Keepapitchinin, the Mormon History blog » Keepa Kuriosities

Keepa Kuriosities

By: Ardis E. Parshall - March 06, 2009

Another in a series of self-indulgent posts, for which I apologize but can’t resist.

Early this morning Keepa passed a milestone: the spam filter had trapped exactly as many pieces of spam as there have been legitimate comments posted. It took a few months for the spambots to identify Keepa as a target and the rate has picked up tremendously. I suppose it will only continue to climb now – today the spam is outnumbering legitimate comments more than three to one. Bless Akismet and its power to keep most of the trash off-screen!

J. Stapley upgraded my software about a week ago – thanks again, J. – and set up an analytics program that gives me far more information than I’ve ever had before about what people are looking for when they come to Keepa. (Regarding this, keep in mind that your privacy is protected – I know that people fall into the following categories and visit Keepa in response to certain queries, but there is absolutely no way for me to know who falls into which category or who made any particular query.)

A quarter of Keepa’s readers are hard-core Keepa’ninnies: you subscribe by RSS, or you come directly to Keepa by typing in the URL or because you have a link on your own desktop.

Half are readers who come because you have clicked a link at Mormon Archipelago, or Nothing Wavering, or an individual blog; many are frequent readers, but your first stop is somewhere else in the blogosphere.

The last quarter are people who probably only come once, unless they get hooked and join one of the first two categories. These are people who have entered a query on Google or some other search engine, and clicked through to Keepa from the search engine results.

Among the Google searchers of the past week:

Some are evidently Keepa’ninnies searching for specific posts they have already seen:

wordle hymns ardis
brigham young “kiss my ass damn you”

Others appear to be doing research. I’m proud to have posted content that meets a need, whether it’s gospel-related:

priesthood line of authority (this search appears with many variations)
im 40 and single and childless should I mourn the loss of never having kids
lds missionaries and arabs in france
a great many searches for help with Gospel Doctrine lessons

or more academic:

radioactive bottled water history
tahitian storm history 1903
william m. evarts jr
fisher harris utah
yellow roses, iosepa

I’m especially glad to know that my post on Dressing the Dead is waiting to be found by people who may have an urgent personal need for information when they make these queries:

dressing a dead body in temple clothes
dressing a mormon for burial
dressing deceased relative yourself
mormon relief society dressing the dead
relief society dress dead
why do mormons wear temple clothes when buried

Some queries leaving me scratching my head – I can’t even guess which posts resulted in these Google hits:

pole dancing utah stigma
do french mormons drink wine

And while I can guess the posts linked to these queries, I have to wonder why someone was even asking:

history behind creamed tuna casserole
can mormons eat sugar?

Some searches creep me out, for various reasons:

ardis parshall undergarments
My Love Letter to Boy Scouts is found by sickos with various pornographic queries

By far the biggest draw from the search engines, though, is The Great Mormon Marijuana Myth. After the author of the original article edited his post to indicate that “Mormon blogger Ardis Parshall disputes this,” my name has appeared on almost a hundred drug-related websites by potheads who copy the text. In addition to those who come to Keepa via those links, that post is accessed by people who ran these searches:

mormons marijuana
california marijuana 2009
california marijuana mormon
can mormons smoke weed?
cannabis in salt lake city
do mormons smoke weed
history of marijuana in mexico
marijuana history
marijuana lds
time it takes to be addicted to hashish
utah 1915 weed illegal
what is the penalty for possession of the marijuana plant in utah?
why is the mormon church against marijuana
mormon utah marijuana law
can mormons in jamaica smoke weed

Remember, these are searches concerning Mormons and marijuana run within the past week; combined, they have brought 122 readers to Keepa, who average about six minutes reading that post. At least they’re reading it.



  1. This is awesome. Keepapitchinin has become the go-to spot for pot heads, Ardis Parshall undergarments peepers, and Utahn pole dancers!

    And to think that Ardis is pleased about it (“At least they’re reading”)! My, how low you have fallen, Ardis. Low, low, low.


    Comment by Hunter — March 6, 2009 @ 1:43 pm

  2. Fun stuff, Ardis! If you want to REALLY waste time snooping on people, I can show you how to monitor individuals’ activity on your page, see who is doing particular google searches, etc.

    Comment by sister blah 2 — March 6, 2009 @ 1:44 pm

  3. I’m in the half who visits your blog through an aggregator. Thanks for all your posts. (I’m a frequent lurker and infrequent commenter.) Congratulations on reaching spam/comment equilibrium.

    Comment by Keri Brooks — March 6, 2009 @ 1:46 pm

  4. “spam/comment equilibrium” — THAT’s the term I needed! thank you!

    Yes, Hunter, I’m the Mormon Marijuana Maven, and proud of it. You can keep the pole dancing.

    SB2, I didn’t know that was possible. I think it could drive people away if I snooped on them that much — um, are you doing it on BCC? I’ll have to stop posing as Steve Evans and Thomas Parkin if you are.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 6, 2009 @ 1:58 pm

  5. Like you said–at least they’re reading!

    Comment by Michelle Glauser — March 6, 2009 @ 1:58 pm

  6. Took me a while to read through this one. I got sidetracked with your BY Kiss My… post. That was a good one. Thanks.

    Comment by Steve C. — March 6, 2009 @ 2:24 pm

  7. It is so fun to see why people are visiting your site. Do you find find people are not on your site for the same reason you thought they would be. For example, I have one short post I wrote months ago on the average age my female ancestors were at their first marriage. It still pulls 4% of the total traffic; second only to the Cane Creek Massacre (12%) which I thought was why most people came to my site.

    Comment by BruceCrow — March 6, 2009 @ 2:39 pm

  8. Yup, they’re reading … and you’re reading, too — my nefarious reason for this post was to trap Steve and others like him into calling up old posts. Nyahahah! [/evil cackle]

    Bruce, I am surprised by some of it. One big draw that I didn’t mention above is the startling number of people looking for coloring pages with Mormon themes. I was also surprised by the number of hits on Gospel Doctrine lessons — I don’t know whether the ancient lessons coordianted with the current ones are of any help to teachers, but it’s easy to see that many, many teachers are searching for ideas.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 6, 2009 @ 2:50 pm

  9. None of this explains people like me, who come to Keepa looking for hot chicks.

    Comment by Mark B. — March 6, 2009 @ 2:53 pm

  10. Cheers, Ardis!

    Definitely fun stuff. We don’t track users at BCC, but it is an important point that it can by done by any website you visit (pretty creepy, actually).

    Comment by J. Stapley — March 6, 2009 @ 2:58 pm

  11. Mark, you’ve found me!

    Thanks, J. I don’t want to go to that level here, but thanks to you and SB2 for teaching me that it can be done, and might be being done by some websites I visit.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 6, 2009 @ 3:06 pm

  12. Ardis:

    What TYPES of websites DO You visit???? Inquiring minds want to know!

    Comment by Steve C. — March 6, 2009 @ 3:17 pm

  13. If it wasn’t for Stephenie Meyer fangirls and Postum fanatics, I would have shut down AMV long ago. 😉

    Comment by Wm Morris — March 6, 2009 @ 4:12 pm

  14. I read it through Google Reader – which category do I fall under? RSS?

    I have to confess, though, I mostly come for the Funny Bones once a week, although I do peruse the rest.

    Comment by FHL — March 6, 2009 @ 4:39 pm

  15. About half the time I come from my blog reader and the other half I come through a link through Ray’s, Tracy’s or BCC. I also tend to come only when I have time to stay for a while, because I enjoy being here so much.

    Comment by Jami — March 6, 2009 @ 4:44 pm

  16. Ardis, I’ve got you bookmarked in Firefox, which may explain Marks’ hot chicks comment.

    And as to the pole dancing, I apologize for pairing those two words when you showed pictures of early saints dancing around a maypole somewhere in the netherlands of Eastern or Central Utah. Who knew?

    If the spammers have found you, you’ve made it big time.

    Comment by kevinf — March 6, 2009 @ 5:00 pm

  17. The “kiss my ass” post is one of the funniest I’ve read anywhere – and the comments are hilarious. I figured I don’t comment enough anywhere, so I made sure it now has an official comment here on this blog.

    “pole dancing utah stigma” – Yeah, I’m baffled too by that one.

    Underpants and marijuana – This blog really is a subversive attempt to spread the real pillars of Mormonism throughout the world!

    Thanks for the laugh, m’lady.

    Comment by Ray — March 6, 2009 @ 5:14 pm

  18. One big draw that I didn’t mention above is the startling number of people looking for coloring pages with Mormon themes.

    This and many of your points in your post were just so funny.

    I’m glad you share stuff like this. Analytics are fun.

    (And not that this is here or there, but did you see that there is another Ardis on the MA? She’s into history, too. Oh, wait, just saw your comment. Weird, indeed.)

    Comment by m&m — March 6, 2009 @ 5:33 pm

  19. Yeah, Ardis and I met last year at an Emmeline Wells birthday party. I was the first Ardis she had ever met, and she was the second I had met. IIRC, she is named for her grandmother; I got the name because when my mother was a young girl, she read the name in a story about girls at a boarding school — she couldn’t remember the title, alas — and decided 25 years before I was born that her daughter would be named Ardis. If I’d had a twin, she would have been Lois. (Although why anybody needs to know that, I can’t imagine…)

    You-all are so much fun to play with. I came back to this post after quite a few comments had been added and laughed out loud at what you’ve said. And just think — we’re having all this fun WITHOUT marijuana. Er, well, with only VIRTUAL marijuana, at worst. And virtual pole dancing.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 6, 2009 @ 6:18 pm

  20. Ardis, we don’t do that at BCC, but I have personal websites where I’ve set up that kind of thing. It’s fascinating to poke through the logs for about 2 weeks, then the novelty wears off and it turns out to be extremely dull.

    In general, people should be aware that website owners who want to can see where they are coming from, and plan their comments in wisdom accordingly. Anonymity on the web is very illusory.

    Comment by sister blah 2 — March 6, 2009 @ 6:23 pm

  21. It’s nice to have this chance to look back on some of your older posts.

    My personal favorite.

    Comment by Matt W. — March 6, 2009 @ 10:30 pm

  22. That was my very first post, Matt — it’s been downhill from there, eh? :)

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 6, 2009 @ 10:54 pm

  23. Or I’ve been hooked ever since…

    Comment by Matt W. — March 6, 2009 @ 11:06 pm

  24. I got the name because when my mother was a young girl, she read the name in a story about girls at a boarding school — she couldn’t remember the title, alas

    A mystery waiting to be solved?

    Comment by Justin — March 7, 2009 @ 8:53 am

  25. Justin, you’re commissioned. I don’t know where to start, and it’s something I’ve wanted to know for 50 years.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 7, 2009 @ 8:57 am

  26. No pressure, Justin, but your reputation (and the awe with which your ability to find links to anything is viewed) is hanging in the balance.

    Comment by Ray — March 7, 2009 @ 10:27 am

  27. Yeah, Justin, it’s YOUR reputation that’s at stake (not mine for not having solved this puzzle over the past decades). 😀

    All I can add by way of help is that it is something she likely read in the very late 1920s or early 1930s, but of course it could have been published any time before then.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 7, 2009 @ 11:20 am

  28. Well, well, Ardis, I truly had to laugh about the “Ardis undergarments” query. But I wouldn’t worry too much about such curiosity. Now, when they start to ask about the cost of autographed photos of you modelling same, then I would definitely become concerned!

    Comment by Velikiye Kniaz — March 7, 2009 @ 2:39 pm

  29. D’ya know, Velikiye, while the query still makes my skin crawl (yes, Jami, that IS a valid form of exercise :) ), at least I figured out what Keepa post they landed on by Googling the phrase myself. It is Undercover for the Lord.

    I announce this so everybody knows that I don’t have secret pages visible only to stalkers and peepers, and I’m not selling my own line of Ardis’s Really, Really Secret. Really.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 7, 2009 @ 3:07 pm

  30. Justin, you’re commissioned. I don’t know where to start, and it’s something I’ve wanted to know for 50 years.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 7, 2009 @ 8:57 am

    No pressure, Justin, but your reputation (and the awe with which your ability to find links to anything is viewed) is hanging in the balance.

    Comment by Ray — March 7, 2009 @ 10:27 am

    Maybe I could recruit some potheads to help me with the quest.

    I did some searching and came across a book entitled Across the Campus (1899) by Caroline Fuller. One of the main characters is named Ardis. However, it’s about college life (though the main characters stay at a boarding house) and seems to be directed toward readers in their teens, so it may be a miss (I don’t know how old your mother was at the time).

    Comment by Justin — March 7, 2009 @ 6:28 pm

  31. That’s a real possibility, Justin. She said “boarding school” rather than “boarding house,” but since she didn’t remember anything else about the book, it’s possible that she didn’t remember that particular detail quite right. My mother probably read just about anything she could get her hands on — college, though, would have been more attractive to her, I think, than boarding school.

    Hmm. Now I need to see if the Chapman Branch Library in SLC ever had a copy of Across the Campus.

    Justin’s puzzle-solving reputation is secure. With oak leaf clusters, skyrockets, and triple crowns.

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 7, 2009 @ 6:47 pm

  32. Justin, I have stood in awe of your mad skillz as long as I’ve participated in the Bloggernacle, but now . . .

    Comment by Ray — March 7, 2009 @ 7:04 pm

  33. I am almost at a loss of things to say about this post. You all have said it wonderfully well. I’m curious about the search for radioactive bottled water history. Tuna casserole search? Maybe in a couple of weeks Ardis will see a search for lab rats or for braized heart and dressing.

    Comment by Maurine — March 7, 2009 @ 7:11 pm

  34. I must confess to having contacted a boarding school story “expert” to see if she knew. I knew Justin was on the case too. I will never doubt again. Justin can find anything.

    Comment by Jami — March 8, 2009 @ 11:06 am

  35. Across the Campus has been reprinted in a modern paperback, but I’ve found and ordered what seems to be a decent copy of the original 1899 edition.

    Justin is King!

    Comment by Ardis E. Parshall — March 8, 2009 @ 12:25 pm

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