Some other bits and pieces from the MLA convention--I just don't have the time for a real post. My schedule's been sort of brutal.
--I've seen a whole lot of MLA folks sauntering casually back into the Hilton with brown paper bags under their arms. I'm not saying that there is necessarily a connection between that, the numerous liquor stores within a block of here, and the crazytown prices at the hotel bar... but the circumstantial evidence is strong.
--A lot of the people hitting up our booth are quite blatant about the fact that they're only there for the freebies. Which is fine; it comes with the territory. But the middle-aged professors who take five minutes just to mine our candy bowl are driving me nuts. They ate all the mini Snickers and the mini Hershey bars; now we only have Kisses and Reese's. I understand that times are tight... but really?
--Speaking of swag, I got some amazing stuff today, including all three volumes of this amazing anthology, a copy of Everything is Illuminated (which I still haven't read), and advance copies of a few other things, including one book that purports to be a biography of Shakespeare's brain. I also got some beautiful posters for various new books, including one for this edition of Beowulf. More than anything, though, I'm excited about the anthologies. We're going to get so much great Iditarod reading from them. Apparently there will be a lot more free books tomorrow. God only knows how I'll get all this stuff back to Washington.
--I did get hit on a lot more today. Last-minute desperation? Guys who struck out with their first choice, or are ready for a new victim? I don't know. The worst part, though, was that the two most persistent guys were both manning nearby booths, so there was basically no escape. Or maybe the worst part was the professor from the verrrrry respected college standing about four inches away from me while making no move to cover his quest to stare down my shirt. For ten minutes. While asking me rather personal questions about my life. I got invited to a number of bars and parties, as well as out to dinner, but I evaded all such suggestions and hit the hotel gym for two hours of cardio. After two solid days of candy and cookies, it was pretty much heaven.
--I met a ton of interesting people: grad students bitter and optimistic, friendly professors, cranky professors, Scott McLemee groupies (I swear the man has a fan club), folks from Ivies and community colleges... no David Horowitz, though, to my mild disappointment.