One of the things you didn’t know about this blog is that a sizable amount of its traffic comes from Google searches for “Labrador porn”. Almost every time I check Sitemeter, there’s someone searching with that phrase (or a variant such as “porn, Labrador”) and ending up at this post. And it’s never the same person, unless it’s someone who travels around the globe expressly for the thrill of Googling on computers located in different countries. Apparently the world is full of fans of lab-porn: they hail from Michigan, London, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore (where the searcher specified “golden Labrador porn”), Bolivia, Tokyo, Madras. This shows that for all our superficial differences of culture, religion, language and race, people everywhere are basically the same. It’s a heartwarming thought.
Sitemeter also provides information about how long a particular visitor spends on the blog, individual pages visited etc, and as you might expect, Labrador-porn seekers tend not to linger at Jabberwock once they realise that Google has misdirected them. Don’t get me wrong, I'm not suggesting that a person interested in videos of humping doggies might not also be interested in a 3000-word interview/profile of Anita Desai or a review of a 1922 documentary; the human mind can be a fascinatingly inclusive thing and many of us have a wide range of interests. But I would think it’s definitely unlikely that a person looking for humping doggies would at that particular point in time be willing to settle instead for an Anita Desai interview or a review of a 1922 documentary, for there’s something very urgent and purposeful about a porn search; it's meant to fulfill an immediate need. At the most, I’d think such a searcher would bookmark the blog, telling himself, “The passive narrator in Murakami’s fiction! Cool, I’ll come back to that after the dog show.”
Which is why I was pleasantly surprised to discover today, for the first time, a Labrador-porn Google searcher who actually lingered! Someone in Illinois who entered the blog at the “This Gun for Hire” post but who then – instead of shaking his fist at his screen and exiting in disgust as any self-respecting lover of lab-porn would do – proceeded to visit 13 more pages (including the Bougainvillea House review, which incidentally has a – non-sexual – mention of dogs) and eventually spent more than 30 minutes on the site. To this anonymous visitor, I would like to say: thanks for the patronage, and I hope your stay was worth the sacrifice.