TechEd US 2008 IT Professionals, Day Two

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TechEd US 2008 IT Professionals, Day Two

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The worst part about being an exhibitor at these events is that I don’t have any time to spend at the Office TLC or at breakout sessions. My day is completely consumed talking to customers about Sonar and trying to find small snippets of time to eat; which, considering the deplorable quality of food this year, probably meant I was better off not being able to actually sit down to any kind of meal. I can tell you this – whoever decided that Pepsi should have the contract to provide beverages at the Orange County Convention Center should be put before a firing squad. There wasn’t a Dr. Pepper to be found anywhere and, as if that’s not bad enough, they barely had any alternatives. Even a good selection of juice would have been appreciated but all they had was Ruby Red and the occasional orange juice. Yuck. If I never see Mountain Dew again it will be too soon.

Sadly, the Bob Fox Show ended prematurely as he had to return to New Jersey for a family event. Although, considering the events of the first night, I think it would have been pretty hard to pull off a repeat performance. But if anyone can do it, Bob can. He has skills that the rest of us can only marvel at. Or gawk, or just plain stare in befuddled amazement, depending on what exactly he’s doing at the time.

The rest of us attempted to have a nice dinner at The Oceanaire restaurant but were confounded by the apathetic staff. Fancy appetizers are cool and all but when it takes two and a half hours to get the main course something has gone horribly wrong. I don’t know if anyone threw a fit when the bill came but I gave the manager an earful on my way out.

[UPDATE:  The original post contained a diatribe from me regarding a company named Exhibit Travel.  While I did have some issues with my hotel reservations for TechEd, the owner of the company contacted me directly after the conference and made it right. I didn’t think it was fair to have my comments circulating around the ‘Net after the company stepped up and took care of me, so I removed the original text.  My apologies if doing so offends any purists who believe that this violates some great unwritten law of Internet publishing – you’ll just have to get over it.  It’s damn hard to get good service these days – when a company does the right thing they shouldn’t be punished forever.  ’nuff said.]

The evening ended with me pounding scotches at the Howl at the Moon bar. The dueling piano players were awful but Adam Buenz joined me to help lend moral support (you should never drink alone at these things – it’s just not polite), followed shortly by The Brad and a few of Ted Pattison’s crew. Apparently we shut down the place but I don’t remember all of it; thankfully Sean Skinner was along to play chauffer and keep me out of trouble. Oh, and I should apologize publicly to Polly Hackathorn and Nicola Young for bending their ears with my ranting and raving. Sometimes I just get a bit worked up, y’know? Sorry, ladies.

More booth duty for me on Thursday. Perhaps I’ll have a chance sometime this week to sit it on at least one session, y’think???

P.S. – Randi, I’m starting work on your project just as soon as I get home. It’s my top priority. Honest!