Backpacks, Loops & Spoons
22 Hours in Philly

Destination NotNewark

So...I'm leaving in just a couple hours on an honest-to-God business trip, with a suitcase and everything, like a fancy business woman, who regularly gets asked to speak at social media conferences. Social media! Have you heard about this shit yet? I think it might turn into something one of these days. The Hulk, probably, or that thing from Cloverfield.

But no lie, I'm going to be at's Social Media Summit in Philly, co-paneling sessions about...blogs. And Facebook. Mostly on a pretty basic level, which, THANK GOODNESS, because otherwise I will run out of web-related expertise in the first 10 minutes. Still, though. I should probably write down some notes, or at least make sure Facebook hasn't reset my password or something. "And this is the login screen! All you do is...wait, fuck, hang on."

The funny thing is that public speaking doesn't phase me in the slightest. Speaking in front of a room full of people, riffing about topics that I may have just a smidge more than a passing knowledge of? Cake! Pie! Bring it! Meanwhile: TRAVEL. OMFG. WE ARE ALL GOING TO DIE.

So I am currently channeling all my copious amounts on anxiety onto an hour-and-a-half train ride, a train ride I have to GET TO and ENTER CODES for my tickets, codes that will most likely TOTALLY NOT WORK and then I will MISS THE TRAIN because I only arrived at the station TWO HOURS EARLY and GAAAAAAH I think maybe packing another extra tank top and/or set of underwear might calm me down a little bit. I've already packed four. I come back tomorrow night. Yeah, I better put another pair of panties in there JUSTINCASE.

*gasp, wheeze, flop sweat*

And now let me leave you with a photo from this weekend. This is what you do when your son has lost all the tiny plastic lightsabers from his Star Wars toys: 


Juice box straw wrappers! I am BRILLIANT. This is the sort of thing that puts you on panels at social media conferences, you guys. Take a note. I mean it. Wait. Why aren't you writing this stuff down? WHERE ARE YOU GOING COME BACK I LOVE YOU



If it makes you feel better, I went on a business trip once where my coworker screwed up the days he needed me there. So I wound up staying an extra night. I needed to go buy a shirt for the next day, but I had extra underwear already packed.


Good luck on your trip and your speaketty-speaking thing.

Also? I've overpacked for every single business/personal/family trip MYENTIRELIFE. Because you never know when you need that extra set of heels.


I LOVE traveling - once I'm actually on the plane. The entire time before that I'm convinced that something has gone terribly wrong and I'll show up and they'll have lost my reservation, or the non-refundable reservation will be for the wrong city and I'll have to go because its NON-refundable. And once I've checked in? Mild panic attacks every time they make some unintelligible announcement over the intercom because I am positive that it must have said that they moved my gate. Except I have no idea what they said. So now i don't know which gate. Which means I must be sitting at the wrong gate. WHAT DID THE FREAKIN' SPEAKER SAY???

Nancy McCritte

My little Star Wars fan is going to love this picture!


That's awesome! I spoke on a panel for that group in DC a while back. They were great. They're lucky to have you!


Love the ingenuity of the juice box straw wrappers!

Have fun speaking and better leave yourself 3 hours. You know, just in case....


Juice box straws = genius. I wonder if they still make sword-shaped toothpicks for fancifying appetizers?

Sprite's Keeper

Talk about recycling. Your blog just went green!
Good luck with the trip!


Dude! I am totally stealing the lightsaber idea. Those damn things break or are lost two seconds after my kid gets ahold of them. Truely talented you are.


I chronically overpack underwear and shirts for any trip. I almost never need them but I'm convinced that the day will come when we'll be stranded somewhere and everyone will be wearing the same dirty underpants for days while I'll be all clean and happy.

Also, I spill things a lot so those extra shirts DO come in handy.


I dont know how it happened or why, but I forgot to pack shirts for our honeymoon to NYC. Shirts! We had everything else, even extras. The list was on top of our stuff with shirts checked off... my husband is convinced I did it on purpose so that I had an excuse to shop. Pffft. Like I needed an excuse!



Life of a Doctor's Wife

I think packing for three days (for every one day you'll be away) is a good plan. I am totally an extra-underwear-stuffer. Which is great - unless you are on a plane and have to check in at an airport that's a little "behind the times" and has to open every suitcase and rifle through it by hand and then you and your 25 pairs of panties are sitting there on display for 8,000 other passengers. Not that I know from experience.

Hope the social media conference goes great!

Mary Theresa Hull

I loved you before. But I love you even more now (as a health care professional) that you are speaking at this particular know what I mean =) much love to you! Have a great trip!


If I were organising a conference on... whatever I'd most certainly be inviting you because you are teh great Amalah and you would rock da house!!


No worries! You're only traveling to Philly. As someone who lives here, trust me, if you forget something (as you will, if you are anything like me) we have it! Contact Solution? Yes! Forgot to print something out? Internet cafes! Underwear? We have clothing stores! (And the cabfare is cheap should you want to wander around to something a little farther.)

Also, delicious Chinese Food if you're going to be at the Convention Center - it's practically Chinatown. I vote for Kang See on 9th near the corner of Vine, the one with the cartoon duck. Do not be put off by the cartoon duck.

Have fun!


I usually pack at least 3 pair of underwear per day. I'm not exactly sure what I think is going to happen???


Ok, so I totally symathize with the over packing. Like, I can be going somewhere FOR THE DAY, not even overnight, and completely stress and take at least one extra outfit. And probably a pair of shoes. Heaven help us all if I'm going anywhere for more than 3 days because the space needed to take all those "just in case" outfit possibilities...well, lets just say it's a real bitch.





I got nothing on the trip, but OMFG do I get the whole Star Wars thing. Those farking lightsabers what a PITA -look under the couch cushions. Our life seems to parallel yours...SPD, ST, OT. Every time we get in the car my son asks if we need gas, he wants to know how the battery is, where we are going, what street are we on, blah...blah...blah? It is nice (not nice but you KWIM) to see someone else going through the same things we are going through and coming out sane. More or less...
Enjoy your grown up trip.


Hi, have the hotel clean those pants, you'll be set. Have a good time. Julie


Is it just me? I keep trying to figure out the hairy limbs in the background of the Star Wars guys???


(Fitpat: It's Jason?)


Congrats on the speaking engagement!

And at first, I thought Luke and Darth had just finished some ice pops. You know, colorful light sabers that taste good!


Uhhh...what's the hairy thing on the table? Kind of creeping the Starwars dudes out...and me...


would you please, pretty please add a fuck and motherfucker in your session?

it would make me all warm and happy inside.

please and thank you.


Dude. you crack me up!

Plano Mom

Have fun. Love the light sabers. Never thought to use the wrappers - always used the sticky straws.

From Belgium

The packing of the extra underpants seperates the expert from the amateur.


Nice idea with the lightsabers. My fiance said that when he was a kid he would just use toothpicks...even colored them to be the right lightsaber color for the characters.

Lisa R.

Better extra underwear than NONE AT ALL, which is what I brought on a 4-day family trip a couple of weekends ago. Turns out that if she really has to, this 37-year-old can squeeze into the extra underwear she DID remember to bring for her 11-year-old son! (And also, when those run out, go commando to brunch with parents-in-law.)

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