Last Sunday evening I published my latest post, The Ten Other Greatest Inventions of All Time. Early Monday afternoon, I came home after work and checked my email for any notices from WordPress about likes or comments about it. There’s something very gratifying about checking your email and seeing a message from WordPress saying “Horridzittyface liked your post”, or “Hideousstalkerchick is now following your blog.” There was a comment or two, no more or less than usual, and so I decided to visit my blog to answer them and to see how many views I’d had so far.
Before I had the chance, the most curious thing happened: my incoming email messages began to propagate like hot, bothered bunnies before my very eyes; first ten, then thirty-four, then fifty-six in a matter of seconds. Oh, lovely, I thought. Satan the computer hacker has deemed my email account worthy of a visit. As it turned out, all of them were notices from WordPress. Soon there were hundreds of them. I went to my blog and checked on my site statistics; views for the day are shown in bar graph form. Monday’s bar was rising up like (get your mind out of the gutter) a bump on Wile E. Coyote’s head (see? this is a family friendly blog). I surmised, brilliantly, that something was afoot (because I looked down and saw a shoe on it. Then I also figured something big was happening on my blog); I went to WordPress’ home page, and there it was: a recent post, Cat’s in the Cradle, there for the whole world to see. I was Freshly Pressed!
I don’t know how it happened (I do know it wasn’t anything I did), or why they picked that particular post. Almost everything I write is intended to be humorous (some will argue there is often a loss in translation); Cat’s in the Cradle is about my relationship with my father, there is nothing funny about it and it’s not one I would have chosen for such a wide audience. Beggars can’t be choosers, however, so I’m not complaining, but evidently they can be chosen, and I’m very grateful for that.
On that first day I had over twenty-eight hundred views and over thirty-two hundred the next. By the time Cat’s in the Cradle had dropped off Freshly Pressed and I had returned to the relative obscurity to which I’m accustomed (and likely deserve), my blog had almost ten thousand views in five days. Sadly, no one with any money has asked me to become the next David Sedaris or Bill Bryson – two of my favorites – but I have quadrupled my followers and, even more gratifying for me, people other than the early faithful have been reading my other posts.
In closing, I must say thank you to WordPress; Freshly Pressed was a rush for me and I hope it happens again some time. Until then, I’ll happily go on writing to the very few. To the faithful, thank you so much for being just that. I write for myself first, but I’m thinking of many of you when I mention certain things. In my mind’s eye, I can see your faces when you laugh; it is pleasing to me (most of the time – some of you screech like a barn owl or have hideous mugs when you laugh) and so I find myself writing for you as well. As for the new followers, I hope you stick around; the heartfelt, mushy posts are really hard to squeeze from a heart as hard and cold as mine, so they don’t happen very often. I hope you find enough here to keep you interested and, if it hasn’t happened to you already, that there’s a Freshly Pressed in your future as well.