South By Ends on a High Note

On my last day at SxSWi, the halls were completely taken over by the rockers. Getting around got a little hard to do, so instead of hanging in the halls like usual, I took off to the AMD sponsored Bloghaus, the difficult to find hang out of Internet A Listers. I met some of the best people at BlogHaus – Tris Hussey, of One by One Media from Victoria and Phillip Jeffery from Vancouver as well as “Internet all stars” like Robert Scoble, Guy Kawasaki and Violet Blue. Turns out, the halls were a good hang out, but Bloghaus was better. Good enough that I didn’t attend many other panels. As the afternoon wrapped up and we were told we had to head out, Robert Scoble rushed in and announced that we were all going for real Austin BBQ. HP had chartered a bus to take us all out to the Salt Lick, which has legendary BBQ. The buses didn’t show, and instead, HP ordered taxis for the more than 40 people and prepaid each $75 to take us to the restaurant. We had no idea what we were getting into but these are the sorts of things that happen at SxSWi. It’s all about going with the flow, seeing where things take you. Turns out, this time we were being taken into the middle of the countryside. With coolers of beer (Salt Lick doesn’t serve any alcohol, but they’re happy if you want to bring your own) and heaping plates of BBQ being delivered, I got to hang out with some of the most influential people on the Internet. There, I joked with Scoble (it’s rare when people use his first name), debated the merits of Twitter with Tim Ferriss (which is a conversation that is still taking place) and rubbed elbows with HP executives. I didn’t think I’d run into any other Canadians (except Peter Anderson & John Beihler, whom I already knew where there) until I met Jeff MacPherson from TikiBarTv. It was a fantastic ending to my first “SouthBy” experience. I’m learning the lingo and starting to “y’all” and “big ol'” like a native Texan. I’m already starting to plan for next year’s trip and hoping to stay for the music portion as well.