four days to go (geeking out in sunshine)

I am a locally recognized name now, thanks to!

Last night, I stopped by a friend’s birthday party (at a bowling alley), and found out that one of his friends had actually recognized my name on the eVite. “Is that the Jillian who writes for” he asked my friend. Who wasn’t quite sure. But when the next question was, “the political activist?” then he knew, same girl.

This happens occasionally now. My name is recognized as a Local Blogger. And I like that a lot. I don’t really crave fame, but I do like being a little larger than life, just enough to be noticeable. And if my particular brand of recognizability comes from blogging and being a geek, that’s even better.

I also met up with more of the geek community at the BarCamp reunion dinner last week. The geek community here is rapidly growing and coalescing, and I’m delighted to be here to see it and be part of it. I love hearing about and being part of the next movement of online. The Internet has been so fascinating to me as a social shift that it’s exciting for me to hear about how it’s being tweaked and applied to more and more uses. Google Maps mashups, wiki-anything, blogs, RSS, clusters, tags, Web 2.0, I love it all. It reminds me a bit of the concept of a “wet net” in Snow Crash (oh god, that was nerdy) because the Internet, in 2006, is shifting towards collaborative data efforts. We may not all have the nanites in our blood and brains to apply our mental powers to a common task, but we sure are applying a lot of collective thought and data with the shift towards wiki-thinking.

So that’s what it means to me to be at a BarCamp event – to be in a place with a group of people who are all sharing ideas. And who, better still, are sharing ideas based on technology, and social changes made possible by technology, and communication made possible…you get the idea. I explained all this to Mom when I went to the original BarCamp, and finally just said, “Mom, do you remember how you always told me that I would meet people like me when I left the Island? That’s why I like the geek community.” It’s awesome, for me, to be around other people who are oriented towards tech, and using it to push the Internet forward into still more social change. This is watching history – and history is always entwined with technology and innovation.

Right now, I’m gearing up to put on sweatpants and go get some cardio in, in the form of biking up to the gym. It’s delightful outside, with clear spring-in-SoCal sunshine. And I’m having one of those days where I’m delighted with my life. Part of this is the shift to spring and summer, the end of my winter season depression extreme. Part of it is just that life is really good right now. Because I’m going to go outside and into Venice Beach, my beloved neighborhood. I’ll go to the open-walled Venice gym and read a magazine and listen to music while I work out, with sunshine and ocean air pouring into the cardio area. And then I’m going to come home and do a little more preparation towards leaving for London in four days. Life’s usually pretty good for me, but right now? this week? this year? it’s fucking awesome to be Jillian.

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