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Hurricanes, Writing LS Abstracts, and Closing Tabs
|Blog Entry - Tuesday, September 23rd, 2008
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I know, I know, you're never supposed to apologize for a blog absence. I won't. I'll just say that I've missed writing here, and hearing from you, although Twitter has helped me through. i've got a lot of making up to do - cleaning up the site, updating it a bit, and being more regular about my content production again.
Thanks to many of you who checked in on me during Hurricane Ike
. (And to Rocky, who also posted to let you know I was ok...
) The hurricane itself didn't damage my house or hurt me. In fact, once the power went off, I slept through most of the worst of the wind and rain. When I got up the next morning, the streets were flooded and the wind was still pushing the trees over, but it felt like the storm was winding down. What has been scary and sobering, on the other hand, has been the aftermath. People tend to pay attention to the destructive force and the moment when the storm is hitting, worried about friends and family who might be hurt while nature does its worst. What has hurt Houston, and those of us who live here, even more, however, is the strange half-city we're living in now. When I drive to the post office or the grocery store, it takes more than twice as long as normal, because most of the street lights still have no power or are no longer standing. Of course, there's always the chance that I won't actually be able to conduct whatever business I had in mind, as many stores and restaurants are still without power and are closed. Gas stations are mostly open, but gas is more expensive and at least two stations near me were mostly destroyed by the wind. They won't be open for a while. Grocery stores are scary places - busy (still with people buying ice and other non-perishables), but not quite normal. Driving down the streets in most neighborhoods shows stop and street signs down, street and stop lights dangling from their wires, and a hedge of browning branching and leaves all along the sidewalks where people have piled them in preparation for the debris haulers. Houses and offices still have boarded up windows. Trees are uprooted. Rooftoops are covered with the blue plastic the city distributed to those who lost roofs or had roof damage. The world goes on, but this city is still limping as kids start to go back to school and folks start back to work. I spent last week in Dallas, because my power was out until Friday. I have both power and internet back now, but I'm still one of the lucky ones. Many of my friends are still without. Many of you have been willing to donate in the past - the Red Cross is still operating shelters all over south Texas
and can still use donations to help those folks who were not as lucky as I've been.
In any case, I've been working hard. Most of you know that I came back to the Lotus biz - I've been to ILUG
, as well as a few one-day local conferences
, with my new company WorkFlow Studios
. I'm going to be working on their marketing and communications, as well as some training, strategy, and consulting when appropriate. I can't promise never to leave again, but it's nice to be back. One of my current big jobs is working on Lotusphere session abstracts for my colleagues, so I've been writing those for the past week or so. I've read Rocky
advice and am excited to once again be part of it all. Hope Mac remembers his old editor
when selecting sessions (wink). Of course, I've got some beliefs of my own on what makes a good abstract - good writing, concrete descriptions of what the attendees get from the session, limited jargon...
I've got some Firefox tabs to close, but that will hav to wait. I got a little carried away with my comments about Ike and now I need to get a quick bite to eat before moving on to another set of abstracts and some other meetings.
Author: Libby Ingrassia
Posted at: 12:10:30 PM