2021 is exiting on the upswing! Not #COVID19 infections, although, they are swinging upward around the world, too. But here in the waning days of the year, we’ve achieved ANOTHER personal best at Ye Olde Blogge! We broke the record for the most likes in one day! Thursday saw us garner 24 likes. Fantastic.
The end of the year requires a look back and a look forward. Here’s a few of my favorite things about Ye Olde Blogge in 2021!
Readers, Supporters, and Visitors
One of my favorite things are the people who come and visit the blog to browse, read, or bounce right on out again! Without those folks, the blog likely wouldn’t have made it through the lean years. I am deeply grateful and humbled by them all.
I am very grateful for all who have left a sign of life: liked, rated, shared, commented, or followed. Blogging is a lonely business. You can get hundreds of views a day, and you wouldn’t know unless you check your stat page (which I do obsessively because I’m obsessive). Those who have taken the time to let me know they’ve been here get a special token of gratitude. It means more than you think.
Ye Olde Blogge by the Numbers in 2021
COMMENTERS: The people who leave comments are extra special to me. The dialogue that they engage in is the icing on the cake. Let’s just go through a few of the numbers and personalities involved:
- BOBCABKINGS has been the most prolific commenter and the perfect foil for Ye Olde Blogge. I forget when Bob entered the scene, but we hold extended conversations in the comments almost like we’re old friends having coffee at a kitchen table. I get some of my best ideas for posts and insights into the psychology and culture from Bob.
- TENBEARS has been commenting more as of late in an enjoyable running dialogue about all that is right and wrong with the world. Always interesting. Always insightful. Always surprising.
- ALI came to us via Tengrain’s Mock Scissors Paper and unless I’m mistaken, I think she can be seen on Bob’s and Ten’s blogs as well. Her comments are always upbeat and interesting and always welcome.
- SUZE was one of the originals as I recall. One of the first people to follow Ye Olde Blogge, like posts, and leave the occasional comment. I’ve always appreciated her commentary and encouragement. She also takes all the psychological tests and posts her results. Much appreciated.
- ANNIEASKSYOU is a relative newcomer to the commenting pool. She has left some useful comments offering her insights on Jim Crow 2.0 and voting rights and the threats to our democracy. She has her own blog championing all of these issues and more. Well worth a visit in the new year. Let her know that you found her from Ye Olde Blogge.
BY THE POSTS: Ye Olde Blogge changed a lot in the past year since the 2020 election and The Ol’ Pussy Grabber was escorted out. In many ways it has been an improvement. Thank goodness, I don’t have to write as much about narcissism.
- TOTAL POSTS AND WORDS: At 143 so far this year, it is the second most prolific year. 2017 set the bar pretty high at 193.
- 143 posts averages to 12 per month which is three per week or just under three. Three posts a week was the goal, so goal met. Check.
- The words have increased as well. My goal is to keep the posts at about 1200 words on average. We didn’t do so well this year even though we broke several up into sets.
- It’s the most words and the most average words per post for any year eclipsing all years by 50,000 words or more.
- COMMENTS: Total comments more than doubled from last year (1,381 to 2, 915), which beat 2017. The average comments per post doubled last years (10.2 to 20.4). It is particularly gratifying because I’ve been encouraging folks to comment for most of the year.
- LIKES: Total and average likes are way up over last year, too. We increased from 674 and 5.0 to 903 and 6.3. Again, gratifying because we’ve been promoting likes and other engagements during 2021.
This has been a year of maturation for the blog. First, we set goals for improving the blog: (a) number of posts per week, three, (b) schedule of posting (Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday), (c) words per post, 1,200, and (d) increases in likes, follows, and comments. It’s really nice to see that most of them have been met.
THE MONEY: At the end of 2020, we monetized the blog by adding ads. We got off to a booming but sobering start by earning five whole US dollars in three months! 2021 has caused us to sober up just a bit, though. We only earned $7.00 in twelve months. Last year I boasted that I could get Ma Belle Femme a coffee at Starbucks. With this year’s earnings, I could get us both a coffee. Progress?
I guess we’re putting retirement off for another year.
When you write these kind of posts, you inevitably have favorites. Ones that stand out in your mind for whatever reason or another. This short list are a few of those from this year.
I reckon before it is all over we’re all going to have plenty to grieve: the #COVID19 dead and forever changed, our democracy, the loss of friends and relatives to MAGA Nation, our climate. Understanding grief becomes really important then. Here’s the 2021 offering:
It was a long hot summer. La Petite Fille wasn’t vaccinated. Ma Belle Femme was off buying a house. I was starting to feel the drag of having spent 18 months largely indoors. Then, I opened Twitter one eventing, saw that Nanci Griffith had died, and I literally fell apart. Okay, literally emotionally fell apart. I explored all the whyfors and whatnows in this soul-searching post.
I was struck by the similarity between MAGA Nation’s reaction to Trump’s loss and the symptoms of prolonged grief disorder. I was also struck by how those extreme emotions we feel when grief strikes keeps them in a constant state of agitation and stress setting the stage for mass psychosis and radicalization.
Gender Identity and Ambiguity Tolerance
I had the oddest experience with a student that I had ever had, so I just had to write about it. In fact, I had to write two conjoined posts about it. I had met this student last year, but didn’t know her very well, but when I met her, I thought she was a boy. She was in my class this year, and over Zoom, I saw nothing to indicate that she wasn’t a boy. It wasn’t until another teacher asked that I started to figure it out. The weirdness of it all helped me understand why some people just aren’t comfortable with the transgendered. Maybe it will you, too. Let me know in the comments.
Radicalization of MAGA Nation
August saw me really concerned about the level of cray-cray coming out of MAGA Nation, especially concerning #COVID19. Once I began exploring the concepts of propaganda, mass psychosis, waves of terror, and political violence, I KNEW I had something worth reporting on. Knowing these things makes MAGA Nation’s inane insanity understandable. These three are must reads for understanding the year we just experienced. Because WordPress, here are the links: Mass Psychosis is the End Game of Groupthink, Gaslighting, and Cognitive Dissonance, Making Explicable the Inexplicable: the Waves of the #COVID19 Pandemic are Natural Waves of Terror, and Rising Political Violence: Authoritarians, Mass Psychosis, and Waves of Terror Make More Violence Inevitable
The Civil War Never Ended
Right after the 6 January Insurrection, we explored the root causes of Trump, his base, and the insurrection. We came up with the Civil War never ended series that examined the racism that is at the heart of American culture. There was plenty of pushback and cries of nuh-unh, but noone came up with a very convincing counter argument.
Reasons for Optimism
The prospects of our democracy, planet, and #COVID19 pandemic, quite frankly, are pretty dim right now. There are reasons for hope, though. Let’s revisit some of those posts before we go.
REASON #1: Black people have saved our democracy on more than one occasion, so there’s reason to think they’ll do it again.
REASON #2: We have history on our side. We’ve been a democracy with an expanding electorate. Our norms and values are deeply ingrained, so they should rise to the surface as our democracy is threatened.
REASON #3: We have Old Handsome Joe Biden! I know the hip Twitter trend is to carp and snipe about how he’s not doing enough for pet peeve number whatever, but he’s had a remarkable first year. I have confidence.
REASON #4: The Repubes may be able to dog whistle up 57% of white voters, but we’ve got everyone else, and we’ve got our superhero, Stacey Abrams.
That about does it for our look back at Ye Olde Blogge’s 2021. We’ve had a pretty remarkable run this year due in large part to the support of our readers. Thank you. Have a GREAT 2022.
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