Today I skipped out of work and did two things outside of my comfort zone: posed as a model for a photoshoot and attend a presentation with a new friend. Cathy directed the photoshoot and assisted the photographer by, at verious points, yelling "happy! happy!" to get me to smile. To say that I don't like being in front of a camera of any kind is a gross understatement, but some people you just can't say no to and Cathy is one of them.
Something still new for me was meeting an online friend for the first time while that friend just before presenting at conference. The only other person I can think of that I met at a conference but knew, at least to some degree, was Suw Charman, whom I had gotten to know fairly well over IRC. In the case of Karen–that's right, I'm declaring unilaterally that I know her long enough to call her Karen—I know her through a case of digital mistaken identity. (Sort of. And yes there's a story behind it.) She wrote about our random encounter and what to disclose in terms of how to find out more about them, in our cases, where to find each other's weblog.
Her presentation was half about Web 2.0-type stuff—since I work for a Web 2.0-type company, I figured that alone justifed stepping out—and half about how Web 2.0 technologies help in the aftermath of the Asian Tsunami. The Web 2.0 stuff wasn't new to me—in fact, near the end I brazenly attempted to hijack the presentation by suggesting she visit the Flickr tag for 'tsunami'—but the other half, about its application and challenges in Indonesia, India and Sri Lanka.
Today was only a slightly ridiculous day, compared to the overwhelmingly ridiculous days one encounters while working for a tech startup. That said, days with any degree of ridiculousness are certainly more interesting than the ridiculousness-free ones.