One hundred forty-four is an interesting number. For one thing, it's a perfect square — a term which has also been applied, sometimes fondly, sometimes not so fondly, to me. In terms of quantity measure, it equals twelve dozen or one gross. And if anything deserves to be called "gross", it's the fact that I've kept up this preposterous Web site for three whole years.

Of course, over those thirty-six months things have changed substantially here. Compare the statistics from that first week with the numbers from today:

Actual size of site, in megabytes 0.0984.65
Number of viewable pages7 269
Average visitors per dayFewer than 2More than 3

Quite a change. To my amazement, there continues to be a small but steady demand for my particular brand of, uh, whatever this is, even after lo, these many years. One of the reasons I undertook this project in the first place was to see if I was capable of writing anything more substantial than a one-liner. While the jury perhaps is still out on that particular question, there's little doubt that at least I'm getting some mental exercise. To those of you who have stuck with me this long, my heartfelt gratitude; to the remaining ninety-nine point something percent of the human race, well, you'd best get your carcasses in gear — this can't last forever. For that matter, neither can I.

The Vent

9 April 1999

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 Copyright © 1999 by Charles G. Hill