Happy Anniversary!!!

- wadE

The 15th of November marks the 4th anniversary of simpleprop.com.

Last year I felt like the we had been doing this forever, but could still remember the early days like they were yesterday. Well, that's changed because those early days have faded. The last year has been a whirlwind for all of us here at SP, and that's has probably been reflected in our production. Last year we wrote 48 articles, this year it's around 25. With nearly 10 of those being my recent weekly Minnesota Viking related rambles.

Even though our personal production dipped, simpleprop.com started to really become a community with over two dozen members on our forum...but then we had the great forum crash of October which wiped out our entire database. We should have seen it coming. First was some funky erros with the search capability, then the unexplicable gigantation (if I can make up a word) of the avatars. The signs were there, but we didn't act until it was too late. Although the forum has risen from the ashes, it is still just getting back on its feet. So get back out there and re-register. Whether you are looking for serious debate, interesting information, or silly commentary, there's something for everyone!

After 3 straight years of unprecedented growth, we've leveled off this year, which was expected. If we grew at our previous pace we'd be talking nearly 1.25 million pages. We didn't have a new feature (like the forum) to bump up readership, and it doesn't seem our mention in the Boston Globe helped out as much as I had hoped.

year:  #reqs: #pages: 
----: ------: ------: 
2001    1335     202  
2002   62359    8406  
2003  321443   50335  
2004  994109  255774  
2005  901384  216789 (as of 11/11)

We ended up breaking a quarter of a million pages last year, which was the stretch goal for 2004. This year the stretch goal was 300,000 which I don't think we will make, but the target goal was to equal 2004, and we have a good chance at that. Regardless, it is still phenomenal. If you told me 4 years ago we'd still be doing this today and we'd have over 250,000 hits per year, I wouldn't have bet a dollar on it. So besides thanking Wade and Alex, I'd like to thank all of you who have stumbled across our pages (whether looking for the Barney Fife song, info on Sue Bird, or a picture of emilio estevez...shirtless) as well as our loyal readers and forum members. You've made this a very rewarding experience. And we are excited to rededicate ourselves to the site to bring you more articles, gambits, and verbal sparring on the forum in 2006!

Ok, enough of mushy stuff, let's get to my favorite part of the anniversary article, the Oscar-style look back at the articles of the past year!

Best Movie Review: Alex for Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
Per usual, Alex was the only one running in this category, but his three different movie reviews were all good, but I give the nod to H2G2 for no other reason than I am prominently mentioned (it's always good to suck up to the judge!).

Best Sports Article: wadE for Week 1: Vikings vs. Tampa Bay
Effortlessly combining sports and politics together. This is a sports article that eats like a meal. (what?) Honorable mentions for Wade's baseball article and Alex's hockey article.

Best Personal Article: wadE for Suburban Decline
A topic that isn't talked about near as much as I think it should. More and more attention is being given to how livable our cities are. Can you walk to your local grocery store? Probably not. Some people can't even safely walk to their nearest park. Food for thought.

Best Topical Article: Wade for Filibusting Our Balls
Not only the best title of any article this year, but a great look at the Filibuster crisis which is probably about to become quite topical again with the continuing saga of the Supreme Court vacancy. A funny and informative article from the only guy here at SP with a degree to back up this discussion.

Best Travel Article: wadE for Las Vegas: Part Deux
Mostly because it was the only travel article written this year, but look out for multi-part series recapping my summer trip to Northern Europe!

Best Gambit: Wade for Minnesota Fisherman vs. Penthouse Forum
Easily the funniest gambit of the year.

Funniest Article: wadE, Wade, Alex, AND Jason for 5th Annual Austin Bar Crawl
The perennial winner is back, and rightfully so. While the actual crawl nearly killed each of this year, and some of us have sworn off doing another one, the fun of going to Austin as a group is still worth doing once a year. Five years is a great run, but look for a modified crawl next year...and hopefully no run-ins with potential sexual predators.

Worst Article: wadE for This Article
Again, a perennial winner. It's the equivalent of turning on your favorite sitcom just to find it's a clip show.

Best Article after last year's anniversary article but before 1/1/2005: wadE for 12/20/2004 The Price Is Right
My personal review of the best TPIR pricing games. With an addendum from Wade on his favorite. No surprise that he's one of those rubes who loves Plinko.

Best Article: (drumroll please.....) wadE for Do you need a Parent Coach?
It was a tight race this year, mostly because we didn't have a lot of articles. But this topic is something the SP community debates from time to time. We are pretty much half and half when it comes to folks w/ kids and folks w/o. While we all have different thoughts on the matter, I think we all agree that the state of parenting over the last decade has declined. At any rate this is my armchair assessment of the state of parenting. While I don't have children, I fully realize what it takes to raise children, and raise them right...which is why I don't have children. :-)

Thanks again to all of you who stop by simpleprop.com; we feel very blessed to have a channel for our creativity that can bring some brightness to your day, or at least a diversion to keep you from doing actual work. And as always, a special thanks to Wade and Alex, 4 years and counting!

- 11/11/2005

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