Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Blogging, v.2008.

The one thing I'll never understand, is why I have such an abundance of passersby, and yet no comments on many of my posts. I know it isn't outstanding, but I average at least 30-40 views a day -- and this is beyond the people who simply accidentally end up on my blog by clicking on some picture that happens to be linked to my page. I seem to get a lot of traffic from people researching the Donmeh. I'm not really sure how, considering when you Google search Donmeh my blog is definitely NOT on the first page. Even searching Donmeh Jewish doesn't pull up my blog. So how are people getting here? The great thing is there are viewers from all over the world, though most are in the U.S. I use sitemeter, which tracks locations and such. It's sort of a Big Brother thing, but it also helps me know who my readers are. I just wish they'd comment, so, you know, I'd really *know* who they are.

Unless, of course, my blogs are really that benign? Uninspiring? Uncommentable!?

I'm not looking for blind praise or comments saying "Oh Chavi, I love your posts, I comment all the time!" I know who my regular readers are, of course. I just wish I knew who the non-regular readers and sometimes-readers were. But we all can't get what we want, I suppose!

On the note of blogs, I started another blog. It's a blog about my (hopeful) weightloss journey. The blog can be found over at Fat Miss America. It's fresh, it's as naked as I get on the internet, folks. Exposing my soul, my personal struggles and my hopeful journey toward health. I mean, I'm healthy as is. The doctor told me so; it's just those extra pounds that someday, surely, will come back to haunt me. As Lisa has said, I'm zaftig! And as always, I post every now anda again over at Jewsbychoice.org. My most recent post is a Torah spiel about last week's portion, which happened to include the parting of the Sea of Reeds, among other things.

As for the blogs I'm attempting to regularly read, well, you can find those over there to the right of this blog. Click around. Check some people out. Take a gander. Enjoy. Most of them are friends from college, my college newspaper, or fellow Jews I've happ'd upon in my happy travels on the Web.

And finally, today is ט״ו בשבט -- Tu B'Shevat (which actually means the 15th of the month of Shevat). You'll note that Shevat can be spelled a dozen different ways, but you get the idea. The day is a minor holiday in the Jewish calendar, and doesn't involve any fasting or particularly special services or observances. It's considered to be the "Jewish Arbor Day" of sorts and is one of the many new years in our calendar, and is really the "new year of trees." There is no specific mention of the holiday in the Torah, though it does appear in the Mishnah. According to Judaism 101, there is a bit of disagreement about the actual date of the the new year for trees, with Beit Shammai saying the proper day was the first of Shevat and Beit Hillel said the proper day was the 15th of Shevat. Of course, with most things, we lean on Hillel for the final word on the proper day of observance. Common traditions for the day are to eat fruits and nuts of the land of Israel, and sometimes even to plant a tree (hence the Jewish Arbor Day bit). Likewise, the Wikipedia article on the holiday has some interesting details about the customs.

So go eat some dried fruits or nuts and take notice of the beauty of nature around us -- even if that beauty is covered in snow.

Shalom, y'all!