Reader Surprise

It always surprises me what appeals to ‘my’readership. You guys are nothing if not diverse and eclectic in your interests. The post in which ‘We Have to Talk About Kevin’ (a reference to a popular book title)was the most popular post this past year for two straight days. 200 readers each time! By comparison, the ‘I Hate Trump and Trudeau’ post received 150 for one day and is not likely to repeat that number on this, the second day.

Maybe I should write pieces on other ‘personally known’ readers…?

OH, do not worry, Scott, Sid, Derek. You guys certainly qualify (we’re friends) but I am mostly only teasing. Kev is further ‘out there’ anyway. NOT more entertaining in his eccentricity than you guys but different. AND it turns out that Kev is a hick magnet! Who knew?

I also have three ‘newish’ readers whose interests are not so much in me and my writing but rather because they are currently planning/dreaming/moving OTG. They will read ANYTHING that has the word OTG in it. There are, it seems, at least three entities ‘making moves’ to relocate OTG that pop in here (blog) now and then. From what they tell me, all three will set their feet on the forest floor within two years….maybe…..each of them swaddles that commitment in caveats, maybes and ‘what-ifs’. And so they should. Life throws us curve balls. But my odds are two will actually do it.

They are NOT the first of my readers to make moves in this direction. In fact, they are #4, #5 and #6 that I am personally aware of. Numbers 1, 2 and three have been up here (in the vicinity) for a few years now and all are doing very, very well.

Each of those arrivals, however, were couples. That is a huge difference in the do-abilty factor. There have been more than a few single males that have also emigrated out here but, by the nature of the beast, they are more alone and isolated. They may be happy and fulfilled but there simply isn’t as much ‘community’ evidence of that. Why? Because it is usually the women who join book-club, go to yoga or chat incessantly in the parking lot. Women are a more cohesive group (the Ya-Ya Sisterhood)and they kinda pull the reluctant males along into the community. Couples fare better or, at least, APPEAR to fare better.

And none of the singles were directly influenced by anything I wrote. The couples, on the other hand, read everything they could find and I was scooped up as part of that exercise – mostly for comic relief as I understand it. No one comes to me for expert advice. In other words, I had a bit of an entree to meeting the couples….Sally AND the book. Lone wolves and I circle one another for a long time before actually talking…..and then….NOT all that much.

I also have a contingent of arm-chair OTG’ers. They have the interest, but not the means or the commitment. They find the whole thing different and probably exciting but, well, you know…kids, mortgages, one spouse opposed, any number of valid reasons NOT to go beyond this blog.

I am particularly fond of my armchair-readers in the city. Firstly, they are obviously easily impressed and that is the kind of fan I need. Secondly, all of them are totally willing to help out from the city if I need anything. That is fabulous support because sometimes I do. And DC is in a field littered with raw materials and stuff-of-building. THAT is a huge thing.

Oddly, I actually have a few single women readers. Sally thinks that is peculiar because, in her words, “You really write like a male, you know that? I mean, it is NOT macho or sexy or even very interesting but six pages into anything you’ve written and your gender is revealed in your words! I am surprised women who do not live out here would go past those six pages. I find it very difficult myself most of them time!”

So, EB, ML, TrRUMind, B, SK, MP are exceptions to the rule and all the more appreciated for it. Mind you, they do seem to speak up more when I write about ravens and Sal’s heroics.

I clearly have some right-wing oriented folks but I think they are just right-wingers-by-self-description rather than by current values and thoughts. I have one close friend who is very much self-defined as a conservative, right-wing, exploit-the-environment, make-a-buck, free-enterpriser who regularly gives all his time and some of his money to widows and orphans, the poor, the indigenous and the immigrants. He is generous to a fault and loves the forest and the ocean. But he claims a neo-con outlook. Go figure.

I also have a lot of Asian readers. That is not a surprise, really, as I have a lot of Asian friends. And many people might be surprised to learn that appreciation for nature runs deep in that culture. Especially if they can eat it! MY Asian friends are deeply immersed in urban life and business-business-business but, at the same time, love the great outdoors much like the Hong Kong students we used to host. They love it but are not likely to ever go much further than Stanley Park. Too busy.

If I delve deeper into my WORDPRESS stats, I find a few Europeans, too. Likely German, Dutch and English. But I have friends and some family there. We’ve had Woofers from there. So, that makes sense.

There is much, much more to the profiles of the group, of course. And much, much, much more to every single one of them. But that is the picture I have from the site stats and those I know. You are a great bunch, a lovely bunch o’ coconuts.

18 thoughts on “Reader Surprise

  1. Well…guilty I guess, and though “picking your brain” gives usefull insights, I have spend some time going through the archives of your blog. So besides probably picking your brain in the future, you have found yourself an addicted reader. Glad to be 1 of the coconuts!


  2. You never know what will catch people’s eye. My all time most popular post is my update about float cabins for sale. Each week it gets about 200 hits but rarely a comment. On occasion someone will send me a personal email about cabin details but only one bought a cabin that I know of. I enjoy your posts on OTG but also you take on the world. Keep writing so we can keep enjoying. – Margy


    • Thanks, Sid. But 200 is NOT a big number. REAL bloggers write once every two weeks or something and get thousands of readers. AND they ‘flog crap’ the whole time! And, do not forget, 200 was the best day of the ‘post Russian theft’ era. Before the Russians stole my first blog-site, the numbers were double that. I average about 120 – 125 a day. I used to think I wrote just to vent my own spleen but then it dawned on me, ‘If no one reads it, the vent remains clogged and the spleen gets blocked. I NEED readers!’ Existential angst in it’s purest form.


  3. Currently we appear to be in the grip of Dr. Bonnie Henry who empathetically reports every day the new cases, the recovered cases, the deceased cases and the hot spots of infections in supportive care facilities. Each day Dr. Bonnie Henry calmly says in effect , “Be safe, be caring and be kind to each other” or similar words. She refuses to shame or blame as the isolation hawks gather to question why some people are not self isolating. All over BC people are making noise at 7:00 P.M. in support of those working to provide the essential services. Dr. Bonnie Henry has over a million viewers per day and is deeply invested in preserving the health of all. Of note Dr. Bonnie Henry has critics and detractors.


    • I am both. She definitely took some steps ahead of the rest of the talking doctors on TV and they were effective steps – so, on that score, she deserves some credit. On the other hand, these ‘talking doctors’ are just pedigreed mouthpieces and they say the same thing day after day as if we need someone over paid and highly qualified to count for us. I would prefer to see Dr. Bonnie in the research lab or the emergency room and have her secretary or even standing-there-Dix tell us numbers. So – meh…
      …….sorry, Sid, after a certain point ‘degreed’ fools irritate me. I am old and grouchy. AND impatient. I want to say, “Don’t talk anymore, Bonny. NOW GO DO MEDICINE!”


  4. Bonnie is doing the medicine that is required to fight this pandemic. Dr Bonnie Henry is saving lives and giving hope. Without the training and experience of this doctor C 19 would be raging in BC. She is not just a “talking doctor”! She puts words into action.


    • I do NOT disbelieve you, you Sid. And I am glad you are showing her the love. But….is she in a lab somewhere doing research? Is she at bedside attending the ill? Is she in rest homes inspecting? How does she spend her day? In meetings? With speechwriters? Going to media events?
      I am NOT accusing…I AM questioning why we need her high level of expertise in front of a camera like Sanjay Gupta and Fauci….
      Shouldn’t Dix be the talking head? I mean,of course – AFTER she did the first few instructive interviews, wouldn’t it be advisable for her to say, “Ladies and gentlemen, I have trained for years to be a good doctor, NOT a good TV interview. Minister Dix will be the face of this most of the time. I will come back if there is breaking medical news. In the meantime, I have sick people to attend to.”
      Maybe I am being petty and picayune but that is how I feel. If you are a bricklayer, lay the damn bricks. If you are a doctor, heal the sick. I hate hearing highly qualified people saying simple, expected AND politically vetted things. YOu don’t think she and Dix meet and agree first on what she is about to say? Why are we paying Dix if he doesn’t DO THE TALKING, then?
      After a point, their education in medicine is NOT being applied, it is being used simply as a credential – one I already accepted some time ago. That is why we practice social distancing and wear masks. You can champion that kind of messaging, if you want. I don’t. I thought Cuomo did it right. And even tho I do not like Trudeau, he only uses Tam now and then. But nice to see your gallantry.
      We may just have to agree to disagree, I guess.


  5. Bonnie is an administrator she is hands on as you were in your life as an administrator. Bonnie does not have a desk job. She practices medicine. My comments are not based on gallantry or love or respect. I am not Dr Bonnie Henry’s equal. I do not have the experiential capacity to claim I have the ability to respect her work. I can not, I’m not a doctor. I’m an too ignorant to judge the work and skills of doctors.


    • OOooooohhhhhhhhhh, Sid. You TEMPT me…..I will NOT go for the bait except to say that, when I ran the clinic, I hired and fired doctors. It was MY job to ‘take the measure of them’. And, like most people, there were good ones and bad ones. Some might even be good in Skid Row and bad in hospitals or private practice while others were the opposite. They were humans first. Like all of us. But let me make one thing clear: in Skid Row, there were some doctors who were fabulous and there were some that simply could NOT do the job. NOT IN THE LEAST. I, too, am too ignorant to judge their work in most circumstances but I was certainly NOT too ignorant to judge them in the environs of the Skid Row clinic. And so I did. I may be taking a bit too much of a liberty to have the opinions I do OUTSIDE that milieu, but there it is. I have them.


  6. What tempts you? Dix is not a doctor and has no credibility in talking about the pandemic but Dr Bonnie makes a credible spokesperson on the progress of the disease and its dangers. Hence Doctor Bonnie Henry ads to the credibility image of Heath Minster Dix by appearing with him on screen.


    • “I am not Dr Bonnie Henry’s equal. I do not have the experiential capacity to claim I have the ability to respect her work. I can not, I’m not a doctor. I’m an too ignorant to judge the work and skills of doctors.”
      It was that statement that tempts me. Can I not judge a mechanic? Can I not judge a teacher? Can I not judge a politician or a doctor? I think I can. Why? Because they are service providers and I am discerning client in receipt of those services. In the case of doctors, I have the added benefit of hiring maybe a dozen or so doctors during my time in Skid Row (the new docs wanted to give to the community but not for too long. Not as a rule. Walking the dark side was a ‘sacrifice’ they were willing to make for awhile. I do NOT judge that. I, too, was only willing to do it for so long). For some, it is a calling. For others, it is a sacrifice. For them and me, it was a sacrifice. We could not ‘hack it’ for too long).
      I judged them based on the job description and the obvious fact that it was Skid Row. Do not demand your patients be obedient, good-natured and grateful. They are drug addicts, alcoholics, insane and beaten. Treat them or leave. No judgments. But do not slack off or be a fancy-pants here. We do not have the time or the patience. All of them but one accepted that and did their best for as long as they could. A few started to get ‘burnt out’ and I helped them leave (NOT fire them, HELP them). I can judge. You can judge. We all judge. And, for the record, you are anything but ignorant. To judge or not is to take responsibility in your capacity as a client.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.