Hello from Austin, TX! This week is South by Southwest. As a rookie, I’m not quite sure what to expect, but I am looking forward to the opportunity to get to catch up in person with some of my “online friends.” This week’s Follow Friday, Damion White, is one of those people. When I met Damion last year at a conference, I couldn’t believe I hadn’t run across him on Twitter. As a student at Davidson, he played in March Madness, he’s a talented rapper, and a super smart guy. Plus, when I met him he discovered an amazing talent for reading menus outloud. Seriously hilarious. Probably one of the best parts of that conference was getting to meet Damion. So, there are lots of reasons you should get to know him. And, this week, if you’re in Austin be sure to spend time quality face-to-face time with him. (Keep in mind when reading this post, Damion wrote it a couple days before SXSW kicked off … don’t you just love his amazing sense of excitement?)
I am starting this post about 30 minutes after it was due. I don’t want to make excuses, but I am going to anyway. This post is late because I have been completely swamped for the last 48 hours, of which I have slept 8 and worked 33+. I am well over the 19th hour for today. But guess what, I feel better tonight than I have in any of the previous 50 times that I’ve put in more than 10 hours in a day.
Why is this you might ask? Well, if it were Christmas, I’d be off so it can’t be that. If it were a big promotion I’d likely be slightly intoxicated and celebrating, so it’s not that either. Instead, it is the fact that we are less than 36 hours away from the start of SXSW interactive conference 2012!
If you don’t know what SXSW is, just imagine if someone rolled CES, Sundance, and Coachella into one; and then dropped the finest minds and business people from the tech, film and music industries into the mix; only then to unleash it all on the coolest most down to Earth metropolitan area on the planet/ the Live Music Capital of The World, Austin, Texas.
Sounds pretty happening, right? Well it is and in a major way!
So the last time I was privileged enough to be in Austin during SXSW was 2010. I put in 84 hours that week, dressed like inspector gadget the entire time (for a client), met a ton of interesting people and took a picture with Pete Cashmore which made for a time that was not too shabby at all. However, that week I started work for SXSW the day that SXSW started.
2012 is a much different story already. The firm that I work for, WCG is hosting its 2nd Annual Pre-Commerce Summit to kickoff the festivities for our clients, partners and friends. With each moment that draws us nearer to this kickoff the whirr, and the buzz and the churn in the office continues to go up. The amount of work being done is maddening, and happening at a frenzied pace!
But this very thing is the beauty of SXSW and why I am wondering if you can feel it too – how SXSW can feel like what it might feel like to be on Super Pills. It amazes me to see just how much the pickup in excitement and in energy feeds off of itself ultimately driving all of our energy to way up, pushing our outputs to levels that we only imagined were possible. The whole city is abuzz! And mind you, all of this activity comes while folks are all mingling, meeting and mixing with new peeps, clients and contacts. Wow!
My energy is at a fever pitch, and I think the same rings true of my colleagues. At a team dinner tonight several of us agreed that we need to get T-shirts for the firm that say “Life is 4 hours of sleep or less; the rest is just details” (or something like that). And we all pondered if there would ever be a better time of year to wear them.
Now that I’ve just eclipsed hour 20 for the day without much more than 4 hours to go before the next thing on the schedule comes bearing down I will gladly answer the previous question with a resounding no. Furthermore, I think I can call this quits. But really before I go I want to know: can you feel it? SXSW is here and it feels like we’re all on Super Pills. Enjoy!