Saturday, January 21, 2012

Number 2,500

We Americans are a funny and stubborn people. We have this abject fascination with multiples of five or ten. That's why we fly in the face of world pressure to move to the metric system. It's also why it would take a major shift in our belief systems to move away from the dollar and go to some other form of world money. The love of fives and tens probably comes from our monetary system. When earning that daily one-hundred cents becomes so important, then it's only natural that all of our comfort level comes from five and ten. It's also why 493 homers is a bummer but 500 homers is terrific. It's why we celebrated Jim Thome and Derek Jeter in 2011. 3,000 and 600 just tickles us in all the right places.

And it's also why the last post (about Michael Morse) was number 2,499 on this site and this one is so much cooler because it's number 2,500. The writer here understands that it's an arbitrary number and yet it feels like a milestone. Two-thousand, five hundred posts. That's pretty sweet. Very few of them have been of the short variety like so many other blogs out there. This writer doesn't visit too many of those sites. If you are only going to give a paragraph or two to read, might as well go somewhere else. The posts here are rarely as long as a Joe Posnanski post, but then whose is? 

This site started in 2003. The writer wrote a lot that first year and then just tinkered around for four years (life got busy) until becoming an obsession starting in 2009. Two-thousand, one-hundred and nineteen posts have come since the start of that year. It's weird going back to the beginning. The posts didn't even have headings. The first post was about David Wells. The second included immortal players like Tony Bautista, Pokey Reese and Brian Jordan. Well, Jordan was kind of cool. We've come a long way, baby.

It must have been in 2009 that the posts became mostly told in the third person. This author likes it that way. It's harder to pull off and most think it pretentious. But it goes back to journalistic underpinnings. Real journalists never wrote in the first person. Bloggers get such a bad rap and a lot of that is deserved. If we want to be taken seriously, then we need to consider ourselves as journalists first and fan-writers second.  That doesn't mean that most of this writer's favorite blogs aren't written in the first person. They are. It's simply a personal choice.

A lot of gratification is taken by the growth of the site in the last year and a half. With a large circle of "friends" on Twitter and a positive association with Yardbarker, the amount of readers that have come this way is astounding. Of course, it doesn't hurt that the site is now 2,500 posts deep either. Just about every search word a baseball fan can type in Google has been covered here. Even so, it will always be a total surprise that so many people come here to read what this writer has to say. To be sure, there is much thanksgiving for those that do. So thank you.

There has been a lot of discussion on Twitter lately about "blogging" versus "writers." The issue seems to come to a head around credentials given by major league clubs. Different teams handle this new world uniquely. The Mets are very open to credentials while the Yankees are very closed. To this writer, the Yankees need to wake up and smell the coffee. Electronic writing is where reporting is going. Even beat writers and newspaper guys are bloggers. The world is a much smaller one and anybody who can type can be a star. Not that it will matter here. Credentials are not even a consideration when you write in a basement in Maine on the next to last stop on Route One before hitting Canada. The Montreal Expos used to be the closest team to this location. Boston is eight or nine hours away.

This writer's grand vision is to be scooped up by a major site. That's long been the goal. But if that doesn't happen, there will still be contentment with tens of thousands of readers each month and a topic that never gets old. Baseball is the greatest sport on earth and writing is so much fun every day. Whether looking back, or forward or at what is going on today, there is always something interesting to talk about. That's shared by the dozens of sites this author visits every day. It never gets stale.

So, yeah. 2,500. That's pretty cool. For some stupid reason, it's more cool than 2,499. Such fat round numbers cause us Americans to celebrate and look back. It's how we're wired. This Fan is no different. Thanks again for the sweet knowledge that you come here often and spend a little of your precious time. Hope we're all around to see 5,000 together.


Mike Clair said...

Congrats! 2,500 is a hell of a number to reach.

Thomas Slocum said...

Congratulations on your milestone, William!