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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

a BlogHer post in which I Shamelessly Name Drop and talk All About Me, Me, Me... because it's all about ME, right???

So I know y'all are wondering something of Major Importance. And that you will unfairly compare me with Stefanie and find me pathetically lacking. Because Stefanie even hung out on her ranch, for goodness sake, so couldn't I somehow manage to just plain meet her? Nope, y'all, I never even SAW the Pioneer Woman, although I heard she chatted with anyone who approached her. I thought about stripping naked and walking through the grand ballroom of 2,500 people to somehow capture her attention, but unfortunately I'm too much of a prude to do that. Plus, a few ladies at the conference appeared to *almost* have that idea already, so I don't think it was too original.

So who DID I see?

Well... I mostly hung out with the adoption writers over at Grown In My Heart, which is why I went to the conference in the first place. After over a year of blogging together and emailing and whatnot, we really, really wanted to meet face-to-face. Plus, one of our writers - Kristen of Rage Against the Minivan - was nominated for A Major Award. We needed to give her our moral support, even though we hardly ever saw her because - as a Famous Award Nominee - Kristen fell into the rabbit hole that is BlogHer Media and could only claw her way free occasionally, and with massive effort on her part. But oh my lands, y'all, I loved each and every one of these ladies.

a few of the writers from Grown In My Heart, including yours truly

Still, the Most Important Question (of course) was: what did they think of the ever-mysterious Tonggu Momma? Because it's all about me, Me, ME... right???

I mean, if I'm keeping it real.

Well, supposedly I'm neurotic, but in a lovable, adorable kind of way rather than an annoying, witchy kind of way. The general consensus was that the best person to play me in a movie (because that is totally likely to happen, right?) might possibly be Joan Cusack. Which is okay by me, especially since - when Claudia first mentioned the idea - I thought she said JOHN Cusack. And, as much as I love John, I must admit that I felt slightly miffed about being hypothetically portrayed by a man. In a non-existent movie, of course.

And no, I wasn't drunk. In fact, I didn't have a single drop of alcohol all weekend. And yes, I really DID attend BlogHer, despite said fact. And yes, I am absolutely the biggest goody-two-shoes of the group.

Just so you know.

But what did strangers think of the ever-illusive Tonggu Momma? Well, most of them didn't have a clue as to who I was. And most of them responded the same way y'all did when you first stopped in... "Tong-ga-wha?!?!!!" Karen of Chookooloonks seemed to get me, though, even though we only spoke for a moment. I mean, with a blog named Chookooloonks, of course she'd understand my need to invent the word Tongginator. Several years ago Karen, an adoptive momma herself, morphed from an adoption blogger into a writing and photography blogger.

(So yes, it IS possible, y'all.)

I briefly met Karen because, during an interactive art exhibit at the conference, she painted one to three word phrases onto faces and arms and backs... words and phrases that the individuals felt defined them as women. Can y'all guess what phrase I chose? If you've hung around here for any length of time, it shouldn't surprise you. Because I am oh-so-boringly predictable.


I still managed to have fun at BlogHer, probably because I hung around with The Most Amazing People Ever. I spent most of my days (and nights! oh, the nights!) kicking around with Claudia, Marcie and Christine, but I also bumped into many, many others, not all of them from the adoption community. You know, people like...

Kim of Prairie Mama ... oh yeah, and her husband, too

Kim is My New Favorite Person because she is the only hopefully first person to randomly blurt out, "I read your blog." To me. In an elevator. Where she was trapped and forced to listen to me nervously babble on and on in response. Kim, I want you to know that you totally made my day. Because you seriously WERE the only person at the conference who actually reads my blog. Well, except for my fellow Grown In My Heart adoption writers. But they've been kinda guilted into that, so they don't really count.

And yeah, y'all, I knew enough to expect that I'd be invisible to most at the conference. Our little adoption community even joked that we should paint scarlet As on our chests, to denote our adoption blogging status. Because seriously, y'all, most people outside of our insular community - once they hear that you write an adoption blog - frantically look for ways to escape. Some ask insightful questions, but most run away. Far, far away.

I expected that. I'd been warned.

I did not, however, expect the Bloggess to react to me the way that she did. You see, during that same interactive art exhibit, the Bloggess wrote haiku poetry about her fellow (much smaller, less witty, but still just as cool) bloggers. Claudia, Judy and I all stood in line together. Can you guess which of these three haikus is All About Me?

pick one for Claudia, one for Judy and one for me

Well, y'all, I'd like to announce that my new claim to fame is that I rendered the Bloggess absolutely speechless. What can I say except that I tend to do that to people, especially those who adhere to the old "if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all" adage. As for the other two haikus... yes, the Bloggess DID perfectly sum up both Claudia and Judy.

I also learned from someone who begged to remain nameless that she just didn't know ahead of time if she'd like me In Real Life. You know, because I spout off with oh-so-geeky phrases like "oh my lands" and continuously use the word y'all even though I don't have a Southern accent. (For the record, I completely understand.) Thankfully, she DID decide to like me. Whew! And I managed to explain to all and sundry that I make "oh my lands" sound hip. And sexy.

Why does my rear look twice the size of Christine's
Kristen's??? Wait... don't answer that.

So there you have it. I am prudish, neurotic, adorable, hip and sexy. AND I leave people speechless.

Just so y'all know that.


Buckeroomama said...

I'm so glad to read that you had a great time at BlogHer. I just read another post elsewhere where the writer felt lonely and on occasions rudely sidelined at BlogHer (and she comes across to me on her blog as a perfectly pleasant person)... I guess in big events like these, there are bound to be people who had a good time and those who didn't.

Mia_h_n said...

I'm so glad to hear you had a good time! All that worry for nothing ;) And you didn't let a little theft throw you off. Good for you.

I can't believe you didn't run into more readers, but oh well, I'm glad Kim could make your day :)

Aus said...

TM - glad that ya'll had a good time! And now we've seen more pictures of you in one blog post than maybe in the whole rest of your blog - go figure! ;) I got your hiku in one try too....I'm.just.sayin. (to coin a phrase?)

As for folks that can go to a conference and be 'lonely' etc - well - they ARE really what YOU make them....so YOU can take full credit for the good times you had! Remember that one the next time you are feeling neurotic - k?

hugs - aus and co.

Cavatica said...

Remember, I've always been jealous of your ability to pull off "y'all" in your blog. Of course, I'm from the north. Maybe you aren't fooling the southern bloggers (neurosis alert - don't fall, no!!!). All I have even slight access to is "yous" and I mentally vomit at the thought.

If I had been at BlogHer I would have been a wallflower dying to talk to you in person, but never have done it. I would have wanted to serve you wine at night or pineapple in the morning, but I would have been too shy. That's probably what most people were doing. Then again, how would I know it was you?

AwesomeCloud and family said...

Would I be barred from BlogHer because I only have 17 followers? Or does that not matter? I'm only asking because NYC is my old stomping grounds, and even though I don't have a friend in the world I could go with and would be going completely and utterly stag, I do love cons. Do I have to give myself a huge marketing push and develop some cred before they let me in?

Tonggu Grammy said...

I'm just surprised that you let someone WRITE on your arms but I guess it would have been worse had it been your feet.

And FYI, everyone, we lived in the south for so long that we actually do say y'all once in awhile and her grandmother was born and raised in the hills of Tennessee so it's in her blood. She probably should say "you'uns" to be authentic for her grandmother, though.

Krista said...

Tonggu Grammy just made me homesick with her "you'uns." My FIL, raised in East TN, says that. Glad you had a great time at BlogHer TM!

Harding Swing said...

Amazing. Just amazing. So glad you kept on the trip after the theft.

My grandparents are from the hills of TN, too. Cool if there were some connection--I certainly have the sensory overload, too, two peas in a pod on that except your rear end is way smaller than mine. :)

And yes, that weekend was All About You. What a neat thing to get invited to!!

Aunt LoLo said...

Glad you had fun!!!!! And a leeeetle jealous. ;-)

Welcome home!

Sharon said...

Oh my Lands! (smile)

welcome home

anymommy said...

You missed delightful and fun. So glad I met you, however briefly.

pickel said...

Oh, I took that last picture! HA!

mama2roo said...

What a great group of ladies! And yes, you DO have a southern accent, y'all, because in my head that's how I read you. :)

Christine said...


Heather of the EO said...

So. I got to randomly hang out with Christine and Kristen at a random something and I'm so sad that you weren't sitting at that table with us. I SO wanted to talk to you MORE. Stupid chaos. Seriously. I ran into you at my most scattered and overwhelmed and I felt so BAD that I couldn't talk longer...
Next time. I hope.
You are lovely in person, just as I knew you would be. Thank you for coming up to say hello. You rock the party.
And Kim? Prairie Mama? Yes. She's sooooo great. She was my roomie last year, so I can say that your assumption is true. She's awesomesauce.

Wanda said...

Knew you'd have a ball!! I'm just catching up now and like someone said above.....a leetle jealous. Just a leetle!

T said...

I thought that my grandmother and I were the last two people on earth to be saying "oh my lands" on a regular basis - welcome to the club!

FauxClaud said...

You forgot to say how we made you go on the NYC SUBWAY!
And that I heard you say the F word!! ( Don't get made at her, of dear readers of Tonggu.. it WAS totally my BAD influence! I curse like a truck driver 99% of the time! I Am from NY and a birthmother to boot!)

And we had a wonderful time!!!!

Georgia Peach said...

Just shaking my head and laughing at the last two lines.

Peach said...

Thanks for writing this and so glad you got to attend this conference. Hugs, Peach