The Tao of Milestones
Last week I had the egotistical pleasure of watching my StatCounter roll past 10,000 hits on my Blogger version of “The Tao of Masonry,” and blogging tradition demands that I note this milestone for much the same reasons, I suppose, that we note similar milestones ending in (or better still, a lot of) zeros.
That is, of course, the nature of the decimal universe. Can you imagine The Artist Formerly Known as Prince writing a song entitled “Tonight We’re Gonna Party Like It’s 1997”? Or Hallmark Cards having a little section at the store with cards for people who are turning 53 or 42?
There is an adage that most blogs fail within three to six months because the authors get bored or run out of material. Unfortunately for my readers, I’m rarely at a loss for material, although this is mitigated because I often run short of time to write. For example, I’ve been working on this post for at least three or four days, in between work and home activities.
I started this blog just about 11 months ago (which means that in another month I’ll hit another blogging milestone, that of having had enough to say for an entire year) when I was the Master of Friendship Lodge in Southington. At the time, I was so disgusted with the lodge websites run by our Grand Lodge, that I wanted to start another way to keep everybody updated electronically, to share some pictures, event information, etc. The GL web dewdz eventually got their act together, so this web log turned into something else; although to be frank I haven’t quite figured out what that “something else” really is.
StatCounter (the link is at the very bottom of the Blogger page for anyone who wants to get one of their own) has some interesting features, among them being the ability to see how people get to this blog. Some of you masochistic types have this blog bookmarked, and come directly here. Others seem to click here frequently through the blogroll or links from other blogs. That’s how I usually jump to other blogs, myself.
Some of you are reading this because you found it on Google (the most used by far) or some other search engine. A few search terms show up frequently: for example, I often see “Tao Masonry” or Masonic Tao” or some variation thereof. These are probably people that vaguely remember who I am, and have some general idea of how to get here. I can imagine someone with nothing to do at the end of the day, or perhaps surfing on their lunch break and thinking “Wasn’t there some Mason guy who just got a purple apron? I wonder what kind of egotistical nonsense he’s posted lately? Let’s see, now what was that address again?”
More interesting, though, are those of you who end up here without specifically searching for me. Some of the recent Google searches include:
- Middle Chamber (a big one for some reason)
- Masonry Blogs
- Freemason Blogs
- Masonic Ritual
- Prince Hall
- Masonic Tattoos
- Square & Compass
- Square and Compasses Tattoos ( my post on Masonic Tattoos has been a consistent favorite)
Others are understandable, although I’m certainly not in the top ten for these searches:
- Fun in Masonic Ritual
- Freemason Degrees
- Ladies Night (This post also gets a lot of hits)
- Masonic Handshakes
- Masonic Degrees
And of course, there are the web searches with the konspiracy in mind:
- Secret Masonic Teachings
- Freemason Conspiracy
- Masonic Illuminati
- Masonic Numerology (Which would lead them to my most popular article)
That’s right: even though it’s one of my oldest posts, Auntie Em! Anti M is still one of the most popular things I’ve written. I’m sure that means something, but darned if I know what.
Some of the statistics I get defy explanation. For example, what to make of “Freemason Red Socks”? (I can’t even imagine what that person was looking for, but it does bring up this post). And for a while, I was getting a lot of hits from a French adult entertainment company, the links for which I no longer have.
There is a certain irony in that although I’m a Connecticut Freemason, and even though I’ve been mentioning this blog to everyone I meet, and that I have published the URL in our state newsletter (for which they allow me to write the occasional article), most of my readers come from everywhere but Connecticut. For some reason I have been attracting a lot of California readers, several of which (judging by their IP addresses) are bored enough to stop by every day. Georgia, Florida, Illinois and Indiana also are harboring people with too much time on their hands.
I’m often surprised to see readers from outside the US, and more especially outside the UK. While I get a few readers from Canada (our 51st state!), lately India, Israel, France, and Sweden have been showing up on the stats. There is probably a good reason that I get more readers from outside the US than I do from Connecticut. I just wish I knew what that reason is.
Some of you are aware that I mirror this blog on WordPress, because you switch back and forth. The WordPress version (the one that you’re reading now), which I started in October of 2006 after several months of issues with Blogger as they switched over to a new format, only attracts about a dozen or so hits per day. I’ve tried promoting it over the Blogger version, simply because I like the wide array of built-in blogging features, but the Blogger version is deeply entrenched, so I’ve come back to to fold. I’ll be expecting Google to send me a card.