I moved to Louisville the day after Thanksgiving last year, lovingly uprooted from my hometown of Las Vegas by my boyfriend, who'd accepted a job here. In mid-December, I found myself having a 10-minute conversation about unusual name traditions with my Insight Communications customer service rep. and lingering during banking transitions just to increase talking time with real-live humans.
Obviously, I am a lonely little Louey newbie.
So, with the majority of my friends three timezones away and the minority still not within arms’ reach, I did what any 20-something with a MacBook, a smart phone and a mild fear of speaking to strangers would do: I turned to Twitter. I began following local bloggers, which led to following other locals, which led to locals following me, which led to hearing about local tweet-ups -- like #FacetimeLou.
Organized by Alex Porter and Tommy Spalding, aka @alexporter82  and @tommyspalding , respectively, the tweet-up was designed to allow all the locals to put physical faces and names to all the twitter users and avatars they’d been following, sometimes for years. For a newcomer like me, it gave the opportunity to converse with people who aren’t recording calls for quality assurance.
Against The Grain , 401 E Main St., in Downtown Louisville served as a great venue, if only for the big, spacious parking lot adjacent to it. (Coming from Las Vegas, where parallel parking usually only happens during the driver license exam, street parking is not my forte.) Easily two dozen people attended #FacetimeLou throughout the night, and they were easily accommodated in the laid back bar.
Tweet-up conversations ranged from the mandatory (bridges, weather), the expected (social media, the interwebz) to the unusual (space pens, cats that save lives). As a newcomer, I was given suggestions on places to go and events to lookout for, as well as a rundown of need-to-know info, such as “This winter has not been a real winter” and “When people ask what school you went to, they are not asking about your college.” The best part about this, or any, tweet-up is that the conversations and interactions don’t have to end when people physically leave. They can continue on Twitter until the next tweet-up.
A second #FacetimeLou isn’t scheduled, but after such a successful inaugural event, I’d expect it. To find out when, head to Twitter and, as their tagline says, join the conversation. Or, stay tuned for future posts from me, as I begin blogging about my new adventures here in Louisville.