Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Googlee, Googler, and Googling

I would wager that almost everyone who's had an encounter with the Google search engine has "googled" their name in some way or form. I guess it's the innate human curiosity that drives one to look for the imprints one leaves on the world wide web. A google search of my complete name (karl evans henson) will lead the googler to (in order of listing) my LinkedIn profile, a website that someone from college made that has my horrendous grad picture on it, a link to this my main blog (that's Chronicles of Boredom, for my Facebook and Multiply readers), and the results of the August 2007 Philippine medical licensure examination.

I only mention the above because I recently found out that someone (from a place in the US that will remain unnamed) has been googling my name. "Karl henson md" to be exact. The results from those particular search terms will unfortunately lead the googler first to a paper, written by Leslie M.D. Helmus and R. Karl Hanson, dealing with treatment of sex offenders (there's even a PDF you can download). There is something seriously jarring about seeing the words on the result page after a search of your name. "Chronicles of Boredom" appears only sixth on the list.

More interestingly, this same googler remained on my website for a little less than an hour (I'm assuming) just reading my entries. What intrigues me the most is that I know of absolutely no one who lives in the place where the search originated. And no, I'm not a psychic. I know about the search through my free visitor counter from SiteMeter (does the free plug qualify me for a Pro account?). A screenshot of the sitemeter record of the visit appears below.

Allow me to be clear though. I'm not freaked out (much) by this. In fact, I welcome all visitors to my blog. I just wish they left comments on the entries they read. Oh, and if that person from the unnamed place in the US and who's so engrossed by my entries reads this, I would love to pick your brains about it sometime (or maybe you were just sorely bored?). I assure you this is not an ego trip.


I've been tracking my website ever since I created it in August 2004 (I just realized my blog is about to turn 5 years old). Over the years, there have been search terms that seemed to recur and these terms are used by people scattered over a wide geographic area (Europe, the US, Africa, and Southeast Asia). Off the top of my head, these are some of the more common search terms that lead people to my blog (listed in no particular order):

1. chronicles of boredom (I am not aware that I borrowed the title of my blog from another blog or book or something else famous; I can genuinely say that I thought it up. Now it seems there are 2 or 3 other blogs out there so named. I make no claims, however.)
2. charity church mouse (people familiar with psalty and kids praise! would know who she is; people in the Midwest US seem to be most interested in her)
3. driving playlist (this comes up a lot; apparently, many are interested to build their own driving tunes list)
4. meritissimus (I'm assuming these are clerks from UST who are curious about the revalida grading system)
5. oral revalida UST
6. USMLE tips
7. my first autopsy
8. descriptive writing

Every once in a while, someone googles my name. Again, I wish they left comments on my blog. Hehe.

Before I round up this entry, I'd like to give a shout out to KayeFish and dancerinthedark (whose website has recently been abandoned in favor of tumblr. I don't know if she'd like it if I redirect you to her new site). Their blogs seem to send my website a handful of visitors and I think it's a symbiotic relationship.


Here's the sitemeter entry of the mysterious visitor (i.e. I'm not lying. Hehe).


Anonymous said...

I happened to come across your blog by chance. What piqued my interest in the beginning is your narration of your journey of getting a residency training spot in the US. Also, there were biblical references in your blog, words of high and lofty ideals, and of your desire to submit yourself to God and follow His will in your life. I am attracted to people who have those ideals, and “real” desire to surrender their life to God whatever the cost may be.

But then the disconnect begins. I presume you are familiar with the Word, having been raised in a Christian home. Then you know that in biblical times, parents are very particular in naming their children, for the name somehow characterize the person, and most often than not, the name becomes a self fulfilling prophecy of their destiny. The same is true with your blog. I just can’t shake my head in the seeming contradiction of it all: you’re writing about your dreams, and about God, yet you name your blogs Chronicles of Boredom? Is writing and talking about God a boredom?

If we are really Christian at heart, we will discern numerous lessons that God wants to teach us in our own daily experiences, no matter how painful those experiences might be. On your part, I can only surmise that perhaps He is teaching you lessons in humility. Reading your earlier blogs, I cannot help but sense some air of pride, a taint of arrogance in your writings. Proverbs declare: “Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before the fall”. It is also written, “Before honour is humility”. Read the life story of Ben Carson, MD, world renowned pediatric neurosurgeon of John Hopkins Hospital in his best seller book, “Gifted Hands”, and you will see how this very intelligent God fearing person also learned to be humble on his path to greatness.

Lastly, I hope you will not mind if I leave this quotation from an inspired Christian writer for everyone to ponder:

“True success in any line of work is not the result of chance or accident or destiny. It is the outworking of Divine providences, the reward of faith and discretion, of virtue and perseverance. Fine mental qualities and high moral tone are not the result of accident. God gives opportunities; success depends upon the use made of them”.

By the way, I am not the one googling your name. Don’t be concerned how many people are googling you or how many are visiting your sites. But rather use your writings to influence people to know God and to love Him. Remember the line in the book The Purpose Driven Life-It’s not about you!

karlmd said...

Dear Anonymous,

Thank you for your comments! I truly appreciate them. Let me address some issues:

1. You are right. There seems to be a disconnect between what I am writing now and the title of my blog. But the blog started almost 5 years ago as a way to pass the time and as a place where I can post my thoughts on anything that strikes my fancy. It just so happens that I have had some pretty life-changing experiences that led to my writing about my faith and my journey with the Lord. I am by no means reducing my relationship with God as something that even comes close to boredom. I could start another blog just to publish my essays about my faith and about God but I guess it's just convenient to have everything in one place. But again, you are right in pointing that out and I will consider one day changing the blog's name into something more appropriate.

2. You are once again right that God is indeed teaching me humility. He's been teaching me that lesson for a long time. I have always known that I have a tendency to be self-sufficient and proud of my accomplishments and the gifts that He has bestowed upon me. It is only by God's grace that I can write about bending my will to His, especially regarding this residency application thing. Thanks for the book recommendation. I'll keep an eye out for it.

3. For future reference, who's the author of that quote? It deserves a page on my Moleskine. :-D

Once again, thank you for leaving this comment. I do pray that the words I write will continue to pique other people's interest and perhaps see God's glory and His slow but sure work in my life. I am encouraged by the fact that we are all a work in progress. That's why my life verse is found in Philippians 1:6.

Joely Ann said...

Karl! Ako I will leave comments because I realy do read your blog!!!

Anonymous said...

Here is the link The quote is embedded in that chapter,but it will be a greater blessing if you read the entire chapter.

Anonymous said...


The Fish said...

I wonder who anonymous is. :)