BWE10 closing: two observations

Couple of things I noticed after three days of bloggerific seminar sessions.

One, I need an iPad. Yes, I did have one for a couple of weeks before I got the cease-and-desist from work—not cool to invest in productivity tools, it seems. It’s a security risk, they say. But seriously, I’m going to need one. I’ll ask the bosses.

While we, the human race, have gotten along swimmingly for centuries using paper and ink, I have drawn the line in the sand and declared scribbling notes during seminars is no longer adequate. Hear that, nature? Josh says the cool kids on the planet need to move on.

For me, the sexy advantage to an iPad-like device is how one person can simultaneously and easily hop-scotch from listening, browsing and note-taking with just a few flicks of his/her type-y fingers. Hear a mention, look up the website, type out a note, send a tweet. Boom. Done.

I was able to keep up with my notepad, sure, but now I have 40-50 pages of notes to work through. Ugh! With something like an iPad, I could have taken notes on the cloud, parceled out bits for tweets and moved on to cocktail hour. Priorities, people!

The other bitingly sweet feature about iPad is the portability. Macbooks and the MBAir used to be the bizomb. But nowadays, any clamshell is cumbersome. I need something I can ninja flip around in mid conversation once I admit the person talking is worth remembering. I don’t want to have to balance my coffee, disposition and laptop in mid hallway.

The second thing I noticed during BlogWorld was how much I still dislike self promotion. Maybe I should say shameless self promotion. Everybody has to self promote, sure. It’s as basic as birds puffing themselves up for potential mates and all that crap.

What I really dislike, though, is session hijacking. It’s like thread hijacking, but in person. You know…topic is one thing, panel is discussing it…the floor is open for “questions” and people start giving GD soliloquies about their business.

It’s ridiculous. I’ll say to those out there who do this sort of thing what my commanders told me: if you’re not at the adult table, you don’t get to talk. In the service, as a lowly-ranked peon, if I wasn’t spoken to about a specific topic, I shut my mouth. This includes topic shifts…like “Do you have a question?” “No, but let me show you a cool thing I learned in Boy Scouts.”

Yes, no, we’re good. Thanks.

Teaching soldiers that they aren’t the center of the universe is standard practice pretty early on in military careers. Maybe I take that for granted. I’m of the persuasion that people sometimes need a kick in the shins to remind them the whole world doesn’t bend to their will. Things will go on if they don’t scratch that itch, gawk at that passing cute something-something, or indulge in any of the 1,000 impulses that come to them every second. It’s why we military guys stand guard over buckets of water on “fire guard” or do any of the other asinine things that siphon hours of life—the whole of the group is bolstered by each of us denying ourselves now and then for the benefit of others.

This includes shutting mouths when others are talking and NOT hijacking panel discussions.

I have no illusions, I’m not THAT special. If I’m doing something that is astronomically awesome, stuff has a tendency to get noticed as I go about my NORMAL ROUTINES. I call it God’s grace.

But what are those normal routines?:

1) Don’t be a dick.

2) Listen.

3) Encourage others.

The end.


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About salemonz

Born in San Diego, Calif. Raised as a Navy Brat, I jumped ship and crossed over to the Army. Served as an enlisted journalist for a bunch of years, then helped the DoD figure out what the hell to do with social media. After the Army, now I drift down the river of life, trying not to be a jerk.

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