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INTERESTING STUFF – 10 December 2016

2016 Top Ten Time Goes By Blog Posts

Not many people can resist lists and this time of year there are dozens, maybe hundreds: best books of 2016, best movies, best TV shows, top ten albums, top ten apps, best new gadgets, etc. Even top ten top ten lists.

A few are based on actual statistics of something but most are someone's subjective idea of what was best over the previous 12 months or so – which doesn't take away from the fun of reading the lists.

On the many “Best Books” lists, I confess that I always compare which new ones I've read to the reporter's choices and sneer at selections that I believe don't live up to my (obviously) discerning tastes.

This year I wondered why I've never done a Time Goes By Top Ten list – never in all these 12 or 13 years. I'm changing that today.

There are dozens of reasons that my “best of” list might be different from each individual reader's best of list so instead, I have made it a popularity list in two forms:

  1. The Top Ten TGB Posts by number of comments
  2. The Top Ten TGB Posts by page views

Comments are a poor indication; there are many reasons people do and do not comment but as you will see, some reasons for a lot of comments are understandable.

Page views are slightly more indicative of popularity although there is no way to know how many people landed on the page and left right away, uninterested in the title.

Also, I've not included Facebook comments, likes, etc. I hardly ever visit my Facebook page; it is primarily a secondary distribution channel for people who don't want an email newsletter or RSS feed or don't want to visit TGB in a browser. The several hundred Twitter followers aren't included either.

So, take a look at these lists, see what you think and at the end, let us all know what you enjoyed here during 2016 whether on the lists or not.

Most Popular TGB Posts by Number of Comments
(In reverse order)

10. Happy Birthday Millie Garfield
I've known Millie for at least 10 years and it was her 91st birthday in August. All of you were sensational attendees at the online party.

9. Old People Talk About the 2016 Presidential Campaign
All the other Republican candidates had withdrawn from the primary race by early May and Donald Trump had just been name the presumptive nominee of the GOP so we had a go at discussing our thoughts and feelings about that. (The Maddow video has been withdrawn since this was published and is now unavailable.)

8. How's Retirement Going For You?
This was an an excellent and instructive conversation about how we came to be retired, what we've been doing since then and how we are getting by. It was a good one.

7. Am I Exhausted from the Campaign Because I'm Old?
It was only February, the day of Iowa Caucuses and I was already tired of the presidential campaign mostly, I think, because * sucks all the oxygen out of the room even through the televion screen. A lot of you agreed.

6. Have You Been Dropping More Things As You Get Older?
Wow. I found out fast that I'm not alone with this phenomenon.

5. One Elder's Notes on the New World Order
This was six days after the election and a large number of us, after nearly a week to think about what a * presidency might be like, had a lot to say.

4. The World is Utterly Changed Now
My first sentence on the day after the election was: “I am stunned, shocked, devastated, horrified and frightened. Nothing good will come of this but beyond that I am speechless.” I didn't have much more to say and with less than a handful of exceptions, neither did you, dear readers, among a huge number of comments. We were in shock.

3. I Will Be in Mourning For Awhile
Three days following the election, we were still mostly paralyzed but had a great deal to say.

2. Lighten Your Life Before You Kick the Bucket - Book and Contest and

1. What We Gain as We Grow Older - Book and Contest
These two, in the number 1 and number 2 positions were book giveaways. I guess I know now how to get you all to speak up. But it's not all that fascinating – mostly what you needed to say was something like, “count me in.”

The second list, as I mentioned, is slightly more indicative of actual interest in given blog posts.

It relies on page views – how many readers actually opened the page in their browser but doesn't include people who read the email, Facebook post or RSS feed without visiting the website – even so, these produced thousands of page views which is heartening for this old blogger.

Most Popular TGB Posts by Page Views
Again, the list is in reverse order.

10. Once Again for the Last Time
A conversation in March about the things we did when we were younger than we don't do anymore.

9. The Theme of an Old Woman's Life
My personal lament last January for the placethat is my spiritual home but where I cannot afford to live anymore.

8. Music Festival Age Discrimination
This was a slap-in-the-face piece of ageism in June. A giant two-weekend concert of our generations' top rock groups – The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, The Who, Bob Dylan, etc. Clearly a concert for old folks and then this notation: ”No chairs or blankets will be allowed in the show."

7. Interesting Stuff – 26 March 2016 and

6. Interesting Stuff – 2 April 2016
Two Saturday Interesting Stuff posts made this list – the first in March, the second in April. The collection of items did not seem better or brighter to me than most Saturdays but they sure drew a lot of page views.

5. “About” Taking a Day Off
I was particularly busy during the first week of May and gave you brief post of a couple of video commercials I liked. I guess you did too. (The second has been pulled from rotation now and can't be viewed.)

4. I'll Be in Mourning for Awhile
In this case, there is a corellation between the number of comments and page views. This was published in November, three days following the election.

3. How Time Flies – Or Not Sometimes
In May, a discussion that comes up regularly about how time appears to slow down as we grow old and what can speed it up. The third most viewed story of the year.

2. The Day After the First Presidential Debate
The was the second most viewed post of 2016, in September. Do you think, perhaps, that we were beginning to feel like it was not impossible for * to be elected?

1. A Century-Old Quilt – Like New
Well, this is a surprise. It was a easy post to write about the quilt my grandmother had made by hand a hundred years ago or so. Nevertheless, thousands of readers made it the number one most viewed post of the year.

I don't know what that means and if anyone is looking for a TGB quilting website – um, the answer is no.

But, it might be interesting for you to leave a comment about what you enjoy reading here, what interests you less or what you would like to see that doesn't show up.


You energized me to look at my 2016 posts to see what was read. Thanks. mj

I'm always interested in what you have to say about the physical and emotional effects of aging, especially when you share your personal frailties. We are of the same age and I often find myself muttering "yeah, me too", which feels good because I hide a lot of my ailments from OH.

American politics often baffle me but I like to read what's happening and think of the differences for someone like me from a country with a Welfare State commitment. I am appalled that a country as rich as the USA will not provide affordable, decent health care for all its citizens. Like many who have commented here, I went into mourning at Rump's win so I won't bang on any more about my fears for the future.

Ronni, I always look forward to Interesting Stuff on Saturdays, and I thank you for your hard-work and dedication that goes into keeping it all relevant and interesting.

Loved the story of NYC and share your longing, only for me it's Tucson, Az. I'm not sorry I'm back east, I want this time closer to my sons, but I miss Tucson; the 60 mile vistas. The mountains surrounding the city, the Mexican food, the desert, the sunshine, and blue blue skies, and I could go on and on. I miss it every day... But it's become part of my Practice of Letting Go and the need for that place is weakening. Loved the quote from William Thomas too - it helps.

I am always interested in what you post. We each age at such different rates. I feel that I am in uncharted territory, which is why I enjoy your posts and comments. The mainstream media offers no insights for me. According to them a person is either a wonder man/woman or a resident of assisted living. Nothing in between.
Your blog is so refreshing in that it expresses what so many of us in that "in between wonderful and less so" experience. Please keep this up.

Somehow I stumbled across your blog, Ronnie, and I enjoyed reading it so much, I added your RSS feed to my homepage. A big THANK YOU for all that you do! I am grateful for you.

I hit a lull when I no longer wanted to read about old people (I'm 86 as of today!) I even considered deleting this site but I did not. Then the impossible happened and I found solace in reading ALL the reactions which helped greatly. I have not had TV in about twenty years, very selective in news, aka: head in sand. It works for my peace of mind.
I feel your pain in longing for the place of your heart. It hurts.
I continue to check in every morning, have not commented in about two years but I'm rather faithful. I wish peace of mind for you and all others. Betty (still lurking)

I'm a regular read, but rarely comment.
Being a green leftie, I appreciate your 'liberal' take, and the breadth of topics.
I enjoy 'Interesting Stuff' and look forward to Peter on Sundays; if we're at home, my husband and I like to listen to his selection, supping wine as we prep our dinner.
Thank you both.

It's all good, as the younger folks say. I pretty much agree with your selections and join many other readers in saying thanks for all you do. I must say that I haven't changed my mind about being old (The "Big 80" coming up soon). Truth to tell I still don't much like it, but it is what it is. The election of * was a HUGE disappointment, but I plan to resist the *eteers however I can for as long as I can.

Well, from 2016, I'd add "The Imperative to Live and to Die" (15 April 2016), but it's only one of several of your posts that I have saved to re-read and re-read. You - and Peter and so many of your readers with their excellent comments - offer so much, from the substantial and useful to the refreshing and entertaining and more. Almost every post speaks to me, some more profoundly than others, of course. But your intelligence and determination and ability to communicate are rare and precious gifts all year round, and have been for all the years since I found you. Many are gifts that keep on giving.
Thank you.

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