Lies, Damned Lies and Fractal Stats

I’m beginning to question my blog stats.  I never had cause to doubt them before but I’ve been wondering lately as they seem to have plummeted over the last few days to an all-time low.  This would not be so odd if I weren’t getting a number of ‘likes’ and comments.  True, the figures for these do not exceed the number of readers, but past experience teaches that the more interaction there is, the higher the stats.  It’s very unusual to get very low stats with this level of interaction.  I’ve checked on other browsers; I’ve looked via the app on my phone and they’re all telling the same story.  But I suspect they lie.

If so, it’s more likely to be cock-up than conspiracy.  WordPress try to be encouraging rather than bringing you down, since the scale of the bar chart varies with the level of views, rather like a fractal series.  For example, if your views are in the low twenties, the chart will go up to fifty; if they’re between three and four hundred it’ll top out at five hundred – and so on.  I expect there are bloggers who get views in the thousands or even hundreds of thousands, whose stats go all the way up to eleven.  Or eleventy-one…

But for now it remains a mystery.  Any other wordpressers experienced this phenomenon?

Kirk out

By the way you may not hear from me much for a few days as I’ll be at conference.  I shall prepare my report-thingy with the utmost care…

The Wrong Sort of Snow

WordPress has gone all weird again.  I got a lovely load of comments on yesterday’s post, mainly from other writers who are every bit as insecure as I am, being supportive, commiserating and also loving the snow.  I like the snow too although it seems a tad inappropriate at the moment, what with the weather being so mild.  Obviously it’s nice that the weather is mild rather than freezing but it does make one worry about global warming.

So at the moment I am working on a very old story.  This is one of the oldest stories in my repertoire as it was originally a chapter of a novel; the first novel I ever finished.  The first one I wrote was when I was eight; however it only ran to half a page and then stopped: I’ve been trying to get back to that novel for fifty years.  But the first I ever finished was called Seven Days and was the story of a woman stuck in a nuclear bunker.  It was written during the Cold War years and it’s not immediately obvious where she is; even at the end it’s not clear whether she is really in a bunker or whether it’s all in her mind and she is, say, in a mental hospital.  Anyway, the chapter which became a story explains how she got where she is.  It’s set in the future – though only about 50 years or so – at a time when thoughts can be extracted from the mind and studied.  She works for a peace project which is attempting to defuse a very complex and highly aggressive thought which, if unleashed, could prove very destructive.

The story is called A Saturday Afternoon in the Museum of Thought and it needs a lot of work to get it up to scratch.  I’ve been at it all morning and now I’m taking a break.

So: WordPress is being all different again, which means it’s reorganised itself and now I don’t know where to find anything.  Why do things have to keep doing that?  My email has changed as well – you keep having to relearn things when you’ve only just learnt them.  It’s not fair.

In my day, things didn’t keep changing every five minutes.

Kirk out

PS if you’re not in the UK and wondering why I put ‘the wrong sort of snow’ as a title, it refers to a remark (unfortunately wrongly) attributed to British Rail explaining why the trains weren’t running.

I am Me and You are He and We are She and We are All Together…

The weirdest thing happens on the computer when Thing and I try to comment on other people’s blogs.  For some reason it’s always signed in to his account when I comment, and to my account when he comments.  This is even after I’ve gone to wordpress and signed in on my own account and then hunted up the blog on which I wish to comment.  It always does that highly irritating little jiggle which only wordpress things do.  Other accounts are content with a wiggly red line or an empty space or a little error message – but no! that’s not good enough for wordpress.  It has to do a little jiggle from side to side so that you can’t ignore it.  I’ve come to hate that little jiggle – and unless I’m on the tablet, I’ve given up commenting on other people’s blogs.  So, to my latest follower, sheislove11, I send this message:

I liked your post although when you said you made water in the coffee pot I thought for a moment you’d peed in it!

And here’s the post I commented on – or rather, failed to comment on thanks to wordpress being so BLOODY STUPID!!!

Deep calming breaths.  Deep calming breaths…

If you follow my blog I always take a look at yours and sometimes follow you as well.  My daughter has started her own blog lately, and it features a banner created by my son.  He has agreed to do one for me, although he seems to be a while getting around to it.  Here’s Holly’s blog anyway.  In this post she has put a very short story and asked for comments, so get over there and get commenting:

The REALLY annoying thing about commenting on blogs is that it tells me I’m commenting as Sarada Gray and when I post the comment it says I’m posting as zerothly.  Which I’m NOT!!!

Aaanyway, Holly, since I can’t post a comment there I’ll post it here.  I basically agree with the other comment, in that the third paragraph is the best.  In the first two you should show more and tell less and maybe connect the grease in the cafe with the grease in her hair.  I love the use of the word ‘shrapnel’ though – it suggests that her life is a battle.

Went to ‘You and Me’ friendship group at the Martyrs today and gave a talk on Quakerism.  It was very well-received and I enjoyed giving it.  I talked about my journey from a red-brick vicarage in Edmonton, round the terrible North Circular to Hounslow, about going to church three times a day on a Sunday, about to-ing and fro-ing when the church went all evangelical and finally finding my way into Quakerism.  Ruth from the Quaker meeting came along to support and add information and the audience seemed greatly interested.

Which was nice.

Happy Monday, like the woman says.

Kirk out



I Am NOT Nineteenthly!

I’ve been having a couple of doodahs with WordPress recently; first it deleted all my contents when I asked it to save them; then today it refused to post a comment of mine (on my own post, I might add) because it thought I was The Other Half.  I am not nineteenthly!  yet it persisted in saying after I’d written the comment that I was trying to post as him (ie Mark) and that I should add my password.  I don’t know Nineteenthly’s password: even Nineteenthly doesn’t know Nineteenthly’s password any more as Nineteenthly has gone on to pastures new and is probably up to thirty-firstly or forty-secondly by now.*

Incidentally, if you don’t know the story, the name comes from a university professor who realised it was time to stop lecturing when he heard himself say: ‘- and nineteenthly…’  Mark has great trouble explaining things in a few words; hence the name.

Anyway, WordPress absolutely refused to accept that I wasn’t Nineteenthly, so that I was forced to resort to a different browser.  That did the trick.

This weekend feels a bit flat after the last one: there’s not much happening apart from Tomatoes today and church/meeting tomorrow.  There will be a march for Climate Change (or rather, a march against climate change) on Nelson Mandela Park at 12 and that’s about all she wrote – or will write.

Holly, on the other hand, seems to be having a complete social whirl: Facebook is full of photos of her and a group of friends all screaming and holding drinks.


Kirk out

*actually he’s reminded me that his latest incarnation is Zerothly.