Chile, Peru, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Germany, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Albania, Portland, Mexico, and France, so while I may be losing popularity in Sweden, Poland is holding steady.

It does strike me that the shorts, usually one or two hundred word pieces, get a lot more views than the weekly essays that aim at seven hundred words. This may be telling me something important about how I write.