IAEE: Expo! Expo! Year 19!!

Had a revelation this week during IAEE’s Expo! Expo!: 10 reasons why I am a typical crotchety, old attendee.


1. I’ve been attending this annual exhibition (and many summer ones) for 19 years now. For those of you doing the math, I started when I was 12.

2. The words, “Remember when we were in Las Vegas three times ago?” came out of my mouth. Twice.

3. I no longer feel compelled to go to every educational session. Or opening session.

4. I faithfully attend the award sessions because I’m friends with most of the people who receive those awards.

5. I’m critical of things that used to be serious treats—for example, I now complain about the FREE food and wine offerings.

6. Good tasting convention food is still an oxymoron.

7. I remember a time before lanyards were used, when you could look someone in the eye and be able to read their badge (and name), instead of looking at their navel. Or chest.

8. I don’t plan ahead. In the old days, I would pour over the selections and change my mind at least a half dozen times. It was THAT important.

9. I don’t read the signage. Yes, I’m that idiot attendee. “Huh? Where’s the exhibit hall? “

10. We work in a very huggie-kissy industry. Really. Then we wonder why we come back from these events sick. (You know I’m right and have probably already pre-ordered your antibiotics.)

Cannot wait to see you all next year in Los Angeles!

Stephanie S. Selesnick is president of International Trade Information, a longtime global exhibition industry specialist helping U.S show organizers increase international participation in their exhibitions and a well-known speaker and trainer. Follow her on Twitter at @stephselesnick.

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