Friday, May 3, 2013

More peculiar comparing aspects of my life to books, now featuring 'Flowers for Algernon' and 'Can I Keep My Jersey'

(Note: this is a super linkable blogpost, just, you know, in case you want to try clicking things in it. Some are what you think, some not, none are dangerous.)

There is a wonderfully done daily cartoon strip called "Unshelved". It is about life in a library. If you work in a library you most likely have heard of it or seen it or read it. If you don't work in a library you probably don't know it, but you could know it because I believe its reach and success is wider than just the world of libraries. One day recently, having one of those occasional marketing feelings about my blog, I wrote to one of the authors of Unshelved, Bill Barnes. I told him how much I liked the strip, thanked him for it, and said he could absolutely ignore the remainder of my email. Then I told him very briefly about clerkmanifesto and suggested if he briefly mentioned it on his website I'd be supremely grateful. A few days later he wrote back a really nice note about writing awkward notes to people when he was starting out, and how he would mention me on twitter. I checked later and he did. It wasn't "Best library blog I ever read," but more "Clerk who blogs about libraries," which, to me, was plenty nice enough.

Flowers for Algernon, well, I really feel like you know the story, but, to be safe, it's about a mentally disabled man who undergoes an experimental procedure that, for awhile, makes him a genius, but it does not last and he goes back to how he was. Yes, it's a great book. Can I Keep My Jersey, by Paul Shirley, is interesting enough. It's his story of the years when he was almost, or barely good enough to play in the NBA and would get called up from the minors, or come back from European leagues to super short stints as a not very good player, hardly playing at all, in the NBA.

When Bill Barnes of Unshelved mentioned me on twitter the number of views of my blog, over the course of about a day and a half, increased by seven times! It was very nice. I could look at my little graph of page views and there would be this giant spike. Actually, at first it was just a huge increase, but now it's a giant spike because things have, on the whole, returned to normal again. My views went way up. Now they are mostly back to where they always were. 

So then, to trivialize these nice books, I am absurdly saying this Bill Barnes spike event is my blog's equivalent of going for a week to the luxurious and fabulously well paid NBA and then returning to the crappy motels of the CBA (a kind of NBA minor league, now defunct), or, even more ridiculously, like returning from geniusness to being mentally disabled once again. Yeah yeah yeah, I'm doing the whole dry silliness thing here, fine, yes, what we are talking about is tens of views increasing to hundreds of views, with many of even these views being done by bots (yes, actual robots view websites, a story for some other time!). But my joking here is, as usual, on the square, and so I want to say, to Bill Barnes, and to you my faithful readers, even if I have fallen from my brief reign as the 2,147th most popular library blog back down to 4,278 once again, it was worth it. It was all worth it just to glimpse the stars.

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