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.