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    A BlogHer how-to guide to not being that jerk everyone talks about next week.

    August 2, 2011

    In case you were wondering…

    1. The drinks in the hotel lobby bar will be $15. You know now. Don’t be shocked about it and for the love of God and all that is holy, do not express your shock via Twitter. It’s a hotel lobby bar in a metropolitan city. If you can’t afford it, drag your cheap ass to The Wine Bank 5 blocks away and buy a bottle of Jack. Problem solved.

    2. Parking is $26 a day. You know, $25 a day cheaper than parking at a hotel in any larger city in the United States (see NY, San Francisco). It is either the cost of doing business if this is your business and you have a nice write off or you are on vacation with your lady friends and need to live it up a little.

    3. No one wants to hear how many delays your flight has or how crappy your airline is or how the guy beside you stole the arm rest or that you have/don’t have wireless. Even my father says that airline travel went downhill after Pan Am went under in ’91. It’s summertime. There will be thunderstorms and delays and oversold flights but no one cares about yours. And if anyone expresses care, they are blatantly lying to you. If someone is waiting for you, DM them. Do not crash The Twitter with the Great Airline Injustices of 2011. See also, tweets about your feelings or emotional state or how “SAD” you are that you can’t seem to catch up with someone. This does not include any tweets regarding what you are drinking at either airport bars or on the plane. We like to know how hammered you are getting. Keep those coming.

    4. Hunt down your favorite bloggers at Blogher and talk to them. Don’t worry if they are going to be an asshole or not. Almost everyone comes home with a “you won’t believe who was a cast-iron bitch to me in the elevator” story. Yes, you’ll cry after it happens but you’ll be the hit of the next tweetup, so there’s that! I am positive that girl I yelled at about taking the plate of blueberries before the Chocolate Fountain Fairy Godmother was finished setting up the fountains at the Mommy Needs a Cocktail Party two years ago is still poking a voodoo doll that looks like a 50s retro chick with a drink in her hand. See also, every single person who came up to me after I had pregnancy vomited in a toilet or was trying to calm down a screaming 4-month old I brought to a blogging conference–all 3 of my children). I apologize now to all of those people. Point is, it’s exactly like high school. You are going to have some of the BEST TIMES of your life and possibly some of the worst times of your life.

    People generally won’t surprise you at Blogher. If they typically write 5 posts a week about taking anti-anxiety meds to survive carpool, they are probably going to freak the fuck out if you run up, give them a huge hug and quote them verbatim from that post they wrote in 2005. I’m not saying not to do those things. I’m just saying if they are unable to make eye contact or smack you in the face, you’ve been warned.

    5. The Bloggess will actually be in the hotel bathroom outside of the People’s Party. No one is making that up. If you don’t know which bathroom at the end of which hall, just ask. Even the hotel staff will know where she is. The valet guy will know. I DEFY YOU to find one person who doesn’t know. Head over to the bathroom, queue up and wait your turn. That line out the door will not be for the stalls. I promise. Have your camera ready and you can say anything you want to her. She’s very good about taking fistfuls of her meds beforehand to get her thru the night and will not punch you if you hug her. But you should ask before you do. Tell her about that time when you really needed hope or a laugh or both and she brought it. She puts too much out there to not get acknowledged that it matters. Also, she’ll look into your eyes and wipe your tears. She’s good people and not even remotely as crazy as she thinks she is. Odds are good you’re meeting with her will be one of your top 5 Blogher 11 moments.

    6. We know you’re hungover. We saw the pictures on Flickr from the night before and frankly are shocked you’re standing today. Just go down to the lobby and buy the $3 2-pack of Motrin from the gift shop. Don’t ask Twitter for Motrin. And rehydrate with one of the 20 swag bottles you got. It’s not that complicated and there is no award for most hungover. It’s not a bad thing to be hungover. We just don’t care about it.

    7. Thank your wait staff and hotel help. Look them in the eye and thank them. Even if they aren’t doing something for you and are just walking by, thank them. Having thrown a party during Blogher, I cannot begin to tell you how horrible people are at these events. That person doesn’t make enough money and doesn’t want to hear how many followers you have on Twitter if you don’t get what you want. Unless you have been stabbed by a hotel employee, are screaming for help from hotel employees and hotel employees are refusing to help you, chill the fuck out. Blogher is running out of cities willing to host so don’t be the person who permanently takes San Diego off the map for future years. I kid. (blinks rapidly) Don’t forget to thank the hosts of parties and sponsors too. They put a lot of time and effort and money into making it happen.

    8. Don’t do anything you don’t want to see on Twitter in 2 minutes. I’d say it’s a no-brainer, but apparently this goes unheeded every year. Good for the gawkers but bad for you if you’re trying to get that toilet paper ambassadorship with Charmin. It’s the Mardi Gras trip of the 80s, people. We’re glad you are comfortable enough (read: drunk enough) to flash but the internet is forever.

    9. Even if you don’t like someone, be kind with the flickr uploads. There is no reason to be posting someone’s third chin or their “not best” side. Use that cropping feature liberally. It’s called paying it forward. And makes you look like a nice person. We can tell if you’re posting bad pictures on purpose and gossip about it behind your back.

    10. Your swag bag won’t be perfect. It will offend you or you won’t be the target audience or won’t meet your dietary needs. Whatever way it goes, don’t whine about the free stuff. Just recycle it. I’ve given out shitty swag bags because the money ran out. It is what it is. And everyone gets creeped out when you take a twitpic of all of it on your hotel bed. Just FYI.

    10. Everyone makes their own good time. If you aren’t having a good time, figure it out. Go back to your hotel room with a bag of chips and catch up on all those movies you’ve missed on PPV. Take a cab out to the beach in Coronado. Take a chance talking to someone in the lobby. You can totally do this. It’s a business conference, not cheerleading tryouts.

    And if you are staying home this year, don’t break Twitter with your tears or jealousy. Just go next year.

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    1. Meg @ Soup Is Not A Finger Food says:

      I’ve never been there but I’ve read many, many posts authored by those who have. This one strikes me as exceedingly sensible and serves as a reminder to me that one of these days in the greater DC area, we really should meet over a 6 pack of Torpedo.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:14 am

    2. sue {laundry for six} says:

      I seriously love you. I think this may be my favorite line of any pre-BlogHer post ever: “It’s a business conference, not cheerleading tryouts.”

      Now I need to find something to do with myself this weekend because my plan was to break the Twitter with my tears.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:39 am

    3. Mom101 says:

      You are my hero.

      Especially the part about being nice to the hotel staff. I still remember a blogger telling me they were leaving garbage in the hallway “on purpose” because they were mad at the front desk. Freshman year FTW!

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:43 am

    4. Niri says:

      Love it! Everyone really does decide their own fate to enjoy or not.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:49 am

    5. Katherine @ Postpartum Progress says:

      “Do not crash The Twitter with the Great Airline Injustices of 2011.” Hilarious.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:50 am

    6. Jess says:

      This post is total perfection in the world of the do’s and don’ts of attending (or not attending) BlogHer. Kudos.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:55 am

    7. Backpacking Dad says:

      11. It’s always a great thing if someone knows who you are, but it’s not an insult if they don’t. The Internet is a big place, and even if you’ve left 90 comments on someone’s blog some people can’t even remember faces, let alone a comment-pseudonym that has some combination of “mom” “kids” “crazy” and “booze” in it. Taking it personally just means you invented a relationship in your head that isn’t there, not that the blogger is a bitch.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:58 am

    8. Julie Marsh says:

      Damn, I’m going to miss seeing you.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 9:59 am

    9. Crazy Mom With Kids N Booze says:

      I think you’re wrong, Backpacking Dad.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:00 am

    10. Loukia says:

      Awesome. Loved this!

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:01 am

    11. Marta says:

      I’ve never been nor am I going this year, but that was just pure common sense. Love it. Can’t wait to read on twitter about all those that didn’t heed your advice.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:08 am

    12. My Sanity Blog says:

      You are freaking hilarious. I would be one of those people who would freak the f out if you came up and hugged me. (considering I have a gigantic following of 38 twitter folks- oh wait I’m whining, ok ok)
      I hope you have a good time and don’t run into any douches that did not follow this guideline!

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:10 am

    13. Karen Hartzell, Graco says:

      Love this! Honesty works! I sure hope I get to meet you irl! I will be stalking…errr..I mean looking for you.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:10 am

    14. Leticia- Tech Savvy Mama says:

      Oh this is all kinds of awesome! Love this: “We’re glad you are comfortable enough (read: drunk enough) to flash but the internet is forever.”

      Bwa ha ha hah haaa

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:26 am

    15. baltimoregal says:

      I haven’t even been to blogger, probably won’t ever get to go, but thank you. We all want to know about your trip and everyone’s important, but it does get overwhelming in tenthousandicate.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:37 am

    16. PunditMom aka Joanne Bamberger says:

      And remember to tip the maids that clean your room every day. If we think we get paid crap on the internet, they get paid worse. Important to thank them, but even better if you leave them a couple dollars a day (I’m a notorious overtipper when it comes to this stuff). xoxoxo

      And I promise I won’t jump into the chocolate fountain

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:51 am

    17. Laura says:

      True, true, true. Love it!

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:58 am

    18. Issa says:

      I think I luff you.

      This may be one of the best posts I’ve read about BH in the past oh 6 weeks.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:00 am

    19. magpie says:


      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:03 am

    20. Cheryl M. says:

      Love this post! Can’t go this year, but meeting both you and The Bloggess would definitely be my top 2! Hoping to go next year. 🙂

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:11 am

    21. jessicaAPISS says:

      Where was this how-to list back in 2008 before my first BlogHer?? I was too shy to do #4 and #5 (I think that is where The Bloggess began her bathroom receiving line?), but I was definitely drunk enough to try and had a #6.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:16 am

    22. Busy Mom says:

      But, those blueberries were soooo good, I had to have them.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:17 am

    23. Rachel - A Southern Fairytale says:

      This is so fantastic.
      just. yes.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:21 am

    24. Robin Plemmons says:

      Hold on. The internet is FOREVER? Like in heaven & everythang? Shiiiiiit.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:23 am

    25. kate says:

      ooh i love this – makes me want to go and just sit in a corner with my bag of popcorn and watch the entertainment unfold!
      might have to make a bingo game out of this…

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:26 am

    26. Angella says:

      LOVE this. And you’re right – Jenny is fifty shades of awesome.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:30 am

    27. Susan @WhyMommy says:

      12. If you’re not going this year, check out the fun on twitter and wish your friends well – but the minute you get weepy, TURN THE TWITTER OFF. Go for a run. Call a friend who doesn’t even blog. Watch a movie with your sweetie and/or your kids. But don’t spend the weekend feeling sorry for yourself. It won’t help.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:32 am

    28. Average Jane says:

      Perfect. Just perfect.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:47 am

    29. The one where I tell you not to freak out about BlogHer. But you’re doing it anyway, aren’t you? Stop it! says:

      […] “Hunt down your favorite bloggers at Blogher and talk to them. Don’t worry if they are going to be an asshole or not. Almost everyone comes home with a “you won’t believe who was a cast-iron bitch to me in the elevator” story.” – Kristen Hammond […]

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:52 am

    30. Julie says:

      Absolutely! I will endeavor to comply with #3 but it may be a big challenge. I’ll probably be fine because I lack the ability to actually tweet and squee in person simultaneously. Speaking of, probably a good rule of thumb is to not start more tweets with SQUEE! per day than times you eat (assuming you eat 3 times).

      Added # wherever we are by the time I finish typing this:

      In the same way we don’t all have the same religious or political affiliations (and that’s okay, free to be you and me), we also don’t all subscribe to the same School of Manners, so very likely someone will be behaving in a way you deem Inappropriate. I suggest keeping that to yourself because it probably isn’t your business anyway, and remember what they say about message bearers. I find if I generally ascribe good intentions to people, we can get along okay.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 11:58 am

    31. WordyDoodles says:

      This is a terrific post. I love no holds barred REASONABLE posts. I’m going to be the super-friendly one saying hi to everyone I can, wearing my MomsRising hat and also probably telling you my hopes for my personal blog and sincerely wanting to hear about yours, and understanding that putting myself out there is going to mean getting shunned a few/several times.

      But I’m hoping that the sum of all that outreach equals relationship-building.

      xo bloggers,

      August 2nd, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    32. 10 Great BlogHer Conference Posts | MomCrunch says:

      […] Mommy Needs A Cocktail provides excellent advice on how to not be a BlogHer jerk. Funny, but very sound advice. […]

      August 2nd, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    33. Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah says:


      August 2nd, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    34. Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah says:

      Also, #13 Whatever you are wearing is fine.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    35. Elizabeth@Table4Five says:

      This should be included in the conference guide. See you there!

      August 2nd, 2011 at 3:52 pm

    36. Karen Sugarpants says:

      I love this post! Especially the crabbing about airlines and stuff. So uncouth.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:10 pm

    37. loralee says:

      I luff you.

      Also…don’t be bitchy to the blogher volunteer staff. They work their asses off and chances are whatever is pissing you off is beyond their control.

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:11 pm

    38. Mo says:

      This is my first BlogHer (and first blogging conference). Hands down, this is the best post about going to conferences ever!

      August 2nd, 2011 at 10:31 pm

    39. kim/reluctant renovator says:

      Great list and spoken like a true veteran. Thanks for passing along your ticket!

      babybrewing says That was an AWARD!!! My taxes thank you for winning! hahaha

      August 3rd, 2011 at 4:55 am

    40. nic @mybottlesup says:

      awesome. not attending this year, but this post is so very awesome.

      August 3rd, 2011 at 5:04 am

    41. crazypants says:

      Best post ever. Seriously. Genius. Hit about 96% of the annoying types of tweets we will see over the next few days.

      I also hit on a couple of the same points in my BlogHer post… especially about the potential douche bags and The Bloggess REALLY being in the bathroom. Love it. Bravo!!!!!

      August 3rd, 2011 at 6:56 am

    42. Melisa/Shiny Brite says:

      can i tell you how much i loved this post? great! i loved this post. it totally made me laugh out loud. i am not at BlogHer this year, but now i know to keep my self-pity-party the freak off Twitter.


      August 3rd, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    43. Susie Sunshine says:

      This list made me laugh hard.

      Also, the swag that seems so awesome at the time, you’ll end up ditching in the aiport trash because your bag is over the limit. Why make an ass of yourself over dollar store items?

      I also have a theory that the lamer the party, the more photos are taken. (Because if you’re REALLY having such a super time, you don’t stop to whip out the camera.)

      August 3rd, 2011 at 4:50 pm

    44. Alexandra says:


      I have found a motherlode of blogher recaps that speak my language.

      Praise jesus.

      All week long, it’s just been the popular girls recaps of their bff bff bff stuff.

      BUt, this, and I came from a rabbit hole at LaurieWrites, to nopasanada, to this.

      FINALLY: REAL BlogHer posts.

      THank you.

      And, yes, I did get shit on by some of my bloggy idols.

      but I’m going to think of the 3,000 that were fabulous.

      And screw the 3 that weren’t.

      August 14th, 2011 at 11:53 am

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