Join me, if you will, on a full (five) days of reminiscing how horribly awkward I felt (and really was) at the blogging conference everyone’s been talking about. Every few hours days weekends I’ll post another humiliating experience so I can relive my shame in the hopes of getting it out of my system.
I have a whole year to fine-tune my cool.
Somehow I don’t think it’ll be long enough.
Awkward of All Awkwards. #1. For Obvious Reasons.
Of all the events at the conference, I was most excited for Saturday night’s CheeseburgHer party, having seen photos of all my favourite bloggers at said event for the past three summers. If you are unfamiliar with CheeseburgHer, I will change your life enlighten you: It is a party where swarms of bloggers, high on life and the networking they’ve just completed let loose and eat cheeseburgers (catered by McDonald’s, of course) and wear paper bags as hats.
In other words, it sounded like just my sort of party.
(In retrospect, however, may I always remember that any time the words “my sort of party” come out of my mouth, I should proceed with extreme caution; for, invariably, my very best sort of party is the one I don’t attend. It’s really better that way.)
Anyway, I was looking forward to free cheeseburgers, so I dragged my poor friend Chelsie there after Promises, Promises.
But as soon as we entered the room, we were instantly on our guard.
Music blaring, lights flashing, the place was total chaos. Someone had moved a couple of beds to the middle of the dance floor—you can see the pillows in the above photo for proof. (Thankfully, people were just dancing and lounging on the beds, fully clothed. But really? Beds? The first thing I thought when I saw them was ORGY TIME!)
We sort of hovered near the bar for a few minutes, trying to find our bearings (not knowing that bearings are not invited to CheeseburgHer), when out of the corner of my eye, I spotted her.
Yes, my friends, THAT Bossy—the very one, in the flesh—at CheeseburgHer.
Bossy, whose blog was one of the first I read, long before I started a blog of my own.
Bossy, who travels coast to coast to coast sponsored by Ford™ and Saturn™ and Burger King™ on road trips of epic blogging proportions.
Bossy, whose hilarity I only halfway meet, and even then only in my dreams.
But then—THEN—she caught my eye and smiled.
Oh, the horror. Having learned from experience that I am not to be trusted in social situations, especially in such situations where I am starstruck, my mind was screaming, “RUN AWAY! YOU’RE NOT READY! YOU’LL NEVER SURVIVE!” But instead of running, I just stood there and watched while Bossy meandered over to where Chels and I were standing.
I wasn’t prepared; seconds before Bossy got within conversational range, I thought to myself, “This is going to be bad.” And if ever I uttered a self-fulfilling prophecy, it was there at CheeseburgHer three seconds before Bossy came to say hello.
See, here’s how my relationship with Bossy is:
What I mean is, it’s one-sided. Because I know all about who Bossy is, but she has no clue who I am. Here’s how it went down:
Me: Hi! Oh my gosh, you’re Bossy! You’re the best! I read your blog (Uh, hello? It’s a blogging conference—everybody reads her blog.) and you’re the greatest! I love you!
Bossy (leaning over to peer at our name tags): Thanks…who are you?
Me: Oh, duh, of course. I’m Camille. You don’t know me, but one time you commented on a post of mine and you said it was better than Dooce.
[Note: Of all the things to say, why did I say that? I sounded like I really believed I was better than Dooce, which of course I don’t because I’m not. I knew that as I said that, Bossy was thinking, “Better than Dooce, eh? Fat chance.” I regretted my conversation topic immediately.]
Bossy: (Weak smile.)
Camille: But of course I didn’t believe you. (Clears throat.) That would be ridiculous.
Bossy (to Chelsie, no doubt hoping for livelier conversation): And who are you?
Chelsie: Oh, I’m Chelsie. But I don’t have a blog. [She does though.]
Bossy: Oh. Hi.
Me (practically exploding because if there’s one thing a socially backward person fears it’s awkward silence): CAN I TAKE A PICTURE WITH YOU PLEASE?
Some fumbling ensued while we sorted out whether I should hold the camera myself or Chelsie should take it for us.
Me (putting my camera away): Thanks.
Bossy: No problem.
Bossy: How did it turn out?
Me (getting my camera back out and showing her): It’s great.
Bossy: No, it’s bad. I have a stupid face. Let’s do a different one.
Me: Okay. (Thinking, “Why are you still here? There are so many cooler people you could be talking to! I wasn’t expecting you to stick around—I don’t have enough material to talk to anyone longer than twelve seconds!”)
Bossy: Was that one better?
Me: Yes, YES, it’s PERFECT, now just please leave so I can go kill myself already! Yeah, it looks good.
Bossy: No it’s not, my mouth is open.
Me: YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING. Why don’t you just take your cool famous self and leave already so I can stand here some more and lick my awkward wounds in peace?
Bossy: Let’s take one more.
And here’s that photo. Note how my face gets progressively more desperate in each picture, culminating with this final deer-in-the-headlights look in my eyes. Also note my blurry hand: that’s on account to the fact that I was pumping it up and down in an attempt to fast forward through that moment in my life.
Me: Okay, thanks.
Bossy: … (Still standing there, mind you, fully amiable and seeming perfectly content to hang out with us all night.)
Bossy (looking confused): ‘Bye.
And after a few more unbearable seconds, she finally walked away.
Of course Chelsie and I left immediately for fear of seeing Bossy again. In the elevator on our way back to our room, I had what can only be described as a nervous breakdown: what I really wanted to do was cry, but who cries about being awkward in front of a celebrity blogger, so instead I laughed, which turned out to be a failure because I laughed so hard that in the end I cried anyway.
Also I peed myself.
Here are the rest of the posts in this series:
Part the First
Part the Second
Part the Third
Part the Fourth