My 2013 year in review (Or why I’m moving to Sydney)

The image from my most popular post for 2013, which was also Freshly Pressed. Apparently, a lot of people like VW vans.
The image from my most popular post for 2013, which was also Freshly Pressed. Apparently, a lot of people like VW vans.
My thanks to The stats helper-monkeys for preparing this 2013 wrap-up for my blog, but mostly I want to thank all of YOU for making this past year what it was — and this blog for what it has become. And even though I don’t know what that is exactly, I do know it is distracting 1,302 more people now than it was last year at this time. I also know the search term “Naked Ned” drove the most traffic here.

Mostly from Australia.

What this tells me is that, in addition to Australia’s obvious high standards in nude men named Ned, my chance at landing an Outback Steakhouse endorsement is still alive and well in 2014.

Here’s why I’m planning a visit to Australia…

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 33,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 12 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

And keep in mind that’s without any mention of showing off my Bloomin’ Onion.

Again, my sincerest thanks to everyone who not only found this corner of the blog-o-sphere in 2013 but, for reasons I’m sure are a frequent topic of discussion with your psychiatrists, keep coming back…

For the full Monty on the highlights of 2013, please click here

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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

57 thoughts on “My 2013 year in review (Or why I’m moving to Sydney)”

      1. Oh oh and then after we eat my free onion (we will get water making it a really cheap meal) …can we puh-lease purty purty puh-lease go to chuckie cheese and play the games and collect long strips of tickets and make innocent children cry? (They serve beer there-nothing like taking your children to run around bat shit crazy while you get drunk and them drive them home intoxicated putting them and innocent others lives in danger- right!?)
        I just want play the games…

          1. what????!
            That’s so my game!

            Let’s make em wail.

            Hmm. Curious. What does that E stand for in chuckie e cheese? Like I know what the chuck is and his last name is cheese….
            Tweet that for me will ya?

              1. Ahahahahhaaaa!!!

                I so put all the beer and all my strips of tix from Chuck E. Cheese on that being true ned!

                I’ve always wanted to also climb up in the tubes up over everybody. Wave to the ppl down below. Heyyyy!

  1. Naked Ned? I’m pretty sure you could fill the Sydney Opera House a full year with that!
    Am glad to be one of the lucky 1302 people that shouldn’t but read this blog anyway. Great annual report by the way!
    I see you almost have as many followers as there are seats in said Opera House…let me know when you’re gonna start selling tickets for ‘Naked Ned, the Musical’, ‘Naked Ned on Ice’ and ‘The Revenge of the Naked Neds’…

    1. Lol! Thanks, Arend. But I think they only way “Naked Ned” could fill the Sydney Opera House is if I was standing naked outside and chasing people inside. Although I briefly considered teaming up with the show “STOMP,” until I realized “STOMP Naked Ned” could have some serious consequences.

      In all seriousness, thanks for being one of the people who read this blog anyway.

      Cheers and best wishes for 2014!

  2. Again with the naked…
    Seriously though, I’m SO glad that I bumped into your blog (via Victoria). You are one of the most fun and engaging people I know/don’t know.
    Newbie question though…how did you get access to that cool report? I’ve seen a couple other of my blogger friends with the same type of stats (though their bloomin’ onions weren’t quite as, er, famous as yours). Do I need a secret handshake? More time in the saddle? An epilady shaver?

    1. I really appreciate that, Michelle — and the feeling is mutual 😉

      As for the annual report, I think (but can’t say for certain), that there is no secret handshake, although a saddle wouldn’t hurt. In leu of that, I think you have be with WordPress for at least six months.

      Or you could try threatening them with an Epilady…?

      1. “I used to watch “Wonderbug”

        So did I! Wow, I haven’t thought of that show for so long. Guess that shows our age, now doesn’t it? 🙂

        Happy New Year to you too!

    1. Thanks, Don— and thanks for being part of what made this year so great; on the blog and in general.

      My best wishes to you and you family for 2014, Don!

  3. Well bloomin’ onion or not, you can’t move to Sydney! What would your three fans in Florida do? Yeah, sure, we could still keep in touch with you via the internet, but…but…but a ROAD TRIP would be right out! 😦

    And just FYI…my husband owns a 1967 VW van. I swear on a stack of your old blog posts. He had it when I met him more than 30 years ago. It was painted primer red and gray back then, because as soon as he had the money, he was going to restore it. It’s still painted primer red and gray today. Because…as soon as he has the money, he’s going to restore it. It does, however, run like a champ, and he often drives it the 25 miles to work and back, just for fun. (And because he’s a sick puppy who thinks sweating through a 45-minute commute in an un-airconditioned VW in Florida temperatures is fun.) However, I’m pretty sure he never puts it through any maneuvers like the one in your photo. Probably only because this is central Florida, after all, and we don’t do hills here.

    Congratulations on your blogging success, Ned, and all the very best wishes for a wonderful and prosperous 2014, with HUGE book sales, beyond your wildest dreams!

    1. I’m pretty sure moving to Sydney won’t happen. Something about my Visa. Or maybe it was Mastercard? Anyway, my wife already said “No way. The closest you’ll get is wearing a pair of Wallabies.”

      So, it looks like you’re stuck with me. Which brings me to my next point: You’re husband’s VW. If he ever decides to get rid of it, I will come get it. Seriously. It’s still the most comfortable car I have ever driven, and the car with the most character. And primer grey and red? Awesome! Mine was pieced together, so it was technically red, white and blue. Yeah, I was in real demand with the ladies…

      Thank you for the kind wishes, Marcia, as well as you friendship. My very best thoughts and wishes for you, now and always 😉

      1. Thank you, Ned. And the same to you!

        As for that VW…I swear to you, Mark (and this is true of every VW owner I have ever known) has some kind of twisted and perverted relationship with it. I swear, he sneaks into the garage at night to pat it on the fender and whisper tender words to its rear engine. 😯 And the really wild part is, everywhere he goes…and I have seen this with my own eyes, so I know he is not delusional…people holler at him to ask if it’s for sale. He gets notes tucked under the windshield wipers in Home Depot parking lots, and strangers pull up in in our drive if the garage is open and they spot it.

        Sometimes they leave dollar amounts written on napkins and tucked in the door handle. And the most common opening line in a conversation with any admirer is “If you ever wanna sell it…” What IS this fascination with this thing? I’m not a car snob. All I ask is that my cars get me from here to there safely and in air conditioned comfort. But this thing is a piece of…ahem!…garbage to look at. It ain’t PURTY. And it is loud. And rides like a truck with no shocks, forcing passengers to hang on to the panic bar for their very lives.

        Mark says it has cachet. “After all,” he croons, “it’s the last year with a split windshield.” Huh? Well, paint me purple and call me Barney! So THAT’S cachet? Somehow I thought it would be something far sexier! And on that note, I must say that out of the hundreds and hundreds of VW admirers that have approached him in the last 30 years, only one was of the female persuasion. So much for cachet. 😀

        Of course, like all good Volkswagens, Mark’s has a name. Victor Willie. And it’s monogrammed, too…just look at the front end. (This joke never fails to make him smile. He’s a simple tool, you know.)

        My conclusion? Women are from Venus, but men are from a planet much, much farther away. 😉

        1. You are absolutely right, Marcia! I am no motorhead, but I grew up with VWs. My first car was a VW van, but my family and I drove cross country in a VW squareback (we had two), and my second car was a VW Thing. It’s name was Wilbee. My vas was Sebastian.

          I can’t explain it. I do know my VW van was the only car I’ve ever driven (besides a fire engine) that I can get in and out of without bending over. Being 6’2, that is a great feature 😉

          I also had a green van when the kids were little, which they still remember as “The Pickle Van” because they thought it looked like a big pickle. They can’t help but smile when they talk about it — I think that’s why I feel the way I do about them.

          VW vans, not the kids… 😉

  4. I love it! Short, sweet and completely sincere 🙂 I wish you the best this new year my friend! You have, as I have mentioned before been one of the most positive people I have come to know, and for that I thank you! 😀

    1. Awe, shucks! 😉

      It’s great to see your smiling Gravitar again, and I so appreciate all the laughs and insights we’ve shared this past year. You have been — and continue to be — a constant highlight.

      Wishing you the best in life and love for 2014!

  5. Funny, “Naked Ned” is not the search term I used originally to find your blog. I believe I searched for “Humans likely to shave their butt hair on Thursdays”.

    Glad I found your blog this past year. My constipation was cured instantly.

    1. I recently changed to Fridays to increase my reach. And, knowing you, I’m sure I don’t need to elaborate. I’m just glad that you have become a regular reader. I would hate to think of you suffering from irregularity. It’s actually a thought that I avoid at all costs, actually.

      By the way, thanks for being the top commenter on this blog last year! On another note, my visitors have dropped by 40 percent…

      1. I find comfort in knowing that you don’t contemplate my constipation. Block that from your mind at all costs, except if it causes blockage elsewhere.

        Wait — I was top commenter? How is that possible? I NEVER comment on your blog.

        1. Apparently, discovering this blog was more effective in clearing your blockage than you may have realized.

          And, in all sincerity, I’m appreciative.

          Happy New Year, Steve 😉

    1. I find that people who search Naked Ned have usually been drinking, so it stands to reason you may not remember how you “stumbled” onto my site. But that’s just between you and me. Ultimately, I’m just glad you did 😉

      Thanks for reading, Cathy, and I hope to see more of you in the New Year!

  6. It’s always nice to hear about someone having a great year, dressed or naked, so congrats Ned. I knew I became your number one groupie for a reason. Still thinking about it, but I’m sure there is one. :p Happy New Year and all the best for an even better 2014 for you!

    1. Give it another year, I’m sure it will come to you 😉

      Thanks so much for being my No. 1 groupie. It doesn’t matter if I ever get two, you’ll always be No. 1.

      Best wishes and Happy New Year to you, too!

  7. Haha well hopefully it will drive even more kinky Aussies to your door by all the times we have all mentioned NAKED in your comments now. Who are these people googling these things? Hopefully next year I’ll get one of these reports… and see the full extent of trauma I’ve caused on the internet. Most people come to my blog looking for tips on how to determine if their boyfriend is gay… I’m not sure what sort of restaurant endorsement that gets me.
    Here’s to another year of hilarity, Ned!

  8. Look at how notorious, I mean famous, you’ve become in just one year! I think I searched “Naked Ned in Sensible Orthopedic Pumps” and this is where the ethernet spat me out.
    Happy 2014!

  9. I am scandalized! Macy’s Nordstrom’s AND Zappo all have nude pumps for sale- somehow nude is just beyond salacious, whereas naked is modest innocence without clothes.

    1. Yeah, “naked” sounds like it was an accident; “nude” sounds more intentional and scandalous.

      Don’t even THINK about searching “nude orthopedic…”

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