I'll have a lot more to say about Creating Change - especially about some of the major topics - but for now I just wanted to mention some of the other contributors and some thoughts about meeting most of them in person for the first time.
Our meetup went well, but not everyone could attend since there was a UNITED ENDA meeting at the same time. Most of our contributors were supposed to be at the meeting! Luckily, Lane Hudson, Alexander Robinson, Cathy Renna, Jerame and I were able to get into one pic. (Click to embiggen.) Mike Rogers and Kate Kendall were there to start with, but had to leave for the meeting while we were waiting on other contributors to arrive. (Long story - they moved our location and, well, it was a cluster-f--k for a while.)
I've still found time to track down all of our contributors that are here though... Jerame will tell you that I tend to run off of my first impressions quite often. Since I do, I thought I'd share some of my first thoughts when meeting some of these crazy contributors (and share some pictures!)
Cathy Renna - OMG I love Cathy. She is very friendly and introduced me to quite a few people like Kate Clinton and Donna Rose. I don't think there's anyone she doesn't know. Can anyone say "Effective PR person?" We got to hang out together for a while at the press reception and I finally got to meet her colleague Simon Aronoff.
Dustin Kight - Dustin was a presenter at the conference. Sweet, cute and with a smile that will melt your heart, Dustin is just as fun to talk to in person as he is online or the phone. I'm excited that he'll be coming to Indianapolis in late March since we didn't get to chat for very long. (Dustin and I at right - click to embiggen.)
Mike Rogers - Mike is another people-person who knows everyone. Hanging out with Mike was a helluva lot of fun; his stories cracked me up. I think he's one of the most dangerous bloggers in America right now as I watched the various organizations try to categorize him as either a journalist or an activist, but never quite the right meld particularly.
H. Alexander Robinson - I have to confess, I already had an impression in my head from Alexander's icon. He is not nearly as uptight as his picture makes him look. (He calls it his glamour shots photo.) I love how often he laughed and I'd really love to have dinner with him so we could talk more.
Sean Kosofsky - Jerame had already met Sean and swore I'd love him too. I do. He's always smiling and really draws you in with his voice and that grin. Looking out over the river at Windsor, Canada from the 36th floor last night with Sean and Jerame was amazing; I'll remember it for a long time. (Sean's pic at right. Click to embiggen.)
Lane Hudson - We didn't have much of a chance to talk since he was always surrounded by a group of admirers. It must be hell to be so popular. *grins*
Kate Kendell - I really liked meeting Kate. We didn't get to spend a lot of time together since she was running off for the UNITED ENDA meeting, but I'd love to spend more time with her. Unfortunately, she couldn't stay for the entire conference. Mike took the photo of Kate so I'll put it up as soon as I get a copy of it.
Bruce Parker - Bruce is just as crazy as I am and I love him for it. *grins* Since we're already friends it was nice to see him again. I've missed hanging out with him since he moved to Louisiana. We're in this pic together with Cindy Rizzo, one of our readers and commenters. (Again, clickety makes bigety.)
Brylo - I always have fun hanging out with Brylo. Since she lives in Indianapolis, I need to make more time to do that. It's been nice to see her again; I always laugh when we hang out and gossip.
Matt Foreman - Matt is very approachable and yet distinguished. His plenary speech obviously moved the audience and you could just feel the goodwill for him at the conference. Matt's staff - especially Roberta Sklar, Dave Noble and Pedro Serrano - were all professional and generous.
My thanks to Matt and Roberta for making it possible for Jerame and I to attend Creating Change. They allowed us a unique opportunity to witness progress being made in our community while still meeting several of the people crazy enough to hang out with us here.
We leave today and I still have so much to talk about! Gene Robinson's plenary speech was amazing and I have pictures. The nightlife. The sessions and topics. I know I'll be sharing bits and pieces for a week still...
Next up, photos of fans and other bloggers!