January 30, 2003

The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

I have some good news, some bad news and some weird news.

First the good news...

Remember about 4 weeks ago, when I wrote about this website going over the 20,000 visitor mark and I talked about how December was, far and away, the month with the most traffic in the short history of this website?

Well, if you don't remember, here is what I said:

This lil old website reached a bit of a milestone yesterday, when it surpassed 20,000 total visitors!

It is a pretty huge accomplishment for me because when I created this blog back in August I wasn't sure whether or not anyone other than my immediate family would visit it on a daily basis.

Thanks to some plugs on other websites and word of mouth I now have a pretty good sized audience and a consistent amount of daily visitors.

About two months ago, I said my goal at the time was to get the monthly visitor amount to over 5,000.

And guess what? December was the biggest month yet and the site got almost 7,500 visits!

So now my new goal is to get 10,000 in a month, so get to work!

Sadly, we did not reach 10,000 visitors in January.

However, we are inching closer to that number and January surpassed December as the biggest month yet.

Depending on how many people check out the site today, the visitor total for January will very likely creep over the 8,500 mark.

I just want to say thank you, not only to all the visitors, but also to all the people who have posted links to this blog on their various sites.

That 10,000 number still sounds pretty good, so that'll continue to be my goal.

If you have any friends you haven't yet told about the site, please do.

Or if you feel like telling some enemies or maybe even complete strangers about the site, feel free.

There is room enough for plenty more baseball nuts.

Now the bad news (for me at least)...

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I sent my laptop to HP to get fixed?

I don't want to repeat my entire anti-computer rant, but here is a little snippet of what I said:

I called up the customer support help line at this computer company that I won't name here (The company name is two letters and it starts with a "H" and ends with a "P" but that is all the clues I am going to give).

The guy on the other end was very friendly and he really wanted to be helpful, but he wasn't.

The guy from the un-named company informed me that it would take between 3-5 business days to get it fixed and that "includes shipping time."

Well, I just got the computer back yesterday.

In case you're counting, that is exactly 15 days from the time I sent it in.

As for their claim that it would take 3-5 business days to get back to me, fixed?

It took 10 business days.

And that's not the worst of it.

Apparently the problem with the computer was determined to have been "user caused" so it did not fall under the warranty.

So, instead of getting it fixed for free like the guy from HP told me, it cost over $200!

Again, that wasn't the worst of it.

Apparently, the computer took so long to get here because it was just sitting in some warehouse somewhere for an entire week.

Once it was determined that the problem didn't come under warranty, it gets sent to a different place to get fixed, at which point HP is supposed to call and get your credit card number, so they can charge you and begin work on the computer.

The problem in this case was that no one bothered to call me.

The computer just sat there, waiting for a credit card number and authorization from someone that no one bothered to call.

Finally, when I called HP, they basically said, "Oops, no one called you?"

So, they finally got my information and fixed the damn thing.

But wait, that's not the worst of it.

The worst of it is this: In order to fix a problem with the power cord plug in, someone decided that they needed to wipe out my entire hard drive.

I have no clue what a problem on the outside of the computer has to do with the inside parts, but all I know is all my stuff is now completely gone.

Before I sent it away, I did make a disk with some of my Word files and other stuff like that, so I could use them while I was on another computer.

However, I didn't figure on them wiping everything out to fix the power cord problem, so I didn't back up everything.

Now I wish I had.

Now, here is the ugly...

A few days ago, someone arrived at this website by entering in a Google.com search for "aaron's baseball blog", overrated.

That got me thinking and I had myself a nice little rant about it, where I (jokingly) called for this person to show himself.

Well, the person did.

Two people actually.

Yesterday, I received emails from two different people claiming to be the person who had typed in that search.

That's obviously a bit of problem, as only 1 such search was conducted.

Which reminds me of a bit I heard Bernie Mac do about a father and son, which basically goes like this:

Father: Mr. Johnson says you broke his window.

Son: I didn't break his window.

Father: So you're saying Mr. Johnson is a liar?

Son: No, he's not a liar.

Father: Oh, so you did break his window?

Son: No, I didn't break his window.

Father: So he's a liar?

It goes on for days.

My point being that 1 of the 2 emailers is quite simply a liar.

I don't really hold that against them, but it's the truth.

I thought it might be interesting to present portions of the two emails and let you, the audience, decide for yourselves which one is telling the truth.

Emailer #1 (Michael):

Hey, can you guess who this is? In a caffeine and nicotine induced stupor (I'm trying to quit both, apparently unsuccessfully) I did a search on Google that seems to have got you spooked.

Clarification: I was searching for things you may have written about players being overrated. I had gone through the entire Prospectus archives searching for that, and seeing as I had hours left before I would pass out (insomniacs of the world unite!) I decided to try your site too. So don't worry, I don't think your site is overrated. Hell, it's one of my favorites. So don't worry about it.

Emailer #2 (Chris):

Hey Aaron.

My name is Chris and I am the mystery Google searcher. Sorry to get you all hot and bothered. I am actually a big fan of the website so don't worry about anyone thinking you are overrated or anything like that.

I was looking for something you said about Ken Griffey's defense a while back and I ended up finding it (Google works!).

Keep up the good work.

Both seem like reasonable young men.

In the end though, one of them is lying.

And what a thing to lie about!

Speaking of reasonable young men...

When this site first started, one of the staples of my writing was to pick out a Phil Rogers column from ESPN.com and just bash the hell out of it.

I have cut back on it, if only because I think most people that read this site think Rogers is an idiot too, so bashing him doesn't really do much good.

Plus, I heard he was looking for me, so I'm in hiding.

Fortunately for the anti-Phil Rogers group out there (which still includes me), Bryan from "Bryan's Baseball Banter" and Christian from "The Cub Reporter" have decided to take up for the cause.

Bryan and Christian each pick out Rogers' "Hot Stove Heater" on the Cubs that he did for ESPN.com and just completely tears it to shreds.

It is fun for the whole family.

Here is:

Bryan's version.

Christian's version.

And finally, because 1 bit of bad news isn't bad enough...

The Twins made the cover of the "Sporting News 2003 Baseball Preview Magazine" with the caption, "Believe it...Twins are No. 1."

The always entertaining "TwinsGeek.com" alerted me to the cover.

John seems to be happy about the Twins being #1.

I, being a gigantic pessimist, am sort of worried that some sort of "cover jinx" will take place.

If the Twins season should go down the tubes as the team suffers a rash of injuries like slipping in the shower or injuring necks while sleeping, let's just say we'll know who to blame (The Sporting News, not John).

By the way, besides posting the thing about the Sporting News cover, TwinsGeek also has a really good article on Bobby Kielty currently posted.

You all know I have been shouting "FREE BOBBY KIELTY" from the rooftops for a while now and it just so happens that John's article begins:

"Free Bobby Kielty!"

That call has been shouted from the mountaintop...

Just to clarify, I am currently only shouting from rooftops and the occasional large hill, but if he doesn't get 500 at bats in 2003, I will be taking my laptop and moving to the mountains.

*****Comments? Questions? Email me!*****

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