Friday, 20 March 2015

God bless America

Dear Americans, I want you to know I've always admired and respected you. Without you my life would be incomplete. You are special people from a special nation.

Why this declaration of affection for the inhabitants of the world's number one superpower? Well, put quite simply, they are my readers.

I get way more, and I mean way more, viewers of this blog from the USA than from any other country in the world.

I won't go in to precise numbers because by comparison with many blogs my readership figures are quite puny, but the fact remains that I get at least 500% more readers from the US than from the next nearest group which happens to be people in Great Britain - the country of my birth.

Trailing in third place is Greece, where I am now, and about which I write most often and then in fourth place is South Korea. No, I don't know why either. Other countries in which readers of this blog are to be found include a sprinkling of European nations and China. Ain't the internet a wonderful thing?

Finding this out made me wonder if I ought to change the content of my blog to reflect the majority readership. Should I mould the content to better fit the interests of the legions, my word, of readers from the USA. The only trouble is my knowledge of America is patchy to say the least.

I do read about some of what goes on in the USA - Mrs Clinton's email use seems to be getting people agitated - but I've never been and given the state of my finances trips across the Atlantic seem unlikely any time soon.

Probably the biggest influence on my perceptions of the USA is TV and films. Oh dear, that's an awful admission, isn't it?

So this winter, this interminably long, wet and windy winter we've had in Skopelos I've watched boxed sets of DVDs of various TV series. None of it has been new stuff by any means. Mrs C and I have watched Northern Exposure, kooky folks in Alaska; The Sopranos, mob life in New Jersey; and The West Wing.

We're completely bowled over by The West Wing. We're only just coming up to the end of season two and we're hooked. President Bartlet is a great bloke and he's got wonderful people working for him who are smart and funny and...oh god, it's wonderful.

President Bartlet's house.

So here's the thing, American people, please keep reading my blog, comment on it, too. But don't, please don't, tell me that life in the US is not like my wintertime TV viewing. I don't want to know if there are people in America who can't find their own backside using both hands, I don't care.

For now, I like the rugged individualists of Alaska, I even like the wise guys of New Jersey, and I think President Bartlet towers over us all. In other words, Americans, you're fine by me and as long as you're happy to put up with with me burbling away about whatever comes in to my head I think we'll get along just fine.

PS: If you are from anywhere other than the USA and reading this blog I'd like you to know you're important to me, too. I'd hate you think my head was turned just by some readership statistics.

Heaps of songs to choose from if you write about America, but there's only one Godfather of Soul which means you've got James Brown singing Living in America.

* Picture of the White House by Ingfbruno (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons


  1. Hello Mark, it's me, Pat! That's Purrfect is a blog of mine. Anyway, that's not what I wanted to say. Unfortunately, the dearly beloved is hooked on American true crime shows so his view of our special friends across the pond is somewhat skewed! I personally love Modern Family which is hilarious - one of the best sitcoms ever, in my view. It's very uplifting and feel good, so the pendulum swings back.

    1. While still in the UK we rarely missed an episode of any of the various forms of CSI, NCIS or The Mentalist. So, yes, it's easy to get a weird idea of a place from TV programmes. Imagine what people must think of Britain if all they ever see is re-runs of Inspector Morse and Poirot with a bit of Dad's Army thrown in for good measure.


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