January 12, 2013

Stats of the Union

I'm a little late with my new year's round-up of the blog's traffic, which I blame on the NFL playoffs combined with the bar we found in our neighbourhood that shows the NFL playoffs while serving delicious pizza and beer. That plus, you know, marathon editing session of novel manuscript, attempting to write second book, doing Ploughshares editorial work, planning honeymoon, lamenting my lost youth... Typical 29-year-old stuff, really.

Anyway. Last year I was depressed because my I published a record low number of posts and, as a result, had a record low amount of traffic; this year, remarkably, I published exactly the same number of posts — how about that regression to the mean, amirite? — but saw a pretty solid 20% rise in traffic. Which I guess means the recession really is over.

Last year I also made a silly, ego-shielding statistical argument that I wasn't really losing traffic so much as gaining a more focused audience, because searches for "recycling jokes" were then — and are still — accounting for an ever larger percentage of my pageviews. This year it's even more ridiculous: I don't just get hits for "recycling jokes," but for "recycling paper jokes", "recycling center jokes", "jokes about refuse disposal", "jokes about solid waste management", and so forth — not to mention the delightfully saucy "recycling jokes for adults." For those readers, I now present this limerick:
There once was a lady named Jan,
Who liked getting an all-over tan.
She'd take off her top,
And go to the shop,
And redeem the deposit on a can.
If you liked that poem, please consider a donation to the Emerson College MFA program.

Actually, though, that silly, ego-shielding statistical argument seems to have some kind of merit, because — I presume on the back of all the "recycling jokes" referrals — I am now getting all kinds of search traffic from people looking for other kinds of jokes. To wit:
Jokes about communism
Jokes about the election
Jokes about Gandhi
Jokes about linguistics
Jokes about masturbation
Jokes about Iran
Break-up jokes
Ritalin jokes
Awful jokes (ouch)
Capoeira jokes
Calvin and Hobbes jokes
Daylight savings times jokes
And the bizarrely specific trifecta of:
Jokes about plenty of fish
Texas spam jokes
Died masturbating jokes
So there you go. I'm now your source for all kinds of really esoteric jokes. Which, I mean, I guess I always was. But now Google has finally caught on.

And finally, as always, my award for favourite search referral of the year, which this year just manages to perfectly sum up my feelings about pretty much every family dinner I've ever had:
linguistics fuck
Happy new year!

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