It took about ten hours to drive to San Antonio. It took thirteen to drive back. The problem started in Tyler, Texas. We decided that we both hated Dallas, and preferred to mess around on the little highways in East Texas instead. It was really fun for the first seven or eight hours of driving, but somewhere around Tyler, the pavement got really noisy. It seemed like a change in the pavement style (the roads in Oklahoma sometimes whine too), but it was loud so I pulled off around the corner from this building (as we were wandering, momentarily lost). The tires looked fine. However, somewhere between Tyler and Kilgore a front tire blew while I was driving around 70 mph.
Somehow, the romance left the experience. There was no real problem, just some logistical issues. Once that was sorted out, I finally reached a sort of overload point. There are many topics/ideas from the conference that I want to sort out. There are a lot of people I need to search for. There is just too much to do, and too little time. The wandering has to cease for a little while.
What is most interesting to me at the moment is the lack of coherence among compositionists regarding “social software.” Lots of people are talking, just not to each other. I met a lot of bloggers that were invisible to me prior to the conference. It was also amazing to see so many projects relating to electronic discourse and/or visual rhetoric presented with paper handouts, and/or overhead transparencies. When computers were involved, there were always technical problems. The conservative traditional strategies actually worked best. I think Steve’s piece on social software pretty much hits the nail on the head.
I really can’t see how people manage to blog conferences in real time. I can’t listen, talk, or type at the same time. Most of all, I find it hard to do any thinking while participating. I think it was a richer experience because I did not blog it in real time, though I do plan to write after the fact. There were two types of blow out occurring at the same time, both metonymic and metaphoric, on Saturday.