I went to the game on Wednesday night. It was a wonderful game, right after a horrendous game. At this point, it would be totally banal to try to compare this season, or the last two-thirds of last season, to anything characterized by rapid and random up and down movement, Let’s just say that, whatever is happening this season, my emotions have leveled out. I really do feel the way people feel in the middle of roller coaster rides. I will take whatever they give me. I accept that I have no power to influence anything. All I want is not to get sick.
The evening was particularly pleasant because of the company. And since there were a number of people there who monitor websites and blogs, we had a discussion at one point of the timing of weird spikes in web traffic and the peculiar reasons why some people visit our sites, and the strange ways that search engines bring them.
So I thought I would share some of the things I have learned by looking at my latest report from WebLog Expert Lite (free of course) which analyzes my weblogs from Yahoo Web Hosting.
Now one thing that your weblog report would permit you to do is say a lot of bullshit things. It is in fact true that my website (both the metsfanbook.com pages and the associated blog) receive an average of 12,000 hits per day, 10,000 page views a day. and 5000 visitors per day. But that, as I said, is bullshit. If you actually look at the report, you see that most of that traffic comes from spambots trying to get onto my comment pages or trying to figure out a way into the guestbook I had to close because of them.
If you look carefully, honestly, and fairly at the numbers what you actually learn is that about 800 people a day visit my blog, about 70 people a day come to my book page, and about 15 people a day read each of the essays linked to the book page. These numbers vary widely according to how much Mets news there is (the spambot numbers don’t vary as much because people in Siberia don’t know about Willie being fired). The traffic after the Willie firing was way above average, as I would have expected from previous experience. I also get a spike whenever I am mentioned by another blog or appear on a podcast. I’d love to see what would happen if I ever got an on-air mention or if Mike and the Mad Dog ever decided to make fun of me for my way-too-generous dissing of them in my book. A Metsblog mention gives me an enormous spike but I get good traffic from a lot of blogs on a regular basis. I think a lot of people read blogs the way I do, going to a blog and then going to other blogs by clicking on the links on their pages. It is clear from my WebLog stats that a lot of my readers come to me from Metsblog, FaithandFearinFlushing, Mikes Mets, Hotfoot, Metstradamus, Optimistic Mets Fan, and The Eddie Kranepool Society. I also get a considerable amount of traffic from sites authored by highly literate women (Pick Me Up, The Good, Bad, and the Ugly, the Mets!, MetsGrrl, YouCan’tScriptBaseball, and MySummerFamily). I think that the pattern here is that I’m getting the kind of English major contingent among Mets fans. My audience consists of people who like to read something because of the way it’s written. Good writing is what all of the above blogs have in common. As a result, I think you get a really nice gender mix, and as you can see on the comment pages, a lot of people who really have something to say, and are not exclusively interested in the ultimately always inaccurate analysis of the Mets’ unknowable prospects that you can find here and on any other blog.
The most amusing aspect of the Weblog report are the search terms that bring total strangers to these shores. People come here looking for Kelly Ripa, kinnahurra, and Sasha Baron Cohen (no relation as far as I know to Gary or Lynn Cohen). They’re also looking for the Home Run Apple and Cow Bell Man and I am happy to accommodate them. They steal my images (fine with me, I believe in sharing images). And sometimes a spambot does get through to a comment page and tells anyone who is still reading a 2006 blog piece on Steve Trachsel that hot xxx chicks who will do anything live right in their area. Spambots selling drugs at a discount also seem to have found a piece I put up on the Mets of Japan.
What a strange thing this Internet is! What have I become now that I am a feature of it? What have the Mets become and what does it mean now to be a Mets fan reading the blogs, with all of these tendrils reaching out into space and touching other Mets fans with laptops in front of ballgames. I’ll write about this more eventually. Right now I am trying to sharpen my blogging brains for this (whatever) Subway Series.
As a matter of fact, I’m going to my first ever Mets-Yankee game on Saturday. I just grabbed tickets for myself and my daughter on StubHub for only $48 each. Not bad, I think. So if anybody’s anywhere near Section 34, row C, in Upper Reserved, please feel free to come by and say hello.