THE CONFERENCE RUN-DOWN:
I learned so much at BlogHer.
1. BlogHer gave me a much needed boost of enthusiasm about my own blog, which I have grown a bit disenchanted with lately.
2. BlogHer gave me a new perspective on my style of writing- it seems that my (brutal?) honesty will ring true with most readers, but I need to implement more editing (what??? People LIKE typos, it makes them feel sUpeRior!) and a more of an essay style that will reach a broader audience.
3. While I attended and enjoyed both the fashion and the graphics sessions, my favorite was an intimate (six people) half hour long grammar session where I talked one on one with an "instructor" and four other bloggers. I did not realize that one could (and should) sign up for these small sessions prior to BlogHer on Eventbrite. Next time... next time.
4. The celebration of women exhibited at Voices of the Year and the Fashion Show was a beautiful thing to behold. GO to these events. They are well worth your time.
5. Schedule yourself an extra day or two for sight seeing. I flew all the way to New York and spent one entire day not even stepping outside the hotel/BlogHer to see the light of day. I missed the Guggenheim, the Museum of Natural History, the Museum of Modern Art and sadly, Saks Fifth Avenue. Somehow, having my hand on the spandex clad arse of the Naked Cowboy did not make up for this devastating loss.
6. Take a moment a talk with the sponsors at the Expo, particularly those whose products are a good fit for your blog. You never know what could happen! You could get food to review, free manicures or meet The Pioneer Woman.
7. Don't shoot women dirty looks because they are wearing a fabulous navy blue disco ball and you are wearing ugly khakis. Just Be Nice.
THE NYC HILTON AT A GLANCE:
I stayed in an acutal HILTON, you guys! Neat, huh? I'm FANCY now! Don't be fooled by the the highfalutin name, I have stayed at nicer Holiday Inns in Nebraska. In an effort to maintain my formerly mentioned brutal honesty, I will now share my
1. You will probably not see Paris Hilton. Do not run up to every skinny blonde with a tiny dog and yell, "You know what would be HAWT? If you posed with me in a picture!"
2. It is in a great location. In fact, it is just a few blocks from Central Park, Radio City Music Hall, Times Square and 5th Avenue.
3. While the rooms were clean and a good size, the lack of counter space in the bathroom was appalling. Trying to use a hair dryer and curling iron with two inches of counter space was basically like volunteering for death by electrocution.
4. The elevators were s l o w. So so slow. And hot. Imagine waiting 10 minutes to catch an elevator, and then when you finally do, it is like entering Tim Tebow's jockstrap in the final seconds of overtime.
5. THERE ARE NO COFFEE POTS IN THE ROOM. Whaaaaaaaatttt whaaattttt whhhyyyyyyyy? While there conveniently was a Starbucks on the main level, I don't want to put on clothes (and deal with the despondent elevators) to get my morning coffee!
6. There is a not only a Starbucks, but also a cafe and two bars on the main level. There are two gift shops for souvenirs and such, as well.
7. There was a refrigerator in the room that we were not allowed to use, hence my leftover salmon turning into "that horrible stench the filled the entire 35th floor". Sorry to all of you who smelled that. At least it was not some one's ass or a severed, rotting foot- like you thought that it was...
8. The maids were super friendly. I was greeted with a smile and kind words every time I walked by them.
9. I had to pay $15 to use the workout center. I did it, and it was quite nice, but we were paying almost $300 per night for the room, I would think that a portion of that could cover the cost of getting a little sweaty while avoiding eye contact with the creepy guy next to you on the treadmill.
10. There was a wonderful selection of pillows on my bed. I think that they provided you with four different levels of firmness. I liked that.
HOW TO BUY SOUVENIRS:
Although I did find my boys some cute t-shirts in the Hilton gift shop and one for Brock in The Dairy at Central Park, I did not get myself anything from New York.
Well, I did buy one pair of shoes. Doi. They were on sale.
Authentic New York tampons.
Not leaving the hotel for 24 hours was making Jen and I crazy. We needed to see some green and some squirrels or we were going to lose our shit. When we couldn't get into the desired session (because we hadn't previously registered on EventBrite), we made a last minute decision to bolt to Central Park. It was BEAUTIFUL. Naturally we got lost on our way out of Central Park, so we did what any city savvy girls would do; we swiftly walked past all the excellent cafes and sushi bars that New York offers. Instead of dining in a swanky air conditioned restaurant, we slipped into a pharmacy (for tampons) and bought sketchy looking salads out of a cooler. We ate them on the street while searching for our
sense of direction hotel. I am happy to report that neither of us died of botulism.
And watch out for garbage trucks!
And watch out for garbage trucks!
So there it is, Johi's incomplete recollection, ramblings and guide to BlogHer and the New York City Hilton on the Avenue of the Americas.
Peace, Love and Souvenir Tampons,