hey there -
i'm sitting on a beach in denmark
out back of the base camp
the old navy base/warehouse cum conference center
there's a sand pit with a lot of lawnchairs
and black clad danes doing danish things outdoors
like standing around and smoking
talking, using cellphones
maybe those are human things
there's so many skinny people wearing black
maybe i'm in new york
but i'm sitting on a beach,
reboot:i wasn't sure what i'd cover, in the days leading up to the speech -
i spoke first thing in the morning
jason said, i was enthusiastic and i was effective at transmitting my enthusiasm to the crowd. that's good for a morning speaker i guess.
something about young people and how they use technology
or gardening, just gardening, the pleasure of plants
i cut loose on a plane on the way over and with a laptop loaned me by steuer
i wrote out about five different essays i thought might turn into the wisdom i'd share
and then a bright eyed pigtailed young woman comes over to my very low lawnchair to chat - she was inspired to make her own web page, she always wanted to be a writer,
so i handed her the laptop and asked her to write something here now
Hi, my name is Sidsel and I'm sitting here with Justin Hall, what a guy!!i've been taking notes on reboot '99: a danish digital commerce, community, and content conference spoken to mostly by white american males, men from california.
We're here at Reboot and up untill now it's been INTERESTING!!! I'm here because the company I work for (ELK, digital productions) invited me. I work as their secretary and receptionist.
I'm talking to JUSTIN HALL!!!! This can't possibly be very interesting. Hmmmm....
Anyway, something about myself. People tell me I think too much about stuff. I'm 19, I still live at home, which sometimes sucks (anyone who is 19 and still lives at home would know). I have a wonderfull boyfriend named Thomas!! If you ever see this: I LOVE YOU BABY!!!!
I guess I should return the lap top to Justin again now. So anyway, I've been bitten by an evil internet devil - so you guys haven't seen the last of me.
Buy for now, Sidsel.
Love to: My family, Mille, Mette, Katt, Faffi, everybody that I forgot, everyone who loves the world. (What is this - Oscar night???)
it's really a barbaric uncivilized thing
to put a dozen people with flaming tobacco sticks in their mouths in an unventilated room now brecome saturated with the chain trails of their addiction to the stuff of piece pipes
and then i leave the ethernetted speakers/sponsors lounge
(the sponsors smoke, the US speakers are lillylivers)
for the conference room
and at one end is a kitchen emitting
across the entire warehouse, the smell of very much heavy red meat being steadily held to heat to make dinner
sick in one room
sickened in the other
i am writing through the worst of the jet lag low - later i'll be wired and high on a weird displaced energy as the city is coming to sleep
there was the day's events, i was first speaker but then i stayed awake and active listening to take notes because i stood to learn a lot and the speakers were quality and i was curious having heard none of them before
and at the end of hte day i was honoured to present a recap
jonathan resented being cast as the ranting voice of capitalism, though he admited that was the character he was playing. later, presenting an ecommerce award, he mentioned that characterization and said he was going to speak in the true ranting voice of capitalism and grabbed a nearby balloon and opened it up and sucked in some helium and talked in a funny pinched voice.
i crawled into the speakers smokeroom and cornered myself on a couch, covered myself in my red jacket and slept through quite a bit of bustle.
later, i spent hours in there, while a raging party with house music and the band "New London Bomb" or something - an 80s cover band like last year
from inside the doorway i could see hte smoke and lights and action
but i was talking to harlan and shelley; we were envisioning brains. one for links.net, an import of my web structure, and maybe a brain for bud.com if they do release their product to allow public editing of a brain structure.
then i went looking for my saline solution to put drops in shelleys eyes and i ran across sidsel from above with her also skinny teen female friend mette, and they were revealing their midriffs for michael, an edgy young designer who acknowledged admiration for my work
as he posed me with the two girls and we were photographed
i continued talking to them and i was thinking, what is this? flirting with two cute pre-20 year olds after i have spoken at an internet conference, i'm in the back of the speakers lounge and they have mentioned some personal magnetism, and sure i'm drawn to nice and loaded flirting but this seems a little
then jason comes in and takes the camera and unbuttons my shirt a bit and re-wraps the girls around me and takes more pictures of us
mette asks if i have been to a private residence in denmark. i hadn't. she mentions inviting me over, to play music - she's a drummer. and i think to myself not about seeing her naked soft thin body aside me but i think instead about how nice it is to make friends and i would like the chance to see a house but i really should be on some good behaviour and never take anything too seriously
who turns out to have a brain it seems as large as his mouth - an outspoken fellow who works with computers and actually reads books. i admire that. i guess it's not all that rare, but i admire it among young folks - i wish i had more patience for reading. he does design too, and that site won the design and non-profit of the year awards.
i was preparing to leave- the speakers/the americans had decided it was 1.30 and time for "food! food! food!" so we prepared to abscond into cabs and some left ahead of the others and waiting around amongst the semi-inebriated danes also waiting amongst us for cabs,
and i realized i was leaving inside an immense party and in fact it had been almost years since i'd danced and would i prefer to stuff my face in late night denmark or shake a leg a little? so i disappeared to inside and stashed my stuff and hit the dance floor and met a few space invaders, where i'll be teaching.
we had a nice talk about art and her boyfriend and my girlfriend and body language - she reports seeing body language articulation in pigeons similar to that of humans - she reads familiar human flirting gestures to tell male pidgeons from female pidgeons.
it's nice to speak at reboot, but as the day runs on i am approached by increasing numbers of enthusiastic tipsy danes with a bit to share but mostly questions to ask. no problem, i always like to meet people, unless i'm jetlagged and i've been working all day and i'm on the verge of having a barely focused conversation with a single person. she seemed to pout a bit next to me when i became distracted. these forces collided to urge me home.
i did meet a lad who was being forced into the danish army for regular service and he was hoping to make a personal web site on the weekends. i had to give that guy a hug - that's the kind of dude that i'm so happy to see doing his thing.
she drew me a map home, not a map to new haven but a map to pain. how could the three people that corroborated her directions not mention the two other bridges and the huge winding street around a city square? this was by no means a direct trip home. twenty minutes, two hours
i did call amy, i missed her after all this silliness and hadn't spoken to her since i'd arrived. i reached her, her and joanne just fallen asleep to "spaceballs" and i got through just a smidge of her film opening story - wilner almost threw up during my scene, and i ran out of credit on my phone and then it was cold at 4.30am and i was carrying many pounds in two bags and i had on two shirts and my ears were cold
and i noticed denmark is incredible in that attractive young women wait in the street at 4.30 for taxis in the center of town. all over the place - people walking through their city without fear. it was like giant comraderie - people mostly drunk or tipsy attracting each others attention and i realized all those arguments those literate people make about the public sphere in europe are relevant and perhaps important. and what have we traded in america? maybe i don't get out enough. living in a city encourages walking. the spring in denmark is a nice place and time to walk. i recommend a hat.