Well, not really... and certainly not when you pack the event with 80-plus bloggers.
(Photo: Matt Dickman)
Those of you who purchased copies of Age of Conversation know that my chapter, "Have You Hugged a Blogger Today?," dealt in part with the interesting things that can happen when the loose, digital friendships you make with people you've met through your involvement in social media turn into meaningful, lasting, real world relationships. This weekend's Blogger Social 2008 put that concept on human growth hormone and sent it out to center field.
It was a chance to catch up with old blogfriends, make some new ones and - most importantly - meet many, many people I've come to know through their writing in person for the first time. And it was a chance to hang with them in a relaxed, social environment -- rather than catch them for a 2-minute standing chat in the hallway at some dreary social media or marketing conference. On top of that, with bloggers literally coming from across the globe, it was truly a landmark occasion unlike anything we've seen in the market-o-sphere.
I even dropped my guard for 30-seconds and let Matt Dickman catch me smiling during a rare moment when I wasn't parading around being totally obnoxious and ruining every photograph I could by flashing my now trademark-worthy devil horns or the occasional (but unconvincing) middle finger. Socialites can take some solace in the fact that fingers were all I was flashing - unlike a certain DC-area PR maven who flashed a bit more - yo Livingston, it's great that you're proud of your crazy-giant dragon tat but did we really need to see you partially nude right after we ate dinner?
Shifting gears for a moment, as a crayonista I'd be remiss if I didn't mention that, during Saturday night's event, my colleague Scott Monty presented Connie Reece, Cathleen Rittereiser and Susan Reynolds's family with a $30,000 check for the Frozen Pea Fund, on behalf of our client ooVoo and the bloggers that hosted video chat sessions during our My ooVoo Day social media promotion. The money will go toward helping women with breast cancer.
While that presentation probably wins the prize for 'most poignant moment of the evening,' I'd say that there were certainly many other defining moments. If Livingston's tattoo show was one of them, so was the not-so-silent auction of Jaffe's unused name tag (he was sick) to the highest bidder -- also Geoff Livingston (some guys have all the luck) who got to be Jaffe for a day -- and a minor insurgence led by David Armano's rebel 'nerd prom committee,' who hijacked the event with cheesy corsages and a set of even cheesier prom-style couples photos that have (mysteriously) yet to see the light of day...
These truly are the End Days my friends, so you may as well party like a Blog Star.
Shifting gears again, I can't express enough gratitude and admiration for Drew McLellan and CK (Photo: David Reich). Not only did they hatch the idea but they dedicated hundreds of hours to making sure everything was perfect. CK will be the first to drop a comment pointing out that they got plenty of help from a dozen or so bloggers who volunteered their own time and talents to assist with everything from creating logos, writing profiles and taking photos to stuffing goodie bags, organizing brunches, picking venues and making sure Jaffe was sick enough that he had to skip the party. Even if BS08 was a community effort, you still couldn't ask for better hosts.
Lots of Socialites have written wrap-up posts far better than this one, so if you're interested in knowing more be sure to check out: CK, Lori Magno, John Wall, Amanda Gravel, Steve Woodruff, and Darryl Ohrt. (If you wrote a post and I've missed it, add a comment or drop me a line and I'll be sure to add yours to the list.)
And if you really want to see what went on, you can find all of the photos on Flickr - more are being added every day, so be sure to visit early and often.