BlogHer Recap: Five Fabulous Fails

BlogHer11 in San Diego is over, people.

Which is why my family looks at me so sadly when I try and present a drink ticket for wine at dinner.

I haven’t even removed my badge yet. The grocery store clerk now refers to me as “@OldTweener”.

I find myself strategically placing my jammies and toothbrush near the bathroom door on the floor, so that when I sneak come into the room and it’s insanely too late dark I can find them and I won’t disturb my awesome roomies.

Hubs is not amused.

And after the glorious highs and excitement of it all; the wonderful basking-in-the-glow of post-BlogHer giddiness most people wrote an awesome recap post.

I’m cheating by linking to a few of them here. Don’t judge; I’m still tired.

If you want to see me as a beautiful, willowy stick figure drawn by my incredibly talented roomie Lori, go here. I look so hot as a stick figure, I may steal that picture for my new About Me page. Lori is already my friend in real life and we chatted so much on the plane home we neglected to notice a blogger sitting in the third seat in our row. My apologies to the very beautiful (and tolerant) Wife of a Dairyman, whose blog I am now following.

If you want to hear how I forced my wonderful and sweet friend Nichole not only to travel with me to San Diego but also to share her drink tickets, get me into the hottest parties, and swap swag, please go here. Nichole is one of my very favorite people already, so to spend days and days with her? Awesome. She even tolerated my insane amount of chatter and reminded me to sanitize my feet after we all danced barefoot. She’s awesome like that.

If you love videos (I know, I’m supposed to call it a vlog) go visit my other awesome roomie Galit, who not only put up with my noisy stealthy sneaking in, but I suspect she was the one who left the light on for me. She found a special place in my heart last week and I intend to keep her there.

And my third roomie (yes, there was bed-sharing) Kayleen wrote the best post I wish I’d read before we hopped on that plane bound for San Diego. She’s smart, that one. And wicked-funny, which I already knew. I felt so smart for snagging her as a roomie the exact moment that she purchased her ticket. Which is not at all creepy.

So my recap post? Not so fluffy and empowering; not very insightful or artistic. But here it is:

Five Fabulous BlogHer Fails

  1. I spent way too much time obsessing about the clothes I needed to look Bloggerish. And when we arrived that first day I did not want to spend time hanging things up on hangers and all that nonsense. So not only did I NOT wear everything I had obsessed over, but it all wound up in an incredible tangle by the second day. Time wasted I will never get back, although I did score a pretty cute Old Navy dress.
  2. I didn’t take any pictures. None. I took a small camera, and I even have a camera on my dumb phone. I just got so distracted by the people and the introductions and the wine incredible food that I forgot. Luckily I did insert myself into lots of other people’s pictures, but now I am on a world-wide-web scavenger hunt to find myself. I call it “Where’s Old Tweener?”
  3. All the awesome swag I collected was not properly packed. Randomly throwing crap swag into your suitcase at 6:30am the morning you leave is not the best approach. Just ask Gigi and Lori, who had the distinct pleasure of watching my super-special detailed search by the San Diego TSA man. He confiscated my bottle of POM juice, a cool wine opener, and a 5-oz package of tuna. Somewhere a TSA dude is having a picnic at my expense.
  4. I didn’t get to meet Rita Arens. This may sound totally stupid and a bit creepy (sorry, Rita) but she was kind-of like a goddess to me back when I had four posts syndicated over at BlogHer. It was like she summoned me up to the stars for a bit. And she blogs, just like one of us. Good stuff, too. I might have even offered her one of my coveted drink tickets (or one I stole from Nichole).
  5. I over-scheduled with the parties. Once the invites started coming in I was struggling to stay afloat, and just kept saying “Yes, yes!” like Meg Ryan in that diner scene. Some of the private parties were almost like long lines to collect swag bags, with a taxicab at the end to take us to our next destination. And all that swag? I gave the cool stuff to my daughter (OPI nail polish, etc…). I am still waiting for the proper moment to give the dog her Canine Plaque Blaster (I’m serious: it’s in the swag bag).

Now? Back to the reality of my life. Cooking, cleaning, taking care of the blog stuff.

Which means I can’t keep dancing on the coffee table after the kids go to bed and declaring it Sparklecorn.

How to Prepare for BlogHer

In my ever-constant state of trying to portray myself as a wannabe real writer I have signed myself up to attend my first ever blogging conference, known to all bloggers simply as BlogHer11.

It seemed like the next logical step. I’ve blogged, guest posted, signed on with an awesome advertising network, and had some pieces syndicated.

In my little world of less than 400 subscribers?

I’m a big deal (ha).

Well, at least I get a few comments on my posts from people who aren’t in my immediate family or spambots.

When I bought my ticket many, many months ago it seemed like it would all be so easy. You show up, learn stuff, meet people, then fly home.

Oh, if it were only that easy…

Checklist for BlogHer11

  1. Design Bloggy Business Cards: Do it yourself to save $$ and time. Quickly learn that it does NOT save any time at all. Spend several of your first days of summer break enduring Photoshop lessons from the teenager, cursing your lack of skills, squinting at small fonts, ranting at friends about which blue is best, and uploading twenty-seven different versions to see how they look. Done.
  2. Order Bloggy Business Cards: Tweet friends to see who has used which online printing company. Upload your image to five different web sites to see how they look. Use your questionable math skills to compute which site will save you the most $$ while still making your cards look awesome. Have a bad dream that your cards arrive in the mail, but they are printed on construction paper. Done.
  3. Find Your Peeps: Start trolling your tweeps and bloggy pals to see who else is going. Make mental lists of people in your age group who will understand your need for rest, comfortable shoes, and wrinkle cream breaks. Consider aligning yourself with one of the Birds of a Feather groups. Spend way too much time wondering if the Elder Bloggers group means bloggers of your generation or bloggers who blog about old people.
  4. Choose Roommates: Quickly make a move to secure first roommate: someone you adore, have met several times in real life, and is actually part of the same over-40 crowd that you are. Huge sigh of relief that you won’t have to stay up late talking about baby poop and leaky boobs. Realize that rooms are expensive and start trolling for two more roommates. Jump at the chance to secure second roommate, who you adore, makes you laugh, and says funny things about baby poop. Practically jump through computer screen when potential third awesome roommate casually says on Twitter, “I just bought my BlogHer11 ticket!”. Done.
  5. Decide on Workshops: Read agenda. Glaze over on jargon and acronyms that you’ve never heard before. Set agenda aside to read again when your coffee cup is full. Come back to agenda again; still no clue. In progress.
  6. Decide on Parties: Start receiving party invites in email. RSVP to anything and everything you are invited to! Realize after a bit that you have over-RSVP’d and now have more to do than Kate and William did when they visited the United States. Start to un-RSVP. In progress.
  7. Choose Clothing: Stand in closet, staring at clothes. Sob. Buy a few things that might work, then agonize over how many other times you will wear them to justify the expense. Read blog posts about adorable bloggers who have adorable outfits all picked out for the conference. Decide to steal this blogger’s suitcase, since you apparently wear the same size. Ongoing drama.
  8. Dramatic Makeover: Purchase whitening strips for your teeth. Begin insane eat-only-kale-and-rice diet in vain attempt to lose a few pounds. Buy spray tan-in-a-bottle. Realize that real bloggers aren’t tan; return bottle. Consider springing for Botox treatment and skipping meals at conference to make up the cost.
  9. Decide about Dinner for Night #1: Respond to Facebook question about who is in town and available for dinner the first night. Watch email inbox fill with responses, questions, ideas, directives, food allergies, airplane arrival times, reservation phone numbers, restaurant locations. Decide to dine on hotel vending machine food while lounging by the hotel pool.
  10. Enjoy Conference: I know I will. If I am not too exhausted by the planning.

So with two weeks to go until I board that Southwest Airlines flight, I am not much closer to being ready for the conference.

But I did find a cute dress.