Sunday, February 09, 2014

Sunday Afternoon in My Bathrobe, After a Great Brunch of Eggs and Fresh Strawberries, Bitchin’ About My Weekend

Only in America can you be broke as fuck and still rock some First World Problems like a boss. America, FUCK YEAH!

WARNING: This doesn’t get any less vulgar: I spent most of the day yesterday working on SEO for my blog, thinking, goddamn it, I’ve got to get these numbers up! I’m raging sick of seeing blogs running the 3,456th post on Why _______ Is Evil and Fucked Up and they get upwards of 350 comments saying, “Yeah! Preach it, you noble rebel, you!” while my carefully crafted prose and sublime wit on multiple subjects is fortunate to be seen by as many people in a week. 

I figured Google Analytics might help, and why not? I’ve got a Google Blogger blog! (I know all the cool kids are supposed to use WordPress, but fuck that.) After kicking around their site I copied and pasted tracking script manually into 60 pages of my 240 page site—because that’s what they tell you to do, for every page on your site. 

I suppose they presume we’re all smart enough to automate this somehow, getting the script in before “/head,” (which, I note, is nowhere to be found in the HTML script for my pages). Alas, I am a but a bear of very little brain and did all of this manually, on the 50 most recent posts and my all-time top post list. All told, about 60 files. 

By early evening I noticed that the right sidebar was gone from the home page. I scrolled down the barren layout only to find it jammed under the posts and over to the left. Lord, it looked stupid. Like a stupid person designed it. Way to build the brand, Warhol!

As the breakage hadn’t manifested itself right away, my initial thought was that it had something to do with either the latest post I wrote, which included a photo, or some unintentional clicking as I went through every son-of-a-whoring tweak page in my Blogger dashboard, looking for things to tweak. 

I found that reducing the size of my photo in my post brought the sidebar back—but as I needed my readers to look for a detail in said photo, I needed that thing extra large and filling the margins. Goddamn it, I’ve got graphics in all but a handful of posts! Why was this one a problem?

I repeatedly went back to Design in the Dashboard and messed with the column width sliding bars. Nothing! Though I did notice that when I looked at individual pages, the sidebar was on the side, and all looked normal. Only on the home page with the feed was the sidebar shoved to the bottom.

I don’t know when it finally occurred to my flustered idiot ass to invoke the first rule of troubleshooting, “What Has Changed?” but I noticed the problem went away when I removed the Google Analytics tracking script from the one page that didn’t come up with the sidebar when clicked as an individual page. 

I spent the better part of an hour and two perfectly good beers manually removing the tracking script from the 60 HTML files. Aside from the fact that this Googleshit broke a Google Blogger blog, it didn’t work. It didn’t track for shit. 

For what it’s worth I know Google is an evil-as-fuck corporation but I figure they have us by the balls anyway, so what the hell. Would WordPress be all that much better? I’d hate to spend money to host my blog when it hardly gets any traffic to speak of in the first place, but it’s getting damned annoying going back into my Blogger HTML pages to remove the random “nbsp” commands that mysteriously insert themselves into my script whenever I do the most routine of formatting, causing lines to break from in the middle of my text and fucking up my layout.

I’m know I’m going to have to make the break someday. Meanwhile, I have a lot more to learn about SEO and CSS and HTML and Java on the side while mastering social media marketing. It’s all part of the DIY world of the modern author making his hustle. Adapt or die, motherfucker.

“Cemetery” by a Moscow-based artist who goes by the name “glooh”
or “mihail.” Click on over to the artist’s DeviantArt page
and show him some love!
Although failure is indeed our best teacher, I still can’t help feeling it was a perfect waste of a Saturday. Fuck that shit. I want to be a writer again. So today I shall. 

Having thus purged the rage poisons from my spleen, it’s back to the zombie mines for me. I’ve got a fictional monster truck to steal and some people and stuff I want to set on fire. That’s so much more my speed. After all this, hell, it’s a relief!