After the storm
July 18, 2005

It's been a busy 2 weeks! Time to reflect and look at the numbers.

Well, this link probably summarizes the month pretty well so far [ok, it doesn't anymore... now see my HTV page]. Tuesday started off pretty slow, I woke up and proceeded to some job sites and my inbox, to discover a charming reporter named Sue wanted to speak with me. "Sure" I thought; "I did an interview last week and not much came of it. Hopefully the site will get a few more hits."

04 Jul 2005 -- 522
05 Jul 2005 -- 39.5k
06 Jul 2005 -- 93.4k
07 Jul 2005 -- 52.0k
08 Jul 2005 -- 11.2k * server switch
09 Jul 2005 -- 4.7k
10 Jul 2005 -- 4.9k
11 Jul 2005 -- 5.3k
12 Jul 2005 -- 5.2k
13 Jul 2005 -- 4.7k
14 Jul 2005 -- 2.3k
15 Jul 2005 -- 3.1k
16 Jul 2005 -- 1.8k
17 Jul 2005 -- 1.6k
18 Jul 2005 -- 2.1k+

As of 2 PM PST, July 18th 2005 the site had at least 201343 hits; there was a while (several hours) when I had switched servers and hadn't set up my stats package yet. Perhaps in a while i'll get around to getting the exact numbers out of the raw logs. Just wait until the election hits... !!!

I've had over 300 e-mails in response to the site. I'm trying to respond to each one that posed a direct question, but it's a work in progress.

My favourite quote to date would have to be what Pat Martin said to the Hill Times:

"Someone needs to give this man a job and pay him a lot of money"

Thank you sir! One could also misinterpret that to mean "go away, you're making my life difficult"... but Mr. Martin looks pretty good from those stats, so i've interpreted it as a compliment. Unfortunately no one has heeded his recommendation yet, but i'm about to resume my job hunting campaign.

It seems Paul Szabo and I are exchanging jabs now. In jest I called him the "parliamentary windbag"; today I see mention of Mr. Szabo:

"Mr. Szabo said he found some mistakes, such as mixing up people with the same surnames and his own statistic that says he's been absent three times from a vote. 'I don't think I've ever missed a vote'"

There were a few mistakes in assigning quotes between Louise and Robert Thibault (I incorrectly identified one of them, causing the quotes to be misdirected). The errors were corrected prior to the story hitting the newswire, and I double-checked all the identifier tags for consistency. There could be errors, but no one has spotted any yet (besides MPs who have websites which are difficult to find). It could very well be that this is just an old quote, or perhaps Mr. Szabo is bringing out the boxing gloves.

Paul Szabo didn't think he had missed a vote this session. Here's what the records show (see if you can find Mr. Szabo's name in the list):

2005-03-09 18:00 A
2005-05-13 11:00 A
2005-05-13 13:20 A

I don't doubt that Mr. Szabo was in the House; he may very well have been, but he didn't vote. A few have complained about abstaining and being absent not being separate; it may be possible to differentiate the two in the future. I will point out that abstaining is useless political footwork; in other words, saving face: supporting or opposing a division while wanting to be seen as doing the opposite (ie. I oppose the budget, but want it to pass). It's appropriate for those needing neutrality, such as Mr. Milliken or Strahl, but otherwise they're just playing games.

There is a correction or three to make regarding press coverage. First of all, the figure 600 hours was a guess, and upon proper calculation I found it to be more likely 200 hours, spread out unevenly over the previous 8 months.

Secondly: "... who still lives at home in Kamloops ..."

Ouch... that hurts. I've only been here for just over a year; the four years prior to that I was quite far from home: Victoria BC, St. George NB, Mackenzie BC, Campbell River BC, and Pécs Hungary. I'm not unemployed either, but am searching for work after moving on from various projects and freelancing.

Thirdly: "Before I came along, it wasn't really accessible."

My friend Jon said "if I didn't know you better, i'd think that was a pompous statement." It sure sounds that way, and I don't recall saying it quite like that; you know what I meant (before this website, gathering the data was quite tedious -- trust me, or check out the Szabo vote links above).

Finally, I need to point out my final interview which rounded things off wonderfully. I went on "Kamloops Internet Radio" with Arjun Singh (on "the X", Thompson Rivers University's campus radio). I must say that was the only live interview I truly enjoyed. Campus radio is so much cooler than regular radio... with the exception of the CBC.