Well, today is my 39th birthday, and I am celebrating by making my 500th post on “Great” Thoughts. (Don’t worry. I’m also going out to dinner at Hamburger Harry’s in Edmonds with Alissa, the kids and my mom.)
Actually, my birthday present from Alissa is tied to Edmonds as well. I’m going to attend the Write on the Sound conference in October. My birthday present is the registration and Alissa doing some solo parenting that weekend. (Thanks, my love.)
So what is there to say about 500 posts? I know that when I started this blog at the end of 2009, I had no idea what kind of journey I would be embarking upon. I still figured that I’d be writing mostly about politics with other stuff scattered here and there. I certainly did not expect some of my top posts to involve my courtship of Alissa, my love of fuzz balls or showering with a cat. I did not expect to delve into poetry. I thought I’d write more about pop culture, and I certainly did not expect to do a post every single day of 2011.
Most of all, I had no idea how many people would see this blog. It’s one thing to say you’re writing a blog that is readable by the whole world, It’s another to see likes and comments coming in from Kenya and Brasil and Australia and Turkey and right here in the USA. It’s amazing to actually connect with people all over the world who I would never expect to meet. It makes the world feel a little smaller in a good way.
That took on a new meaning when WordPress started posting county statistics. It’s a list of how many posts come from a given country combined with a world map highlighting all the countries on the list. Since the feature was introduced in late February, this blog has been viewed by people in 67 countries on every continent but Antarctica ( any research scientists out there want to change that?).
There’s also, what I call “the India mystery.” I don’t know anyone in India. I don’t write about India. I don’t think I’ve even done so in a geo-political context (aside from a Comparative Politics paper in college). Yet, for some reason, my traffic from India has been rivaling the traffic from the USA, and the “Great” Thoughts Facebook page (Yes, it exists.) has quite a few followers who seem to be Indian or of Indian descent based on their names (although I’m hardly an expert on Indian names).
This is a true mystery to me. Do my posts speak to the Indian psyche in some way? Is “Great” Thoughts some kind of internet meme in India? Are there common search terms there that point people to “Great” Thoughts? Or is it just random chance that will have the India traffic fade and traffic from Suriname pick up inexplicably.
Don’t get me wrong, if I have to choose between solving the mystery and keeping the readers, I’ll take the readers in a heartbeat, but I have been scratching my head over this for a few months now.
In any case, it’s been a true joy writing the blog and hearing from my readers. I always enjoy your comments and hope to read more of them in the future.
And so on my birthday, I choose to celebrate you, my readers. You have my heartfelt thanks for joining me on this journey.
Here’s to 501 and beyond!