Well, that was amazing.
I’m still riding the high of it. Thank you, thank you, thank you for being there. For taking notes from the front row; for sitting in the back leaning in; for finding a seat on the floor on the sidelines.
For making it a standing-room only event.
There’s no greater compliment. For bringing me home-baked bread! For travelling up from the other side of town through that traffic (I sat through it too!)… For standing in line for who knows how long, that we might have a chance to chat. I’ll never be able to express how much it means to me. For coming even though you started work at 4 A.M. that morning.
For being kind in your congratulations, though you may have known the topic better than I.
Every person I talk to at these things, every hand I shake and moment of eye contact made– it always feels like the tip of an unrealized iceberg. I always wish for more. To sit and hear all of your thoughts, share in our mutual glow; an impossibility with a crowd this large, but we can hope, or rather recognize, how much we appreciate each other's existence. You’re out there somewhere, being your fabulous self, and I am enormously grateful. It changes and energizes how I think about the world, knowing you and your smile exist.
Last night was my version of Jimmy Carter’s “Crisis of Conscience” speech (except not as good, but with a happy ending and more graphs!), and I put every ounce of my heart and soul into it. It’s everything on the subject I can offer at this point in my life, in speech form. Thank you for coming, and in such numbers, making it so huge. Thank you Rachel, for organizing this beast. Thank you Al and Tom, for putting MOHAI and I together. To the lovely tech crew. To Stacie, for gettin' that book out to the people!
Video of the speech will be up shortly.
And– I mentioned a nice fat bibliography, because it was that kind of speech– check out the PDF below! Because these things are important! So fun! Enjoy!
Photos by Tom Eykemans.