Further Thoughts From the Conference

I’ve gone into DC the past five days for the American Library Association Conference. Today, I head back to the real world. Before the real world, I thought I would add a few more thoughts about my time in DC.

I’m going to miss going to the city every day. I’ve lived and worked in the suburbs for the past 24 years. My wife has gone into the city every day for the past 24 years. I would happily trade places with her. I loved taking the train to the city and having a nice 20-minute walk through DC to go to work. I loved having a city with multiple lunch options outside my door. My normal work life has Wendy’s and a grocery store as the only close options if I don’t want to pack a lunch. I loved jumping on the Metro to go to a baseball game after work on Saturday. I know working in the city is out as an option at this point, but I really need to make an effort to head down more on my days off. I hate that I live so close and never go, but it’s hard to convince my wife to go back after she’s been there for work all week. She’s happy to stay in the burbs.

Larger crowds still annoy me. I don’t understand how people think it is a good idea to just stop walking in the middle of the crowded hall(or on a crowded sidewalk). I don’t get groups of people deciding these areas are the best places to stop and chat with friends. I don’t get the people who go to an author talk and then talk loudly with their friends. If you have no interest in actually hearing the author speak and would rather chat with your friends, go have coffee somewhere. Generally, I don’t understand why people don’t care how their actions affect others. This isn’t necessarily a crowd only thing. Unfortunately, that attitude is something I deal with on a daily basis. Sometimes I wish I could be someone who can do what I want without considering how it affects someone else.

I was much better this time at schmoozing with people in the exhibits. One publisher has promised to send me books for my branch(and one to me personally). I spoke to another company about partnering on a training we are doing at the state level. I stopped by the booth of a company we do business with to tell them how much I like their service. I talked to CIA recruiters. I stopped by the state library association booth to say hello to the people volunteering their time. It was like Bizarro Tater went to the exhibits in my place.

It was a good five days, but now I go back to my suburban life and Bizarro Tater goes dormant again. Maybe I can convince admin that I should go to PLA in Nashville in the spring.


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