Sunday, 5 September 2010

The Hat Trick

Originally uploaded by reuvenim
With the AussieCon4 science fiction conference that ends tomorrow I have accomplished a personal hat trick: Between PZ Myers, whom I had met during the Global Atheist Convention (and reported about here), and another two authors/bloggers I have met at AussieCon - John Scalzi and Cory Doctorow - I have now met all three of my favorite bloggers, and all within this calendar year.
To be honest, if you were to wake me up in the middle of the night and ask who are the three people I would like to meet the most (excluding relatives and such), my candidates would be different to the above three. They'll probably be Richard Dawkins, Carl Sagan and Isaac Asimov. There are, however, a lot of things in favor of my favorite three bloggers, and not just that they're still alive (unlike Asimov and Sagan): being that they're bloggers I have personal insight into their lives. Like all good voyeurs I know a lot of what takes place there, enough to know these are people I can easily identify with.
Let's take Doctorow and Scalzi, whom I met and chatted with this Friday:
  1. Both are roughly my age.
  2. Both have roughly similar backgrounds to mine. Doctorow, a native Canadian now living in the UK, is an immigrant.
  3. Both have similarly structured families to mine, in the sense that both father a single child. During Friday's panel Doctorow expressed his opinion on parenthood by comparing it to salt mining, indicating we share similar opinions on this very important matter (for the record, this view mirrors views he has been expressing in his blog, where he also frequently expresses his love for his daughter).
  4. Both own Android mobile phones (a Droid in the case of Scalzi, a Nexus One for Doctorow). I know that you are not what you buy, but still - it says something about the type of people that buy an Android as opposed to those that get an iPhone. I'll be explicit here: thinking for oneself vs. following the herd.
    On that matter, Doctorow has been a long time advocate for open source and Linux. Apart from using Ubuntu, like yours truly, he also has a thing or two against Windows, like yours truly. Check here for evidence.
  5. You should have seen the way both sat down at the panel. As in, the way they laid down their wifi hotspots/mobile phones and cameras on the table in front of them, in formation. Now, these are people I can relate to! Take Doctorow in particular: from time to time he picked his camera up, took a photo, and put it back in its precise place. You can watch his photos on Flickr, where he publishes them under a Creative Commons license, here (did I mention I do the same?).
  6. They both wear corrective eye wear.
  7. Both have relatively similar hairstyles to mine, especially Scalzi with whom I share a nice bald patch.
  8. They're both heavy bloggers (Scalzi has been here for twelve years, Doctorow here and here for ten).
  9. The stuff on the agendas of the two is very similar to mine. Scalzi's is the less similar, probably because he's still very American; Doctorow, on the other hand, while not saying much about religion, is a big time advocate on matters of civil liberties. Unlike me, Doctorow does more than talk about it.
  10. I'll put it this way: once these guys open their mouths to talk, you can clearly witness these are no fools. I'll put it another way: you can clearly see why these are authors that sell lots of books while I, for example, run a blog that hardly anyone reads.
I am sure that it won't be hard for me to find areas where these two people are significantly different to me. It doesn't matter, though: what matters are the subjects of their blogs, and these happen to be the ones dearest to me. I am proud of having met them all.

No comments: