Dollop 35 – Boooooooooom!!!

Download today’s Dollop in its audio form here

Well I’m afraid we’re back to the standard way of doing these Dollops, because the poltergeist who wrote yesterday’s Dollop has gone in a huff. He read a comment from Jools, who was suggesting that it wasn’t a real ghost doing the writing.

“I think the lack of sleep is leading to an identity crisis” she wrote. As I explained on the audio version of yesterday’s Dollop, the ghost is a bit of a diva, and so, upon reading this denial of his existence, he got all moody, and has refused to write any more Dollops. At first he wouldn’t admit that he had been upset by Jools’ unfair assertions, but I knew that he was mortally offended, or perhaps more aptly, immortally offended. He kept denying that he was upset, but I could see right through him. He was communicating with me by typing, and I could see him shimmering in between the keys on my laptop. He got very angry, he damned me to Helvetica, by which I mean he changed my font, also decreasing the size to unreadable. This was his parting gift to me, because he then spirited away, vanishing into space, by which I mean the big long key at the bottom of my keyboard.

So I hope you’re happy Jools. I’d arranged with him to spend today’s Dollop talking about life after death, but you’ve gone and ruined that now with your rash words, meaning that we’ve missed the opportunity to learn about one of life’s greatest mysteries, and more importantly, it now means that I’m having to do some work today, and type up this bloody blog post. So thank you very much Jools.

As explained yesterday, my sleeping patterns are awful, due to a combination of late night gigs, and recently interviews with Australian media to promote our Australian gigs in March. I think my phone has become confused by when I am meant to be sleeping and when I’m meant to be awake. I have to set my phone alarm to wake up for the Australian interviews which are scheduled at odd times during the night when ordinarily I should be sleeping, and I’m also on my phone until the early hours of the morning, unable to get to sleep. Therefore, I think my phone has decided that it can alert me to anything at any time of the day. I think what normally happens is that your phone will time certain alerts and messages to pop up at a time that it expects you to be awake. But seemingly, as far as my phone is concerned, any time is fine to chime to let me know that it’s the birthday of someone I met once seven years ago but for some reason is still a Facebook friend.

I’m frequently woken up by these kinds of alerts. A couple of nights ago I was woke up by an alert on my phone telling me that I had a notification from Facebook. When I looked at the notification, it was simply a notification to remind me that I had five proper notifications from actual people that I hadn’t read yet. What kind of a notification is that? Facebook is so desperate for me to log on that it can’t possibly wait until I get another actual notification from a person, so it has to contrive a notification itself which is merely to tell me that I have notifications. I’m logging onto Facebook more now, as I’m using it to promote the Dollops, but a few months ago I hadn’t signed in for a few weeks, and I got a notification from Facebook telling me that I had 36 notifications. When I looked through these notifications I saw that six of them were from Facebook telling me that I had notifications. Stop being so needy Facebook.

Last night’s phone alert woke me at about 430 in the morning. It was from the WordPress app, which is where I host my blog. When I get an alert, my phone beeps or chimes at me, and then my screen reader starts reading out the message. This particular message started with, “boom!!!” But because there were three exclamation marks, the screen reader read it more like, “booooooom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” This gave me quite .a shock, jolting me out of sleep.

The reason for the word “boom”, and the proceeding triplet of exclamation marks, was because I had apparently done something good, and struck some kind of target. “Boom!!! Your blog is performing very well. There has been a steady growth in people visiting your website over the last month, with a sudden spike over the last day. Congratulations!!!”

While I was glad that the Daily Digital Dollop project was seemingly attracting more people to my website, I was a bit disconcerted by the statement that my website had seen a spike in the numbers for yesterday. Yesterday’s Dollop was the only Dollop that I didn’t actually write, despite what Jools might have you believe. It’s official: I am worse at blogging than a dead man. I read yesterday’s blog post, and I’ll admit, I was jealous of the ghost’s ability. Word had obviously got out that the quality of the content had improved, and thus more people had flocked to see for themselves. But then I realised that I was being needlessly harsh on myself. It was obvious that yesterday’s Dollop should garner more interest than my previous ones, given that it was written by a ghost. I can’t be expected to compete with an actual, genuine ghost.

Hopefully now I’ve got these new people reading, I will have hooked them in, regardless of the fact that we’ve had to give up the ghost, thanks to Jools’ wreckless comment. Hopefully these new people will have been seduced by my talk of irregular sleeping patterns and Facebook notifications, and decide to stay, even though the ghost has gone. Otherwise if they all abandon me after today then I’ll probably be woken up tomorrow at 4 in the morning with my phone playing some sad music, perhaps Barber’s Adagio For Strings, while the screen reader shouts “noooooooooooo!!!” to alert me that there’s been a sudden slump in website visitors.

Thanks for dropping by anyway. I’ll be back tomorrow; hopefully so will you.

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