Sunday, March 20, 2011

Back from South by Southwest

I got back from South by Southwest a few days ago. It was as good as the last one, though in a completely different way. I got to see several old friends, notably Brenda Huettner, speaker and co-author extraordinaire, and made any number of new friends.

Also, thanks to Phylise Banner, I ended up hearing the Discovery astronauts speaking the day after they got back, meeting them, and getting their autographs on a couple of t-shirts for The Babe. We then got a 3-hour private tour of Houston Mission Control and even got to sit in the space shuttle training simulator. I'll point you to photos of that some point soon.

Mostly, what I wanted to say in this post was that the the cool giveaways at SxSW in the dealer room were:
  • 1gb and 2gb flash drives. Between all the different vendors giving them away, I snagged 7 or 8 of them. Y'can't have too many free flash drives.
  • A color flashbook: they'd film you for 6 seconds doing whatever, then print it out in color in a pocket flipbook. The Babe instantly identified that I was doing a Michigan J. Frog sorta thing. It was very silly.
  • Pint jars of hot salsa from a company named Salsa.
  • Urinal mats.  (Women, if you're not familiar with these, urinal mats are a male piece of gear. They're plastic mats with holes or slots or baffles that go in the bottom of a urinal so there aren't splashes when the pee hits the porcelain and you also have somewhere specific to aim, which seems to be a male preoccupation). Why would we want a urinal mat, you may wonder? It's certainly not something one carries from place to place. Well, this one has a picture of Charlie Sheen's face. It was a fun idea. In fact, I saw this item actually in use at a sports bar near the convention center before I even knew it was a giveaway. I approved.


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