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November 20, 2004

Happy Second Birthday, Nonfamous!

Yes, it's true-- Famous and Nonfamous Strangers is two years old today! Our first post was written November 20, 2002.

I never imagined how successful--or how much fun--this blog would be when I sat in my bedroom on 61st Street struggling with HTML and CSS getting it going. And needless to say, I had no idea all of the amazing changes in my life I'd end up writing about--proposing to David in Maui, buying a home we'd call Casa Nonfamous, visiting Moscow, Paris, London, Sydney and Adelaide, Vienna, and Florence with him--let alone the immeasurable joy of getting married in Vancouver. I could only imagine the pleasures of reading Paulette's posts from Spain. Swallow Don't Spit wasn't even a glimmer in my (slightly intoxicated) eye.

There was no Pam in our lives, no Jamie and Mike, no Jason--can you imagine? We'd never loved, worried about, or mourned poor little Dozer. I never dreamed that a post would get David profiled and photographed in the New York Times. And who can forget the time I lost on Jeopardy! While I did expect we'd all have quite a bit to say about politics, I did not really expect the quality of writing and depth of commitment the site would bear witness to. Needless to say I never really imagined that 51% of Americans would turn the site into an extended exercise in group therapy/platoon activation. But I did hope that it would reflect, as fully as pixels can, the passion that all of us bring to the business of living, loving, eating, drinking, traveling, working, and politicking. That it has done, and I am so proud and thankful.

So what are our vital statistics? With almost 1,000 entries, we're humming along quite nicely. Our most recent author additions--Terry, Marti, Jamie, Jason, and Erik--continue to post amazing stuff, joining David, Paulette, Pam, Gary, and me. (Nonfamous, for its birthday, really wants to get Anika and Julie Anne posting, not to mention Rachel if only she could conquer her fear of the Internets.) These writers are being read by 300-500 unique visitors a day, and our Google AdSense revenue is trickling in at a rate that pays for the site's hosting. But most importantly, we have proved that a group blog can do exactly what I hoped it would--replicate online the amazing sense of community, conversation, and convivality that our group of friends demonstrates in the flesh. Our family and friends in Australia, Oklahoma, New Jersey, New York, England, and Poland can see what's happening in Seattle and hear the thoughts in our heads. We get the occasional reader from Finland, Japan, and even Saudi Arabia. It is an amazing thing, and I want to thank every person who posts to, comments on, or just reads this site.

So what of the next two years? I honestly believe that the quality of writing and commentary we offer is as good or better than sites that are read by thousands, or tens of thousands, of readers every day. While I don't mind staying, well, nonfamous... I think we can take it to the next level. Blog strategy is increasingly part of my business--helping companies use blogs to connect to their best customers and most honest critics--so I'm going to be talking to more of those "A-list" bloggers and raising the profile of nonfamous.com in the blogosphere. I'm happy to stay nonfamous... but I really do want to launch Paulette's cooking-show career. More on that later.

But to sum up, thanks for reading, thanks for posting, and thanks for passing our link around. Thanks for keeping paranoia at the lowest healthy level, however high that may be. I think Jeannine would be proud (though still crazy).

Posted by jay at November 20, 2004 11:22 AM | TrackBack
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Comments

If we're going to live in interesting times, as seems to be our curse, we need help making sense of all that's happening around us. Thank you for nonfamous and happy birthday!

Posted by: pam on November 21, 2004 07:36 AM

Happy Birthday, Feliz Cumpleanos, Joyeux Anniversaire, alles Gute zum Geburtstag, с днем рождения, gelukkige verjaardag, 축 생일

Thank you so much for giving us a place to gather, rant, discuss and expose ourselves and the rest of this crazy life we are sharing!

Viva NonFamous!

Posted by: terry on November 21, 2004 02:17 PM

Congratulations! Jay sometimes I feel like we're back in Bingham during one of those late night bs sessions (except without the midnight break to call J Crew!). Thanks for helping us stay connected and building this great community. My daily (or more) nonfamous breaks are like looking out of a porthole as I toil in my lowly berth in the ship of commerce. Keep it growing!

Posted by: Seth on November 22, 2004 01:13 PM

I baked a cake, but I'll be damned if I didn't lose a glamour length press-on-nail in the batter. I like to think of it as a new King cake, but we'll just call it Queen cake! Find the nail, good luck the rest of the year!!

Posted by: jamie on November 22, 2004 01:15 PM

Hey! Two years! It seems so recent. I am ashamed to admit I have strayed. The past year has been so bizarre and up and down that I can hardly begin to tell you, but I was just thinking fondly of this site and came to check it out and read what I haven't kept up with.

I hope you are well, and I'm going to backtrack and read everything to see what you are up to. Happy Thanksgiving, btw.

Posted by: Kim Runciman on November 24, 2004 03:19 PM
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