Saturday, August 09, 2014

The good, the bad, and the ugly of Blogher'14

The good was the voices of the year readings.  I enjoyed all the readings.  I did not expect as much emotion as I witnessed in the readings.  The blogs were obviously near and dear to the reader's heart and no one just stood up and read it.  They infused it with the emotion that doesn't always come through with just reading something on line.

The good was Tig Notaro.  She cracked me up and educated me a little bit about breast cancer and how folks react to it and what it entails.

The good was running into two women who buoyed up my ego by being amazed at my profession and how long I have been at it.  One was near my age and reminded me how much work it involved to become a software developer when I did in the late 80s and how it was indeed an impressive achievement.  It seems rather an ordinary achievement to me.  The other was a bit younger than I but so impressed with me that she asked me "may I touch you" twice!  Once when I revealed to her that I wrote software for satellites and once when I mentioned that I worked at NASA Ames Research center.  Who knew that I would walk away form Blogher'14 with a sense of wonder that people were impressed with what I have accomplished in my professional career.

The good was hanging out briefly with Denise, Tarrant, and Karen.  The good was meeting Laurel and Jenna and having good chats and meeting scores of others whose names I have forgotten but who lightened my day by chatting with me.

The good was the ending party and how I was able to overcome a bit of my social anxiety and dance like no one was watching way off in the corner to get away from the very loud speakers!

The bad was being bored at two of the sessions.  Not bad for Blogher'14 but bad for me personally.  I realized I really have no desire to improve my blog or learn how to monetize, or how to publish a book, and any myriad of things the sessions covered and so I was bored.

The bad was when my social anxiety did get the best of me.  It did at the Friday parties.  I just felt like a fish out of water.  I tried to engage with people and never felt  relaxed.  It did at the beginning of the closing party.  I wandered around the party three times looking for where I could plop myself down to eat my McDonalds.  I finally did plop down on the ground and felt sort of lame that I was all by myself.  But then some other folks sat down with me and I was back on track.

The ugly was when the Saturday lunch food did not agree with me and neither did the midlife mini-conference.  I ended up deciding to leave the mini-conference as it wasn't going in a direction I liked and I really needed to make a trip to the bathroom.  Fortunately, I chased the ugly away with a wonderful nap on the fake green grass outside the convention center!

All in all the conference was a mixed bag for me but with slightly more positives than negatives!

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