The Year in Blogging: More Than Just Sonny Tufts

by Con Chapman

As I look back on 2013 and prepare the Gerbil Interactive Media Group (Gerbil News Network, Gerbil Sports Network, Gerbil Entertainment!) for an initial public offering in 2014, it is appropriate that I give potential investors a candid and unsparing view of our business prospects.

How're we doing, as the late Ed Koch (1924-2013) might ask?

Koch: “What did I do to deserve this post?”

Un-freaking believable!

By the numbers: 1,919 followers in 105 countries! 517 new posts last year, viewed by almost 9,000 people! Using as a yardstick the 2,700-seat Sydney, Australia Opera House, a Standard Blogging Statistical Metric, I could have filled that sucker more than three times with readers who come to this site every day looking for breaking news on the growing threat of Komodo dragons, the number of white kittens concert venues are required to provide Mariah Carey at each personal appearance, and the slow-but-steady rehabilitation of the reputation of Sonny Tufts.

Sonny, with that beaming smile of his!

But a business is more than just cold statistics. I like to think I may—just possibly—have saved a reader or two from a life of degradation and a white neo-soul music career.

“La-la-la . . . . connect the dots!”

I say this because the most common search term used to find Gerbil News Network in 2013 was “health benefits of smoking crack in PJ's.” That's right—while the lamestream media was looking the other way, I was connecting the dots, Pee-wee Herman style, to warn America's young girls not to follow the path trod by Amy Winehouse and Whitney Houston. You can almost see them in your mind's eye if you try hard enough, like the classic trailer park slumber party scene in The Legend of Boggy Creek:

VENETA SUE: I think Joe Don Riggs is cute!

NAE ANN: Me too!

TULA MARIE: Are you gonna try out for cheerleader?

VENETA SUE: I don't know.

NAE ANN: Hey—do you guys want to smoke some crack?

TULA MARIE: Don't you think we ought to check the internet first?

NAE ANN: Well, okay. (tap tap tap tap tap) Oh . . . my . . . God!

VENETA SUE: Don't swear, Nae Ann!

NAE ANN: It says here on “Gerbil News Network” that the health benefits of smoking crack in PJ's have been “questioned.”

TULA MARIE: That's good enough for me—Gerbil News Network is one of the most trusted blogs in the world!

“No crack for us!”

But any good prospectus must provide a full and fair summary of the potential risks involved so that widows and orphans can't sue once they've sunk their money in a bottomless rathole of self-dealing and financial fraud. There are some troublesome aspects of Gerbil Interactive Media Group's results to date, but remember: past performance is not an indication of future results!

If you look at the world-wide map of our readers' locations, you'll see that we once again failed to crack the Chinese market, a critical shortcoming for any blog that hopes to survive in the coming 21st century media shakeout.

“Mrs. Chapman—she good tipper! You—not so much.”

On this score, I can only plead “nolo contendere,” which is Latin for “No checks accepted.” While I have faithfully patronized Happy Panda restaurant I decline, unlike my former New Yorker wife who is a chronic over-tipper, to leave a gratuity at a take-out restaurant when I pick-up my own order! And so I suffer by comparison, and I'm certain that the Chinese, who are said to be able to steal the floor plan of an automotive plant using nothing more than a Radio Shack Execuheli II Micro Wireless Indoor Helicopter, have taken note.

I mean, there's no other plausible explanation.