Saturday, December 31, 2011

Pathetical Analyticals 2011

Am I the Only One Who Cares?  Probably

Local Color:  The Colors of Yingge: May 2, 2011
Well, it’s time for the Pathetical Analyticals for 2011.  I call it “Pathetical Analyticals” because I think it’s kind of pathetic that I have to take this blog apart and analyze every aspect of what happened in it for the year.  It’s not so much that I feel a need to understand why I posted one thing or another.  I posted what I posted because it was interesting to me and I figured, if it was interesting to me, it might also be interesting to some other people who don’t know that much about Taiwan.  But what is pathetic is my need to break everything down into some kind of statistic:  To try to gain some meaning for the blog by examining the minutiae.  I wish that I was above that, but, once again I have fallen victim to my baser nature and did it anyway, so what follows is Pathetical Analyticals 2011 or by the alternate title:  Am I the Only One Who Cares?  Probably

What’s it all about?

First a bit about the Taiwan Adventure Blog:  In the beginning it was written purely as an informational tool for my family and friends.  I was leaving my home country and didn’t want to be writing separate emails all the time to dozens of people who might possibly be interested.   It was intended to chronicle our life in Taiwan as well as the church we came here to build.  But after a while, I separated the church website from the Taiwan Adventure.  I needed a website for the church and I felt after a while I was duplicating my efforts, so I split them.  The church website is at   The Taiwan Adventure, became a stand alone culture, history, travel, and food blog.  It has evolved into what it is, and probably there is more of the evolutionary process that will still take place.  

Taiwanese Traditions:  The Planting and Growing of Rice:  April 4, 2011
I think the blog has improved this year.  It has a better look for one thing and readership has increased dramatically.  I have also included a weekly feature, Photo Glimpses of Taiwan, which features photos that have been used or supplement the photos in the blog.   The really great part is that my posts have been picked up by We Blog the World and Go! Overseas.  These two websites have enormous readership and I believe they have really helped to increase traffic to the Taiwan Adventure.  In addition to these we have been featured a number of times in the feed aggregation, The Best of Taiwanderful and iTainan and a number of others.

Eating My Way Through Taiwan:  The Stink of Adventure:  July 11, 2011
The Taiwan Adventure is based in Taoyuan City, Taiwan.  Taoyuan is a city of about 380,000 people in Northeastern Taiwan.  During the winter it’s cold and during the summer it’s hot.  The other two seasons are superfluous because it’s either hot or its cold, there are only a few days in between.  Taoyuan is not a beautiful place.  But the people are warm and friendly and if I have to live somewhere I’m glad I live here.  I can drive to a pretty place, but as I’ve always said, people are where it’s at.  The Taiwan Adventure is really my look at Taiwan.  Everything is examined through the filter of an expat American.  I really try to understand the culture, and the things that cross my eyes, but sometimes I’m wrong because I look at through the filter of my life.  I can’t escape that.  So it is what it is.  So far no hate mail, so I guess I’m on the right path most of the time, but who knows, there’s not a lot of love mail or comments, either.

Statistically Speaking

The rest of the post will be made up of numbers and stats; some of them may even be meaningful.


Total views of the blog this year:  26,167 
Average Views per month:  2365.4
The Taiwan Adventure has readers in 129 countries.

Taiwanese History:  Sun Yat Sen:  Sept. 13, 2011
Over the course of the year the readership increased from 1,150 readers in January to 2,897 readers in December resulting in an average monthly increase in readers of 158.  This is a net gain of 151% for the year.  Of course there were peaks ad valleys, some months readership went down only to rebound the next month.  One of the biggest affects on readership was the number of posts.  An increase in the number of posts resulted in an increase in the number of readers; correspondingly a decrease in posts meant a decrease in readership.  Lesson for bloggers:  Consistency results in higher readership.  If you post regularly readership will always increase.  Inconsistent posting results in lower readership. 

The RSS feed did well as well.  We added the site to Feedburner in February and in 10 months there were 2,433 views on the feed with 917 clicks back to blog.  That means that about 38% of the views resulted in readers being driven to the blogsite.  This is the main purpose of a feed so that people will see your posts and want to go back to the original to see others.


This year I posted 42 different posts under 8 category headings.  I don’t usually break them into categories in the way a wordpress blog does.  Actually I categorize them through the use of a “header” in the title.  I use eight headers

Taiwanese History
Taiwanese Traditions
Cultural Unawareness
Traveling with M13
Taiwan Travelogue
Random Asianess
Eating My Way Through Taiwan

Local Color:  Taoyuan City Ghost Festival Parade:  August 23, 2011
Something new this year is the use of a header titled Local Color.  The Local Color posts are photo essays of some place or topic I find visually interesting.  Rather than describe them, I just take a series of photos and include them.

Most are self-explanatory.  Cultural Unawareness are my mistakes at the culture that resulted in funny or embarrassing moments.  I’m hoping to phase this out this year; that it will become obsolete.  Traveling with M13. Mordeth13 is a friend of mine, and I have done a few things with him and his family.  These posts are the result of some interaction with him.  I hope to do more of these in the nest year. 

Top Five Posts

1.  Taiwanese History:  Sun Yat Sen           
     Total views since September 1,059 or 353 per month. 

2.  Taiwanese Traditions:  The Dragon Boat Festival             
     Total Views since June 2010 3,112 or 172 per month.

3.  Traveling with M13:  Custom Scooters of Taiwan             
     Total views since February 501 or 50 per month

4.  Taiwan Travelogue: The National Palace Museum            
     Total views since March 437 or 49 per month

5.  Taiwanese History:  Double Tenth day            
     Total views since October 2010 468 or 33 per month.

Sun Yat Sen is considered to be the Father of Modern China.  This post has been the single most popular post I have written on this blog.  It will be interesting to see if it has the kind of staying power that the Dragon Boat Festival has had. The Dragon Boat Festival is still popular after 18 months.

Taiwan Travelogue:  The North Coast:  September 20, 2011
My Personal Favorite Posts

For various reasons I like the following posts the best.  I think they are the best written and I’ve had the most fun talking about them with other people.  They’re listed in order according to how well I liked them. 

1.  Eating My Way Through Taiwan:  The Stink of Adventure
     A very funny post on Stinky Tofu, that also appeared in Zite magazine for iPads.

2.  Taiwanese Traditions:  The Planting and Growing of Rice
     A post on Rice Planting in Taiwan, contains my favorite picture of Taiwan ever.

3.  Local Color:  The Colors of Yingge
     Photo essay:  I think Yingge is a cool place…It’s also very colorful

4.  Random Asianess:  Oh Sure, Now We Decorate
     Talks about decorating for Chinese new Year.  It is the next post after my      complaining about not decorating for Christmas.

5.  Taiwanese Traditions:  The Dragon Boat Festival
     I’m only including this because everyone else reads it.

Taiwanese Innovation:  Magic Click Shoes:  December 13, 2011
Top Traffic Sources

Of course some people, just go straight to the blog.  I know it sounds hard to believe but there are a few faithful readers.  In fact, 11% of the readers on the blog have visited more than 101 times.  So, I guess some people are regulars.

Google                         7,764 referrals
Expat Blogs                     299 referrals
Taiwan Bloggers              188 referrals

The Google referrals breakdown like this:                  5,225                603      Canada                   579       United Kingdom                578        Philippines                292        Australia                250        Taiwan                 237        Singapore

Top Keywords

Taiwan Flag                   416
Dragon Boats                182
Taiwanese Traditions     121
Mordeth 13                     99
Sun Yat Sen                   54

Other Places where the Taiwan Adventure can be found (or at least a link):

There are some other places but some of them are really temporary.

The Taiwan Adventure is now an integral part of Taiwan Gongfu Tea.  This company is a startup website to sell Taiwanese Teas over the internet.  The plan for the future includes franchises in America where Taiwanese Tea can be distributed to fine tea sellers as well as offering the Gongfu Tea experience in a comfortable, Taiwanese styled Tea Room.  In addition to the Taiwan Adventure there will be a blog about the types of tea grown in Taiwan, the methods of brewing, how tea is grown and harvested and other information about tea; specifically Taiwanese tea.  This blog will be appropriately titled The Tea Blog. 

Finally, The Taiwan Adventure won first place in the category of General blog in the popular vote at’s 2011 Top Taiwan Blog Awards.  We appreciate the support of our readers and would like to welcome new readers as a result of the competition.  Thank you for your votes.  We also want to congratulate the other winners.  It always amazes me how many excellent English language blogs there are in Taiwan. 

Here is a link so you can see the results first hand. Taiwanderful

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