I’ve never been that into SXSW. No real reason – its just not my scene. Even with the interactive aspect and all the cool tech I still find it hard to get past the crowds and hype and media overload. That being said, I have no problem accepting a job that takes me into the heart of the fray. This year, as with last, it was WWE that brought me in. The upside was that I got to follow Hulk Hogan – yes, THAT Hulk Hogan – around for half a day and it turns out he is a very entertaining person. He knows how to talk and work a crowd. He’s not all muscles and jock-brain; he’s actually an intelligent, well spoken and personable dude. With very large muscles.

Hulk and Mini-Hulk
Hulk and Mini-Hulk

The downside to my experience – aside from simply having to be involved with SXSW – was a massive allergy attack, a potential client (a PR firm) that waited too long to hire me so their client (XPRIZE) hired someone directly and this:



I took the train home – Mindy and Declan picked me up at the MLK station – and on my way off the train, in my allergy wasted half-asleep state, I failed to notice in time that my camera strap was not securely around my neck. Nor was my sluggish hand fast enough to both meet and grasp the camera as it fell. The body of the lens sheared off the mount, ripping some screws out and tearing a piece from the circuit board. This just one month after I cancelled my insurance because it was too expensive (knowing full well when I did that something like this was bound to happen).

Honestly, I don’t blame SXSW or Hulk Hogan (seriously, the guy is so much cooler than I ever gave him credit for and I loved him as a kid) for any of this. I would work a job downtown tomorrow if offered. But I still prefer to avoid the hoopla and spend my Spring Break elsewhere. And I am running out of lenses.

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