Spikes in stats

Feedburner displays my feed subscribers in the left column. I keep an eye on as a casual reference to growth in readership and declare little victories everytime the odometer clocks another 100 readers.

Typically it hovers around 600 subscribers but in the last few days it has spiked to 900 plus. Why? No clue. The number fluctuates up and down, but a 30% spike means either Feedburner has burped or … (update, Nathan Gilliatt said FriendFeed subs are added)

Some undetected thing spiked inbound traffic.

Look at the green bar just go nuts in the last week.

I’m not a collector of stat counts — I have to worry about followers and ranks too much in the real world of Lenovo — but it is an ego-stroke to know someone reads this stuff.

Then again some don’t ….. Stefan Constantinescu, a great commentor on all things related to ThinkPads, had to unsub when he realized that my professional title doesn’t mean this blog follows in my career’s footsteps. (No hard feelings Stefan, just citing your decision as example of blog identity crisis).

  1. Churbuck: David Churbuck works for Lenovo (OTCPK: LNVGY), a company that makes a line of laptops known as the ThinkPad. Why do I know this? I’m a huge ThinkPad nerd. Practically every laptop I’ve ever owned has been a ThinkPad. I love the design, the dependability, the battery life, but do I love David? This is his personal blog more or less. He constantly writes about getting back into shape and fishing. I’m sorry, but I just don’t care. Decision: Unsubscribe.

Whereabouts week of June 29

Coming into the summer season this weekend, the traffic has tripled, the sidewalks of Cotuit are alive with joggers and bikers and baby carriages, and I am trying to stay close to the home fires.

I have a boat to paint, another to launch, lawns to mow, in-laws to entertain, family arriving from Florida, China ….

So — no travel for the next two weeks. Focus on some work stuff, then hit the road in mid-July for some Lenovo partnership meetings on the west coast.

Monday-Sunday: Cotuit. You know where to find me.

Local ball

What could be better than knocking off work at 5 pm, walking half a mile down Main Street to a little ball field tucked into the pines, and watching the best college baseball players in the country play nine strong innings in the June sunshine?

Welcome to Cape Cod Baseball League baseball, arguably the best summer college baseball league on the planet. Where wooden bats reign, and little girls sing “Take Me Out To the Ball Game” during the seventh inning stretch. Where admission is free, kids run wild, and you can pick up a cup of clam chowder and a couple dogs for dinner. Cute girls in their summer clothes flirting with the boys in the dugouts. Old timers parked by the third base line fence in their lawn chairs. Families tucking into boxes of pizza on picnic tables.

This is the real deal. No lights. No rock music. No mascot running the baselines.

This is where I:

  • smoked my first cigarette (in the pit in the woods behind the visitors stand)
  • had my first (of several)  fights with a townie (I was and always will be just a summer kid)
  • had my bike stolen something like three times

Cotuit is where major leaguers like the Met’s  Ron Darling played.  The Yankee’s GM, Joe Girardi, was a Kettleer. The team was started in 1947 and has won the Cape championship more than 12 times. The current list of Kettleer alumni in the pros is here.

Great aerial of the Cotuit park here.

Congrats to my Cotuit buddy, Matthew Barzun

Public Affairs Section Stockholm – Press Release.

Fingers crossed for my Cotuit friend and fellow Cotuit Skiff sailor, Matthew Barzun:

On June 19, President Barack Obama announced his intent to submit to the U.S. Senate for approval the nomination of Mr. Matthew Barzun to be the next U.S. Ambassador to Sweden.In reference to the nomination of Mr. Barzun and several others for ambassadorial posts President Obama said, “I am grateful that these fine individuals will serve in my administration and I am confident that they will well represent our nation abroad and help strengthen our relationships within the international community. I look forward to working with them in the months and years ahead.””
The Senate will do well by confirming Matteo.

FSJ is back

“I will tell you this about iLiver 2.0: It’s nanoengineered, and it kicks ass. I wake up every morning feeling like Shaft, Superfly, James Bond and Kung Fu all put together. I’m bench-pressing twice my body weight”

Life is better again. Dan Lyons brought back Steve Jobs, this time with half of David Pogue’s liver.

via The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs.

Shameless ThinkPad promotion

Okay, so I get grief for talking about fishing and shaving the dog’s butt on this blog by people who for some resason think that the guy who does digital marketing for the company that makes ThinkPads is going to blog about ThinkPads. No way! Ok, so sure, I try not to get all spammy and promotional for the company that pays my paychecks, but every so often we do something that reminds me why I here and glad to not be there, and that’s my simple love for classic stuff that works, is designed by people who care about what they are making, and carries a kind of craftsmanship that I sure as heck didn’t get from my rental car this week.

For the last year I’ve had a serious love affair with my ThinkPad X200S — a bad ass little ultraportable with a 12 inch screen. I love it so much that I just juiced the hard drive to 320 gigs and am tempted to go buy some more memory to make it fly …

But then this came along. Just another ThinkPad?

This is the T400s. The T-series is our bread and butter ThinkPad — the one our corporate users roll out to their employees. If you are reading this post on a ThinkPad your IT department gave you then you are probably reading it on a T60 or a T61. It’s what I was given at IDG in 2005. If you bought it yourself, or are a big traveller, then you may be on an X200 like me, or an X60-61.

So why am I getting all spammy and in your face about just another black laptop?

Ah ….. This thing took all the glory of our X300 — the notebook Businessweek called the Perfect PC — and puts it into a serious heatseeker of a laptop. You can, if you are inclined to spend the big dollars, make this thing behave like a serious workstation. Configure it with a big SSD drive, max the RAM and you’re talking one of the most powerful laptops ever conceived. Super thin, and loaded. I could see toting this around for the next two years with never a regret.

I’d dumping the X200 for this. Listening to my buddy David Hill go on about the design enhancements– the interior design — not the skin, the bling, the crud that our competitors seem to think makes idiots buy PCs, but the internal genius… in this. I personally love the consistency of our design, I just need to figure out how to show you the inside genius.

Want one? Send me an email for my employee purchase code.  dchurbuck AT lenovo.com. Here’s David on the keyboard.

Why I Hate Social Media – Advertising Age – DigitalNext

Matt Jones at Jack Morton says what need to be said — it’s not the plumbing, but the water in the pipes when it comes to social marketing.

“At the risk of being branded a heretic or perhaps just being shown the door by my agency HR director, I have to say it: I hate social media. Why? Because it’s just media. And since when was media ever interesting?”

via Why I Hate Social Media – Advertising Age – DigitalNext.

“Get on the Boat Campaign”: Three Bays Preservation works to raise awareness of fragility of Barnstable’s bays

“Get on the Boat Campaign”: Three Bays Preservation works to raise awareness of fragility of Barnstable’s bays.

Cape Cod Today on Three Bays’ tour of the Cotuit Bays last weekend. I saw them on the water Saturday — there was a little sun and break from the incessant rain. It’s good to see public awareness building about the water quality issues.

Take me out to the ballgame …..

As I grow old I start to look at life’s potential opportunities differently, chafing at hours spent wasted in front of the television or laptop, fretting over powerpoints that don’t get read, emails that don’t get answered, Dancing With the Celebrity Housewives in Intervention … and realize, that at any given time, there is something I could be doing that I have never done before.

Last night I did something I’ve been meaning to do for the last four years — and that was go see a Durham Bulls game. I tried once the first summer I worked in North Carolina but was rained out before the first pitch.

Goodmon Park is what the connoisseurs of the sport would call a “bandbox” of a park — a nice new  (1995) AAA league ballpark that sits like an emerald of grass in the late afternoon sun and gave me that wonderful revelatory thrill as I walked through the tunnel to the stands and saw in front of me that big green field (I get kind of religious when I emerge from the bowels of Fenway, but still, the comparisons between churches and ballparks are one of sport’s writings most tired but true cliches.)

Big bag of peanuts, four — count em — four hotdogs; a big Yuengling beer and a nice night in the Carolina summer on the third base line by the Red Sox bullpen.

Clay Bucholtz on the mound for the Pawtucket Red Sox — my home team’s AAA feeder. And Scot Kazmir rehabbing for the Tampa Bay Rays — last season’s arch rivals (we had an epic bench clearing brawl).

Bucholtz left the game early, falling behind, and by the end of the nine innings the Bulls had won, 3-1, breaking a long losing streak.

Just  a nice night, well spent, with a good friend, a lot better than four hours weeding emails in a hotel room.