Remembering when I struggled to get a blog off the ground

This morning I met Kara Gormley Meador for coffee (a report is forthcoming), and she got me to thinking about some stuff that happened several years back, and in trying to look it up, I ran across the following blog item, from May 22, 2005:

Journalism in South Carolina

The Lowcountry looks like it’s been hit by Hurricane Mark.” — Rep. John Graham Altman, R-Charleston

I first learned the trade of journalism in Tennessee, so I hope I can be forgiven if I occasionally revert to an atavistic form of that genre — the form that Mark Twain lampooned so brilliantly.

I managed to shy away from that temptation in editing today’s lead editorial, which quoted recent headlines about Gov. Sanford’s vetoes in the Charleston and Greenville papers, to wit:

— “Sanford vetoes funds for local groups,” The Greenville News

— “Veto Storm Hits Lowcountry,” The Post and Courier

But this is my blog, and in the vigorous spirit of my 19th century journalistic forebears, I feel free to give vent to my righteous indignation at the cupidity of those greedy poltroons in the Upstate and the degenerate hedonists of the Lowcountry. (One must particularly admire the hyperbolic hyperventilations of our brethren down on the coast, who led their report — an apparent news story, not an editorial, mind you — thusly: “Only a hurricane could do more damage to the Lowcountry than Gov. Mark Sanford’s veto pen.” They did attribute that sentiment to local lawmakers, but we all know that dodge.)

I, me, mine — that’s all they think about. Here we are in Columbia doing our best to think about the interests of the state as a whole — our energies are devoted to nothing else — and all they can do up and down the road from us is whine about their petty, parochial little local goodies. Well, it’s enough to make a decent man blush with mortification at the state of the human race.

Of course, being eaten up with intellectual honesty as we habitually are here in the true heart of the state, we do have to acknowledge that there weren’t any local goodies in the budget for the Midlands. To which we must ask, why? You would think that, as tirelessly selfless as we are in doing good for Sandlappers everywhere, the solons could throw us an occasional budgetary bone.

Why, if only some farsighted lawgiver had thought to, say, build us a AAA minor league ballpark on the old CCI property, with a fully stocked skybox for the ladies and gentlemen of the press, we might have joined our sagacious counterparts on the coast and in the foothills, and denounced the cruel pecuniary strangulation perpetrated by that shortsighted penny-pincher in the governor’s office.

But since they didn’t, we continue to take the long view.

What’s interesting about this to me is that I tried so hard in writing that. It was only my fifth day as a blogger, and I went to all that trouble to craft a (rather stilted) Mark Twain impersonation — or rather, impersonation of his impersonation of the backwoods journalism of his day. (You have to read the linked short story, “Journalism in Tennessee,” to get the joke.)

I was trying so very hard, and for such little return. First, you’ll note that I was rewarded for that post with only one comment. I went into the guts of that old blog just now, and found that I only received 218 page views that entire day.

How far we have come. Yesterday, I had 12,432 page views. Last month, I had a record 272,417.

And without straining so hard at the writing.

Thank all of y’all for your support thus far. Here’s to comparable, or better, future growth…