My blog is a mystery


Ever since my unfortunate experience with the Russian cyber-guys who almost-hacked my website (They did not but they did enough nonsense to get the Google warning label activated which was almost as bad.  Getting that scarlet letter removed was the bulk of the challenge), I have felt a smidge neglected.  Not lonely so much as, well, not so popular. (My definition of being popular or not hovers around the 300 visitors/day mark).  Off the Grid Homes has not had 300 visitors a day in over a month!

I am pretty mature.  Sane, I think.  I have perspective.  Mentally healthy, kinda, ya know?  I am not even as insecure as I once was.  But, well, let’s face it – numbers don’t lie.  And my numbers were bad.  And I expected better.  Clearly I was out of the ‘popular’ neighbourhood and into the ‘shunned’ area of town.  Wrong side of the tracks.  It hurt.

But surprise!  the day before – 290.

Yesterday was 390!!

Now how is that possible?

What happens that makes 100 more people visit the site?  I wrote about our W’fer…….wazzat it?  Did a bunch o’ w’fers look up ‘w’fer’ on Google and all of a sudden I am on the map?  How does this sort of thing happen?  Is this how a message ‘goes viral’?  (Does 100 more readers a viral message make?)

All of a sudden there is a ‘blip’ on the search engine and you are Warhol-famous for fifteen minutes?  “Hey, Groucho!  What’s the secret word?” (Groucho Marx had a quiz show on TV in the late 50’s.  Part of the quiz show format was a ‘secret word’.  If a contestant said the secret word in any part of their participation, they won something.  The secret word was a big quiz-show deal until the $64,000 Question.  But, I digress).

Anyway my point is this:  social media (of which I am a micro-part) is a crapshoot.  Some things click’.  Most things do not.  And ‘clicking’ is a big deal in this brave new world.  People become famous for being on a viral wave of some kind.  I guess Paris Hilton was built on such a foundation, now that I think about it.

But no sane person wants that.  I don’t.  I don’t think I can take the lows.  The ‘highs’ would be nice but the ‘lows’?  Not so much.

However, I would like to communicate what I am going through – chronicle my devolving consciousness, as it were.  I’d like to record what a guy who is over-the-hill and off-the-grid, off-the-wall and probably under-surveillance is going through and observing.  You know, while the synapses are still signing and not napping?

It is not about profundity so much as sharing perspective to see if it resonates with anyone.  To see if anyone else feels what I feel.  In other words: the feedback is important and only about 1% of readers ‘feed back’.  Therefore, to get ten comments I need 1000 readers.  It’s all in the numbers.

OK, I am still a bit insecure, I guess, but, hell, I am male.  I have an ego.  Egos are fragile things.  Old male egos are tortured souls.  We need support, ya know?

What caught your eye (I am talkin’ to the mysterious 100 now…)?  The word: Japanese?  Sake?  Was it the picture of a fish farm pen? 

What is it with you people!?

9 thoughts on “My blog is a mystery

  1. Part of the draw is the choice of tags assigned to your posts. A further draw is being part of a linky party (Do I hear projectile vomiting.) Comment on at least ten blogs you read each day. If some one comments always comment back with at least a ‘meh’ or a ‘kinda’. A tag such as WWOOF will draw in readers trolling the web as will tags salacious. If some one clicks on your link ten times a day the clicks indicate 10 visits not 10 new readers.


  2. Yeah……someone said something like that to me. But I don’t really know what ‘tags’ are. And ‘linky’ ain’t my style. I am just wondering, ‘why do the numbers stay the same and then, all of a sudden jump? One day six months ago they went to 1200!? Which was nice but now they are back to 300. Almost a thousand people left me! Was it something I said? Did I offend 900 people (I am not saying that is a bad thing…….)? I jus’ wanna know…..ya know?


  3. Hits are an outcome of the algorithm used in the WEB search. Out there are vast amounts of information without any system organizing it. The WEB is not organized alphabetically, or by the Dewey Decimal System or in reality by any system at all unless you the blogger attach a tag. “A tag is used to mark individual messages(blogs) as relevant to a particular group, and to mark individual messages as belonging to a particular topic or “channel”. You will get hits IF a blog is relevant to reader and IF the algorithm picks your blog as relevant. How does the algorithm do that: It looks for tags. On a day when you get lots of hits it is because of the WEB algorithm. You can led the the WEB algorithm to your site with the right tags. Otherwise its a crap shoot up one day and down the next. Now if you called your blog “Bieber” your hits would increase. Please have a look at this site.


    • Well, thanks. Appreciated. I kinda knew that I could ‘direct’ a bit of traffic just by using some key words but this is different. Frankly, I do not want to draw just any old reader. I really want the people who are interested in living off the grid – even if they don’t do it. It is kinda like finding kindred spirits for me. So, using ‘Bieber’ just wouldn’t do the trick. Still, I could use ‘canning’, ‘free range’, ‘wild’ and such terms, I suppose……’cept we don’t ‘can’, have chickens or go too close to where the wild things are…..oh, well……………..Hmmm……I could use ‘single malt’, ‘feet up’ and ‘cheap B flicks’. Waddya think?


  4. Time for some blog analysis if your raison d’être is to express a married ironist guy near sixty going feral, eschewing wealth, living healthy and wise remotely on an island with dogs and ravens that is you. But if that doesn’t in broad strokes rough in the canvas of your blog then what would you add? You have a bird feeder(read blog) that attracts certain type of birds is that by design or are there others birds you would attract if so who? What is your target audience? Not too big, not too small, family, friends, community, pets, kindred spirits and who else?


    • Thank you for your interest. I’ll try to answer. It is my belief that a lot of people (especially the aging baby boomers) are not as enamored with urban living as they once were. But they lack a viable alternative. And it is hard to see the forest for the highrises. So, I am really writing for the older person who feels frustrated and wants out. Whether they come out this far is not so much the issue. The issue is to say out loud what I think a lot of people are feeling.
      But, I could be wrong. Maybe Starbucks and cable is enough..?


      • Well, that last line isn’t quite fair….I don’t mean that……….I mean that – for those for whom Starbucks and cable and neighbours and friends are not quite enough and for those whom the city, the traffic and the bureaucracy is becoming too much……….that is what I meant.


  5. Aging baby boomers as your target blog audience. I know that you have attracted a few boomers but you want more. One question is how many of them are just living vicariously through your blog and how many of them want to join you in the hard graft that circumscribes your day to day. You must realize that you are cutting edge for most of the sixties crowd if not for most people with a pioneer spirit. You could be in one of those reality survivors shows that glues the boomers to the flat screen. The only sixties types you see there are ex-navy seal types with bodies of steel. How do you do it?


    • You see me more heroically than I am. I have a body of goo. I drink wine and scotch, eat too well and only work about four hours a day, and only two of them are hard. Well, there is the washing of dishes, too, I guess. Admittedly some of the stuff takes getting used to and having muscles is a requirement but you don’t need many. The pace is slow. And I go even slower.
      And having more money will make even most of those requirements diminish. We have rich people out here who don’t even chop their own wood. We have (well, had) poor people who gather from the forest and the sea just to eat. We have old, young and even a few ‘new ones’ now and then. Really, a 60 year-old urban woman who has never done any kind of heavy work would have a challenge because physicality is a built-in requirement. But we have several of those and they are doing fine. We also have great, bulky men who can rip trees out by the roots who have different challenges – especially if they are single. Oddly, they don’t adjust to their challenges as well. So, it is not about muscles. It is all about attitude, really. And money, of course. ‘Why? ‘Cause you can’t earn any out here. There is very little work and what there is goes from the urban oldies to the younger muscles. “But why do it?” Because it is so incredibly beautiful, healthy, peaceful and a new learning experience. Highly recommended.


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