Sunday, February 22, 2015

climbing the cliff

Mexico has freed me of most of my obsessions.

Please note:  I said "most."  Unfortunately, one has been exacerbated.

I have two programs that regularly provide me with information about people who peek in on Mexpatriate.  Not the type of information collected by NSA agents, who know everything about my internet wanderings.

All I know is the country of readers -- and how long they hang around this rather tame neighborhood.  It gives me some vague idea of who is out there.  What it does not tell me is how many of those readers enjoy or hate what they find.  I hope it is the first.  But I can live with the latter.

But one chart has always baffled me.  It is the raw page hits for my daily essays.  That is it at the top.  The chart purports to tell me the trend for the past five years of readership.

If Mexpatriate were a commercial venture, I would be sitting down with the board of directors to make some sense out of this odd painting of the Alps.  With soaring heights.  And plunging valleys.   

Such as, what happened in February of last year with its noticeable drop in page hits?

The good thing about not being a commercial enterprise is that such questions simply do not matter.  Nor do the answers.

I long suspected that I could artificially increase page hits with essay titles that would titillate -- take naked youth, for instance, where I raised this same question.

That was six years ago.  And I know little more about my readership than I did then.  I did learn that creating salacious titles does nothing to affect readership.  I suspect that internet cruisers have become inured to such come-ons.  (Except for the rather odd emails I received from several Middle Eastern countries.)

And, as I have learned in so many other areas of my life in Mexico, the number of hits simply does not matter.  Nor does the relative trend.

I write because it gives me an opportunity to better focus on each day.  I am constantly looking for the hook of the hour.  And to enjoy the moments as they occur.

Because I believe Marcel Duchamp was correct (
art is never finished until a viewer looks at the piece and interprets it), I share my essays with you.

Thank you for being part of that process.  No matter where you are on that chart.

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