The obligatory follow-up post to the 99% of you (give or take 2%) that didn’t attend my presentation, to let you know that I gave a presentation. This one is pure entertainment value only so if you’re looking to code better, maybe Greg Young or Matt Podwysocki will finally post something technical.
I talked about Brownfield application development at the Florida Tweener weekend. On a side note to Joe Healy: Florida ‘Twixter sounds a lot cooler. It’s because of the ‘x’ (Come to think of it: Florida ‘Twixxxter would be even better…). Nevertheless, he pulled off a pretty cool event in record time. At least from the brief bit I saw. I talked for an hour from 8:30am until 9:30am, then bolted like a cockroach (not the Bahamian kind, they’re a little more lackadaisical when the lights come on).
Reason for my leaving was that I had left my family alone with a credit card in the middle of theme park central. So the rest of the day was spent at Universal Studios Orlando and its sister park, Islands of Adventure, with them. My entertainment gland was supersaturated by the end of the day. Tip: when you’re going for a single day, the Express Plus passes are just about the best money you can spend there. Seriously, bring a bag of peanuts and use the food money for these incredible time-savers. By my estimate, we saved no less than three hours of line-waiting during the course of the day. Longest line was RipSaw Falls for thirty minutes. All others were less than five.
The trip home was a noble little disaster. Delayed leaving Tampa, which meant getting bumped to a later connecting flight in Miami. (Little known fact: Miami’s airport code, MIA, is actually a double-entendre. I’ll let you figure out the other meaning. Hint: it has to do with luggage.) This usually isn’t a problem because there are anywhere between two and forty-seven flights from MIA to Nassau on any given day, depending on the blood alcohol level of the American Eagle pilots.
Today, however, all twelve remaining flights (must have been a heckuva bender last night) were oversold. And it took a couple of batted eyelashes and an eight-year-old’s temper tantrum* to get us on a flight out of Fort Lauderdale the next morning on an oversold flight. All due credit to American Airlines’ customer service people. They may not be competent as a rule, but they were unflappably nice in the face of a customer service disaster that, by the time we got there, looked like it had started during the Clinton administration.
Once flight confirmation was achieved, we set out to find a hotel in Fort Lauderdale. This may sound like an easy task unless you are intimately familiar with the wireless internet access in MIA, which does not recognize the Bahamas as a country for credit card processing. Nor, in fact, does it recognize the internet at all. Luckily, Mrs. Billy has a travel agent on speed dial…
The cab ride to the hotel in FLL was the highlight of the day. The driver was Kurdish and if you *really* want to hear about a "tweener weekend", listen to his stories about living ‘tween Iran and Iraq for half his life.
Rest of the trip was uneventful which, ironically, makes it the best part of the flight home.
Back to the presentation. It went pretty well, I think. Started out with three early risers but ended around twenty-five strong. For me personally, it was another case of wondering why I go through the expense as I walked to the venue and wondering why I don’t do this every weekend as I walked back to the hotel afterward. It really is fun though I still need to work on my audience participation skills.
The show, unfortunately, was not taped as I copied the slides over to one of the TechEd computers and barely had enough time to get the projector working. As it is, I was mike-less throughout and I’m not exactly Rush Limbaugh when it comes to voice projection.
Next up on the North American tour will be a couple of talks in the home turf. One in Calgary and the other in Edmonton. Both at the end of July and that’s about as detailed as it gets so far. The Calgary site lists me as presenting on ASP.NET MVC which is good to know. Gives me a place to start anyway…
Kyle the Homebound
*Bonus trivia: I performed one of these acts myself. You may be surprised at which one. And at the level of success I achieved