I just spent a solid 20 minutes trying to diagnose a performance problem on this web server. Some of the sites hosted on this box load very, very rapidly while others have intermittent problems with slow image loading. The HTML is served and rendered rapidly, but the images that make everything look pretty are not so forthcoming.
I was going insane until I realized all the slow sites were Blogger driven. Much like mikemchargue.com. I started thinking maybe the CSS (Cascading Style Sheets, or a way to make websites look good) was just to great a strain on the clients, but CSS is really not all that intensive. I started looking at the HTML that Blogger pages are made of and then I realized that all the images were being served by http://www.blogblog.com. Visiting this site reveals it to be a domain blogger uses for hosting.
So, my server is rapidly and responsively responding to client requests and then point clients to another server to load the graphics. That server happens to be very overloaded at times. Now I am faced with a dilemma. I can either leave things like they are and have people get frustrated while visiting the site, or I can cache the images locally and update all the HTML template to point to local copies instead of Blogger's servers. Considering my intense dislike for HTML, that means I'll be the one frustrated.
UPDATE - all images are now served from this server. The site should be pleny fast now.