from the "Blogbusiness" Dept.


Get Tooned In

The expansion of my Internet Empire has officially begun with the unveiling of Tooned.In, a blog about all things cartoony (containing the archive of my previous webcomics blog Funny Paperless, just because I can).

I probably will be changing that logo, as well as some other format adjustments, but the Marvel/Disney news (and what I can do with it) prompted the earlier-than-intended premiere. As I will no doubt say way too often in the blog, Stay Tooned.

And yes, that logo on this blog is going to change too… TOO BIG!


Welcome to the Wendell Zone

Okay, I guess I owe those of you still paying attention an explanation. I have set Wednesday (or Wendellsday), September 30th as a kind of premiere date for the latest iteration of my latest (and possibly last) attempt to set up a small ‘network’ of blogs and mini-sites covering my various interests (as a result, I will write more about more things while the individuals in the audience will be able to follow my views on X while discretely avoiding my views on Y – a win/win). I plan to begin unveiling things on September 9th (because everybody has something happening on 9/9/09) but the official premiere will be Wendellsday, September 30th (which happens to be my mumblemumbleth birthday).

That’s assuming I can get out of the bad Twilight Zone rerun that is my life right now. You know the one where all the mechanical and technical things this guy owned turned against him? (Maybe it was an Outer Limits or Night Gallery, I’m not sure). Well, mine are being more subtle because I’m experiencing on-and-off functionality from my car, refrigerator, microwave, cellphone, cable TV/internet and two laptop computers. It reached a high point of creepiness when my dead cellphone came back to life just in time to call the AAA when my car stalled on the freeway. Don’t know if I’m blessed, cursed or if my warranty on life as I know it just expired, but it appears to be spreading to my physical body, via some nerve spasms that are alternating among various locations in my extremities. So, I am typing this with my fingers crossed, and saving the file every 17 seconds.

And since I have just discovered a WordPress theme framework that does more of what I want than anything I’ve ever used before and I reallyreallyreally want to try it out here, expect this site to look like Matt Mullenwordpress himself threw up on it for the next few days. Because it’s so obvious that I will lose all internet connectivity and/or motor skills while ‘live testing’ it.

But if you do happen to meet up with the ghost of Rod Serling at a seance or Hollywood haunted house tour, please ask him to lay off the Wendell. Thanks.


Under Contraption

I used to say that “Life is what you do between technical difficulties.” Now, I believe that my life has become a series of technical difficulties (and I was mostly unaffected by the Big Facebook/Twitter DDoS Because Some Dork in Russia Had a Hissy Fit). Of course, I am now including my health crises among the “technical difficulties”… and every contact with my father, who mixes luddite-ism, clumsiness, denial over his failing eyesight and an extra dose of the common male resistance to reading instructions into a Perfect Storm of technical difficulty.

My all time favorite title of an LP record album (actually, an “EP”, which I really won’t goi into) is The Waitresses’ 1982 release “I Could Rule the World if I Could Only Get the Parts”
(featuring the title song for “Square Pegs”, just to give it more to love).

Anyway, I want all 7 of you reading this to remember this, as I continue to fine-tune this blog’s theme in the next few days (yeah, I don’t like that crap-brown background that comes up when you add the theme’s semi-opaque thingy to my regular orange background… I’m working on it).


789 Part Two

Yes, it’s been a while since I’ve blogged, but I came back in time for the other 07/08/09 (Euro Edition), at least long enough to say that I’ve noticed the problems some of you were having with my old format, so I’ve installed a new theme NOT of my own creation which I will be tweaking over the net few days, so if it still doesn’t look right, trust me, I’ll make it worse.


Do Not Adjust Your Set

We do not quite control the transmission, but we’re trying. Yes, the Web’s Semi-Beloved Wendell is attempting to make some adjustments to The Blog’s inner workings, including one that will allow frequent and possibly random style changes. So things may not be fully functional for a little while (which may be defined as anywhere from a few hours to the remainder of the Obama Administration) but when I’m finished this little site is going to be totally Web 2.1 (which may be defined as anything from a few more rounded corners to user customization via telepathy).

In the mean time, I may be taking a brief break from posting. NOT because of the other work I’m doing on The Blog; I have tried ‘focusing on the back-end’ before, and that way goes MADNESS! But because of some work I’m having done on myself. This afternoon (5/6/09), I am undergoing some medical tests that may or may not lead to hospitalization that may or may not be almost immediate that may or may not limit my internet access. Or if may just extend my semi-bedridden state of the last few weeks during which I have blogged like crazy to the rest of my un-natural life.

But I am taking up a new personal mantra, via the title character of Phil & Kaja Foglio’s wonderful webcomic Girl Genius, a character who has brought a whole new meaning to the word “plucky”, and who recently made the proud declaration:
(I altered the image slightly to remove extraneous dialogue in favor of the main message… if it is in any way esthetically ungood, it’s all my fault… but I CAN WORK WITH THAT.)


100K OK!

If you ever should happen to have the intestinal fortitude to get to the bottom of the page (for the front page that would mean you’re a first time reader – HI THERE! – or haven’t checked in in a few days), you’d see my visitor count numbers. and you’ll see a number just a few hundred short of 100,000.

Now, recently, Mark Penn, a political hack whose work for Hillary Clinton helped make Barack Obama our first woman President or something, wrote a column in the Wall Street Journal (a publication that gets lets respectable every day that Murdoch, Al-Walid* & Co. owns it) claiming that “It takes about 100,000 unique visitors to generate an income of $75,000.” I am eagerly awaiting my check. Oh, wait, that’s 100,000 unique visitors a MONTH to earn $75,000 a YEAR. My 100,000 was since July of ’05, that’s 45 months. And they’re not all “unique” visitors… not to say that each and every one of you who bother to read my blather is not a Special Snowflake of the Most Specialest Kind… but many of you have been here more than once. I hope. And the numbers in Penn’s column are a prime example of How to Lie with Statistics (still one of my favorite books of all time) as explained here by a guy named Waldo who has far more credibility than Mark Penn because he writes for the Virginia Quarterly Review and everybody knows you shouldn’t be exposed to Virginia for more than one quarter of your time.

I can only think of one blogger who obviously is making that kind of money, and that, of course, is Miss Cellania, who, in addition to her own two blogs, is a frequent perpetratorcontributor to YesButNoButYes, Mental Floss and Neatorama (and I hear rumors she’s blogging elsewhere under a pseudonym… Xeni something…) And she’s obviously getting royalties from webcomicker Phil Foglio because the title character in Girl Genius is based on her:

She’s obviously the hardest working blogger on the internet (and still has time to post comments here about my not blogging enough) and the only one who can get away with posting jokes like…

In a train compartment, there are three men and one ravishing young girl. The four passangers join in a conversation, which very soon turns to the erotic.
Then, the young girl proposes, “If each of you will give me $1, I will show you my legs.” The men, charmed by this young girl, all pull a buck out of their wallet. And then the girl pulls us her dress a bit to show her legs.
Then she says, “If each of you gentlemen will give me $10, I’ll show you my thighs.” Men being what they are, they all pull out a ten-dollar bill. The girl pulls up her dress all the way to her undies.
Conversation continues, and the men, a bit excited, have all taken off their coats. Then the young girl says, “If you will give me $100, I will show you where I was operated on for appendicitis.”
Naturally, all three fork over the money, and then the girl turns to the window and points to a hospital in the distance and says, “There!”

(of course, I could never post a joke like that without being subjected to massive amounts of criticism and general derision… but then that’s the usual reaction to most of the things I post)

If you don’t believe she’s also one of the highest paid, then why is there an Amazon link to How I Made My First Million on the Internet on her blog? There’s another reason I know Miss C is quite affluent, but it involves a very tacky reference to Madonna and Angelina Jolie that she would never forgive me for.

And before anyone accuses me of kissing up to this überblögger in the hope that I could become the future Mister Cellania, let me assure you that the only woman who could ever make me abandon my vow of asexuality is Edie McClurg (even though she hasn’t posted anything to her website since 2006). But more of that in a future post….

*did you know that next to Australia’s Rupert Murdoch and his family, the largest shareholder in NewsCorp is Saudi prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, chairman of the Kingdom Holding Company, who told Charlie Rose that he had about a 6-7% stake? As part of my personal policy of denigrating everything NewsCorp does except The Simpsons, I think I’ll just call it “Murdoch, Al-Walid & Co.” from now on.



Write a post with the headline “MOST AUDIENCE ATTRACTING BLOGPOST IDEA EVER”. But with my past record and ongoing bad luck, it won’t work for me.


High Maintenance Dot Me

I know that no more than one or two of you in my half-vast audience of several dozen care, but I’ve made some more changes to the star-making machinery behind this unpopular blog.

Yes, the complicated header image is less complicated now. Leaner and meaner, you might say. I had to lose Bill Wendell and Wendell Goler from the mix of Other Wendells as well as that road sign that promised Gas with your Wendell, but what is left is still Wendellicious and allows more room for more content to show “above the fold”.

Speaking of content and page format, I have done something to make my front page all more readable/accessible. IF you have javascript enabled. Just follow these instructions:

AHA! This post unfolds to reveal that this is one of my long, involved rants! I’m going to do this on all my thousand-word entries, even the ones made up of dozens of 140-character Twitters, so you don’t get the front page cluttered by things like those umpteen Jack in the Box commercial videos. I have decided to go AJAX with this because I’d rather have happy visitors than extra pageviews. But seriously, I’d appreciate your comments on my new-to-me technology, especially if something isn’t working (for that you still have to click to another page… but maybe not for long).

Also, if you have serious OCD, you may notice that the left sidebar is a little skinnier. That is a side effect of my installing a seriously cool Grid system into the formatting code. Not only that, if I may brag (and who’s stopping me?), I adapted the @#$% out of one of the more popular Grid systems to make a 12-column system into 24-columns for greater flexibility, accommodate that right sidebar that starts at the top of the page that nobody else does, and give me the option of different-sizes of margins between content columns (which is why, if you look at the Page Source of this site, you’ll see classes named “grod” instead of “grid”). So, if I wanted to, I could make that left sidebar wider again by changing two numbers in the code. (I’m not going to talk about how much work it took to get to that point) This will allow me to use the Grid I built to make other themes for other blogs lickety-split, so if you’ve been missing my commentary on webcomics at the Funny Paperless, well, something even cooler is coming very soon. And this time I can say ‘very soon’ with a little bit of confidence!

And one more thing, the ‘big change’ in hosting this blog that I rolled out when President Obama was inaugurated turned out NOT to be the change I needed, so I rolled back to where I was before. It turns out that WordPress MU is not so great for one user doing multiple blogs unless that user has Multiple Personality Disorder. And I don’t. Honestly. And neither do I.

Okay, thanks for following along on this rant. I promise to blog a lot more about things somebody actually cares about (although most likely not YOU) starting tomorrow. Monday. Yes, the Monday holiday for Several Presidents’ Happy Unbirthday. Because blogging never takes a holiday, just long unscheduled hiatuses.


Get the Picture? Neither Do I.

I knew there would be unforeseen complications to the recent under-the-hood behind-the-scenes below-the-surface under-your-nose inside-the-box off-the-beaten-path under-the radar behind-the-curtain between-the-seat-cushions off-the-wall in-the-crawlspace and up-the-tailpipe changes to the ol’ blog. And while some of you (mostly at Twitter) have said nice things about some of the Old Content that has been returned to the Archive, I am still quite anxious about what may be lurking back there. I did have an annoying amount of difficulty posting the Overthinkin’ Bean graphic in the MetaFilter-reference post yesterday, and have since discovered that some (but not all) of the pics in older posts have disappeared. Apparently, somewhere in Conversionland, the addresses in the posts started pointing at places where the pictures were not, or just never stopped pointing at where they used to be. THAT’S A FAIL, WORDPRESS. BRINGS YOUR WEBLOG SUPPORT AVERAGE DOWN FROM A-MINUS TO B-PLUS.

Anyway, fixing it all appears right now to require going in and re-entering long and goofy-looking URLs, so that’s one more item on my It’ll Take Me Years To Do List. But if you, my happy, tolerant, possibly-drugged-up webfriends, should find something missing [which reminds me, my Oxymoron Site is also on that List] that you’d like me to restore ASAP, leave me a note in the comments for this post (if they work) or on the Contact Form (if it works), or if neither works, give me an Angry Twitter. Which would be a great name if Burger King ever wanted to make a chicken sandwich like its “Angry Whopper”. But I digress. Interminably.


If You Can Read This…

…welcome to the new and subtly improved Wendell.Me. What? You don’t see any difference? Good. It’s all, as they say, under the hood, but if you’ll look at the left sidebar, you’ll discover that I have restored the archives from my past blogging attempts going back to The Last Millennium (I like saying that). However, there’s a lot of cleaning up to do, so don’t panic if you see something weird as you wander though my playing cards and please just let it be one of sixteen vestal virgins who were heading for the coast… uh, sorry, I’ve been listening to some old Procol Harum songs…

Anyway, if you still think I’m not providing enough tasty new content, CLICK HERE.