Friday, April 07, 2006

An account about Nothing: Yesterday.SG meetup, NYDC Holland Village, 7 Apr

Me, to Siva, via SMS: "hi, is NYDC within walking distance from buona vista mrt?"

Siva: "Yes"

Me (30mins later): "hi, if i'm now at the CC, am I in the right direction?"

That's me, the sua-ku trying to find my way to Holland Village after work, probably the only person in Singapore unsure of how to get to that popular hangout place. I reached the cafe eventually, only because I'd bumped into Preetam. Turned out I'd reached Holland Village alright but walked past the cafe first time round. I'd totally missed the NYDC sign, which in my opinion, wasn't prominent enough, so it ain't my fault right?

Even before food was served to our party of 13, I found myself surrounded by three Macs, which somehow led to a demo of the Mac's video screening/ sharing capabilities, and an impressive demo of Google Earth by Siva (he's got a new Macbook Pro... show-off!)

In fact, look at what Siva had for dessert...

... as opposed to mine:

I noticed a quiet lady sitting opposite me. Must be one of the Yesterday.SG friends/ editors that I've not met in person.

"Hi, I'm Ivan. I don't believe we've met... "

She told me her name.

"I'm sorry?"

She told me again.

I gave her the blur sotong look.

"I'm OceanSkies."



And throughout the evening, if I didn't have her namecard on hand, I'd have only remembered her by her blog name.

I asked what Oceanskies did. She told me. I became more interested. We were practically shouting over the din of other diners, not to mention the streams of cross-conversations that took place left-right of us among the other Yesterday.SG guest editors who turned up. Oceanskies and I ended with an agreement to follow-up about collaborative opportunities, work-wise.

At one point, I turned to Siva and asked if he had achieved whatever he wanted to achieve by organising the first meetup after the launch of He looked at me (all so serious) and said, "The objective was just to meetup. There's no agenda. See, you met Oceanskies and you've networked with her."

Writing this blog post, I appreciate even more how online social tools & software serve to enhance physical interactions, rather than alienate people. Far from finding my social skills diluted, the opposite was true.

I can't say I know the bloggers very well as individuals but what I do know (from reading what they choose to blog) gave me a better sense of how to ask and where to start the conversation. It certainly makes it easier to say things I normally wouldn't say to total strangers whom I'm meeting for the first time.



  1. Hilarious post Ivan! LOL... I guess Mac people are such snobs, I mean look at them buying expensive desserts while you do ok with your glass of water. Wait a sec, I use Macs too... Aiyah!

    Also, I guess it's always strange to introduce yourself using a pseudo name. Imagine instead of Kevin, I call myself V for Vendetta or something like that. I'd either be a joke, or if my pseudo name were "big" enough, be taken with respects.

  2. Ivan, you did not mention that I met my 'old friend', Victor for the first time.

    Next time, call me and I tumpang you. What's the use of spending so much on a car in Spore and not fully utilizing it?

  3. I'm a Mac user too and I would definitely choose Siva's yummy dessert over a glass of plain water.
    But I don't think I would introduce myself using my pseudo name because it would be really odd - "Hi, I'm Road to PSLE."

  4. Kevin & Fuzzoo, just to clarify -- I've got nothing against Mac Users. Was just a post in jest about Siva showing off :) In fact, I consider myself almost crossed to the "darkside" already... except no urgent need to get one yet.

    Chun See - it was a first-time meeting for lots of us too. Thanks for the offer to give me a lift. Next time I might take you up on that. :)

  5. Rats, my indulgent dessert exposed. Funny thing that night, the mac user was actually dissuading the pc user from swtching!

  6. Hi Siva, actually I think that's your "tactic" -- using the contrarian approach. Well, I think by not trying to "hardsell", you sold me the idea of the Mac even more. See, now I asked to be part of Mac User group mailing list some more... for sure step over to the dark side already!

  7. Ivan, you shouldn't believe Siva when he says NYDC is within walking distance of Buona Vista MRT. This is a man who thinks nothing of 1-hour treks in the jungle. To him everything is "within walking distance". :p

  8. i bought an ibook after we met. i'm not quite on the dark side yet because i'm too busy to start using it.

    anyway, if you have a descriptive blog name like mine (i.e., filipino librarian), it's almost like telling people what i do for a living.

    and yes, i've met quite a few bloggers with whom it was quite easy to start a conversation because we had already "met" online. oh yeah, that includes you! i'll post your photo soon =)


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