Drinks, Food, Karaoke (We're Not Kidding) Fill ad:tech Tuesday Night
Tuesday night's activities at ad:tech San Francisco were subdued, enjoyable and ended oddly. Once the session rooms cleared and everyone began discussing where they'd eat dinner and what they'd be doing before they went to bed, we pulled out our trusty party schedule and headed over to the W Hotel's XYZ Lounge for the Boca Networks Party With A Star Party. Snooze. Though there was one bit of small amusement. apparently, there must have been a CIA agent there because when we lifted the camera to take a random crowd shot said agent turned her head away from the camera faster than an ad:tech booth babe gets accosted by drooling conference attendees. The look we received post flash was piercingly less than happy. Oh well. No visual fame for this CIA agent.
After that bit of drama and five minutes of wondering if anyone at the party actually worked in the industry Adrants Co-Editor Angela Natividad and I went down to the lobby bar where we said hello to the ever-present Susan Bratton, Chair Emeritus of ad:tech. Always a pleasure to speak with, Susan has just launched Personal Life Media, a site offering up all manner of personal-related content.
So after screwing around with a newly purchased Casio Exilim - because the old one fell into a cup of wine (don't ask) - by taking pictures of the top of people head from the lobby balcony of the W, we headed over to the Clift Hotel where the Oldtimers Group, a 500 member-strong community of the online elite (yes, we know that's pompous but it's true) was hosting its soirée in the well-appointed Spanish Suite.There we ran into fellow ad:tech blogger Chris Eaves, Social Diva's Peg Samuel, Mediasmith's Dave Smith, HandHeld Entertainment's Mark Heyert, Laredo Group's Leslie Laredo, UnsubCentral's John Engler and a host of others. Held on the 17th floor of the hotel and with stunning balcony view, the Oldtimer's party was well worth the stop.
With three parties all occurring in the 6P-9P time slot, we were running out of time getting to the third, the Bay Area Interactive Group's party at 111 Minna. Angela, Chris and I grabbed a cab ride over to find the party winding down a bit. Always reminiscent of a fraternity's party room, 111 Minna exuded something far less than it did during last year's party where I met the enchanting Lindsey Frankenfield.
With others in our group calling it quits for the night, Angela and I headed over to the DNA Lounge where the EVB/CNET party was held. A live act club, the event served up The Lovemakers who I had never heard of (which isn't saying much at all) but were very good. The place was packed. smoky, loud, fun, dark, transfixing - the perfect late night ad:tech party. Had Angela I and stopped there, the night would have been much like any other night but, oh no, we didn't stop there.
When we were at the Oldtimer's party, we had heard Datran was having a party at a place called Mint, Before we had time to get the details as to the minty goodness of this supposed party, we were already in a cab, calling friends, calling 411, chatting with the cab driver trying top determine just where...and what Minty was. We probably should have listened to the person that shouted "it's a lesbian Karaoke bar" when we were outside the Bay Area Interactive Group party. Indeed (as Angela so often says), it was just as described. Not sure about the lesbian part but it was hard core Karaoke - something we had - believe it or not p never truly experienced before. Yes, it was every bit as cheesy as it's always been described.
So, with hot chocolate in hand (yes, that's what Angela ordered...in a bar...late at night. don't ask), we both watched in amazement as one American Idol wannabe after another took that stage and belted our lyrics to cheesy eighties songs to the delight of the Karaoke-loving audience. Oh, and the Datran party? Never found it. You'll have to ask them about it but, somehow, we think this Karaoke experience is an ad:tech experience we're not going to forget any time soon.
Since, apparently, our timing was off all night and we seemed to have missed the food portion of each party we visited, room service was ordered and all manner of existential-ishy conversation ensued. Until it was time to go. Now, Wednesday AM, it's time to head back to Moscone North and hunt down the booth dudes and babes that are sure to be trundling about the exhibit hall floor which opens today. And until we do it all over again tonight when we hit the multitude of parties scheduled for this evening. Later.
For more and far more professional photos of the evening's events, be sure to check out MingNow's ad:tech photo gallery.