Oops. I meant Washington's for Bloggers. Here are my personal musings about my trip. I'll talk about the actual content of the conference in another post. Got back from DC last night around midnight. My flight back (although delayed) was not as eventful as my trip up to Washington. I was supposed to have dinner with a "who's who" group of medical bloggers on Thursday night. I got to the airport without problems and waited for the plane to load. In the "famous last words" department, I made the following tweet:
(It was 5:17, by the way)
I gave the ticket to the woman at the gate and as she scanned it, the scanner made an angry sound. "You don't have a seat." she told me. "You are number 51 and there are only 50 seats on the jet."
I was a victim of rationing.
I got to DC six hours later, after more delays from thunderstorms and "mechanical problems." I finally arrived at the hotel and met up with Dr. Val at 11:30 PM. We went back to the private room announced my arrival. I was greeted by a group of people who almost seemed more interested in recounting their incredible dinner than meeting me. I was reminded of my misfortune in missing this dinner many times after that. Many, many times.
In truth, I was greeted with a very warm welcome. It amazed me at how these people who I had never met in person were already good friends. That has always been my experience with other bloggers - there is no work needed to get to know them. There are very few surprises either - they all acted as I expected them to. I like these people. I really like these people.
I've already posted about the people on the panels:
- Kevin Pho (You may call him Lord Kevin) - Brilliant, very insightful, says a lot in a few words.
- Allen Dappen - Has a practice that allows for house calls (a REAL house call doctor) and extra time with patients.
- Valerie Tinley - Allen's nurse practitioner. Has English accent, so sounded the smartest of anyone.
- Kim McAllister - Emergiblog blogger and queen of Change of Shift. Feisty as expected.
- Wes Fisher - Dr. Wes - he and I came up with a new form of tele-medicine. Bright and has good sense of humor.
- Richard Fogoros - Covert Rationing blogger - used some words the rest of us had to look up. Brilliant, but not cocky.
- Jim Herndon - Big-Wig in orthopedic circles (I am told), but you wouldn't know it from talking to him. Listens as well as he talks.
The moderator was Ria Blakey, who was extremely good at her job, making us feel very comfortable. Handled a couple of raving lunatics in the audience with grace.
I also got to meet:
- Edwin Leap - OK, I met him before, but he still is beyond nice.
- Kerri Morrone Sparling - Six Until Me diabetes blogger. Very nice, but didn't let me get away with saying stupid doctor things.
- Evan Falchuk - New blogger for me. He's a lawyer who is on the good team. Great sense of humor. Got my jokes faster than anyone. Poor guy.
- Val's sister - Has a name, but I will allow her to hide in the shadows. Doesn't look anything like Val. Lives with Dutch People.
- Duncan Cross - Recoiled when I called him a rabble-rouser. He doesn't do it to raise a fuss; he does it because he has convictions. I know that. I meant it as a compliment.
- Lisa Emrich - Brass and Ivory patient blogger. Has lots of illnesses but doesn't seem to let it show.
- Mother Jones, RN - She gave me a hug. She is that kind of person.
There were also a couple of looneys in the audience (as I mentioned). They made a very good case for universal mental health coverage.
I didn't meet the giant inflatable Santa. That was a blatant case of false advertising. The children were weeping.
Val also promised I could meet Oprah. No dice on that one either.
It was nice to meet everyone. I hope I didn't leave anyone out. Let's do it again soon!