The question posed to yours truly the most often these days is — "Has 'Pushing Daisies' been canceled?"

The answer (as of this writing) is, "No."

The more accurate answer is, "No, not yet."

The fact that the question is being asked so frequently is a pretty good sign that things are not going well. And they're not.

The ratings for "Pushing Daisies" have never been good. And they've been in steady decline. So, barring some sort of unforeseen miracle, the show will complete post-production on the 13 episodes that were ordered this season, and that will be it.

There's no doubt that the show's fans (including yours truly) are passionate about "Pushing Daisies." There just aren't enough of us to make the show viable for ABC.

This is where the recriminations usually begin among a show's fans. There will be those who will severely criticize ABC when it drops "Pushing Daisies."

I won't be one of them. If there's blame to be assigned, good friends, it should be assigned to those of us who watch TV.

ABC put a distinctive, entertaining, charming and engaging show on the air. It gave it a decent time slot. It promoted the show well — including a big push for the second season.

And very few TV viewers cared.

Let's not forget — based on the ratings from the first season, ABC was going out on a limb by renewing "Pushing Daisies" for a second season. And remember that ABC not only airs the show but its TV studio produces it, so the Disney-owned company has the most invested in trying to make it a success.

Is it the network's fault if the mass audience refuses to watch a show? Not if the network has given the show a decent time slot and decent promotion.

Am I frustrated? You bet. I've been frustrated innumerable times over the past 18 1/2 years as a TV critic (and as a viewer long before that) when good shows got canceled.

And, quite honestly, it's hugely frustrating to me that two shows I like that air on ABC on Wednesday nights ("Daisies" and "Dirty Sexy Money") are hanging by a thread while the show I've given up on ("Private Practice") has been picked up for a full season.

Grrrrr ...

But I can't blame ABC because people won't watch. I won't even blame the network if it doesn't air all 13 episodes of "Daisies" produced for this season.

Eventually, they'll show up on DVD. And, along with the Season 1 DVD, we'll have 22 episodes of "Pushing Daisies" to treasure.

Thanks, ABC.

E-mail: pierce@desnews.com