November 7th.  It means a little something different to everyone.  For some it marks the anniversary of the date that women in the state of Colorado gained the right to vote.  Others will light birthday candles for Canadian musician and songstress Joni Mitchell, or candles of a different sort to commemorate the passing of Steve McQueen.    It’s also the day that Magic Johnson told the world that he is infected with HIV.  Nine years to the day later the United States came to a fifty-fifty split deciding whether Al Gore or George Bush would have their incoming mail delivered to the Oval Office.

All those things are well and good, however on a blustery November 7th, 2010, a day not unlike today, a young man with a dream (and a healthy libido) started a little website with an idea to entertain the masses.  Yes, today is the one year anniversary of www.Chi-Guy.com

Admittedly it took some time to hit my stride in finding my writing “voice” but I’m pretty pleased thus far as I’ve settled into the three posts a week, usually Monday-Wednesday-Friday format.  By no means do I consider Chi-Guy.com a finished product, but rather see it as more akin to a child in its infancy.  I’ve got a lot of ideas as to where I’d like to see the site go in both style and format but a lot of that has to do with you, the reader.  My favorite part of this whole experience is the feedback I receive from you, whether we know each other personally or not.  I’ve heard all sides ranging from there’s too much sports, to the focus shouldn’t be as heavy on my fascination with the “Jersey Shore.”  When everyone has an opinion on what you’re doing wrong, I take it as a sign that you’re doing something right.

In fact, interest in you the reader results in my checking Google Analytics like a diabetic checks their blood sugar.  I find market research fascinating and I thought I’d take this opportunity to let y’all behind the looking glass.  So without further ado, here are some interesting tidbits (well, interesting to me anyways) that I’ve gathered in the past year of putting this site out into the public forum. 

For the record I didn’t activate Google Analytics until sometime in January but we’ll round up.

  • Chi-Guy.com has had visitors from 67 different countries over the past year.  The United States is running away with the “Most Visits” title followed by our friendly neighbors to the north (more on them later).  What’s interesting however is that the country of Peru averages the longest time spent on the site.  It is with this knowledge that I will make you a promise that I will not be translating Chi-Guy.com to Peruvian any time soon as I like keep these people’s attention while they break out their English to Peruvian dictionaries.
  • I couldn’t be happier to say that visitors from both Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as Israel and Palestine have found joy in the content I provide.  Chi-Guy.com, creating world peace since 2010.
  • In the US, readers have come from 49 of our 50 states as well as the District of Columbia.  Wyoming get your act together.  I spent a week in your state and sang your praise upon my return and got bupkiss to show for it  If any of you reading this know someone in Wyoming please forward them a link and let’s get that state off the schneid.  New Mexico, don’t think I’m not paying attention to your single hit either.  How about I come out to your balloon festival next year and we right that wrong?
  • Kudos to the good people of Illinois, Colorado, Wisconsin, Michigan, California, and Washington.  I appreciate you guys carrying the bell this first year on the site. 
  • More of you people have Android phones than I ever would have imagined. 
  • My single biggest traffic day at the site was August 16th.   That day I posted my Bears free agency recap and put a link to it out on the Chicago Bears message board.  Apparently this is dirty pool in the message board world as numerous posters, with thousands of posts on www.chicagobears.com to their credit, admonished me for linking to my own site.  To them I say “go scratch.”  There will be a lot more of that to come.  For the record I also received a lot of positive feedback as well from first time readers who found Chi-Guy through that link. 
  • Far and away the Google Search that led the most people to the site involved some combination of the words “2011 St. Louis Rib Festival.”  I found that kind of funny because in my post from Memorial Day Weekend I didn’t exactly give St. Louis a lot of love.  Apparently others felt different.  I’ll let you know if a bunch of angry St. Louis-ians show up at my door with pitchforks and torches some day. 
  • My “Let Go My Ego” post generated the most feedback of any single entry.  I interpret that as you all liking to learn a bit more about what makes me tick.  Expect more of that.  Also, on the Comments front, I just want to make clear that you can post a comment without using your real name or email address if you don’t want to.  The website field is pretty much useless as well.  Those are just format things that I can’t control.  Also of note, if you want to contact me directly and not in a public medium just send emails directly to ChicagoChiGuy@gmail.com.  I’m much more likely to respond to you in personal correspondence this way.
  • Without a doubt, Mr. John Milton wins the award for best Comment of the Year and no one came in second.  Outstanding work sir…
  • One of my favorite little factoids over the past year was in gathering concrete evidence that Canadians are awesome.  Do you want to know how I know this?  Well back in July I wrote a post entitled “Me & My Moustache” where I tried to use as many synonyms for the term “moustache” as I could think of.  In putting this piece together I was searching through Google to find a website that had a list of different terms for a Weasel Penis but no such site really exists.  I made sure to tag the phrase so that others could find Chi-Guy going forward as a tool for their own use.  Apparently I am not alone in my search for such a site however.  61 different people found Chi-Guy.com by entering “moustache synonyms” into a search engine since July, and a shocking 29 of those people were from Canada.  What fantastic people they are.
  • Apparently there are some real comedians that read Chi-Guy.com.  Twice people have found the site by Googling the phrase, “the guy that wrote chi-guy blog is gay.”    
  • Other notable searches of interest that bring readers involve the Old St. Pat’s Block Party, Russell “Honey Badger” Wilson, and for some reason Rango’s girlfriend.
  • Along these lines there are also a lot of Bill Watterson and Diane Keaton fans out there…
  • Finally, I couldn’t be more excited about this post.  Four months until my world flips on its head.  It’s going to be crazy but undoubtedly will provide an unlimited amount of fodder.

So that’s what there is to know.  I made note last week that as we head into year number two my goal is to take the readership up to the next level.  In order to accomplish this I’m going to need your help.  I plan to keep putting the goods out there for your entertainment and all I can do is ask that if you like what you find, please pass it on to your like-minded friends.  I’m consciously going grassroots on your ass here with zero marketing outside of the random message board post and word of mouth.  I’m not on “The Book” (primarily because people call it “The Book”), I don’t Twitter, and I don’t do anything else new and clever to sell the site.  It’s all pretty much done through the people as I am conducting a small social experiment to see if the American Dream exists.  By the “American Dream” I’m referring to the 1940s & 50s ideals of if a man walks out onto a corner and does his work well, he will be recognized and succeed.  That’s the pitch that brought thousands of people to this country from around the globe with nothing in their pockets beyond a glimmer of hope.  They believed that if they showed up and worked hard, success would find them in America.  That’s what I’m shooting for here.  With that said I’m going to continue to do my part and look forward to watching the hits roll up. 

Thank you one and all whether this is your first or five hundredth visit.  I look forward to the opportunity to share my ideas and opinions and ideally make you think or smile a couple of times each week.

Chi-Guy