Analytics in Life. The Birthday Wish Index (BWI)

844175170I’m a Libra. October is birthday month for me. Alas you missed it already if you didn’t wish me a happy birthday on October 11. It’s a birthday I proudly share with Yankees great Orlando Hernandez (El Duque). Could have used his playoff magic this year as El Duque was the man in October.

Truth is that I am not a big birthday guy. Which does not mean I don’t take notice of those who wish me a happy birthday and those that don’t!

We live in a social media world where those who are “Friends”, “Connections” and “Followers” etc. number in the thousands, or more.

At the present time I have 750+ friends on Facebook, 2000+ connections on LinkedIn and 8000+ followers on Twitter. I’ve long since stopped measuring my “popularity” by increasing numbers. As it relates to my birthday, I will give my Twitter followers a pass because Twitter does not prompt followers with a birthday reminder, so my 8000+ twitter followers, the vast majority who I don’t know, are forgiven for not wishing me a happy birthday. You have a mulligan until next year and beyond.

However…. for my Facebook and LinkedIn friends/connections, that’s a different story. They told you it was my birthday, so no mulligan for you.

Given that there’s a significant overlap between the my Facebook and LinkedIn universes, I will assume roughly 2500 “Unique” friends/connections, whom I would expect the vast majority to wish me a happy birthday on October 11.


I clearly must be viewed as meaningless, tertiary friend/connection in the social media world.

Which comes to the concept of the Birthday Wish Index (BWI), which is the ratio of friends/connections which recognized my birthday to the total friend/connection universe. For me, in round numbers, 275 people of the 2500 unique friends/connections wished me a happy birthday. That includes old fashioned email and text wishes and really old fashioned (but very powerful) phone calls. Nothing like the human voice.

That ratio of well wishers to the total universe results in a .110 BWI. Weak. Even pitchers can hit higher than that!

I do realize that social media way over-inflates one’s supposed friendship beyond reality. Nonetheless, if you want to stay my friend in 2019 here’s an early warning that October 11, 2019 will roll around soon enough to provide you .89 of non-BWIers with a shot at redemption. As for my real friends, including my forum buddies with whom I spent a portion of my birthday (Power of Friendship), thanks for the well wishes. Sincerely appreciated.

At age 66 I realize I am way past the 50-yard line of life. Truth of the matter I may be in the Red Zone…. who the hell knows? But that’s a touchdown I can surely wait to score. On that dimension a nice 15-yard offensive holding penalty is just fine. So mark your calendar for October 11, 2019. I’ll give you non BWIers another shot. Don’t blow it. I’ll be watching and counting.

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