January 3, 2008

New Year & Halfway To Fifty


Age is a question of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.


- Satchel Paige

It's been 10 days since the last entry here, which I'm fairly certain is the longest between-blog stretch in the nearly vacation-free six-year history of AG.com. Sure, I could have banged out a new entry or two during that time, but between various holidays, the calendar turning over to a new year, the complete lack of Twins-related news, and some on-deadline writing work that's staring me in the face it seemed like a good time to go dark for a little while.

Of course, even then I could only stay away for so long before the blogging bug reeled me back in, which is why you're reading this new entry despite today being my birthday. I'm not big on birthdays and tell people not to get me any presents each year, although no one ever seems to take me seriously. To celebrate my 25th year I'm going to lunch with my dad this afternoon and then having dinner at my mom's house tomorrow night. That's it, unless you call writing a self-absorbed blog entry "celebrating."

Turning 25 years old seems like the time when a person can officially no longer avoid being perceived as an adult. At 18 or 19 you're still a teenager, from 20 to 22 most people assume that you're going to college, and even at 23 or 24 it still seems plausible that you could be in school. At 25 any "school" better have "graduate" in front of it and "what do you do for a living?" replaces "what are you studying?" as the question that people tend to ask when they first meet you.

Plus, I'm now halfway to 50 years old.

Rewinding to exactly 365 days ago, I called 2006 "the best year of my life" and wrote about losing 90 pounds, being featured in Sports Illustrated, signing the first multi-year contract of my writing career, and a whole bunch of other exciting things. My age-24 season wasn't quite as life-altering, but the past 12 months did see me buy a home and move out on my own, continue to be employed as a full-time writer by a Fortune 500 company, and keep most of the weight off. It was a fantastic year.

I also made a bit of a personal leap by branching out beyond strictly writing by making several in-studio radio appearances and shooting regular videos for NBCSports.com, which was a huge step for me given the lengths that I went to avoid such things for the first 23 years of my life. Still, at the end of the day everything about my writing career can be directly traced back to this blog, so I'm thrilled to note that AG.com once again set a traffic record with over one million visitors in 2007.

I vividly recall the days when this blog had a single-digit readership and it took 30 months to amass one million visitors, so the fact that the readership here has increased each and every year continues to amaze me. The traffic for 2007 represented a 10 percent increase over 2006 and with 196 new entries written over the past 12 months that means an average of 5,500 eyes saw each post, which is astounding to me given that it wasn't even an especially enjoyable year to be a Twins fan.

I'm not sure exactly where I'd be right now if not for this blog, but I know for certain that it wouldn't be nearly as good a spot as the one that I'm currently in, so it's been incredibly rewarding to see more and more people continue to stop by here each day to read what I've written. To be honest, I'd have bet on everyone being pretty sick of me by now. Whatever happens over the next 12 months, I want to thank all of you for your readership over the past 12 months (and over the past five-plus years).

And for everyone who found the preceding eight paragraphs incredibly boring and painful to read, regularly scheduled blogging will resume tomorrow.


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