Three Years

Three years of blogging are now behind me, which I suppose some would call an accomplishment. This blog hasn’t turned into a conversation hub, nor has it sputtered out and died like so many of my friends’ blogs have.

Not having a “following” has been very liberating. There are people who read this thing—some even do so consistently—but I’m not worried about hanging on to a readership by continuing to churn out the same type of writing. If there has been one constant in my blog thus far, it has been change.

My blog, like much of the rest of my life, is a very solitary endeavour. With one exception: this blog has a potential audience of the entire planet. A very odd position for an introvert to be in.

Now, for an excuse to dig into my stats: this is my 364th post in the three year life of this blog, meaning that I’ve averaged a post every three days. In the past year, I’ve had 9527 visitors and 14,322 pageviews. My most popular post published in the last year was On Valedictions, which currently appears as the result #14 on a google search for valedictions.

81% of my visitors use Windows, 16% use Mac, and 1.7% are on Linux. Firefox beat out Internet Explorer 45% to 43% for browser share, with Safari finishing a distant third at 8.2%. 51% of my traffic arrives via search engines, with matt wiebe, valedictions, and variations on “modern day parables” being the top keywords used to arrive here.

USAmerican visitors make up a whopping 55.6% of my visitors, which means that I should try harder to hector them. Fellow Canadians finish a distant second with 23.2%. The Philippines won out for non-English-speaking countries with 1.1% to finish in 5th place. All told, I’ve had visitors from 116 countries.

Well, that was a bunch of numbers. Expect more words in the following year. Hopefully some of them witty, some of them challenging, and some of them profound. Likely many will be garden-variety ignorant. This blog is a work in progress, and to whatever readers are out there with me, thanks for putting up with me. Here’s to another year.

Misunderstanding Introverts

Do you know someone who needs hours alone every day? Who loves quiet conversations about feelings or ideas, and can give a dynamite presentation to a big audience, but seems awkward in groups and maladroit at small talk? Who has to be dragged to parties and then needs the rest of the day to recuperate? Who growls or scowls or grunts or winces when accosted with pleasantries by people who are just trying to be nice?

So begins an excellent article called Caring for Your Introvert (HT: Br. Maynard) that describes the rich interior world of the introvert, and how difficult it is for extroverts to understand us.

As I am an introvert, I’ve wondered in the past about how to be an introvert in community. Perhaps something that would help is to get all the extroverts to read this article!

So, if you are an extrovert who has anybody in your community who fits the description above, read the article. If you are introvert, read the article for some good nodding material, and pass it on to every extrovert you know.

An Introvert in Community

I am an introvert. This is one of the reasons why I blog: it is a quasi-social interaction that occurs without anyone else actually around. It’s on my terms and it’s not really emotionally demanding of me.  I get tired out if I’m around people for too long.

And yet, I am fully cognizant of the absolute necessity of community. One of the reasons I’m at SSU in the first place is because of its ingrained insistence that community is a fundamental component of the learning process.

So, I find myself caught in this tension: I know that I need people and community. I also know that I need my own space. Too much of either of these does bad things to me. I refuse to invoke the “b” word (balance) here because I don’t believe it exists. At the same time, I wonder if any other introverts out there have gained some wisdom in this tension?