This is what my stats looked like shortly after 11:00 last night.
(Yep, I use the old stats page. The new one doesn’t give you this snapshot of “context.”) This morning I’m back on track to my usual numbers, lucky to break 100 views in a day.
That “best ever” day of 581 was also a fluke, just like yesterday—although more legitimate. That was the day, shortly after I’d started blogging, that my “Jonah Lehrer, and the ‘marvellous Boy'” post was Freshly Pressed. At least people who came to my blog that day were actually interested in reading what I’d written!
I have a feeling that people who came to my blog yesterday immediately clicked away again once they’d discovered their mistake.
So here’s what happened.
I think, anyway.
About mid-morning I noticed something strange. A post I’d written last December about how Ohio State football coach Urban Meyer teaches like a humanities professor (see it here) was suddenly getting more views than my usual heavy hitter, “What’s the difference between grammar, punctuation, and mechanics?” Odd, but with the start of school and football season, possibly someone had stumbled across it and maybe shared on Facebook or something?
Then my stats really started to explode. It seemed I was getting several new views every minute.
What was going on?
I decided I’d better go look at that post to make sure any links I’d put in were still current. They were, but I put an “update” paragraph at the end, telling people that one of the blogs I linked to now had some kind of ad to sign up for an electronic newsletter that might dissuade them from reading that particular discussion.
For much of the day, as I passed 200 views and then 300 views, this whole situation remained a mystery. Finally I discovered what must have been the catalyst (see the UPI story here). Here is the “Update #2,” which I also added to the bottom of my old Urban Meyer post yesterday:
Update #2: I think I’ve figured it out. Apparently Urban Meyer made students do pushups who wore blue (arch-rival Michigan’s color, BOOOOO!) to his class today. I’m guessing that many people searching for that story have accidentally landed on my page instead. If you stuck around long enough to read my entire post AND this update, thank you! And good luck finding the story you were actually looking for
Oh, well. It was fun while it lasted!