I’ve decided to go ahead and do a recap of my blogging year since I doubt I will post much before I head to Kentucky next week.
First, my overall stats for the year. They are actually not bad for my boring little blog. I’m still ahead of last year even though I stopped posting regularly last month:
Views – 8467 Visitors – 5104 Likes 2310 Comments – 566
Visits by Country – USA – 5661, UK – 859, India – 781, Canada – 251. No other country broke 3 digits.
Top 5 posts:
- The Lori Loughlin Scandal in Full House GIFS – It is what the title says. The college admissions scandal in GIFS from Full House.
- I’m Done: A Tater Rant – A profanity-filled rant inspired by me being done with a lot of stuff. I’m still done. Probably more done than before.
- Tater Talks the Crazy Disney Mom Rant – My thoughts on the mom who ranted that people without kids should be banned from Disney. Spoiler alert – I disagree.
- Tater Talks Teachers – A post for National Teachers Day where I talk about some teachers who made an impact on my life.
- Tater Talks Leadership – Some thoughts on what I think it means to be a leader.
I was on a roll there for a while. I was writing stuff. People were actually reading my stuff. I thought maybe my blog would grow a little bit. Then a lot of my little daily frustrations exploded and left me is a state of mind that took me out of the blogging mood. I’m still pretty pleased with my stats. I’m sure most bloggers get 10 times the traffic, but it was a good year for me.
I’m thinking that whenever I start up again I might go toward more thoughts on TV and current events and less on my actual life. It might make it easier to want to write.
I guess this is a good time to post the link again where you can give me money to support the blog or to buy me a cup of coffee to drink while I’m writing. So, click this sentence if you feel the need to give a random blogger money.
I stayed up late last night watching the Ravens beat the Patriots on Sunday Night Football. I got a little less than seven hours of sleep. That’s not terrible. I would like to get eight hours, but if I can hit seven I feel like I’m OK. A little less than seven and I’m verging on struggling the next day. So, I started out the day in a less than stellar way. It went downhill from there.
I just deleted a paragraph because I don’t think I should write about why this Monday was a very Monday Monday for reasons mentioned here.
It’s very hard to come home and write anything when your day sucks. It used to be that the blogging helped me deal with the stress of the day. Now the stress of the day is winning and I spend a lot of time staring at a blank screen. It’s also hard to write when you are boring. If I could think of interesting stories from my past it would be easier. I have no interesting stories left.
So, I can’t write about my stress because I’m not anonymous. I have no interesting stories to tell. I guess I need to do more posts about politics or TV or just give up.
You’ve probably noticed that not been writing a lot lately. You might be happy that I’ve not been writing a lot lately. Maybe you didn’t notice. I don’t know what you do with your time. In case you missed it – I have not been writing a lot lately. Lorna over and Gin & Lemonade asked on Facebook who was up for a blog a day challenge and I decided to join in. The problem is – I still don’t really feel like writing. So, I decided to use the first post to try to write about why I’m not writing.
Part of the problem is as simple as a change in schedule. Not my schedule. My wife’s schedule. I was in a groove of writing after work instead of in the morning. I would come home, change clothes, take the dog for a walk and then watch a TV show while vomiting up a blog post. The last few weeks my wife has been home on Monday and Tuesday so I didn’t come home to an empty house. That’s a positive for the most part, but it is not conducive to writing. I find it hard to write when others are here. She’s here now, but she was on a call, so I had time to start this. Now it sounds like she is done, so who knows when I will write the rest.
The bigger problem is frame of mind. My days can be mentally and emotionally draining. Part of it is the public. Most of it is a particular person who makes my days more stressful and toxic than should be allowed. It’s hard to come home and do anything after dealing with a toxic person who has control over your days. I just want to watch TV and not think. This is also a hard time of year for me. Tomorrow is the anniversary of my mom’s death. This time of year was when I was driving home a lot to see here when I knew my time with her was limited. I still struggle with my decision to not go home to be there at the end. I wanted my last memories to be better and I’ve always felt bad about that. Like I failed her. So, depression, grief, and mental exhaustion makes it hard to feel like vomiting words on a blog.
Finally, I’m boring. I don’t have the type of life that gives me a lot of stories for a blog. It’s hard to be a blogger when you’re boring.
So, that’s why I’m struggling to write. Who knows if the blog a day challenge will work. We will see,
I think one of the biggest drawbacks of this blog is that a lot of people who read it know who I am in real life. A long time ago I created a Tater page on Facebook as a joke. I used it to sometimes post things that I thought might be too much for my general collection of friends on Facebook. My closer real-life friends knew I was creating the page and liked it. This lead to a few more of my Facebook friends liking the page. There was no anonymity. I eventually decided I might as well just post what I want on my personal page and people who didn’t like it could just hide or unfriend me. The page is active again as Facebook won’t allow WordPress posts to autopost to a personal profile anymore.
When I started blogging more regularly I turned on the auto-post to Facebook and Twitter. I never hid who I really was. I have scrubbed my Facebook clean of my workplace. It says I work for Tater World Headquarters and a Common Tater, but I share posts about classes at work, so I’m not fooling anyone. I would say half of the 20 or so people who read this thing are people I know in the real world. Even so, I still feel like I’m generally open about things. For the most part, I don’t hold back.
Unfortunately, there are things I really need to say that I can’t say because there could be repercussions. If I were anonymous I think I could post a little about the stuff that is happening that is making my life miserable and be vague enough that it wouldn’t come back on me. I don’t have that option. There are some people who can apparently spend years doing whatever they want without any repercussions. I see it on a daily basis. I don’t think I am one of those people. I think I’m a person that people are itching to catch and punish. Getting rid of me would be a positive. I don’t live a Teflon life.
So, there are things that will be left unsaid. There are rants that will only live in my head while I increase my efforts to get to a place in life where I can spend my time at a place where I am respected and appreciated. I’m afraid I’ve reached a point where that will never happen and my only option is to retire to a secluded, hermit life.
I’m stuck in a phase of having nothing to write. As I mentioned before it’s hard to be a blogger when you are boring. So, while I struggle to get back to writing something, enjoy the five posts I like the most or at least the ones I can remember this early in the morning.
On Marches and Life I still think this is the best that I’ve written. Maybe I should write on little sleep more often.
I’m Done: A Tater Rant – A recent one where I ranted about all the stuff I’m done with. A lot of profanity included because I was also done with caring about how people felt about that.
Michael Vick – An early one that got a lot of views because a Twitter celebrity retweeted it. I need more people with lots of followers to retweet me.
Exploring Career Options– I thought it was funny and it was good to use humor to deal with my career blues.
Ten Positive Things About Tater – It was good to think about good things about myself for a change.
The Lori Loughlin Scandal in Full House GIFS – This one also got a lot of views. I still think I should do a perioidic “Tater GIFS the News” feature.
Those are the ones I can find/remember. I hope you enjoy the best of Tater.
I’ve posted my most viewed posts already. Now I will see if anyone wants a second look at what they didn’t read.
Good Omens! – In which I talk about my love of the book and my excitement about the TV show. I’ve watched it and am now re watching with Mrs Tater.
Alternating Dreams – In which I talk about stress dreams about applying for a promotion. I was correct in my assumption that I would interview and not get the job. It’s a pretty easy assumption to make.
Some Ideas I’ve Had Recently – the post is what it says. Some ideas I’ve had. I still think they are very good ideas.
Going it Alone – I’ve since gone to the concert alone, gone to lunch alone a lot and gone to a movie alone. Still debating going to another concert alone in a week.
A Tuesday Tater Update – in which I talk about the ALA conference where I met Frank Miller and Henry Winkler.
Tater Tours Istanbul – pictures from Istanbul!
We Are the Villains – Humans are the villains of the story. Not exactly shocking news. It gets clearer every day.
Maybe you will like them better this time?
And if you would like to Support the Common Tater you can click here.
I didn’t get any official notification from WordPress that it is today, but my Facebook memories told me that last year was 10 years on WordPress. My math is good enough to theorize that today would now be 11 years. 11 years of babbling about nothing. Before that I babbled a lot on LiveJournal, but under the name Demoncatch. I’ve been boring people online for years. Yay me.
As I enter the next year of blogging, I think maybe I should consider again the point of the blog.
Do I continue what I do which is post whatever pops in my head whenever I have time to do it even though it is not exactly a successful formula?
Do I veer more towards pop culture and media and do more TV/movie/book/music reviews, recaps, etc with a little more general pop culture thoughts thrown in?
Do I go back to posting more thoughts on current events, but take more time on crafting an essay and not just vomiting my thoughts out for 10 minutes and posting?
Do I just stop thinking about it and do whatever makes me happy because no matter what only about 20 people are going to read it anyway?
You would think after 11 years I would have more of a sense of what I want to do here.
I should probably wait until the end of the month so it’s officially mid-year, but I have a severe case of “I should write something but I have nothing to say” so I am going to revisit times this year when I posted and people read. Maybe you will find one you missed.
Here are the boring stats – 4611 views, 2748 visitors, 1265 likes, 383 comments. Very small numbers for most, but not too shabby for me.
Where are these visitors from? Mostly the US, but the UK, India, and Canada all hit three figures so far.
Now my top five posts of the year:
The Lori Loughlin Scandal in Full House GIFS – over 200 views and all it is is my look at the college scandal using Full House GIFS. I never expected anyone would actually read it, much less over 200 people.
Tater Talks Teachers – and now we drop to my more common numbers for most read – in the 50’s. I wrote about some of my favorite teachers and then shared it to my high school class’s Facebook page.
My Favorite Song From Each Year I’ve Been Alive – Self-explanatory. A list of my favorite song from each year I’ve been alive.
I Learned to Knock that Day A repost of something I wrote based on a friend talking about walking in on their parents at an intimate time. I still think it would be a good children’s book.
Tater Talks Blogging – Where I bore people by blogging about blogging.
And I leave you with the link to my page with a link to pity me and send support my blogging or at least buy me a coffee to drink so I don’t doze off while writing.
Support the Common Tater
I have several changes to my work schedule this week and I’ve driven someone to the airport twice over the last few days. That, however, is not the change I’m writing about.
The change in schedule comes from reverting back from an empty nest house to a house with a 19 year old living there. I had changed my habits for when I write, when I watch my alone shows and my reading to fit my new life of having multiple hours alone every night. I’m now back to coming home to someone already in the house. This is not a bad thing. I like having my kid back at home for the summer. I will just have to adjust my life back to where it was before she went away to college.
I will have to try to write in the mornings before work again. I could write in the evening still, but I still feel weird writing with my family around. I don’t think they get the whole blog thing and I don’t want to have to tell them that I’m posting something on the blog. So, I will write during my alone times in the morning while the college kid is asleep.
I will struggle to find time to watch the shows I watch alone. I will have to watch in the morning or wait until she is at a friends house or asleep on the couch. We will have plenty of time to catch up on the shows we watch together. I have hours of TV on the DVR I’ve been saving to watch with her.
So, after today, my blog posts will go up in the mornings(or not at all if I sleep late) until such time that I am an empty nester again or until I get over writing when other people are around.