"The truth will set you free. But first it will piss you off."

Gloria Steinem

Friday, January 1, 2016

This Is For My Loyal Readers In Norway: Thank You!

Happy New Year to Everyone!

I hope  that everyone who reads these words will have a happy, successful and above all healthy 2016, as will your loved ones.  I am definitely looking forward to the new year.  That’s largely because I expect 2016 will provide me with an ample number of subjects to discuss, as did 2015.  Several of these will be carryovers, subjects that just keep on occurring.  But first I want to acknowledge two significant holdover issues from last year, one in this post and one in the next.  Both are structured as questions, because I would like to know more from my readers.  Only they—you—know the answers.

Everyone who reads this blog knows that while I deal with major issues facing our country today, my specific examples to illustrate those issues derive almost exclusively from eight small towns on the lower Schuylkill River in Pennsylvania.  That’s a pretty tight focus, but the Internet knows no geographic boundaries, so my posts are accessible to anyone, anywhere, at least as far as I know.  In my next post I will the discuss the interest Ukraine seems to have about Phoenixville, but first I want to acknowledge and say “Thank You” to a loyal group of followers from Norway.  Yes, Norway.  Beginning in December of last year, I have received some 200-300 pageviews from Norway every week, without fail.  So, I employ this post to address my Norwegian readers directly, and ask the question I always ask:  Why?

I believe I know how I was introduced to your country, perhaps.  In November of 2014, I attended a reunion of my wife’s family, which is predominately Norwegian.  Two family members came all the way from Norway!  I was impressed that they had traveled such a distance to meet with people they did not know, and gave them a signed copy of my book, What Killed Downtown?  Norristown, Pennsylvania, From Main Street to the Malls.  This was in November, and my Norwegian pageviews exploded in December.  It doesn’t take Sherlock Holmes to see a connection.  Am I right about this?

Initial—or periodic—interest is one thing, but sustained interest over an entire year is something else entirely.  Unlike my popularity in Ukraine (the subject of my next post), which is very post-specific, my pageviews from Norway arrive every week, regardless of subject. 
Although the metrics on my blog site do not allow me to analyze the response from specific countries to specific posts (in truth, they don’t allow me to analyze much of anything), I am continually pleased that attention is not paid solely to the current post.  Most of my earlier posts (pre-2015) have been steadily been accumulating pageviews.

As pleased as I am by appearances, I am going to assume nothing.  After all, I recently read (on the Internet, of course, so keep that in mind) that Norwegians employ the word “Texas” as a synonym for “crazy.”  I’d like to think I haven’t earned any such status, but this post is phrased as a question, because I simply know almost nothing about why—and how—my posts seem to attract continued attention in Norway. 

That’s why I am asking you, my readers in Norway, to email me at mike@michaeltolle.com, or leave a comment on my blog site.  I very much want to know more about you.  I don’t speak a word of Norwegian, but will have them translated, so feel free.



(Of course, if you have answers to these questions, you don’t have to be from Norway to email me, or comment on my blog site.  Any contribution could help.)