March 07, 2013

Showtime!

So tomorrow I'm headed to the Natural Products Expo West in Anaheim, and I'm psyched!

Crabby goes "Au Natural"!

Although oddly enough, no purveyors of natural products have even tried to recruit me as a brand ambassador for anything.

Seems awfully short-sighted, don't you think?  Just imagine the cachet a natural product could obtain by having a frequently foul-mouthed health blogger who goes by the name of "Crabby" spreading the word to millions... er, thousands, or, well... literally several regular readers who might buy something someday!

Well, their loss I guess.

However, even though I may be unsponsored, I did manage to wrangle a press pass for myself and my wife helpful Co-Blogger, the Lobster. And I am hope-hope-hoping to run into other bloggers I admire, like the most awesome Jody who may very well be there.

Will I actually end up turning this adventure into a blog post? We shall see! Depends on what I find there and whether the camera-phone catches something interesting or if I end up with the usual abstract art featuring underlit blurry objects or the inside of my coat pocket.

So in case I get too lazy, I at least have a few random preliminary thoughts to share before heading out on our great Natural Foods Expo Adventure.

1.  I Seem to Pathetically Desire Some Token Symbol That I Am Important.

Because I'm totally looking forward to wearing a lanyard, which is the technical term for that thingy you wear around your neck at conferences and trade shows.  (Although the dictionary definition I consulted suggested it should be something more exciting and piratey, like a knife or a pistol.)

Apparently Crabby needs to pluck her chin hairs again.

However, if I do wear a lanyard with a knife or a pistol, I promise it will be crafted from 100% pesticide-free, organic, fair-trade vegan materials.

And sure, those of you who have normal jobs with badges that require entry behind locked doors, or who have ever traveled to trade shows or conferences or whatever must think I'm nuts to be excited to wear a badge slung around my neck.  But one downside to self employment is that you almost never get to wear something that says YOU get admittance to somewhere that not everyone else in the world can go too if they want.  The website even says: "Natural Products Expo is a private trade show open to the trade only, and not open to the public."

Music to my f--cking ears.  The only place I ever get to go that's even a little bit restricted is  the women's restroom.  And I don't get a lanyard for that.

Oh wait, once during a blog break I had a brief gig doing some medical device writing! And, well, my fondest memory of that time was of the free pens, totebags, refrigerator magnets, and yes the lanyard I got to wear at a conference I was writing about.

Ah, the glory days!

2. There is a Special Feeling When You Are Amongst Your Own Tribe.

You people who travel many miles in order to get up at 4am so you can stand in an ungodly long line waiting for a porta-potty before you compete in some crazy-ass race in order to possibly score a T shirt or belt buckle know what I mean. 

Are there other people who sigh sadly at the offerings in most grocery stores and must seek out specialty retailers, who obsessively check labels, who can't eat at normal restaurants without being a total pain in the ass to waitstaff with their questions, who have the whole EWG "Dirty Dozen" list memorized and who generally think more about what goes on their dinner plates than what might be available on their cable TV channels?

It will be fun to spend a day where this sort of behavior is possibly considered "normal!" 

3.  I Can Not WAIT for Free Samples!

Yeah, I'm not fooling anyone, this is the main reason I decided to seek out admittance.

It seems there are hosted breakfasts, lunches, "relaxation lounges" and booths and booths of companies pitching edible products that are normally a bit on the expensive side. I'm really hoping to hell they have a lot of free samples on offer.

However, the ground rules say we can only carry out one bag of samples per day.  What?!?!?  And I'm only going to be there one day!


I'm just hoping they mean a bag like this?



But if not, this means I am planning on doing a lot of grabbing and then snarfing up product, and then re-grabbing and re-snarfing more product while pretending to be an entirely different person, all day long, or until I get tossed out.

Because everyone knows that free samples, particularly natural free samples, do not contain calories, right?

Am I the only person in the world who could be excited to attend a natural products trade show?  Do you all think I am TOTALLY Insane?

Photos:
Huge Bag swiped from The Bag Lady TV
Expo photo from somewhere off the Natural Products Expo West website
Pirate Lanyard from the lanyard store.

47 comments:

  1. Oh man...I laughed and laughed at this one. They are really missing out not sponsoring you in my opinion. :)

    I actually probably would enjoy a natural products trade-show, and you are right, this label checking vegan would fit right in.

    Get some good samples and some good info to share!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey QD, which would be more fun...this trade show or one of the big quilt shows? Crabby will get more free samples, I am sure. Don't you think Crabby should have a HUGE give-a-way with a BIG bag of freebies after this? I think so. I mean, aren't we here for the prizes? It can't be because we luv this blogger, can it? :D

      Delete
    2. Aw, LOVE you guys QD and Sherri..

      but no way Sherri I am NOT SHARING MY GOODIES!!!

      But will try to scare up some blog giveaway possibilities once I'm stuffed and sated. :)

      Delete
  2. OMG! Love this hilarious post! And - FREE stuff?!?! Who wouldn't dive into that???? The fact that the lanyard is a PRESS PASS just makes it all over the top wonderful!

    Your strategy to employ various methods of large volume acquisition is right on (size of bag, repeat visits, etc...).

    If the Lobster is going along, all the MORE opportunity for grabbing stuff up! Teamwork!!

    One of you makes the first round to scope out what you might want 2nds or 3rds of and hands the list to the other. First round - go low under the radar of being 'noticed' at all. Blend in completely. Then - on round 2 - be all annoyingly enthusiastic, ask tons of questions and they'll give you stuff just to get you to move along.

    Oh - and there's the tactic of snatching up several of the same thing in one fist, tossing it in your bag and then saying "Oops! It seems I accidentally took more than one!" and put ONE back. This tactic presumes you took more than 3 of the item, though - to have most benefit for you, the Grabber. (Can you tell I've done this a few times?)

    Is it insane to enjoy anything that has a hint of exclusivity to it? I think not! We all want to be special like that. Those who say they don't care are from another planet, I think. Plus, that 'specialness' has to be visible enough for others to NOTICE your new status :). A lanyard sure does the trick! And they always LOOK so official and everything. It's the next best thing to a snappy uniform. Actually - it's BETTER!
    Enjoy :)
    PS - It is your duty to snarf up as many consumables as possible since you are expanding your carbon footprint to get there, right? (Assuming you're not taking a bus, walking or riding a bicycle....) i.e. - make it worth everyone's while and don't make them truck stuff BACK.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OMG anon, these are fantastic tips!!!! And I love the notion that it is my DUTY to justify the gasoline to get there with an equivalent amount of energy acquired in the form of comestibles.

      But dang, now you have me wanting a uniform of some sort. Must ponder...

      Delete
  3. Ah yes I know a couple members of your tribe they often congregate at my gym very early in the morning swapping tips about where to find the ultimate organic blueberry. They have this crazed look in their eyes and grin on their faces as they discuss the merits of steel cut oats and flax seed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah Cindy you have us pegged!

      Um, did you happen to overhear WHERE the ultimate organic blueberries may be found? Not that I'm obsessed or anything...

      Delete
  4. I can't believe Blogger ate my comment. Don't they know who I am??? ;) Trying again...

    Bringing the Lobster with you means that you get TWO BAGS (although I love your "grab and snarf" strategy as well).

    Not only do we 4:00 am crazies get a free t-shirt, we almost always get a free banana, too. I KNOW!!!

    Have fun mingling with your tribe. Bring us back an adventure!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Especially stories.

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

      Delete
    2. Yep, it's definitely great that I have a co-conspirator to help haul goodies. Like two heads, two bags are better than one. And two old bags with two old bags... oh never mind.

      Hmm, stories... that might require me to pay attention to something other than where my next free snack is coming from! Will try though...

      Delete
  5. You're a hoot. There's something about the atmosphere of this blog post and the one I experience with Benny most mornings when I've just uttered the words "Wanna go for a walk?"

    Crabby, wanna go to the Expo? Let me just grab a bag first!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OK, that was hilarious Hilary! Just hope you didn't think that a reference to dog poop bags might dampen my free sample lust. I am ON A MISSION!

      Delete
  6. I'd be beside myself to go to a natural products show. My fave would be the grab and snarf, too, no question.
    Also, I get a kick out of lanyards myself. I feel like I belong when I wear one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love that you go places where lanyards are on offer. Hmm, maybe the Shat will show up tomorrow in Anaheim? :)

      Delete
  7. Do I *think* you are insane? You mean you aren't? Gee, pop my balloon, why doncha! :(

    In CA you have to peace-tie the pirate knife...lanyard or no lanyard. I know this as I have had to peace-tie my short sword before entering CA events. (a whole other side of me)

    Be sure to wear a long coat like Dr. Who and have a BUNCH of pockets on the inside. That way you can get the optimal amount of freebies. Plus all the extra weight you'd be carrying around will make for a wonderful workout!

    You should have a funky lanyard too. One made from food fabrics or food beads or both! You'd stand out in a crowd...something I am SURE you NEVER do! hehehehe

    I am looking forward to hearing and seeing some of your adventures there! Have FUN!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooh, a Dr. Who coat, what an excellent idea! I don't own one, alas, but do have a pair of cargo pants, which should be great for smuggling out "cargo!"

      Hmmm, creative lanyard construction, perhaps you crafty gals could come up with something for me?

      Delete
  8. Holy crap - now I am even more excited the way you described it!!! I want that bag too so I can grab lots of stuff!!! I better read the rules too - 1 bag per day.. maybe I should go bag a 2nd day! ;)

    Can't wait to meet you & the Lobster - very exciting!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jody, we will HUNT YOU DOWN!!!!

      Be afraid. Be very afraid.

      Delete
  9. Coat pocket photos aren't a legitimate art form? Now you tell me.

    One of my friends and I go to the local chapter meeting of our professional society every couple years and suffer through an endless tedious business meeting in addition to the the board members incestuously awarding various "_____ of the Year" awards to each other *just* because they serve a damn fine free lunch and the exhibitors give away swag. Most of said swag I end up throwing away, but four+ hours of tedium and eye-roll-inducing self-congratulation is worth enduring for a couple free nail files, right? Right?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Perhaps we should form a chapter of Swag Addicts Anonymous?

      And hey, I kind like the idea of incestuous self-congratulatory awards. I hereby proclaim you Smart Ass Yoga-Pants Wearing Blogger of the Year!

      Delete
  10. So you can only carry out one bag of free stuff, but is there any mention of rolling suitcases or hand-trucks? Loopholes are there to be exploited!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If Crabby exploits all the loopholes she'll have to be carried out herself.

      Mary Anne in Kentucky

      Delete
    2. Bring on the stretcher! Hey, I don't think the rules say anything about stretchers...

      Delete
  11. Not insane at all. Sometimes you just have to get away to somewhere, and a place with free samples is one of the best somewheres of all. Bon Voyage!

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'm sure you will be getting lots of free stuff!

    I better never see any blogging from any of the attendees leaving with bags of goodies to ever criticize doctors and their convention perks from big pharm, etc, unless you just say no to yours.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have NO problem Dr. J with doctors collecting free stuff, as long as it doesn't affect what they recommend or prescribe to their patients!

      The great thing about being a blogger is no one gives a crap WHAT you think so the chances of us unduly influencing anyone as the result of a freebie is pretty much zero.

      Delete
  13. Well drat! My boss will be there as well! Unfortunately I had to pass since I'll be heading off to our Arizona properties the next week. (BUT! We are looking at taking the kids to Disneyland and maybe Legoland over Memorial Day. Will you have fled the state yet?)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dang it we keep missing each other! Memorial Day is also known throughout Provincetown as Baby Dyke Weekend, and we are usually back for that. It's sort of our traditional beginning of summer ritual to watch hordes of young women roaming through town getting rowdy and inebriated and possibly removing articles of clothing at tea dance.

      And yeah, we do lead a weird sort of life!

      Delete
  14. Being excited about something is never insane, Silly Crabby. :) Go forth and loot the free stuff with wild abandon, skip down the aisles, sing a little song of joy if you snag something especially wonderful - go out there and have some FUN!(And I imagine there will be cocktails sometime in the afternoon, so it just gets better and better!)

    Do you ever go to any of the fitness bloggy-blog conventions? I've seen several being promoted but I don't really know anything about them. I'm thinking I might eventually attend one just to see what they're like. Any insider tips?

    Gaye

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I keep missing the conferences Gaye; always seem to be on the wrong coast or haven't planned in advanced or, truthfully, often it's because I am too cheap. But they sound like they'd be awesome!

      Delete
  15. Don't hate me!,... I get to wear a lanyard everyday! I'm a third grade teacher. Life is good. However, I love going to conventions as it is fun to talk to adults and get inspired. Plus it's always good to get out of going to work. ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Third grade teachers get lanyards? Wish I'd known Bob Ben, I might have gone into teaching! Oh wait, aren't there children involved? Er, never mind.

      BTW, I SO ADMIRE teachers and all that they do and just wish they got compensated fairly for it as often they don't seem to!

      Delete
    2. Compensation you say. Well we do get summers off. So, all my friends hate me. It's great.

      Delete
  16. How exiting!! Especially since you and Jody are meeting!!
    This post made me laugh and laugh!! I hope the Expo is everything that you are hoping for.
    Too bad I didn't know sooner - I have a really awesome sparkly lanyard (with a whistle on it even) that I wear when I substitute - I could have sent it your way!!!
    Have a great time filling your bag and snarfing your way through the day!!!
    Hopefully you will post pictures of the snarf fest soon!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. OMG, back from the show and can barely move due to massive free sample pig out. Full report on Monday!!!

      And would have LOVED the sparkly lanyard kim!

      Delete
  17. NOOOO I am so jealous!!! That is the kind of Expo I would love to attend.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Death Ride GrandmaMarch 9, 2013 at 7:51 PM

    This makes me think back to when I worked summers at my company. There was an old lady (well, she seemed old to me then - she was probably very close to my current age. Hmm) who loved to take us summer slaves under her wing. She'd take us around & show us where sodas were a nickle cheaper, how to get the bus,whatever we needed. Then she would sashay into the bank and head purposefully to the tellers & say, "You got any sumthin' for nuthin' today?" And then would often proudly present to us whatever calendar or pen she'd snagged. She'd have loved your convention!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Seriously, I want to be there so bad. Delicious natural food, like minded people, and health. MMMMM.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Definitely their loss. You would be an awesome brand ambassador! And I would enjoy that type of Expo as well. Hope you have a fabulous time!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Hi I chanced upon your blog while searching for some health and fitness tips. And boy I am finding myself reading many of your blog posts!

    And this one is hilarious!

    Somehow many part of me sings with you when it comes to wearing a lanyard at a conference or event. It's like just cool and makes you feel like somebody =)

    And I will definitely be interested to attend a natural products trade show and I hope that you will enjoy yourself with new discoveries.

    I look forward to reading more of your candid straight to the point blog posts! Thanks you having me =) Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
  22. I am really looking forward to getting to the Expo. You are awesome and inspire me to lose weight.

    ReplyDelete
  23. SO SO SO JEALOUS AND AWAIT THE RECAP!!
    (yes I be shouting...)

    ReplyDelete
  24. Keep us posted on the Expo please because this looks awesome :)

    ReplyDelete
  25. Free samples are always the best to have, especially if those are healthy ones.

    ReplyDelete
  26. This expo looks totally awesome. You can't beat the free samples.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for commenting, Cranky Fitness readers are the BEST!

Subscribe to comments via RSS

(Note: Older Comment Threads Are Moderated)