people in my neighborhood - linklove fest Nov 19, 2006

I figure there has to be some sort of personality type or brain chemistry that makes you find things interesting, and I have more of it than others. I'm really interested in my own life right now, though I'm also fascinated by the lives of others. One of the things I like so much about travelling is meeting and re-meeting people who are different from me and really getting a chance to see what they're about. Since I live in the country and mostly visit cities, the contrasts are often fairly striking. I've always been a bit of a "connector" one of those people who says "Oh, you're doing X, you should really talk to my friend Y...." and yet at the same time, my little circuit here in Vermont is small and fairly contained. I wonder how this would be working without the Internet.

Here are some people I met or got to hang out with. You can see why trips like this are so much fun.
  • Nichole and JonMichael -- she's a librarian, he's a mathematician who works for the state lottery. They love puzzles and he makes games in his spare time. They are eating their way through Madison restaurants alphabetically. It was my pleasure to help them out with a restaurant in the Gs.
  • The Jail Library Group is doing some great work, even though they didn't get a lot of people going to their poster session at WLA.
  • Abby is half the team at LibraryThing, technically LibraryThing's librarian. She was also in Wisconsin with me and had some funny things to say about the crazy safari we were on.
  • My friend Michael just bought a house in Pasedena on a lovely tree lined street with no sidewalks and dim streetlights. I took photos of his dogs and his license plate. We went book shopping. He wrote this post about my visit.
  • Bryan took me out for carne asada and drinks and regaled me with stories of what happened internally when Conde Naste (where he works) bought Reddit.
  • Lauren, my friend since junior high school, now a law professor, put me up in her lovely apartment and gave me some perspective on all the hubub in my life lately. For my part, I set her up with wifi (slightly self-interestedly), put new RAM in her computer and got Firefox running on it. It was there that I heard the election returns and was mighty pleased.
  • Sara was one of my online pals before I met her in person at a MetaFilter meetup. She offered to drive me around and was responsible for me winding up at Jumbo's. I just got an email from her this morning, subject "Isis says hi." I met her boyfriend and some of his friends while I was at Jumbo's and, though I was seriously out of my element, started feeling a lot more IN my element when one of his friends handed me a Moo card. Even though Flickr has a zillion members, it still seemed like a small gesture that said "one of us"
  • The guy who organizes the HLA conference also has an award winning album. He told me about the time he was asked to join Heart but he couldn't because his Dad forbid him, since he was only 17 at the time.
  • Andrew Wertheimer is another socially responsible librarian who is also tech savvy, an unusual combination. He gave me a great restaurant recommendation and is now a Flickr buddy of mine.
  • Wes Fryer manages to have a semi-corporate job and also be a strong advocate for open source and sensible technology. Aaron took my two favorite pictures of him videochatting with his kids.
  • Speaking of Aaron, having a Hawaii buddy to go to the beach and sit on the balcony with made the tropical part of my trip that much better. Seeing him later, in Michigan was like some crazy timewarp.
  • Michael Porter and I went to get some gyoza and some beer when I first got to Hawaii. He's always been my polar opposite jobwise and yet we have a lot in common. It's fun to compare ideas with him.
  • Meredith helped finagle a ride to a place to eat for me (thanks Rikhei!) when I was late getting in to Lansing. As thanks, I stole her pen. I tagged her in when I left Michigan. I am home in Vermont now and she and her husband are in Florida.
  • Pete and Ana are turning their little house in the Mission into an excellent oasis of calm, good coffee, and fine-looking richly-colored furniture. The unlinkability of it is one of the things that makes it so special.
  • Evette organized the whole Michigan trip and scored a home run with her Tuba Museum restaurant recommendation. She also makes origami and met Utah Phillips!

There were so many more people, from the MLC guy contemplating his first tattoo, to the librarians from the Marshall Islands, to all of Drew's library school students, to Jade the four year old who would not stop talking. Now I'm back at home and Ola is preparing for her big step off the "what will my fuiture bring?" cliff and I'm trying to help her out in all the ways I know how -- installing satelllite radio in her car, getting her email up and running, being a sounding board for all of her thisthatandtheother last minute plans. I feel nice being able to give back something and help someone else go on a long crazy trip while I stay home, for a change.

You're welcome!

(Unrelatedly, I see in a more recent entry of yours that you have a Vox account - may I add you to my "neighborhood"?)
27 November, 2006 17:32
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