Saturday, November 22, 2008

SBL Day 1

Wow! That's all I can say about the first day. After coming from the deadness that was AAR, the liveliness at SBL is refreshing. There was a line to get in before the hall opened, which any other year I would take for granted, but not this year! It remained busy most of the day, with just a few slower moments. At the end of the day, they had to kick customers out. Makes a bookseller happy to see that people want our wares.

The mugs are definitely a hit. I brought 8 boxes, thinking that would be sufficient. By the end of the day, we were down to 2 boxes. I can clearly see that they aren't going to last the rest of the conference. So, if you don't have one yet, you had better swing by tomorrow and spend the $100.00 for a free one because once they are gone, they are gone. At this rate, this mug will go into a second printing, too, just like the cuneiform one.

I met lots of you who told me that you follow my blog, and some that told me they enjoy it :) Seriously, I am humbled to think that you find something here worth reading. I try to remain transparent about who I am and what I do, and it is encouraging to hear that it resonates with you.

The rest of this is just ramblings of what has happened in the last 24 or so hours.

After set up yesterday afternoon, I got a chance to walk around Boston. I took the Freedom Trail and saw the historic sites. I thought it was a loop 2.5 miles long, but it ended up being more of a circle with a tail. I think I ended up walking about 5-6 miles, since the trail started about a mile from the hotel. But, it was refreshing and invigorating. I ended up in a nice Borders Bookstore—an important part of any historical tour, right?

After that, I went to the ATB (Association of Theological Booksellers) meeting. They meet every year on Friday, and I try to get there, if I can. It is always good to share war stories and ideas—with the emphasis on ideas. Besides, Charles always orders a good pizza :)

The day started early with a workout on the recumbent bicycle. I usually try to get to the workout room before 6:15 because of the rush at 6:30. Well, today there was no rush. In fact, by 6:45, there were only 4 of us in there. I'm left wondering why. Is it because Boston is a nice place to walk/run, so people don't need to work out inside? My first thought was that nobody was really coming to SBL, but the exhibit hall definitely proved that wrong!

After the exhibit hall closed, I went to the ATLA reception and enjoyed the company of some librarians for a while. They had been touring libraries in the area all day and come to the conclusion that a seminary couldn't be built anywhere other than the top of a hill. Im fairly sure they are wrong...

Right now I am sitting in the mall of the convention center, hoping that my battery doesn't die. In about 15 minutes I head over to the Baker/Brazos reception. After that, I think I will go back to the hotel room and read for a bit. Tomorrow comes early.

Well, I didn't go right back to the hotel. I ended up going to the Fortress Press reception after the Baker one. I finally headed back to the hotel around 11:15. Tomorrow (Sunday) I have a 7:30 breakfast meeting. It will be a day of many meetings, so I will be in and out of the booth all day.

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