Two Days of Geeky Goodness

April 12th, 2008

With Cristiano off to the Netherlands to get his wisdom tooth removed (which I am glad to report went way smoother than mine), I thought I’d be bored out of my mind. The two past days though have just been one constant stream of geek activities. I should address each event in a separate post, but I know if I attempt to do that, I’ll end up only blogging about half the stuff. Instead I’m going to try to summarize all the stuff I’ve done here.

London Girl Geek Coffee 2

I only announced it two days beforehand on the Geek Dinners and the Girl Geek Dinners site, so I kind of knew that not many people would show up. However, I didn’t expect to find myself completely alone at the chosen time. It gave me time to check out the venue (Smiths of Smithfield), but I soon discovered it wasn’t really what we were looking for. Half an hour later, Patricia Hanrahan (Gondul) showed up, with Rachel Clarke following quickly thereafter. We spoke about a whole bunch of things, including Rachel and I explaining to Patricia what we’ve experienced so far in We Tell Stories. Here’s where this event kind of flowed into the next event:

We Tell Stories Meet-up

For the past 4 weeks I’ve been following the We Tell Stories project. As I’ve mentioned before, besides the six public stories, there’s a hidden seventh story in the form of an ARG. I’m not going to explain everything here, but a couple of days ago we (all the ARG players on the forum) found out one of the characters would be in a bar…in real life! Jacques the French bookstore clerk, depressed because his girlfriend Bella dumped him. The idea was to bring him gifts and tips on how to woo Bella back, which somehow would lead to more clues.

I completely forgot to bring something, but during the GGC Rachel convinced me to write down a song and sing it for him. Weirdly enough I agreed to do this and even stranger I chose a Dutch nursery rhyme (I have no recollection whatsoever in what prompted me to choose this particular song). Anyhow, Daisy, one of the other girls on the forum, also came to the GGC, hauling along freshly baked muffins and printed out poems.

Abandoning Trish (who would wait for the other GGCers) we went to the bar where Jacques was and there we met up with 2 others from the forum. At 17:30 we entered the bar and there he was…Jacques, looking depressed as ever and drinking red wine. We all gave our gifts and each of us received an item in return. Some of them were clearly “only” prizes for showing up (a Terry Pratchett book, for instance), but others were actual clues. I got a blue Wedgwood tray with snippets of rules of a card game. If you want to find more, check out the We Tell Stories website and the Unforum.

Jacques (on the right)

SEO Party

After the cool weird meet-up with a fictional character, I made my way back to the GGC (now expanded with Emma Persky and Weefz), only to discover that the SoS was packed. There was no way we could talk in there. I suggested to move to the Starbucks down the street where the ARGers had gone to sort out all the clues. Patricia, though, deserted us to meet up with Judith ‘deCabbit’ Lewis at an SEO party, but invited us to join her later. After a short half an hour in the Starbucks, we went in search of the SEO party.

We arrived a bit before 8 and the bar was crowded with SEOers. I was surprised to discover at least one person I had met before: Chris Hambly, whom I had met at MediaCampBucks last year. I had a short talk with him about some upcoming events, including a second MediaCampBucks and a MediaCampLondon.

Despite having no actual experience in search engine optimization, I had some interesting conversations with a couple of the SEOers there and was amazed when I realized I had been there for more than 2 hours. Around the same time, Patricia and the others decided to leave too and I slowly made my way back to home. Of course, even though arriving home at a fairly early time, I managed to only get to bed at about 3.

Social Media Cafe

Naturally, I slept through my alarm and I arrived quite late at the Social Media Cafe. I had met Lloyd Davis (the organizer of SMC) back in October in Berlin and had been meaning to come to a SMC for some time now (wisdom tooth removals and sleeping the cause of missing previous ones). I’m glad I finally made it, cause I got to meet a lot of new people (I’m not even going to try and list everyone). What I found interesting was that (if I’m not mistaken that is) this was a completely different set than the usual Geek Dinners and BarCamp crowd; most people there hadn’t even heard of those two events before!

Just when I wanted to leave, it started pouring outside (even lightning!), so I decided to stay a little longer. I talked some more with LJ Rich and after the rain cleared up, she suggested having lunch at a Vegetarian Thai Buffet close by. Great food and great conversation with both of us geeking out about TV shows, books and other stuff. Having already spent most of the day procrastinating networking, I realized I wouldn’t get any real work done today, so it wouldn’t hurt to go to:


Three words: real life rickrolling. By now there should be enough reports and videos documenting this event.

So those were my two action packed geeky days and all I want to do now is sleep. I’ve announced the next Girl Geek Coffee on both Geek Dinners sites and a new idea for another event (Geek Meet). Let me know if you’re interested in either of them by leaving a comment on one of those blogs.

Tags: Events, Geeky