New Year Announcement

Welcome back, nerds!

Hope you guys got a chance to unplug (at least a little). Just started looking at the giant pile of emails which I plan on catching up with by the end of this week. Responses are coming. My time away was spent on Kauai and it was, without a doubt, one of the best times of my life. Almost perfect. The kind of vacation that’s so good it’s a little confusing to return home. Service at the Grand Hyatt was spectacular across the board. But now it’s time to start real life again…

What are my goals here for the year?

The majority of 2018 will stay the exact same…
Being honest, providing as much useful information as possible, avoiding fluff, trying to respond within 24 hours, no ads, short posts (with exceptions every once in a while as my emotional dam bursts), and just trying my best not to be a douchebag.

There will probably be a noticeable difference in sentimentality from time to time, though. Yeah, it’s time to make that announcement of some pretty big news here…

2018 will be my last year with the MileNerd blog.

I guess anything’s possible so I could keep going by doing one long monthly post and updating the credit card list…but that’s very unlikely. The best bet is that I won’t be around here at all after 2018. Retirement time is quickly approaching for me. It’s something I’ve felt for a few months.

As closing time gets near, I’ll write some longer (and I’m sure more emotional) posts about this. I’ll explain the reasons. But my goal is to keep things normal for now. When the end gets closer, you can expect a pretty memorable last month here on a wide range of subjects.

No, I don’t know yet what will happen to beyond 2018 yet. I have a couple of standing offers and will likely get others. I’ll look at anything that comes in. I remember at one point last year hearing from a data geek type who was totally blind to anything beyond financial bottom lines. He only saw things through the lens of Twitter followers, ad income, etc. In his black and white eyes, none of this computed…how I could possibly be so uninterested in that stuff. Or how a one-man blog with no social media or advertising got offers. I tried explaining that it’s pretty simple (at least for non-robots). Being the most trusted name next to a nonstop parade of shady, paint-by-number blogs that don’t mean anything to anyone is a unique position. That uniqueness becomes an intriguing possibility to certain people. They see a depth of loyalty in my readership. It’s something very different. Doing this day after day…year after year…and never compromising myself…to a lot of people, this name means something. Add in the Google ranking stuff when people are searching for a mile blog and it ‘aint rocket science. I’m sure there were other appealing factors I don’t pay attention to like the USA Today ranking thing, etc. None of it is the stuff I focus on. But I’ll hear the offers and we’ll see if there’s a good fit (whether a blogger, award booking company, etc). Obviously, I’ll never sell this to anyone who tricks people. If I have doubts about a new owner being upfront with their intentions…they’re not going to be the new owner. We’ll see what happens. If I’m not comfortable with any of the options, I’ll just hold on to it until the right fit comes along.

So where does this leave you guys? Obviously, the kindness of good people matters to me. Probably more than you know. It’s the main reason that I’ve continued to do this. I really love the magnetic aspect of wonderful, clever, decent humans finding their way here. So this is what I’ve come up with…

Last month, I had so many conversations with new people from here (and plenty more with readers I’d spoken to previously). Something clicked. It made perfect sense in my head. Even though my daily monologue is (usually) pretty interesting, the dialogue is a hell of a lot better. It’s really not even close. The readers of MileNerd are exceptional people. They’re not the usual comment section weirdos found on blogs. So, not only am I not going to leave you…I’ve been working on a plan to bring you guys together in an online community. One that I’ll be a part of with you. My goal isn’t just to make online introductions, but to actually turn those into “real world” friendships. I have experience with this and I’m uniquely qualified to do it (for a few reasons). I’ll explain it in detail in the upcoming months. In short, I know how to do this. And I know how to do it well.

I really don’t like the world of miles and points bloggers. That includes the readers. It’s a weird “community.” What I have here is something different. It’s not of that same world. You guys are something better. Nothing I’ve done here matters more than the group of special people I’ve managed to gather. Looking back, I think that’s what this has all been about. So I’m going to bring you together and take it private. Away from the noise of a public blog. It’s going to take a shit ton of work to organize, but definitely worth the time. I’ll start sharing more details over the next few months. I’m still here for now and, believe me, I’m not going to be leaving you. This evolution is going to be something even better.

For now, I’m planning to keep things business as usual. You’ll see my usual 5 posts a week and I’ll be around to answer all emails (just give me a few days to catch up please). I’m really excited about what’s next. Happy new year, guys!

More soon…

milenerdNew Year Announcement