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Sunday, June 21, 2009

I'm toast

Ugh, as I attempt to mentally rejoin the living, here I sit recapping on my 3rd day at the HLAA convention. You'll want to excuse my frazzled brain that's still recovering from being up until 3am!

1) Missed connections - where were you, oh St. Louis chapter ones? Apparently there was a miscommunication and the St. Louis chapter and the KC chapter meetup didn't go off as planned. Therefore, the KC chapter (myself, Shanna and Minda) held a breakfast pow-wow to address our own chapter issues. Looks like we're gonna have an interesting exec board meeting on Thursday then....

2) I hopped over to the "Social Networking" presentation and caught fellow blogger Jennifer Thorpe getting us all awake with a resounding "Ye-haw!" Covering a number of tools and methods that people can use to improve upon a common issue among the hearing loss community - how to connect with others instead of being isolated in our world without sound. Showcasing Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, MySpace, DeafVillage, and a few other sites, I got the impression that all those there definitely will be a lot more vocal about their place in the world!

3) An almost impromptu gathering of the "young adults" of HLAA snuck into a room during lunch and discussed the futue of 18-35 year olds at HLAA. What's our place in the organization? How can we have our voice heard? What can we do to truly fit in? We brought out our issues, and Chris Sutton was able to capture a number of ways we can move forward - a) Get representation on the HLAA board; b) Set up a virtual chapter online; c) one more item that I'm forgetting right now, but clearly people will need to step up and take the reins of these new initatives. Looks like I'm one of those people!

4) The rest of the afternoon is a bit of a blur - nothing really interesting pops out, the chapter development stuff wasn't holding my attention, the "Wireless Apps" panel was a rehash of stuff I knew, and retreading the exhibit hall was getting a tad old. So, I was quite glad when 4:30 rolled around and scooted off to my room to get some rest!

5) The best part of HLAA is making connections; this final evening together is no exception, and truly, I think you learn so much more about people when you're out together. My friend Lindsey from Vanderbilt and her friend Applonia joined the gang that set out for downtown and a night of kick-ass music. I somehow got roped into a bet that I failed miserably on, which, in the interest of time, I will get into later. All in all, some blues, some country, and some R&B really rounded out the evening.

I'm on my way out for lunch and then to the airport - Nashville, you were great! Stay classy!

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