Sunday, March 13, 2011

www=World Wide Wehrle

I'm still trying to get a handle on this blog thing.

Not the writing part. The computer part.

I started blogging about a month ago just to use as an excuse to write. I like writing. I like to see words actually take shape and form themselves on a blank screen. I like to play with the meaning of words and the meaning of ideas formed by those words. It's fun.

But to blog, I have to have at least a rudimentary understanding of a computer, and that's where it gets a little dicey. All I know about computers is what I learned during my days as a sports writer for The Dispatch. It was a brave new world for me when The Dispatch finally went computerized. I wasn't sure if I could live without my IBM Correcting Selectric Typewriter, especially with its amazing correctable ink cartridge. Man, now that was some high tech stuff. Hit the correcting key and a letter would disappear. Hit it repeatedly and whole words were gone. It was like bringing back a fired bullet.

Anyway, computers arrived and I learned how to log on, create a file, type a story, save, and log off. That was almost two decades ago. I'm not much beyond that now, I fear.

Blogging allows me to continue writing (albeit without a paycheck). One of the interesting features of Blogspot, the vendor I use, is that it has a tab called "Stats" which allows you to track the page views you get from your readers.

I'm not sure what to make of this. I'm not even sure I believe the numbers it throws at me. As a former sports writer, I love to study stats: batting averages, earned run averages, yards per carry, points per game, goals for, goals against. It's endless. Sports statistics are the flotsam and jetsam left floating from the actual games played, and sometimes, they're impossible to ignore. Statistics can be addictive.

So I've noticed that on days I post a new blog, I get, on average, about 35 page views. Cool. On days I don't post anything, I'm still getting about 10-12 page views. So thank you for that, faithful readers. Or, at least, faithful checkers-inners.

What amazes me is there is an international page view stat. Since I've started this blog, I've had 15 page views from Canada, two from Great Britain, two from Russia, two from Japan, one from Singapore, one from Indonesia, and one each from a view other unexpected places.

As far as I know, I have no friends in those countries. I figure these are accidental page views. That can happen, I guess, when somebody reads a friend's blog, then goes to the menu bar at the top of the page and hits "Next Blog," which randomly brings up a blog from somewhere else. Since there's a bazillion blogs out there, you never get the same blog twice.

I asked a friend of mine who used to blog whether she paid attention to the stats tab, and she said she did not. She also warned me to be wary of any responses I might get in broken English because it probably means a spammer has entered my world. This is a little disturbing to me since both my brothers like to communicate with me in broken English.

But I guess it's something I can live with. Nobody said it would be easy to be World Wide Wehrle.

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