Wednesday, November 09, 2005

SFO Post-Event Party

Oh.... My.... God! The event turned from business to pleasure at 6 PM, starting with the kick-off of a happy hour on the second floor while they transformed the third floor into a party zone (and don't even think about trying to get upstairs early, because the security was tight).

So, I'm standing in line for chips, or veggies, or something. Lo and behold, the .NET Rocks duo starts interviewing someone behind me! (Deb Kurata - the interview is 19:15 minutes into the show).

Ok, for the first time, I'm watching this process live, instead of just listening live (or listening to an edited interview). And, I don't think that Carl had time to get a judge to issue the restraining order, so I was was in no danger of being arrested by remaining this close to him:

Watching the interview process is interesting. Carl has 2 mics, but one is occupied by the guest, while the other is shared by both him and Richard. Well, I don't know if there's ever a cue, but every now and then, Carl shoves the mic into Richard's face and Richard immediately starts talking and/or laughing as if he were on mic the entire time. The rest of the time, Richard just looks off into the crowd, or watches Carl in much the same way that I did. It's a little comical to watch.

Well, finally, we were allowed upstairs. AC/DShee was on the stage. The floor was packed.

I met up with Michael Voigt from Switzerland, whom I met the night before at the CS Developer Competition finalists dinner. We grabbed a couple of beers, and then watched an airbrush artist create this picture of Gene Simmons right before our eyes (remember, it's a rock-and-roll theme).

I wandered around to see what else was set up. The ballrooms, which had been lecture halls just an hour prior, were now divided up into a pool hall:

I'm pretty sure that pool shark Juval Löwy is walking out of frame to the right:

And, you can't have a party for developers without having Foosball!

Another room was transformed into a lounge area:

The music was loud, no matter where you went. Up till this point, I was still carrying my laptop, so I decided that I would take it to the coat and bag check area. Unfortunately, after I left Michael, I didn't find him for the remainder of the night.

One part of the party area was dedicated to video games. There were multi-player XBox games:

Single-player XBox kiosks:


And Cocktails (getting back to my R.G.V.A.C. roots!):

Well, 3-4 beers had it's effect, and I travelled to the men's room. On my way in, I just about ran right into Paul Sr. from American Choppers, who was coming out. What is this, the Discovery Channel trip for me (see earlier post about flying on the same plane as the Mythbusters).

I was fortunate to have been in the "backstage" area at that time, because staffers were clearing a path for Paul Sr. to ride the chopper through the crowd! I think Mikey was on stage, and from Jason Mauss's blog, the crowd was chanting "F*** Oracle", but I couldn't hear anything because, well, I was standing 15 feet from a Harley!

Wow, all of that excitement made me a little hungry! So, I get in a food line (specifically, the BBQ Rib line) behind... None other than Richard Campbell, Canada's own Memphis-style BBQ Rib king himself. We chatted a little bit about meat, I think (remember, it was loud, and I had consumed several beers), and about how the DNR duo were so ready for the trip to end in order to get back to their families.

The ribs were decent, but as Richard pointed out, they were boiled, and flavoured [his words, not mine] with liquid smoke and lots of sauce. :)

So, here's an uber fan standing in the middle of a party with AC/DShe playing, eating ribs with Richard Campbell (and Carl, who joined us with his own plateful). It just doesn't get any better than that. Or did it?

I don't remember for sure.... And, I hope that Geoff does some really good editing.

Update: Carl "lost" my interview. ;-)

Me: Are we recording?

Carl: Yeah, man, we're recording.

Me: Are you sure? Don't you want to, like, plug these microphones in or something?

Carl: Who's the professional podcaster here? Who got interviewed for the New London local newspaper?

Me: You, sir.

Carl: Ok, so let's get this thing over with already. I've got so many more people to talk to here.

(Later, that same minute...)

Me: Thanks guys.

Richard: No problem, Jesse.

Me: Uh, that's Jas...

Carl: Yeah, ok. Richard, look, there Chris Menegay. Hurry!

Richard: Oh, Carl--you'd better plug in that XLA cable. We don't want to lose an interview.

(walk off stage left)

Me: Um, ok, catch you later...


(This dramatic recreation of events is like, totally true, as far as you know)

The time came for me to leave in order to catch a train to the airport (this was while they were setting up the stage for Cheap Trick). I snapped a picture of the airbrush artists' work on my way out.