Driving and Biking in the Big City

Commuter Chronicles had 3,500 views in 2012

with one comment

WordPress has been a very intuitive blog vehicle for me, and I’ve enjoyed the experience of being a regular columnist again. I tell folks who think about blogging how easy it is, and I know they don’t always believe me. But, in this day and age, everyone can be a blogger. I can start a million more blogs if I want to and change the look and appeal anytime. It’s just that easy. I love our new technology and recommend we all embrace it. I’d read what you have to say.

I’ve actually written Commuter Chronicles longer than this year and this blog because I started it when I first started commuting to Houston about 15 years ago. I would write columns about my travels and experiences in Houston and send it back via email to my tennis team, book club and other friends in the ‘burbs – just for a laugh. It felt natural to me because I had been a columnist for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Houston Chronicle and Detroit Free Press in my newspaper days. And that easiness of writing my thoughts stems from being a diarist starting when I was a kid. I would write every day in my Barbie diary about the events of every single day.  I may have mentioned before that I have written on every single page of three diaries from all three years of junior high. Should I ever become known for my serious work as a writer, my first act will be to burn those very shallow pages.

It is quite notable that in my hometown of Port Neches in the year 1969, Jesus’s image appeared on a screen door of the home located behind the Western Auto. As unbelievable as that sounds, it is true and people who lived in the area remember it well. It was huge news, made national television and Parade magazine. Like folks for miles around, I pilgrimaged to the newly formed shrine with the also recently invented Polaroid camera to take a photo of the image of Jesus. That proof remains in my wallet and on my person at all times to this day.

I tell you of this weighty event to create juxtaposition with my junior high diaries. There is not a single mention of Jesus on those pages. Instead, you can find every girlfriend and every boyfriend who called me that night, what we talked about and what I was thinking about wearing to school the next day. Those diaries are just that embarrassing.

Now that I can blog, it’s especially better than my old newspaper days. The reasons are

  • I have no editor. I was an editor and a writer and always a control freak. As a reporter, I didn’t love being edited. As an editor, I didn’t love not being the writer. The current symbiosis that everyone can be a writer is fine with me.
  • I get to write about anything I want to write about.
  • I get to take my own photos like I did in the Beaumont Enterprise days. (Or else the famous Big Johnny gets to take even more beautiful photos with his fancy, smancy lens.)
  • I have no deadlines and can arbitrarily post whenever I feel like it.
  • Folks can immediately respond to anything I write, and we can start a dialog about something we’re thinking.
  • And, thank Jesus, I have no editor.

As an old-time journalist, I’m very intrigued by the easy statistics provided by WordPress. For instance, I can tell how many folks view the blog and how many different individuals read behind me. I worried for a while that most of my views were from me looking at the column myself but then figured out that I didn’t count. So, in the olden days, I knew my work was coming to your doorstep, but I didn’t know whether or not it immediately went into the birdcage or whether you just read the sports section.

I am reminded all of this because, at the beginning of the year, WordPress automatically sent me an annual report about how Commuter Chronicles went in 2012. Here’s the roundup:

  • Biggest news is that my blog received more than 3,500 views last year.
  • Also huge is that about 320 folks follow me on a somewhat regular basis.
  • Interestingly, viewers were from 31 different countries – mostly the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. But still, others. Who knew?
  • In 2012, I posted 61 columns; not bad for the first year and considering I didn’t start until March.
  • There were 220 pictures uploaded. Some in slideshows; some in galleries.
  • The busiest day of the year was July 24 when 100 different folks looked at my post on the same day. That most popular post was “Advice from my teen-aged self” that I wrote during my high school reunion and trip to Port Neches.
  • I got the most comments from readers on my column called, “A mystic passage home,” also written during my reunion week.
  • My regular readers get email messages when I post, but most others come from LinkedIn or Facebook.
  • Some people find me when they look for my name, bicycling columns or even the term “road warrior.”

I’m looking forward to more blogs in 2013 and plan to keep it light and fun. Life is too short to take it too seriously.  However, I do, in fact, have a few serious reflections in me and hope you will ride along with Commuter Chronicles through thick and thin. Sign on to follow; don’t miss out. Then, sign on to WordPress and start your own. It’s truly fun.


Written by commuterchroniclesdbh

January 11, 2013 at 8:47 pm

One Response

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  1. Keep writing Denise and I’ll keep reading !!!!


    January 12, 2013 at 7:33 am

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