Blogging is a pretty glamorous pursuit. Not only does your family groan when they see you taking pictures of the salad, but you gain access to a fascinating underworld of knowledge that you access via your "stats" page. Yes, I have a Stats Page. Pretty soon a badge and a toolbelt will come my way, I can feel it.
Having a Stats Page makes me want to call up Lincoln Moses, my statistics professor in college. He looked like Santa, and behaved a lot like one might hope of same. At the school I attended from grades 5-12, the math classes were divided, not into "A" and "B" or "I" and "II" or "Tomohawks" and "Mohawks" but into sections called "Regulars" and "Specials." Just to save us trouble figuring out what the section names might indicate about us. But despite my checkered and very Regular career in mathematics up to the point where I took Lincoln Moses' Statistics 101 class (at the last possible moment prior to graduation in order to fulfill the math requirement), despite all the remedial numerical classroom experiences I had been subjected to since I scored so low on the math section of the bubble test I took at the age of 9 that they had to call in a specialist to interpret the alarming results, which, when adjusted for the fact that in my panic I seemed to have shifted all my answers either one column to the left or one row to the south, indicated that I was only in the 30th percentile (phew!), and not, as the first scoring seemed to indicate, too low to measure--despite all that, I signed up to take Professor Moses' class for a grade. I could have signed up to take it P/NC, (officially "pass/no credit," but known to students as "pass/no clue") but I did not. Do not look to me for an explanation. I do not have one. But St. Nick called me in to his office right as the deadline for changing one's mind about classes was about to glimmer off into history. In a friendly way, he urged me to reconsider. "We have a phrase in statistics," he said, in our chat about how a career in mathematics and allied professions was not likely on my radar, "'Close enough for government work,' we say, when we aren't looking for too specific a measurement."
Point taken. Squeaked my way to a "P" on that one. It was a long quarter for all of us.
But now I have a stats page. Ha! Guess I showed him. Except, true to form, I don't really know what anything on it means. It tells me about "referring sites" and "referring URLs." It doesn't say what the hell the difference between those two things is. If my nice friend Alana
, her website might show up as a referring site, and it might show up as a referring URL. Or both. But the numbers will not match, or add up to anything familiar. One of my referring sites, I am told, is "AirportCigarettes.com," which is kind of alarming. One of the keyword searches that led someone to me, it seems, was "typo render in blender." I pretty much only look at the pageviews now, but even those can be confusing and I won't bore you with just how confusing except to say that they are counted both by day and by post and those numbers never add up either, even if I only (ever) post no more than once per day. What I just noticed, though, is that since I began this little enterprise, one measure of something seems to have hit, as of today, a number a little over 10,000. This could mean any number of things. Maybe AirportCigarettes is involved. But it seems like it's worth a little party.
photo here and below by lovely middle daughter
It's been a funky season here. Warm, dry winter and rogue late frost and ongoing drought do not add up to a big harvest of anything other than zucchini. Last year was a boom year so we can't really complain. And there are still the blackberries! Some years picking blackberries is like shoplifting in a jewelry store (albeit one guarded by angry cats): each berry a glistening stunner worthy of a platinum setting. Thanks to the dry conditions, the berries this year are kind of small, but they are still plentiful enough, and plenty delicious, and we've been jamming.
I am not going to try to lure you into canning by telling you how to do it; if you are already canning, then you know the counting and re-counting of your jars as they march proudly across the counter after the steam clears has nothing to do with poor math skills or with not knowing the tally. If you are not yet a canner, there are many people more informed than yours truly who can talk you through the doorway (see below). Look them up. Fear not the canning pot.
hmm...anything low enough for me to reach?
But I will taunt you with a jar of blackberry jam, if you will come out of the shadows and leave me a little story about any old jammy thing. Have you made jam, this year or ever? What kind? Did some beloved adult in your youth make jam? Are you a little afraid of the prospect of doing it yourself?
On August 1, I'll select a name randomly from the comments on this post--provided there are more than 20 of them, as I think we don't want to repeat the whole
--and wing the winner a little jar.
Meantime, here is a little set of links to some jammin jam sites:
and a few Beyond The Toast ideas for how to use the jam in your life during a heatwave:
(these involve ginger--yum--and get layered for beauty; the link takes you to the translated site, I hope, or you can cook it in