It's raining today in Atlanta, and it's cooled down somewhat, which is nice.
I woke up late, but got to the Home Roasting labe in time to find out... Ken didn't need me! That's cool - I wasn't sure what I could do at the event.
I did make some observations though, which I'll expand on later. But it seems some of the C-Member events didn't go so well. Some of the problems were that organization and technical troubles caused some snaffus (mainly technical troubles). But, well, to be honest, some of the problems were social. Most internet "folks" are great people and very sociable, but well, to be blunt, some lack certain social graces, and it was especially noticable when newbies were around the hyper advanced "altie" type.
The weird thing is, there's actually nothing wrong with that in most senses, but in some cases, newbies got shut out of some events, and that's just plain wrong. They're there to learn. Not to geek out. But in some isolated cases, they didn't get a chance to learn.
When I was prepping my panel via email a few weeks ago, I said to all four participants "guys, keep an eye on the prize. Remember that we're there to promote better coffee in the retail and industry market. Geek out too much, and we'll lose them". And let me tell you, all four of my panelists did an amazing job - they were "geeks" for sure, but they really created some awesome line of communcation with the audience, and DIDN'T frighten any off. I didn't see one person leave the room during the panel - that's a sign that we had the audience in our hand.
That's all it took too - just telling these guys "keep an eye on the prize, don't geek out too much". And Jim, Bob, Richard and Marshall did an amazing job.
Maybe that's what we have to do next year in Seattle - talk to the hypers, and tell them what the whole purpose of this cMember thing is - to get a better chance at getting great coffee "out in the wild".
More later. I'm off to the Barista finals. BTW... I'm actually doing laundry right now :)