I wasn’t going to do a BlogHer11 post this year. What do you guys really care about my vacation, really? But I started thinking about it today, and decided that you’ll just have to indulge me for a personal post, I promise to say SOMETHING technology related. 🙂
So, a Mormon, a Muslim, and some Lesbians walk into a bar…. it sounds like the start of a joke, but that is what BlogHer is all about for me. It’s the relationships I make with wonderful people based on true connection, as opposed to “we’re friends because our kids go to the same school”. Last year at BlogHer I was honored to have my post be selected as on of the Voices of the Year. This year my friend’s post was selected as an honoree! While waiting backstage I met Deborah, who consistently made me crack up. Afterwards I wanted to hang out with her at the parties, not only because she was super funny, she was so much fun to be around! I also met Faiqa backstage. We bonded over the fact that the art that was made to go with our posts actually drew us to them. It’s hard to explain, but it’s like I knew which picture was mine, and she felt the same.
This year I could not wait to hang out with my friends again! I was lucky enough to run into Vikki right at the beginning, as we were both speaking at the conference. I saw her at the speaker meetup the night before the conference started and practically attacked her. I hope her partner didn’t mind. 🙂 Again, we spent the evenings dancing crazy, and just enjoying being with each other, and then had a super fun “after party” in their hotel room until 4 AM. Here’s what I love about hanging out with them… they don’t care (and I’m not saying “them” like I’m lumping all Lesbians and Muslims into one big stereotype… I’m saying “them” as these particular friends that I have). They don’t care if I dance REALLY REALLY lame (which I totally do), they don’t care if I’m wearing jeans the entire week, they don’t care that I have no clue how to do my hair, they are just accepting of everyone. In a huge space filled with 3600 bloggers, it’s nice to be with people who truly accept you for who you are… even if you are Mormon.
So, tying back to technology? That is what is so wonderful about social networks, blogs, and just the whole space of social media. it’s not people coming together because their kids are in the same school, or because you happened to purchase homes next to or near each other. It’s friendship based on things you are truly passionate about. If you don’t know what you are truly passionate about, get out there and look around the internet. What blogs do you enjoy reading? Who do you look up to? What do you like to do when you have spare time? Find people there and connect with them. I mean really, where else besides a social networks can a Mormon, a Muslim and some Lesbians find so much in common?
I can’t wait to go to BlogHer again next year… I have been promised a game of spoons at our next after party.
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Sarah Kimmel is a digital parenting coach and family tech expert. She has spent the last 16 years of her career as a Microsoft Certified IT Manager supporting over 100 small businesses. During that time she started Family Tech LLC to help families understand and manage the technology in their home. She has regularly appeared as a family tech expert on KSL News, BYUtv and Studio 5, and has been invited all over the world from tech companies like Lenovo, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, and Samsung. Find out more on her website SarahKimmel.com