I refer to Scoresby Scotch fairly regularly throughout this volume, don’t I? It is because I am frustrated with this particular whisky. And here’s why.
WordPress, the company that houses Angelsportion.com, keeps track of everything, and in fairly decent detail. It chronicles how many hits you’ve had to your blog. It ranks posts by popularity. It even records for you which search engines were used to find you and the particular keywords that connected you to the visitor.
When I first began keeping the blog, among other things, it was to be an excursion into quality Scotches, and the reviews to be written would emerge from a spirit desiring to draw the reader into whimsical jaunts — story telling essentially — in order that the non-fictional aspects of the particular Scotch might be delivered more enjoyably. I think there is something to be said about being on the inside of Lord Vader’s history with Emperor Palpatine, why he actually threw him down the reactor shaft in Star Wars Episode VI (Review of Lagavulin 16). I think it helps to open up, not only the senses to the Scotch, but the mind as well, to know that even though Aslan wanted a drink from the divine old magic, he was found satiated by a nervous Tumnus with something that we can retrieve and enjoy in this world (Review of The Glenfiddich 21). Even my negative reviews are, God willing, given in this way.
But my review of Scoresby was a little different.
I couldn’t just write a negative review about Scoresby. I needed to carry the reader to a much deeper understanding of objective and subjective, right and wrong, truth and untruth. It was an examination of the soul. I knew from my own experiences of walking the aisles at Kroger and Wal-Mart that there existed a particular Scotch whisky that was most affordable and easily transportable in its classless plastic container. And yet I knew the dangers of worshipping at this whisky’s altar. With this knowledge and the prodding of some very close friends, I took a chance at writing not only a review, but a thorough discourse.
Yes, the review was long, but not necessarily cumbersome. At the time, I believed that for most it would be a readily available and readable piece – although I also calculated that because we live in a society of “sound-bites,” only certain folks would actually take the time necessary to read it. It was both philosophical and theological in nature, serving as a journey into and out again from oneself, seeking ever so sincerely to lift the reader to a higher knowledge that they would discern something better. I did offer the typical nose, palate, and finish with some severe judgment, nevertheless, it was entangled in humor and carefully inoffensive. At least, I hope so.
And so my frustration: The most popular post on my humble little blog remains “Review – Scoresby, ‘Very Rare Blended Scotch Whisky’, 3 Years Old, 40%.” Not even the home page has as many visits and views.
To give you an idea, consider that for every single visit any of the other posts receive, the Scoresby post gets about ten.
What does this mean?
Well, discerning the search statistics, “scoresby” is the most common keyword leading people to Angelsportion from a grazed keyboard. Obviously, they weren’t looking for my blog in particular, they just landed there hoping to read about Scoresby, and because one of the second most popular destinations is the “About Angelsportion” page, my gut tells me that perhaps it is that visitors are reading the Scoresby post and then silently asking one of two questions: 1) “Who is this pompous lunatic rambling on forever and then finally wasting my time by ripping on my favorite intoxicant from back in my college days? Go State!” Or 2) “Who wrote this piece? It opened up my ulcer. This is a good thing because it showed me that the actual source of my ulcer is the Scoresby I’ve been drinking. I definitely need something better. What others has the Reverend reviewed? Ah, The Balvenie Caribbean Cask sounds very nice!”
So with all of this being said, I am frustrated that the more poetic reviews are further down in the statistics, and yet I am hopefully optimistic that this is an expressed fraction of visitors who were first found loyal to Scoresby, and having been engaged by the truth, they’ve been converted. If that is true, then the ball has been moved down the field, so to speak, not necessarily scoring a touchdown but gaining significant ground in service to mankind’s Scotch preferences.
I should add that I have confirmed that one of my good friends, the one who somewhat instigated the Scoresby review, is not waking up each morning and typing “scoresby” into a search engine and then clicking on my site’s link, all just to annoy me. I must admit, at first, I wondered.
Lastly, I was speaking with my wife regarding Scoresby’s frustrating and almost incomprehensible lead and the topic turned to the fact that I may just be doing Scoresby some serious damage over time. She asked, essentially, what I would do if a Scoresby executive called and offered me $100,000 to write a positive review. Well, I’d say for $100,000 I would allow them to post a comment at the base of the post. For $200,000 I would shorten the current review. For $300,000 I would do a complete rewrite that leaves the reader wondering if I was actually for or against the whisky. For $400,000 I would delete the post. For $500,000 I would delete the post with the promise not to re-post it somewhere else. For $1,000,000 I would write a positive review encoded in a way that would allow those of you with Angelsportion decoder rings to know the truth. For $2,000,000… well, I guess I’d probably sell out at that point.
Until then, sláinte mhaith!