Last week, I attended CES! CES!!!! I feel like I’ve been waiting my entire life to attend. Just me and about 170,000 other tech junkies descended upon Las Vegas. It was my first time; I was a CES and a Vegas virgin. Talk about go big or go home? WOWZA!
I could go on for days, hell, weeks, writing about this experience but I will start by giving you the jist of what it feels like to attend CES, it’s like climaxing and then despite your better senses continuing on, in that crazed, hyper sensitive, overwhelming feeling of pleasure and pain overload but you still want more….more….more…THAT.IS.CES!
The next thing you know, your feet are on fire, you drank too much at some VIP event because you forgot you weren’t 21, you want all the tech, you’ve been up til 5:30 eastern time every night because you are so jet-lagged. You really don’t know what time it is anymore and then you find yourself so overwhelmed after 3 days of walking in the dessert of lights with that ginormous fucking badge that weighs twelve pounds that you hit a wall (figuratively not literally, though if you are tired enough you might do that too.)
You’ve seen more hookers than you ever have on HBO real sex and Taxi Cab confessions combined, been given directions by a Mexican Elvis who requests a selfie with you and seen and heard gadgets that have blown your mind.
Next thing you know, there you are crying, stranded in the airport in Dallas, your flight’s been cancelled because of “weather” and you were the dumb ass who “voluntarily” checked your carry on because some smiling flight attendant asked politely in Vegas and when you ask the flight attendant in Dallas to help you find your much needed luggage, she rolls her eyes at you (ROLLED.HER.EYES.AT.ME!!), scolds you and turns you into a sniveling, sleep deprived ball of snot in the middle of the Dallas/Fort Worth airport with TSA eyeballing you like you just smuggled in heroine ( or maybe it was that new Vibe selfie flash) in your anal cavity.
Speaking of strange and weird shit happening, as a stranded traveler living my own personal version of Planes, Trains and Automobiles, I ended up in a shuttle with 1) a gentleman from California who happens to be the boss of one of our closest friends from college, who now lives in Colorado but originates from Chicago 2) an ex-lobbyist turned UCLA Poli Sci Professor who has a reoccurring roll on Hawaii 5.0. This trip was all about the surreal.
Finally, around 10 p.m. Texas time, there I was wearing my new scarf as a sarong, in 20-degree weather while washing my panties and yoga pants out in the sink so I had clean clothes to wear the next day. I did this all by hand. A friend told me that MANY people use the in room coffee makers to wash their unmentionables. I didn’t but think twice before you use those to make coffee. That “weird” taste might be someone else’s ass.
Anyways, aside from all the drama of the flight home, CES is awesome. Being that it was my first time there are some things that I wished I would have known going in, so I am sharing them here with you. Yes, I will get to all the really, cool shit I saw tomorrow.
- Wear Comfortable shoes. Repeat after me…WEAR.COMFORTABLE. SHOES! Save your cute shoes for nighttime events. Wearing cute heels to CES means that you are either certifiable, dead from the waist down or a hooker. Go away, P.S. even TOMS can wreak havoc on the feet of sensitive soles. Let’s just say, I somehow managed a blister the size of my baby toe on top and on bottom of said baby toe. I was crippled, people. Gym Shoes, UGGs, Frye Boots, COMFORT PEOPLE but please NO CROCS ALLOWED. If you wear crocs the homeless people will make fun of you.
- Register early to avoid fees.
- Pick your badge up at the airport, the line is quicker than at the hotels. But if you are PRESS ( as I was) go to the PRESS kiosk or you may find that your badge was given to someone named Donald.
- Cabs are expensive and traffic is horrible in Vegas. Take the shuttles. It’s $8 one way or $14 round trip. Very cost effective.
- If you are a single woman who is looking for love with a nerdy, highly intelligent, somewhat wealthy, possibly a gamer, with a great BIG sexy brain… this is your heaven. The men outnumber the women about 9 to 1. STEM PEOPLE. This needs to be a priority with our girls.
- Have a plan. Vegas is huge and there were 170,000 attendees and 3600 booths. You do the math. There is no way you can cover every booth in 5 days. It’s not possible. Make a plan.
- Forget about passing out your cards. This is not a blog conference. Get cards. Give cards if asked or if there is a spot to leave them.
- Network at events and smaller venues. You are not going to stand out at CES unless you are naked or wearing crocs. Wait, I stand corrected, you are not going to stand out at CES unless you are wearing crocs.
- Walk the strip. You have to. It’s beautiful at night. Also, #Highroller. It’s bigger than the London eye and the view is not only natural it is fucking spectacular!
- Schedule down time. I am serious, if you do not, you will hit a wall and end up in your room in the middle of the day in your pjs, eating a slice and taking a nap against your own will. P.S. It’s really hard to network when you are delirious from sleep deprivation.
- Also, speaking of naps, get some sleep. I’m one of those people who physically get ill after a certain point of no sleep. I have insomnia so my threshold is pretty high but if I stay up past 3:30 a.m., I will literally get nauseated. I guess my body decides it’s had enough and it’s shutting down.
- Don’t over schedule yourself. I made the rookie mistake of making lots of booth tour appointments. I was just so flattered to be asked but I will tell you, then you find yourself rushing around and not enjoying things. CES is all about flexibility; you need to be able to spend time where you find your interests.
My takeaway, have a plan but be flexible. Wear comfortable shoes and clothing that you can stay comfortable in for 12 + hours. Be prepared to walk because I walked about 15,000 steps every day I was there. Be spontaneous. There are so many cool gadgets and tech and people that you never know where the day might take you and if you have the option, take a friend. Life’s never quite so overwhelming when you have someone with you to help you conquer the world.
If you love playing with gadgets like I do or just love being in the tech know, when given the chance attend CES. It is awesome. Come back tomorrow and I will tell you all about the great new tech gadgets coming out this year.