My second day in New York was the official beginning to the BlogHer conference (see here for Day 1). I had every intention of going to at least one or two of the sessions offered, but it didn’t quite work out that way. While I was blowdrying my hair in preparation for the day, Jen and Johi headed downstairs for the first planned session, promising to save me a seat. Ten minutes later I received a text about how they were bailing because it was packed to capacity and people were merely pimping their blogs whilst asking dumb questions. Instead, we decided we would meet at the Expo that was being held at the same time. This was where all the sponsors and other companies had come to promote their wares and give away free shit. We were all for that! Plus, we had not yet had any breakfast, and we foresaw booths with food samples, so it was on!
Before we even entered the Expo Hall, we discovered a large furry orange guy was greeting all entrants. Then, out of nowhere, a very tall yellow gentleman accosted our orange greeter and swept him up in a big hug, as if they were long lost mates. It just got weirder after that.
I obviously recognized the tall gentleman, as I have seen him many times at breakfast, after stripping him down so that I can feast on his flesh. But Mr. Orange was giving me some problems. He seemed familiar.
Hmmm, some bells are ringing. Wait, what’s that? Oh, you want to give me an empty orange bag? And it’s for collecting all the free swag I am about to get just past this doorway? Oh, well thank you fine sir. Much obliged. Oh wait! What do we have here? The bag says right on it The Lorax. Well well the pieces are starting to fall in place now. You, my fine sir, are an oompa loompa, aren’t you? I knew I’d seen you in a movie before. You cannot get anything by me. Sharp as a tack I am!
Once we entered the Expo Hall, we were able to sample many food items. There was an entire refrigerator case full of different yogurts, there was a Dole booth with samples of homemade banana bread and full cups of fresh fruit, there was pudding and java juice and sausage biscuits and cereal bars and guacamole and cookies and cake pops and coffee and pasta. There was even soy sauce ice cream.
It was actually quite tasty. Sort of like a salty caramel flavor. I was surprised and impressed. AND FULL! Needless to say, we did not need to eat lunch that day. We were pretty jam packed with yummy samples as we walked through the numerous booths on multiple floors. And although the food was abundant, there were also many other items that were being given away for free at the Expo. There were teeth whiteners, hair dye, press-on nails, medication (generic and the real shit), huge pens for the kids from the Chuck E Cheese booth, full bottles of lotion, Bowling DVDs, flash drives, lip gloss/chapsticks and vibrators.
Yep, you heard me right. There was a Trojan booth there and they were giving away free vibrators. They brought 400 and were somehow surprised at how fast they were able to clear their inventory. Really? You are giving away free sexual aids to a mostly female blogging population and the speed of distribution surprised you? Ok then. UPDATED: I actually just got an email from the Trojan company, saying they read this post and enjoyed it, and just wanted to let me know that they brought 4,000 vibrators, not 400. I guess that makes more sense. And I can understand their surprise now. That is A LOT of “personal massagers.”
But enough about the dildos . . . more on those at a later time.
Once we were done walking around and collecting tons of free shit, we retired to our room for a bit. This is when the hair braiding and pillow fights broke out. Of course.
Then we needed to get ready for the Voices of the Year speeches. I previously detailed Elizabeth’s amazing reading and my subsequent bombtastic attempts to replicate that in this post.
After all the speechy speeches, us lovely ladies were off to an officially sponsored BlogHer party that evening. Also know as . . . Sparklecorn.
My companions were all decked out in their finest sparkly attire, while I was not sparkly, but was wearing a cute dress and my new fancy shoes.
This was quite the party. There were glowsticks in abundance, balloons twisted into unicorn horns and wrapped around people’s bodies, food, drink, and of course there was this:
I’m pretty sure that is a cake. And apparently we were not feeding Jen enough, because she looks like she’s about to chomp down on that poor little unicorn’s tale. Either that or she is trying to catch the unicorn farts in her mouth. Is it true that unicorns fart rainbow Skittles? Because if so, move out of my way, Jen!!
We started out on the dance floor and started moving and grooving and generally strutting our fabulous stuff! We were having quite the fun time. There was dancing. And there was sparkling. And there was laughing.
Here’s a picture of the three of us on the dance floor. I look stunning and am positively glowing, by the way!
And then . . . and then we saw a sight that filled us with such glee, we hardly knew what to do with ourselves. It immediately made us think of our poor little Bex, who wasn’t able to join us on our journey, our country being a big bag of dicks and not allowing her awesomeness to enter our shores. But she was there in our hearts and thoughts, and now it was almost like she was there in person!
As we were leaving Sparklecorn (right about 9:30, because we are old and sad cougars), we ran into a couple celebrities. Whilst I proceeded to make Justin Bieber into a man, Jen and Johi decided to become members of a band.
The next day was going to be very exciting, because a few of my favorite bloggers were set to come in just for the day. As my bloggy buddies were pending arrival, there was much texting and communicating amongst us as to where we were and when we would meet. I came upon Jules at the registration area, and since I had seen her plenty on her blog, yet she had never seen my face, I figured I would fuck with her a bit. As I do.
I walked up to her, and as I was about to pass her, I said pretty loudly, “oh my god, can you believe that chick wearing leggings as pants!!” Then I looked right at her. After her initial WTF expression passed, she realized right away who this rude and obnoxious chic must be. Later she told me she knew who I was because I had that “Misty energy” about me. I’m not sure if that is a good or bad thing, but I’m gonna go with good. Don’t you dare try to tell me otherwise!!
Soon after meeting up with Jules, one of her friends joined us. JM is a fellow blogger who actually works a couple blocks away from the conference hotel. So, she took the train in early to go to the conference, and then planned to go to work that evening. (She does tech for one of the broadway shows). We had little time to chat at that point, though, because the sessions were about to begin, and damned if I wasn’t going to actually go to one of those things while I was here. So, we went our separate ways, planning to meet up later in the day.
I can’t say much for the sessions I went to. The first was mainly focused on putting drawings into your posts, and since I don’t draw, it didn’t really apply to me too much. The next one was custom fitted for me . . . it was about legal issues pertaining to content in blogs. I figured I would get a lot out of it, because I needed to know what kind of liability I was setting myself up for with all the pictures of the crazy people I post. Turns out, I can get my pants sued right off. Oh, and all those pinterest pictures that everyone puts on their blogs without having any idea what the source is? Yep, you can get sued for that, too. But mainly, most of the info they gave was pretty logical and self-evident, and a lot of it rang familiar from stuff I had learned in law school. So basically, I could have done my own brief research and figured all of that out myself. Not the best use of my time, but that’s ok. I didn’t come to BlogHer for the information I would receive in the sessions. I came mainly for the chance to meet my fellow bloggers and the opportunity to hang out with them.
And that is just what I got to do later that day. After the morning sessions, it was lunch time. This is where I met up with Jules, JM and my very own buddy and pal, Thoughtsy. We ended up having lunch together and exchanging presents. I was unaware that JM would be there, or I would have brought something for her as well (sorry JM!), but I think after the booze given to her by Thoughtsy, and the mustache glasses from Jules, she was pretty much set!
Thoughtsy also got a pair of glasses as a gift from Jules.
And then of course, Jules had to wear hers so that she would fit in with all the fabulousness. And she also showed off her most excellent phone case that some thoughtful soul sent her when she won it in the most coveted giveaway ever!!
And that was the end of all the gifts. What? Where were my mustache glasses you ask? Well, of course Jules also gifted me with the most radtastic pair of mustache glasses as well. The are mirrored. And handlebarred!! But sadly, I cannot model them for you, because then I would have to show you my face. And that just cannot be done. Nope. Sorry.
Hmmm, but there has to be a way to model them in a way that both shows you the glasses and doesn’t show you my face. But it has to be a way that is creative and, well, me. Let’s see . . . let me think on this a bit. What to do, what to do . . .
Hold on now . . . I think I’ve got it!
After lunch and mustaches had been
consumed finished, Katie Couric came out on the stage. Yawn. Anyway, moving on. Since nobody really had any interest in any of the upcoming speakers, we decided to hit the Expo. I then acted as tour guide to show them where all the good swag was, and even show them the secret hidden room where they were giving out the vibrators. I’m a helper in that way.
Once we were all filled up with swag, we decided that we were just gonna hang out in the hotel bar for a bit so that we could chat and have a cocktail (or 2, depending on who you were . . . ahem, Jules, ahem). So we sat. And we drank. And we chatted. Honestly, it was the best time that I had there. Just being able to sit and talk to fellow bloggers, comparing ideas, tips and war stories about blogging, talking about our lives and families . . . it was just really nice. I felt like I was part of a community of like minded people and like I found my home. I know how cheesy that sounds, but it is truly how I felt while sitting there talking to these wonderful ladies. This was why I came to BlogHer. Thanks for the enlightening and enjoyable afternoon girls!! Cheers!
While we were there, one of Thoughtsy’s bloggy friends stopped by as well. Amy actually lives in NYC, so she just popped in to the conference for the day as well. She was super sweet, and while she was there, she very helpfully suggested a sushi place for us to go to for dinner, and also shared with me her own whacked pictures that she had captured on a recent trip to Vegas. She is such a kindred spirit! Oh Amy . . . you blog, you love sushi, and you take random pictures of crazy people on the streets? If it wasn’t for that whole Asian thing you’ve got going on, I would say we might have been twins separated at birth!! ;)
Eventually, Thoughtsy and JM had to depart, thus breaking up our little bloggy lovefest, which made me oh so sad. Not just because I would miss them terribly, but because JM was taking my new love with her. This fabulous bag!!
I kid, I kid. Obviously I was just sad because they were leaving. But Thoughtsy had a 3+ hour train ride home, and JM actually had to go to work, so leave they must and did. Amy had also run off around this time, so this left just Jules and I to
get into some trouble figure out what to do. So we decided to grab Johi and make use of that sushi recommendation that Amy gave us. And what a great recommendation it was!
Once our delicious dinner was over, we also had to say goodbye to Jules. I hate goodbyes. Why can’t we all just live in one big bloggy commune for ever and ever and ever? Then again, we’d probably get on each other’s nerves within a week and it would become a Lord of the Flies situation. Nevermind, let’s not do any of that. Moving on . . .
I then got to do two things I have always wanted to do . . . finally get to spend more than 2 minutes with Elizabeth (she was leaving, but texted me before she headed out so we could meet up and chat for a few minutes before she left, which was so very sweet, just like her!) and I got to walk around NYC and experience the city. I also got to buy some souvenirs for my boys. If I had walked into that house without presents, I’m not sure I would have been allowed back in! So, the M&M store it was.
Then, as I was making my way back to the hotel, I realized how dark it had become, and that I was walking around in one of the busiest cities in the world, in the dark, by myself. Hmm, seems like a good idea, right? It was fine, though. I was in a very touristy area, and there were lots of people walking around with me. Plus, I got to see the city all lit up again. I also got a really great shot of Radio City Music Hall with 30 Rock in the background.
And thus ends the tales of my time in the big city. The rest of that night, I pretty much just stayed in my room packing, and did not see anyone else until my quick goodbye to Johi the next morning as I ran out to catch my flight home. Which, of course, left late enough so that I missed my connection. In Philly. And I had to sit there for 2 hours waiting for another flight. Again. Seriously, what is up with me and travelling? At least I got one final drink. Doesn’t make up for it, though.
I did finally make it home, to much hugging and appreciation from my family. That is always nice, to return to your normal life with the people who love you. And unpacking. And laundry. And bedtimes and dinner and lunches and . . . what was I saying again?
Stay tuned for Monday’s post . . . there will be a giveaway of some of the swag items I received at BlogHer. Good stuff, too.