Not the recap. Just a rant. — BlogHer 2007

I haven’t actually done my final BlogHer Recap post because I’m still trying to find time to sit down and write something about all of the wonderful women I met and how I truly hope they won’t hold my crappy attitude against me because I was suffering from my post-miscarriage period which NEVER WANTED TO END. Like having a miscarriage (or four…) isn’t bad enough, right?


There have been several other BlogHers writing about their experience with the cliques and comparing it to High School and the exclusivity in some groups and the feelings of being left out and yada..yada..yada. I don’t mean to undermine these feelings, but I don’t even care to link to those sites because I’m just bored with it all. And I don’t get bored easily.

First, let me go on record saying this: I felt excluded. There were a couple of moments where I didn’t feel like I belonged or that I was most definitely NOT wanted in a group. But there are two reasons that this could be:

1) I was self-projecting my insecurities and was dreaming the feeling of not-belonging simply because I have no self-confidence.


2) They honestly didn’t want me there because I didn’t belong.

Well, you know what? That’s life. It’s not BlogHer. It’s not Bloggers. It’s not women. It’s not particular women. It happens in any group anywhere. I’ve felt isolated at the most loving of gatherings and I’ve felt welcomed at the most unusual places. Sometimes people want you to be part of their group and sometimes they don’t. That’s just life. Yeah – I’ll bitch about it because I want everyone to want me to be part of their group. But – I’m not going to let it cast a negative light on a group as amazing as BlogHer.

And you know what? Even the women who I feel didn’t necessarily want me in their circle — even they are still amazing women to me. I don’t look down on them for pushing me aside. I may be sad – but you know what? Sometimes there are people I shun too. Not necessarily because I don’t like them, but because I feel safer with my own familiar group. It just happens. Anyone who says they embrace and welcome anyone who comes to them is a better person than I am.

So, yeah. I didn’t feel 100% welcome in every group. However – I was depressed and cramping so I probably wasn’t 100% welcoming to everyone either. I wish it were different; but overall I think a gathering that size consisting of so many amazing women should NOT be scorned because sometimes not everyone feels welcome. I left the event inspired like I always do.

Hell – I was totally freaked out because no one was drinking beer at any gathering but me. I felt really insecure about that and you know what happened? Y from JoyUnexpected offered to drink a beer with me.

Dear Y, I love you!

You just can’t beat that. Life is not group hugs all the time. I feel like as long as I have one person willing to drink a beer with me? I just can’t complain.


32 thoughts on “Not the recap. Just a rant. — BlogHer 2007”

  1. Love this post…and here’s a little secret: I actually prefer beer to wine. Actually I really shouldn’t drink either, since I have an allergic reaction to alcohol of any kind, but I choose to ignore that on occasion. Anyway…next BlogHer I will most definitely and proudly share a beer with you :)

  2. Zoot, it was effing hot and humid that weekend. And I only drink red wine. So I? Would have had a Miller Lite or 10 with you. Because nothing beats a nice cold beer in the summer time!

    Hopefully we can have a few together at next year’s BlogHer! I’ll be the one stalking you, following you everywhere with a cold beer in my hand. :)

  3. Amen, sistah.

    See, and here I was hoping all the fun and excitement we were having would help distract you from the awfulnesss that was that period or those cramps.

    And I totally feel like I should have had a beer with you now, even though I don’t like beer, simply to have cheered you up. Oh well. Next year? :)

  4. I just want to hug you again!

    You know what? I don’t even like beer, but, I didn’t want you to feel awkward with your beer, and so I drank a beer with you. Because I LOVE YOU.

    I really do, you’re just the best.

    (and for the record, the beer wasn’t that bad and I think I may have another one this weekend in your honor.)

  5. I didn’t get to attend 07, but as a previous attendee for 05 and 06 can say that I always did walk away from the conference feeling a little left out. But I tried not to dwell on it because that’s life. It certainly wouldn’t have kept me from attending 07, if I could have gone and it certainly won’t keep me from attending 08.

    Anytime there are more than 2 people in a group, there will be some politics. Plain and simple.

  6. Oh Zoot. I so wish I had met you some other time than on my last morning there while I was severely hungover. Seriously, I rushed to find a bathroom moments after we met, because THE HEADACHE, THE NAUSEA! THE PORCELAIN THRONE, MUST BE WORSHIPED. And then I got back on the bus and went back to bed at the hotel. Not my finest moment of socialization. I had big plans of geeking out over HP7 with you…but I only saw you at that one unfortunate moment. Bummer. I wish we had had time to talk.

  7. i’m proud of you for writing this. i’m currently stuck in the middle of my blogher recap post…i’ve published my crazy ‘the road to blogher’ story, but then i stopped. it seemed like ther were so many people sharing bitter stories of their time in chicago…and others who weren’t even there who had quite a few negative things to say about us. i just became petrified to type another word on the subject…too much judgement flying around.
    i think you’ve stated things perfectly here, though. and if i would have known you were feeling self conscious about the beer, i would have run over with one right away, as opposed to what i actually did: whisper to my friend aimee, ‘see that girl? that’s zoot. she is awesome.’ to which aimee said, ‘go say hi to her.’
    to which i said, ‘no! not until i drink this entire bottle of vodka.’
    for the record, you were not being exclusionary. i was excluding myself in that scenario.

    p.s. that picture of you and y is my favorite picture from blogher this year. it makes me smile.

  8. I had some coronas at the Children’s Museum…and amaretto sours otherwise. There WAS a lot of wine drinking going on, wasn’t there?

    I’m just kicking myself because I didn’t introduce myself when I had the chance at the Chicago City Center on the Thursday evening when you bumped into my roommate and travel companion.

  9. But the wine! It was free!

    Well I know how you feel. I went out of my way to start a google group of women I knew were going months ahead of time so that I would not feel excluded.

    Funny thing is, I didn’t invite you into that group because I thought you might ignore me. That you would be too cool for my little group. Silly I know.

    I hope you know that I enjoyed every second that we spent hanging out and I was beside myself giddy that first morning when you invited me to sit with you for breakfast.

    Don’t let this discourage you from going next year. I think they are only going to get better year after year.

  10. Can you give these talks at high schools across the U.S.? Seriously, that was the best, nicest way to say “It doesn’t matter what other people think” I’ve heard. I don’t drink (the Boy does, just a personal choice), but I’ll drink a Root Beer with you anytime, Zoot!

  11. You hit it. Again. Yes there were groups. All 800 something of us were not going to be close personal buds.

    Personally, I thought you were very kind and patient with me, and I was sorry that I assumed you wouldn’t want to have an entire conversation with me. I was trying not to be a pest.

    I would add that I’m happy you didn’t link to anyone. There have been other posts that called people out about writing what they felt, and I didn’t like that. People have a right to say how they felt on their own blog. We all have different opinions and should be able to share them without being attacked by those who disagree.

  12. Oh man, now I wish I would have gone to BlogHer. I would have totally drank a beer with you. I really like beer and not a wine or mixed drink person.

    Oh by the way I have been a lurker for a long time now. I think you are really cool and love reading your blog.

    I know how you feel. I have major insecurities and sometimes feel like I don’t fit in. I don’t have many friends outside of the blogworld. Is that weird?

    Anywho, I think you are great!

  13. If I could’ve afforded to go to Blogher than I totally would’ve had a beer (or three) with you. I’m even having a glass o’ wine with you right this moment…

  14. is it weird to say out loud that i loved meeting you? and you were so kind and pretty and no pretension, just good people.
    and, um, can i just say that i felt like a giant dick when you introduced yourself and it took me 20 minutes to figure it out and then i shouted “OH! ZOOOOOOOT!” Durh.
    seriously, i think you really nailed it on this one–it’s just life.
    i was constipated (oh, where to poop?!) and tired and bitchy most of the weekend and feeling self-conscious that i’d be THAT girl all hammered after 2 glasses of wine. but since the wine was free, i had 3 glasses. otherwise? i’d have beers with you any day of the week. i lurves me some beers.

  15. Can I just say that I was freaking out (on the inside) that first morning when you and I walked to get a soda together. I just kept thinking to myself “I am talking to Zoot. THE Zoot!” It was my most surreal moment at BlogHer.

    Thanks for rocking so hard and for being so nice to me the entire weekend.

    (Can I also add how upset at myself I am. As another “repeat aborter” I feel so bad that I didn’t open up and talk to you more about miscarriages. I should have known better. I apologize for not being more compassionate.)

  16. I didn’t go to BlogHer, so I am not writing from knowing. BUT, I know that if I were there and I had seen you I would have wanted to flip out and talk to you the whole time and have a six pack with you. BUT I wouldn’t have done so because I would’ve thought you were all cool and I was being a blog dork. So maybe that’s where some of what felt came from. But I don’t really know.

    And I think you rock!

  17. awwww (((zootie))). I would’ve had a Yuengling or three with you! I look forward to the day we actually get to meet and compare tattoos :-)

  18. Isn’t that funny that everyone was thinking “Oh Zoot’s so cool. She won’t want to be in my group!”? It sounds like everyone felt the same thing, like they were the outsider and didn’t fit in. Interesting!!

    You can be in my group any time!!

  19. Dude, I keep telling you that I would love to buy you a beer if we ever met! I did not get a chance to go to Blog Her, but only because I feel like maybe it is for “big time” bloggers and not just people like me. Which may be totally crazy. I would LOVE to go. I would be totally dorky and probably end up drinking WAAAY too much in my nervousness. I would be Colin from HP! Following everyone around with my camera!

    Fun times! Maybe next year?

    We could also compare tattoos!

  20. If I didn’t have a wheat allergy I totally would have drank beer with you. I did do my share of wine drinking though.

    I think we all feel excluded sometimes. Mostly I feel it afterward, like gee I was standing there and that person didn’t talk to me.
    But I am sure I did it to other people unintentionally also, though I hope not. The drinking combined with hanging out in person with people you “know” from the internet will do that I think.

  21. I WISH I had an opportunity to share a beer with you; I had to find my hotel room that first night, which I am JUST NOW laughing about. :)

    I was so thrilled to meet you at BlogHer. Your hair smelled SO YUMMY. I’m in awe of your hair.

    I’m glad you wrote this. I didn’t feel excluded, but I did feel like it was on me to put myself out there and meet people. Everyone, including you, was so nice and friendly, it made my nervousness lessen. I was just glad to be there amongst everyone, learning what I could.

    Next year? I’ll be drinking. That beer with you? It’s a date. Count on it.


  22. Oh my gosh I had NO IDEA you felt that way! I was so happy that you chatted with me about Big Brother 8 on Thursday! And all the wine drinking? I just don’t get it. I’ve tried to drink all kinds of different wines, and they all taste awful to me. Give me an ice-cold Rolling Rock any time! Next year? More chatting, more hanging out, MORE BEER.

  23. Thanks for this post. I just posted on my site yesterday about how having never gone to BlogHer – reading the post-event posts this year was making me wonder if it was something worth going to.

    It’s nice to read something so honest but also full of perspective.

  24. I feel AWFUL that you felt this way. Truly horrible. Honestly? When I hugged you hello, I rushed to get out of the way because I knew you wanted to hug Yvonne. If I’d had my way, I would have put you in my pocket and carried you with me all weekend!

    And now that I know you felt excluded? I wish I had.

    P.S. I felt exactly as you did after BlogHer last year. And I also had the same view – the convention is really just a microcosm of real life.

  25. um yeah I didn’t read any of the other comments but I read the one from Elisa Camahort! Hello..famous on your blog!! good work.

    And as far as this post? HERE! HERE!

    cuz damn, straight.

  26. Oh, I was drinking and I would have for certain had a drink with you! But supertiff who was very shy around you….was very shy around you and was too nervous for me to ask. Plus I might have scared you because I happened to be overtalkative and slightly crazy on this little trip. Next year…next year!

  27. This is a most excellent point. I feel bad that I’m just now getting over here to tell you how much I enjoyed meeting you in Chicago. How come I only saw you on Thursday night? Where were you the rest of the time? :)

  28. I posted a 2 part recap and I honestly felt really bad after posting the 2nd one because I got some email and comments from women who said, “I’m glad you told me that, because I definitely won’t be going next year!” And that most certainly not my intent. I just wanted to point out that if more of the really outgoing people broke away from their groups and approached some of the less social people, world peace would ensue and everyone would hold hands and kiss and Clay Aiken would finally admit he’s gay.

    Seriously, my husband tried to tell me that it was mostly me and my insecurity and I NEVER would have believed him until I read the recaps from so many people who felt awkward and excluded. Now that I KNOW it’s me, it just makes me that much more determined to approach more people next year and really make the best of such a tremendous and diverse group of women.

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