Yesterday, I organized the first phase of taking this blogging community out of the virtual world and into the real world by bringing together a bunch of Southern California bloggers who have at least a peripheral relationship with Bamboo Nation.
We met at Caffe Primo at the glorious outdoor mall/oasis that is The Americana at Brand in Glendale, California, and chatted face-to-face about blogging, about writing, and about many other things that made us smile and laugh. And as misanthropic as I wanted to be (anybody who's ever seen me at a party sitting in a corner with my arms crossed knows what I'm talking about), I genuinely liked everybody there—smart, engaging, funny people—some of whom I had met in person before and some of whom I had not.
You should consider reading some of their blogs, which I am listing below. I asked each of the bloggers who showed up to give me a link to a favorite post of theirs, and that's a good place to start. Enjoy:
Ashley Aguirre. I became familiar with Ashley online first and eventually met her at a couple events that Jonny organized back when he was in Los Angeles. She blogs about pop culture, with an emphasis on music. Read about her thoughtful take on our blogger meetup here.
Noel Alumit at The Last Noel. I've known this dirty Filipino whore from the Asian-American theater community. He blogs about all things literary, but claims he's branching out. Read about the time he was writing a novel on a pyramid in Mexico here.
Jake Bradbury at Video Contest Warriors. Jake lives up the street from me. He (and Will, who also lives up the street from me) have made a shitload of money winning video contests, and they blog about it and other film-related issues. Jake didn't send me a favorite blog post (lame!), so I will punish him by linking instead to a guest post that I wrote for them on their blog here.
Donovan Keith at Another Actor in L.A. Donovan's first professional theater gig was in a play of mine in San Francisco, in which he was forced to strip down to his skivvies and have his testicles electrocuted. (Who says theater is stuffy?) He blogs about how to navigate being, well, another actor in L.A. Read about how he was a cryin' ass little bitch on a film project that took him around the world.
Cheryl Klein at Bread and Bread. I know Cheryl online through Noel. She blogs about literary things and personal adventures. Read her amusing deconstruction on a Michael Jackson music video here.
Louise Larsen at Louise on the Left. I met Louise online first before grabbing some face time with her. She blogs about politics and entertainment from the perspective of a liberal mom in conservative Orange County. Read her hilarious description of her daughter's middle-school sex education course here. (Part Two of that story is here.)
Scott at Tropico Station. I met Scott online first because he knows everything about Glendale, California, the city in which I live. He blogs about living here. Read his expert guide to the 1952 film, Crime Wave, and its various locations in Glendale, Atwater Village, and Toluca Lake.
Stephanie at The Water Glass. I met Stephanie in person for the first time yesterday. She blogs about literary things. Read her unusual tribute to John Updike here.
Peter Varvel at Plastic Bubble World. Peter stalks me. He blogs personal anecdotes about his lurid past. Read about the time he peed in an electrical outlet here.
I'm hoping to make this SoCal blogger meetup a quarterly event. Are there any other friends of Bamboo Nation who have their own blogs and want to be invited to one of these things? Let me know.
And in the future perhaps I'll organize a Northern California blogger gathering and maybe, just maybe, a reader appreciation event? If it involves bringing me presents, then I'm down.
[Special thanks to Louise and Peter for actually suggesting this event in the first place.]