Unused Holiday, Rain, and Fake Followers

It’s been a strange sort of day – and it isn’t over yet.

After a very strange dream that I can’t remember a lot about any more I slid out of bed at about 8am, had a shower, shave, brushed my teeth, got dressed, and wandered into the junk room to begin work. On Tuesday mornings we have an “all hands that can make it” video call – just to say hi to each other – to combat sitting alone at home for hours on end.

I made a comment about perhaps taking a few days off this week (it’s half term), and spending time with my daughters. Within a couple of hours of the call a holiday request had gone in – and by this afternoon had been approved. It kind of makes sense – there are projects afoot at work, and when they begin the chance for time off will vanish – much as it did for the last year, leading to the mountain of untaken holiday still sitting there.

It’s still raining. By my reckoning, apart from a brief bit of sunshine on Saturday morning, it’s rained pretty consistently for the last twenty years. I should really see about building a boat out of what’s left of the shed. I checked the weather forecast earlier – there’s a 60% chance of rain all-day every-day throughout the week.

It’s “pancake day” in the UK today. I’m not sure if the kids have found out yet. If they do, one or other of us will find themselves standing in the kitchen for an hour later, pouring batter into a frying pan, trying to look like we know what we’re doing.

I wonder who invented pancake day? I wonder if it has something to do with an overrun of milk somewhere, and a crafty scheme to get lots of people to use theirs up ?

In other news, a lot of people have started following my blog at WordPress just recently – 99% of them marketers and business owners. They follow, never read, and never comment. I wonder what they think they achieve when they follow blogs? According to the stats, across Tumblr and WordPress I have several thousand followers. In reality, I have about twenty regular readers, and of those, only two or three interact in any meaningful way.

It’s lies, damn lies, and statistics.

I read a post by somebody I know fairly well on Tumblr recently about being dropped and blocked by friends online. I used to really take it to heart when people either unfollowed or blocked me, but have slowly hardened up over the years. I suppose I came to realise that somebody falling off the radar is rarely about those they follow. I miss a lot of people who don’t post any more – more than they know. I sometimes wonder about reaching out, but then talk myself out of doing so just as quickly.


I think I might need to go and find the packet of cheap chocolate biscuits, and put the kettle on. For reasons.

20 replies on “Unused Holiday, Rain, and Fake Followers”

Hi Jonathan. I’ve been reading your blog for a while now, and although I do not comment, I enjoy your posts. On one level, it’s comforting to see another blogger writing about their daily life, and not necessarily optimizing for SEO, looking for sponsors, or selling products. On another level, I think your writing is fun to read! Just wanted to let you know that I appreciate the effort to write and post.

Liked by 3 people

Oh, you’re not the kind of reader I’m commenting about 🙂 It’s more those that follow, and you go look at their profile, and their entire existence on WordPress is a company website – and they obviously have no intention of even reading.

Thanks for reading and commenting! 🙂

Liked by 2 people

My own WordPress blog is, thankfully, modest in size and, being mainly about knitting, fountain pens and notebooks, doesn’t attract a huge number of ‘the wrong sorts’. I’ll get a new subscriber every so often and it’s no big deal to quickly check their website to see if they are real people. Like you, I’ve seen an increase in the number of times the linked blog is an obvious sales arena (or worse) and in those cases I delete their subscription (it’s not called deleting, but I’m practising to be a Cyberman). As you say, having a good following is better than having a big following any day of the week.

Liked by 2 people

Oh, and I forgot to say, Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) is the last day before the start of Lent. The pancakes are just a way of getting rid of all the fresh ingredients you won’t be allowed to consume during Lent. It is one of the celebration days with a long historic tradition, not a modern consumer one.

Liked by 3 people

I was being flippant about Shrove Tuesday – I once visited the milk marketing board through work, who’s entire existence is predicated on finding new and inventive ways to sell milk 🙂

Liked by 2 people

The sun is out today. It’s still wildly cold, with warming by the end of the week. I am decidedly not religious, but I like the way certain oddball holidays break up the calendar. In that vein, I celebrate Shrove Tuesday. After all, it sounds like a wear-your-clothing-in-side-out kind of holiday– a pancakes-for-dinner day, falling in mid-winter when we need silly the most. I throw it in with the other weird days–Epiphany (celebration of the tardy), groundhog day, and St. Francis’ blessing of the pets.

Liked by 2 people

We have both had this issue of followers that are marketing sites that never read or interact with our sites. What makes me more annoyed are the ones who click like yet according to my stats didn’t even read the post. It seems in the last couple of months there have been a huge increase in these marketing sites following us. That’s the big issue I have with WordPress. Keep writing I do enjoy your blogs

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