I am rapidly approaching my 500th blog (though the short one I ran yesterday afternoon shouldn’t count.) In any event, when I started writing this blog about a year and a half ago at the urging of a friend, I figured the novelty would quickly wear off — or I would run out of things to say. Neither has occurred (though some might say I repeat myself). And I am especially astonished by the fact that I still feel there are things that need to be said. I knew the blog would not be popular and I named it “daily gadfly” on purpose. Socrates likened himself to a gadfly whose job was to sting his fellow Athenians to keep them alert and on the ball. I don’t see myself in a league with Socrates and American citizens don’t compare favorably with the Athenians (though the latter did put Socrates to death … hmm). Anyhow, there are so many things going on all around us that we need to think about that finding words seems to be fairly easy most of the time. In fact, I sometimes have several blogs drafted and waiting in line for posting. It has been fun.
My dashboard (which apparently is not altogether reliable) claims that I have had more than 13,500 visitors from more than 80 nations around the world, which amazes me. Most of those are visits from a small coterie of friends and fellow bloggers whose blogs I also read with great interest. And that is the best part of this blogging escapade: the community of which you become a member. There are some very bright and interesting people out there in the blog world who have fascinating and important things to say and reading blogs has become an important part of my daily life. One of those bloggers recently announced his 1000th blog, so my 500th isn’t such a big deal. And another has 500 followers while I have just over 180. It’s important to keep one’s perspective!
In any event, I thank those who read the blog regularly, and especially those who have referred their readers to my blogs — which gives the visits a very nifty spike every now and again. (I say “spike” because those visitors don’t usually stay around. Not everyone wants to get stung by a gadfly!) It’s comforting to know that there are others of like mind and that even a few of those who are not of like mind will still read and comment. Some of the comments — and there have been nearly 3,000 of them — have been most interesting and have even generated other comments. The dialogue is sometimes fascinating to follow. But those people don’t need a gadfly. It’s the people who don’t bother to read these blogs at all — or who don’t read much of anything I would guess — who need to be stung by a gadfly every now and again. There’s a conundrum for you!
So in the end, this gadfly will continue to buzz until either his mind turns to mush (further to mush?) or the hamster that keeps his computer running dies from exhaustion. It has been fun and I do thank my friend Dana Yost who lives in Iowa and who is one helluva writer and poet and who urged me to start down this path that has proven so rich and full of new friends.