If you can, please come check out the St. Louis interactive conference this weekend, beginning today in the U City Loop at 4pm. All the details you need to know - including how to follow along live, are right here.
This was a huge endeavor, much more than I anticipated but not completely beyond my expectations. There were several points that were positively maddening and some that made me want to hug people until their eyes bulged out of their head like the eyes in those small, rubbery stress dolls.
This couldn't have happened without the help of many people and I want to say an extra special thanks to Melody, Joel, Greg, Lisa andCraig for all the hours, muscle, and too many other things to list.
I'm in a very introspective place right now. Last night I
hosted the moderators/speakers workshop for InterPLAY, the St. Louis
Interactive Festival so many of us have been yammering on about. We held it in
Chris's building and it was the very first time such a large group of people outside
Chris and Doug's circle saw it.
It was also the first time that I met a handful of areabloggerswhose work and personalities I've admired from afar. One by one I met
them at the massive metal side door before we trekked through unfinished construction
and up the elevator to the finished ShockCity offices where we sat
in a ring of metal chairs, cracked jokes, talked shop, and shared a beer with
Bill, who brought a case with him. I looked around the room at my
contemporaries, members of an unofficial official industry, and felt an immense
sense of privilege to be able to embark on such an ambitious project with them.
I know that I'm one of those people that others either love or hate, and this
says more about me than I've ever wanted to reveal about my personality, but I
just assume that people will always feel the latter. I assume they will and
hope that they won't.
After the meeting Chris gave an impromptu tour of his
building. This building has shaved an easy five years' off of our life. But
what is duration if it's hollow? What is life if you don't at least stick a
toe into the unknown everyday? I hung in the back as he explained each room,
his motivation, the purpose of the place. That building is his dream manifested.
We are going through such a stressful time right now, it seems like this past
year has been a series of those. Looking back they seem nothing more than a
bunch of scattered vignettes, frozen moments of tears, heartache, frustration.
I tried to downplay my absolute terror at the enormous
weight of such a dream, to scoff at the various amounts of stress we've
been under to pull this off, by making a couple of jokes here and there. I didn't
know what the people there thought of it everything, until I read Mae's account
this morning. Her words pierced through it all and relieved some of the
pressure, somehow, simply because she gets
it. (Read her post.) When I told her that sometimes Chris and I lie in bed at night, turn
and look at each other with terror in our hearts and tears in our eyes, and
silently communicate "Oh my gawd. What if we fail?" it was the most honest I've
ever been about this entire experience with anyone. Like, just by even admitting the possibility will make failure a reality or something.
The good - or sad - thing is that I am so driven for him,
that drive, that belief in him has eliminated my doubts, my cynicism that it won't work. He doesn't have bad ideas. His
planning, his execution, is spot-on. Sometimes I get so frustrated living with
a counterpart who is so much better than me on so many levels but it's the
reason why when he extends his hand while standing at the edge of a cliff and
says "Jump. Trust me," I do.
And I jump.
I also enjoy watching him on the cusp of accomplishing his
life's dream, second he says, to us. (I don't care how sappy that sounds. That's
where my head is right now.)
So as he was telling everyone about recording music, about
his building, a legacy really, and sweeping his arms all around, I was proud.
Pride tempered with fear. For so long I've felt very alone in this feeling.
Because of that I'm thrilled to have met Mae and realize that she gets it, too,
she's there herself. She's right on the cusp of something amazing.
When people do well in St. Louis,
St. Louis does
well. I am so hopeful.
A lot of them will be at InterPLAY this weekend. I would be
over the moon if you could join us.
I'm standing in my kitchen about to stuff manicotti with an amalgam of various cheeses and spices; Liam is at his desk finishing homework for tomorrow and Ewan is at the dining room table pretending that his crayons are army men and they're waging an epic battle.
Starting tomorrow morning (and running through the election) I'll be guest co-hosting on Jamie's show from 7 - 9 a.m. every Tuesday and Thursday. This is in addition to my Sunday night show.
Also this weekend, if you haven't glanced at the badge to your right, I'm speaking and doing some moderating at St. Louis's first ever interactive conference orchestrated by myself and several members of the St. Louis Bloggers' Guild. Dude. Putting together such an event was HARD. Working with a plethora of people, trying to accommodate everyone, and being constantly aware of the various individual schedules is/was nothing short of brain-frying. I'm happy with how things have turned out for our inaugural year, though. We have a lot of great people coming together to share their experiences and expertise and I've no doubt that attendees will walk away with some valuable information. You can learn more about the conference, including all of the panels, here and purchase wristbands (which admits you to the entire festival and you can catch some pretty cool indie bands) here. Many thanks to our kickin' sponsors for helping to make it happen.
Lately it's been dusky dark when I'm at the station to do my Sunday evening show. When they asked me to come in the mornings I sort of feel like a crypt keeper let loose in the day. Jamie had his little flip camera this morning and I didn't realize that his intent was to post actual footage of his heinous protein dirt shake and me doing the Cabbage Patch on Youtube. In my defense, I was halfway through a potent pumpkin spice latte from Starbucks and completely cracked out:
I brought Jamie a mix CD (how neo-80s!) of some of the 2,000+ songs I have on iTunes to play that morning and he asked if I was going to break it down right in the studio like how the Obamas danced on Ellen. You can't hear the music, obviously, because it's playing through our headphones, but here's the track, Kenna's "Say Goodbye to Love":
Currently trying to extricate a Tostino's pizza from the oven as it said "BAKE ON THE RACK" and I baked it on the rack and lo, it became one with the rack. Liam sits at the kitchen table, working on math lessons a bit later into the afternoon than usual; this morning I drove around the KMOV building four times (much to the amusement of the cab drivers) before finally spying the slightly-hidden little spaces behind the building in which to park. I was due there to tape a segment for a new show called "Great Day St. Louis," hosted by Carol Daniel. Carol sent me an email a year or so ago after one of my posts and she told me she laughed her head off. I was just floored that she even knew I existed.
She caught me doing some last minute primping before walking on the set and told me I looked fine. Because I am awesome like that, I responded with something about how I could feel my face greasing up because I was wearing more makeup than usual and I KEPT TALKING AND WOULD NOT SHUT UP ABOUT IT and the producers laughed, either out of hysterical pity for the family stuck with me or because they were being polite.
The taping was lovely, I believe it will air next Monday, when it does I'll let you know. Also: please don't fret none - I'm still working on that big ol' homeschooling resource post and will publish it shortly; I'm currently up to my armpits in InterPlay, the St. Louis interactive conference and lamenting over how certain unnamed wifi providers are proving difficult with which to work. I'm also wrapping up sponsors, so if you want in, email me asap. When I'm not writing, homeschooling, and trying to figure out how to clone myself for efficiency, I've been handling the radio gig and watching in amazement as my phone bay grew from nothing to being completely jammed every Sunday night for the past three months. I'm getting more and more emails about the show and the numbers have the crew thrilled beyond belief. It's a good thing that it's 2008 and I'm not short of ambitious mother role models for inspiration.