Spot the new *s in my blogroll

by Suw on April 1, 2004

I get frustrated sometimes by the way that people characterise the online environment as ?not real? by using the term ?real life? to describe offline life. When non-webbie types find out that I habitually meet online people offline, I often see a characteristic glaze come over their face, as if I’ve just told them that I go visiting at Pentonville and am about to marry an armed robber.

Over the last seven or so years, I have met some really cool people online and have managed to transfer some of those friendships offline with quite a high degree of success, often despite geographical issues. In all this time I’ve only ever met one nutter, which is probably a better ratio than than one would get meeting strangers in bars when already half-cut.

Anyway, that’s just preamble.

Last night I went up to London for dinner with nine other bloggers. I only knew Gary Turner, although I’ve been reading Euan Semple’s blog a while now and had at least come across Jon Husband’s blog once or twice before.

I’m not sure who else knew/had met whom, but rapidly became obvious that it really didn’t matter. The table was continuously buzzing with conversation and laughter – if you’d asked some stranger to pick out the table of people who’d never met before, they’d have had a hard time spotting us.

I was a bit nervous about turning up on my own and trying to recognise Euan from one the tiny picture on Orkut that I’d seen, but the way that I stood outside Carluccio’s on St Christopher’s Place, prodding at my mobile phone and looking lost obviously gave the game away and we ended up doing that pointy-finger-?Are-you-who-I-think-you-are?? thing.

As the rest of the group trickled in there were occasional flashes of recognition along the lines of ?Oh, I saw you outside and thought it might be you?, just as Euan and I had done. We came to the conclusion that all bloggers have some sort of aura that fellow bloggers can subconsciously spot. Sort of a ?bloura?, maybe.

Last night was also my first time IRCing on a phone – GT had his swanky sonyericsson p900 and we connected up to #joiito and had a bit of a chat. It’s cool to be able to IRC from wherever you are, but when the channel’s busy the conversation goes past too fast to follow. GT’s phone also has the ability to take photos, play a full episode of, say, The Simpsons and can probably make the tea and tie your shoelaces as well.

I want one.

So, shamelessly stolen from Euan Semple’s blog, a list of those of us present:

Jon Husband
George Por
Gary Turner
Matt Mower
Andy Borrows
Julian Elve
Torben Anderson
Jon's friend Jim who is a virgin blogger

GT’s stitched together photos from the evening so you can see who’s who. Hopefully, more photos will surface soon.

Anyway, in conclusion, it was an excellent evening – interesting people, cool conversations, and really good swordfish.

UPDATE: Matt's uploaded his photos of the evening. Thanks Matt!

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