Ten Things I Learned from Attending BlogHer in NYC
1. Turn off your phone and do not even answer if it is your kids. Chances are they will only call when you are talking to a “cloth diaper mom.” You will find yourself yelling into the phone, “NO, YOU MAY NOT WATCH THE HANGOVER 2! WHERE IS YOUR FRIENDS MOM? THAT MOVIE IS RATED R TOO! LET ME JUST SAY THAT NO MOVIE THAT IS RATED R IS APPROPRIATE!” The other mom with small children will look at you as if you are raising barbarians. Secretly, you are so happy your three boys called before they saw a woman in a movie shooting Ping-Pong balls out of her “place between where the babies exit out,” (you can click that blue link to find out why I wouldn’t teach my boys the word vagina.) You also secretly cannot wait until this woman’s kids are older and she gets hers.
2. That 5% of the 5,100 people who attended BlogHer in 2012 are the long time bloggers that really know what they are doing and have learned through their own successes and failures. Then there were approximately 3,000 people there with the objective to get something for free, go somewhere for free, get a discount on something back home to make it almost free or build a relationship with a vendor who will start sending them something for free. Those women had a pretty good offensive line. Then there were the rest of us.
Just in case we didn’t meet and because I suck at passing my cards out to people and then wish that I had and because there were 5,100 people there and I only had 100 cards and I came home with 80.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @allthatmakesyou
The rest of us wandered and occasionally bumped into one another. We wished we had someone with more experience to talk to but it turns out those with more experience were out together trying to get away from the people trying to “crack into their nut.” I get it. I have long time girlfriends too and I am sure these women have amazing relationships. Do I sound jealous? I am not because I really do get it. They have worked very hard to learn what they have learned and I am sure they had some bumps and bruises along the way. I am thankful for the sessions I attended and I did learn things. I am looking forward to catching a few of the other sessions I couldn’t attend, online.
3. It is IMPOSSIBLE to blow dry your hair and paint your toenails, at the same time. I am sorry Hilton and way to plan for everything with that polka dot carpet! We will call it even stevens since I paid $450 a night for a room with broken seals in the windows and I couldn’t even see out my premium priced views.
4. I may just have to accept the fact that I will never fit in with 5,000 women, as hard as I try. I never rushed a sorority, joined a mom’s group, or went on a “girls night out.” I like mixed company and I like men and frankly they were passing out plush vaginas and I won’t even teach my three sons the word “vagina.” When a table of women hear me say that I wont teach my boys “vagina” and that I refer to it as “the place between where the babies exit out,” they will looked at me like I just said women should not be allowed to vote. BTW, I didn’t get a plush vagina and I would have really loved one. I am the sole vagina bearer in my house and it would have been nice to bring it out on occasions and let it vote during family voting issues.
I need a man in the group, who used to be a boy, to get my sense of humor. I need a man to understand that it is a lot harder for little boys to yell at one another, “You’re a giant place between where the babies exit out!” versus “You’re a giant vagina!” I don’t need Judgy Judy looks and for you to whisper, “My children know the appropriate terminology” to your girlfriend. I just need you to chuckle or a smirk, that is what I do when I get that the person is being sarcastic. My husband is a doc and we all know the proper terms. My mom called mine my, “kitty cat” and I am not a stripper. She did give me a sense of humor because it is freaking hilarious when I hear a little girl get off a slide at the park screaming, “My vagina hurts!”
5. Mc Donald’s employees in NYC are paid wayyyy more than Mc Donald’s employees anywhere else, as evident by the McDonalds employee that sat down next to me and wolfed down a $24 cheeseburger.
6. You need to make connections before you go to the conference to meet people. If you don’t you will find yourself spending an evening listening to a woman tell you about the sex toy lock box business that she tells me is thriving. This leads me to the next thing I learned.
7. You need to be able to keep a straight face or get Botox everywhere so when the “naughty box lock lady” starts talking you don’t immediately begin making weird astonished faces and then decide to fist bump her? Ok, Botox arms as well.
8. If you work for a sex toy lock box company they train you to not blink when you talk about your products. Not one blink. Not one blink. I pay attention to blinks, (my story here about fast blinkers versus slow blinkers.) My guess is there was way too much giggling at training sessions so they just Botoxed their eyelids open. This whole sex-toy-lock-box episode has given me so much to think about and when I say that I am “thinking about” something it means I am hashing it out in public to anyone who will listen, that mean you reading too. I mean, have women not heard of a lock on their drawers? You put a locked box in my house and that is like giving my kids a challenge. That box would end up on a dark road waiting for someone to run it over for my little boys to find out what is inside and in their heads it would be gold coins and Skittles. Locked boxes are asking for trouble in my house.
9. Just because you took off your name badge off, Abbie, it doesn’t mean that it is OK to harass a vendor on an elevator. “But, why do we need to kill bad germs in the air now? Don’t we need to be exposed to germs? And how exactly do you know you are only killing the bad germs? We get new information all the time like, what if a germ we thought was bad turns out to be good for something else?” When the poor man finally breaks down and says his dad invented it, you can’t just say, “Oh, you will sell them gang busters because new moms are sleep deprived will buy anything for their babies” and then try to fist bump him, again…what is with me?
(Yes, my name is really Abbie Gale, (I said this 25 times.) My parents were hippies and they named me after the MAN Abbie Hoffman who spent his entire life trying to get pot legalized. He wrote the book, “Steal This Book.” My middle name is really Gale because they were babies having babies and they thought it was cute and they were lazy. Gale, as in a gust of wind hitting a sail because they also liked to sail. I am not giving you my last name, unless you want to hire me. I have high standards for my boys and hope that they get into college one day but if the school learns of their concerns over sperm diameter and whether or not this “sperm” I told them about is a liquid or a solid I will have to home-college them and I don’t even know how to form a proper paragraph.)
10. Wear a vendor badge so people will talk to you. Wear a vibrator company badge and women will chase you down like you have a key to Christian Grey’s house. I may do this next conference because I am much smarter now and very good with PhotoShop. I just have to make up a ridiculous vibrator company name. I am open to ideas. Anyone?
I think I will just keep on writing and keep on building the relationships I have on the computer and if it leads to more, than great. Perhaps one day I will be asked to sit with the “big dogs” but probably not until I learn to use a comma.
Hey, all you BlogHer chicks I didn’t meet, you missed out. I am much better in person as you cannot see my poor punctuation when I am speaking. I also had a rubber alligator in my purse my son sent with me. That is always a guaranteed good time.
Follow us for…
- New Ways to Earn Money From Your Influence: With BlogHer Economy 2012+ (blogher.com)
- What’s Your BlogHer ’12 Follow Up Strategy? (blogher.com)
- It’s a… BlogHer Recap! (buriedwithchildren.com)
- When Did I Lose Faith in Myself? (allthatmakesyou.wordpress.com)
- BlogHer 2012: In New York, There’s Nothing You Can’t Do (queenofspainblog.com)