Sunday, August 11, 2013

BlogHer Gone Wrong


Last month I attended BlogHer. Those of you who didn’t go probably think it took place in Chicago. Those of us who did go, know that it actually took place in the tundra. It’s been said that Chicago is the windy city, and up until a few weeks ago, I thought the wind being referred to was that thing produced by nature. Now I know that wind is the thing the McCormick Place blows into its conference center for reasons that I can only assume are meant to KILL ALL THE PEOPLE.

My friend Coffee Lovin’ Mom pointed out this indoor wind phenomenon as we were waiting for Queen Latifah to show up for Voices of the Year. We were told she was an HOUR late due to the Chicago traffic but when she got there she was all “I was eating pizza!” And I was all, “Well of course you were, because showing up on time for a speaking engagement? F*ck that!”

I know I sound bitter, but I think I have a right to be, because while Her Majesty was sampling Chicago’s finest in deep dish, I was slowly and painfully freezing my ass off. Thanks to her tardiness, I’ve spent the last three weeks in traction in order to return my shoulders below my ears and my knees to their rightful place below my waist. It’s amazing the positions a human body will contort itself into in an effort to extract every molecule of heat from itself.  At one point, I think I was actually trying to crawl up inside myself. (Don’t try to imagine that. It will traumatize you.)

As soon as the last voice was spoken, I bolted from the room with a mission to get back to my hotel and into the shower as soon as possible.

But before I could make it to my sanctuary of warmth, I was stopped by an Irishman who had arrived in the city four hours ago and just had to run across the street and nearly get hit by a bus to tell me how kidnappable beautiful I look.  Love at first sight followed by near death in an effort to express said love sounds like the makings of romantic comedy, but it wasn’t nearly as wistful-sigh worthy (or funny) as it sounds, especially since Irishman and I then went forty-two rounds of “Where are you going?” “I’m not telling you.” “Take me with you.” “No.”

Irishman proceeded to ask me 14,000 personal questions, and, like a good little victim, I answered every one truthfully. It was somewhere between question 972, “What is your blood type?” and question 1,057 “What is your social security number?” that I realized I was going to end up on Dateline. All I could hear in my head as I continued to spew forth the intimate details of my life was Keith Morrison narrating my fate.


“All she wanted was to get warm. But she met an Irishman on the street and was never seen again.”


More than anything, I just wanted to walk to my hotel, but Irishman as all, “I WILL FOLLOW YOU EVERYWHERE.” And I couldn’t just hail a cab because he, no doubt, would have climbed in with me.

If there’s anything we ladies have learned from Taken it’s, don’t get in a cab with strange men.

Actually, if there’s anything we’ve learned from Taken it’s, have Liam Neeson as your father, but biology failed me on that one, so it was extra important to me that I didn’t get sold into the sex slave trade.

Finally, Irishman grew bored (or maybe he decided this kidnapping was taking way too much effort) and wished me farewell, but not before offering a few parting words of comfort, “I will be watching you from my hotel.”

To further solidify his creep factor, he gave me a hug... and naturally I thought of Copernicus the Monkey.

 "A hug is like a strangle you haven't finished yet."
(Wise words from The Bloggess. I mean, Copernicus)

Lest you think my first blogging conference was all hypothermia and near kidnapping, here are a few highlights of awesome:



  • Seeing Guy Kawasaki at The People’s Party and wondering why they would ask an actor to be a keynote speaker at a blogging conference.

  • Googling Guy Kawasaki and realizing he’s not an actor but the dude who invented the internet, or something.

  • Saying, “I don’t know, but he’s definitely not an actor!” the rest of the conference any time someone said, “Who is Guy Kawasaki?”


  • Being told by random blogging dude that electrical outlets don’t produce heat.

  • Screaming at random blogging dude, “So! Cold! All we have left is hope! Don’t take away our hope!”

I don’t know when I’ll be going to the next blogging conference or where it will be, but one thing I know for sure, I’ll be packing my parka and pepper spray. And maybe a ski mask. And some Chinese throwing stars.

And Liam Neeson. Just in case.

*That thing that happens when you meet a blogger you seriously love for the first time.

Comment gem!
The Blue Grumpster: I wish I could do such adult-y things... When I read, 'Things that we really, really need to do, but require, like, three steps and probably twenty whole minutes,' I thought 20 minutes? That's all? But of course my not-so-adulty mind was thinking about something else.
 

16 comments:

  1. The cold part is no good. But yes the cold part cuz it added to the funny. I know I gave you a hard time on twitter, but I really did think that a gal from Florida would probably be cold anywhere that isn't the Equator. But you know I love you!

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  2. OMG you never got a chance to tell me about the Irish man. So creepy. If I was there I would have gone all ninja on his ass and saved your life. But I wasn't.

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  3. See Mel knew what she was doing walking our butts up to the stairway that first night - she must have known the Irishmen were lurking. We will be prepared for the next one with gallon flasks, parkas and pepper spray..I will also look into portable heating devices that use a USB and can be plugged right into a laptop. I still wish I was waking up to you, you never groped me in my sleep..that I know of..

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  4. WTF IRISHMAN?

    I hadn't realized that you were in such dire straits! Sad you had to experience, but hilarious retelling.

    Love the blogasm - it was so cool to see you. I LOVED meeting you. I wish we had chatted for longer. There never seems to be enough time.

    PS What does it mean that I was HOT AND SWEATY the whole time? Malaria?

    XOXO

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  5. Whenever I'm walking down the street alone, or standing at an ATM or somewhere equally murdery, I imagine all the Kung fu moves I'd do on a perp. I'm pretty bad ass in my head. I wonder if I would actually do them in real life. I don't want to find out but I have to think all the crazy Kung fu sounds would make a creepy Irish man run because he'd believe I was doing hard core drugs and it just wasn't worth the hepatitis.

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  6. And men wonder why women tend to do the buddy system. EVERYWHERE. Seriously. Especially buddies who just may happen to have a black belt in Karate.

    And Taken? Scared the shit out of me and makes me afraid to want to go anywhere. Ever. Again. Especially without Liam as bodyguard.

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  7. Ahhh see it would not have done for an Irishman to have followed me around. I am Southern I can obliterate your world with a few Southernisms..

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  8. Too late, I tried to imagine it.
    Booking therapy session now.

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  9. GAH... Why so cold?
    You would think if they could book The QUEEN they could get some heat up in there.

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  10. Oh now see! I knew I was missing out by not attending BlogHer but now I'm really pissed because I never had a stalker and I always kind of thought that would be cool! Do you think everyone gets a stalker at BlogHer? Like is it on the itinerary? 11:30, Meet your stalker. 12:00 Lunch with friends so your stalker has his first opportunity to stalk you. You're so lucky! Oh, and congrats on escaping and not being killed! Bonus!

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  11. Oh my GOD. On behalf of all Irish people everywhere, I sincerely apologise. We need to run courses on how to behave in other countries. Seriously.

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  12. See? This is what sucks about being female. Because the appropriate response to Irishman's behavior is screaming "Fuck off!" into his face, but some guys take that as an invitation to become violent.

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  13. Sounds like it was a blast...of cold air! Next time you get nearly kidnapped, just remember the wise words of Miss Congeniality: Solar plexus, instep, noise, groin.

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  14. I am not sure, but I swear Liam Neeson is Irish...???
    Are you sure he maybe wasn't trying to rescue you?
    you know, being froze ass cold and all?
    Did Irish guy have an oak barrel or rum around his neck? cause that might be a clue...
    I also swear I thought Queens had better manners.

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