12 Things I Learned at BlissDom Canada 2012

1. How to Find My Room

In a big hotel, always find out if there are 2 towers of rooms.  This will lessen the shock of dragging your bags up to the eighth floor and discovering that the rooms stop 11 numbers before your room.

2. That I Can Still Party in a Cheesy Bar

I’ve never had still got it.  I was asked to break-dance with some dude in a bar.  Note to Nerdguy to stay in line because clearly I’ve got options.

3. I Am Not Calm, Cool, and Collected

It takes special talent to creep out fans of your work by gushing endlessly about how much you love them, and appreciate that they read your blog.  Phrases such as “Wow, I didn’t think anyone was reading it,” may serve to insult your entire fan-base of deux (that’s French for 2…it sounds more impressive doesn’t it?) as it implies they have very little going on in their lives.  You don’t often hear of a fan getting a restraining order against the person whose work they admire.  I think we broke some legal ground this weekend.

4. I Will Never Be In Charge of Wardrobe for a Play

My Halloween costumes are just as pathetic as they were when I was a kid…once I was beyond the age of my mother being in charge of what I wore.  People at BlissDom Canada take the Costumes and Karaoke party seriously, and there were some amazing costumes there.  Mine was not one of them.  It was awkward explaining to people that I was dressed as…myself…nerdgirlmom.  The highlight of my costume was the “kick me” sign on my back that Molly lovingly wrote out and put in my suitcase.  I may have created a monster.

Photo Credit: BlissDom Canada 2012

5. I Don’t Get Out Much

I am not ready for Toronto.  Zombies in the mall, an unattended baggage scare, and a creepy old flasher in Tim Horton’s were a bit more than I was prepared for.  Although we did have a surprising number of flashers in the suburbs growing up.  But they were proper flashers…in the park with raincoats…not standing so close to my bacon & egg breakfast sandwich.

6. Small Conversations Are Awesome

My favourite moments, outside of the micro sessions, were the conversations that I had with people in smaller groups.  Fewer witnesses to my crippling social awkwardness moments of brilliance.  There were many.  You just weren’t there when they happened.  Trust me.

7. Strangers Don’t Always Equal Danger  

I roomed with someone who I had never met before, and didn’t even know very well before we agreed to room together, but she didn’t seem like the type that would steal all of my left shoes for a collection, or post photos of me sleeping on the internet, so when she was looking for a roommate I jumped at the opportunity.  We turned out to have a lot in common, and I had a great time with her.  I still have all of my shoes, and no incriminating photos have surfaced as of yet, so it was a win.

My fantastic roommate Erin  and I right before we headed off on our excursions.

8. I’m Not Ready to Be Rich or Famous

Park in the City Hall parking garage.  Pay only $38 for the weekend for parking instead of $90+ and be able to get at your mobile junk drawer minivan at any time without having to have Jeeves summon your car and feel obliged to hand him copious amounts of cash in a pathetic attempt to apologize for the questionable smell of your van interior.  When parking your car in the underground lot, try not to think too hard about the “Check your back seat” signs posted every 11 feet.  On your way to your van at the end of the trip, leave a loaf of bread for each of the homeless people sleeping in the tunnel, and count your blessings for how rich your life is in every way.

9. Do Not Call Home

There is nothing that will make you feel worse about being away for the weekend than your child telling you that they forget what you look like.  But then you will think of the upside…if she doesn’t remember what you look like, she can’t very well describe you to the police now can she?  It’s okay to take a weekend to recharge and renew, and we already make ourselves feel guilty enough…no need to have other people phoning in their votes on the subject.

10. Have Your Home’s Internet Feed Cut and/or Smash Husband’s Cell Phone

I am not the only one who learned things this weekend.  Nerdguy learned how to use Twitter.  In secret.  Suspicious people might say it was to spy.  I am one of those people.  It reminds me of when I was staying in Toronto for a month for the torture extravaganza otherwise known as Chartered Accounting Summer School.  See…when I say that I am a nerd, I’m not kidding around.  Anyway, Nerdguy happened to notice a couple of charges on our debit card for Rabba Fine Foods, and decided to tease me about all the fancy meals I was taking myself out on the town to enjoy.  I think he was disappointed when I pointed out that it is actually an over-priced convenience store, where I was buying my groceries, and couldn’t even buy soap without asking them to get it out from behind the counter.  I go all high-class when I hit the big city.

It was unsettling enough that he was following along with all of the tweets, but really unnerving when he starting tweeting things like this:

As promised, looking for #BlissDomCA folks to take lots of embarrassing pictures of @nerdgirlmom tonight for #donttellnerdgirlmom
β€” nerdguy (@nerdguydad) October 21, 2012

Downright terrifying when he got the Fantapper guy on board:

@nerdguydad Mwuahahaha. Indeed. They’ll be live later at taps.la/bdc12 email other embarassing pix & vids [email protected]
β€” FantapperLive (@FantapperLive) October 21, 2012

Thank goodness they both overestimate my ability to do anything beyond standing in one spot and looking very interested in my iPhone.  And there’s also that key idea that no one knew who I was.  Without a disguise.

11. Google Really IS Watching Everything We Do

This was the view from my hotel room.  It was very 1984 but in 2012.  It’s all very meta.

The Flat Stanley Twins came along for the weekend.  And see the Google sign?  I kept trying to tap on it, to launch the search window, but it seems the window is not a touch screen.  Kind of a letdown.

12. Don’t Do Anything That You Don’t Want Photographed

Our cheer at the end of #RoadRallyBliss was “BlissDom Style” like the song Gangnam Style.
Photo courtesy of BlissDom Canada

We really didn’t think that one through.

So those are the things that I learned at BlissDom Canada.  I learned a whole lot of useful professional stuff too, but I’ll probably just screw it all up trying to relay it, and outrage the speakers.  And the last person you want to outrage is a blogger for heaven’s sake…it’s not like they’re not going to tell anyone, or maybe just tell a few close friends at a cocktail party…they write that shit down!


  1. says

    LOL love your recap. My husband also stalked twitter while I was at Blissdom. Actually he never uses twitter except when I am at blogging events. He knows me so well that when Used Everywhere was looking for me as I won something he tweeted at them to check the wall. Sure enough I had been sitting against the wall with my drink and my phone.

  2. says

    My husband was tweet-stalking me too. More because he wanted to make sure I wasn’t in a ditch somewhere than because he thought I’d do something embarrassing though. Unless crapping your pants and passing out is embarrassing, and then yes, maybe he thought it was because I might do something embarrassing.

    It was a pleasure meeting you, Tara! πŸ™‚

  3. says

    We didn’t think things through with the cheer, but we had fun anyway, didn’t we? I enjoyed meeting you, and look forward to hanging out some more at the next conference. πŸ™‚

  4. says

    Girl in the cardigan was my roomie for the weekend. (from your road rally pic) We have a similar story: total strangers with lots in common.

    I love your recap.

  5. says

    I LOVED THIS POST – you are a brilliant and understated comedienne. you do know that, right? and please try to refrain from borrowing my party lines. i am the one with a fan base of deux. you have double digits! xo


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