PJs at TJ’s to remain wee. Js.

Hello! Since last weeks shitcakery, I have been busy, and I have been deep in plans for the 2013 rehappening of PJs at TJ’s! Do you remember, that happened last year? My husband went out of town for three weeks and left me alone with the baby and on the day he came back, I had a whole bunch of Internet women in my home for the weekend, and I didn’t say much about it, because I was exhausted and then I caught the ennui, and I swear, it all feels like it was last week, but NO. Last week was shitcakes and plans for next year, because I am doing it AGAIN.

It is still in Arizona and it is still (or again) in February and while I have heard a lot of people who couldn’t make it last year (well, earlier this year) express interest in attending the next one, I have made the possibly to be considered assholish decision to not only limit the number of spaces available, but make that limit very few numbers above the number of people who attended last year. And then if I do it again the year after next year, the number won’t be any bigger than that again, because that’s why you (if you are one of the yous) want to come, right? Because last year it sounded fun, and one of the things that made it fun was that it was so small that it was forced to be a cohesive event, with very little, if any, fractioning and splitting off of groups (some people did go get pedicures, but otherwise we were all up in each other’s armpits) and it was not something that made this particular event any better than any other event, but it was certainly somewhat different than others.

The thing with Internet gatherings is that if they become a yearly thing, it is almost as though they are expected or needed or forced to becoming a bigger thing each year, to accommodate the interested parties or to allow for more fun stuff to happen or to become more spectacular or better in some way each year, and as they get more successful they garner more attendance and become more awesome and anticipated each year, and that is undeniably a Very Good Thing and not something I am about to dispute in any way.

But I have realized in my long history of doing this one time and beginning my plans to do it a second time that I just have no interest of becoming a facilitator for Internet people to meet in a city and go off and do things, I think there are tons of events that do just that, and I think that the logistics of something like that make my eyes squinty. I don’t think that’s what I did last year, and I want to do what I did last year again, and I want to keep doing it.

I guess if you want to go someplace central to meet your friends and then go off with your friends and do things with your friends, there’s a lot of events preplanned for you that will allow you to do that, OR you can just pick a city and you can go there and do it yourself, a concept that, after I went to The Blathering, seriously BLEW MY MIND, and lead to me doing PJs at TJ’s, and that still may be something that I do someday, some time, and some place with some friends for some purpose, but what I realized I was doing with PJs at TJ’s and what I want to continue to do is throw my own party.

And that’s what it is, really, when it comes down to it – it’s my party. And I guess that can sound terrible, depending on how you want to look at it, but it was in my HOUSE where I live with my husband and baby, and I made all the plans and mixed up all the dips and put my bed in the living room, and I invited all of my friends to come. Not by name or anything, though, because it’s not exclusive, except how it kind of is.

Internet, I am rambling, because I am nervous. I have been a bit… strident… in the past, about some of the more ridiculous Internet shit that smacks of exclusivity, like like shmoad shmumit, oh my LANDS, and I have been gnawing on my fingers over the last week or so, knowing that in a few weeks, I was going to tell you that yay! PJs at TJ’s is coming!  But! There are this many spots. Where “this” is a very small number. And how was I going to assure you that EVERYONE was welcome, because how can you fit EVERYONE into a very small number?

Well, you can’t fit everyone into a very small number, especially when that number is made smaller by allowing first dibs to people who attended in the past. Why? Because… that felt like the right thing to do. No one writes rules for this shit, you know? There’s no “bring an invitation for everyone in the class” when you have a very small number of spots and a tiny but not entirely insignificant slice of Internet to consider.

Half of me is annoyed that I’ve written 900 words on this, the half of me that taglined my first blog, run on MT, with “I DON’T HAVE TO EXPLAIN MYSELF TO YOU PEOPLE” (Hey, does anyone remember the fad in the early 2000s of “leaving out the keys to your blog” for a day? Where you’d leave a guest login and password and let people post to your blog all day? And people just did? And no one fucked up your shit?), but the other half of me that has been fretting for a week feels like I need to prepare you in advance for what is coming.

TO SUM UP WHAT IS COMING!

– PJs at TJ’s is coming!

Registration (“registration” – basically you tell me your name and I tell you where to send your money and where you can get a hotel room) will open (“open” – I pick up my pen) sometime next month (“sometime next month” – ish).

It is an exclusive event in that X number of people can come and everyone who is not in the set of X number of people will be excluded, likely of their own choosing. It is not an exclusive event in that I am extending invitations. I have no idea whose names I will write on the list of attendees when “registration” “opens.” It is going to be a surprise. It is the SURPRISE kind of exclusive. It’s… surplusive.

I am telling you this because I want you to be prepared, if you want to come, to start thinking about the reality of coming to Arizona, and the costs, so that just in case there is a shocking run on the surplusive spots when I pick up my pen next month, you are all squared away to tag one for yourself.

I am also telling you this because I am kind of half-defensive, in a yeah, it’s my party, I am throwing a party, I am throwing MY PARTY, this is how I am doing it, want to fight about it, I am totally a tough guy kind of way, since as we all know, as I have now asked you if you want to fight about it, you have 48 hours in Internet time to challenge my stance on Personal Party Throwing and Surplusivity before this document is entered into Internet law and becomes invulnerable to latecoming crybabies and whinerpantses.

Here is my baby, in a clip for her upcoming documentary, “I Was an Only Child: Videos Compiled for a Life in Therapy”

23 thoughts on “PJs at TJ’s to remain wee. Js.

  1. susie

    I keep trying to come up with something contrarian and irritating to say, but I can’t. So instead, I will say that Penny is adorable (wheee! whee!) and it’s your party so you do you what you want to.

  2. Sarah Lena

    This made me giggle the entire time I was reading your 1500 words because it is just so YOU.

    Also, “keys to your blog” thing? That really happened? I .. am intrigued.

    TJ Reply:

    IT TOTALLY DID. People just came by a guest posted all day. Stuff like, “Hi! I’m so-and-so!” and if they didn’t have a blog, they’d tell a little story, or if they did have a blog, they’d say something they normally wouldn’t put on their own site, and then plug their site, but NO ONE SPAMMED, and there were no ads, and no one was a dick, and it didn’t even OCCUR to people to be all shitty.

    Sarah Lena Reply:

    This would never fly today. But I wish it would! I love the idea of it. The social experiment and variety of backgrounds and writing styles would be amazing.

    ::sigh:: Stupid MySpace ruined everything. Made internet all *accessible* and stuff.

  3. Swistle

    I am so INTERESTED in this whole thing—about how hard it is to make it open when it CANNOT IN FACT PHYSICALLY BE OPEN. It is a very, very interesting topic. I want to say more in this comment to communicate just how interesting it is, but all I would be doing would be listing your points back to me after the words “And it’s interesting how ____.”

    Nicole Reply:

    I must have started four different comments to the same effect, only to delete them. Because, repeating.

    I’ll just say “Wooooo! PJ’s at TJ’s!”

    TJ Reply:

    It is tough. But I have decided, I will just not go about anything sneakily, and it will be clear and obvious that there is nothing to gain in the sense that maybe some other types of Internet gatherings may have something to offer in the way of… gains. And that I will be very clear that I plan to turn THE VERY INCREDIBLY HUGELY VAST MAJORITY OF THE WORLD away, but I have no plans to turn anyone specific at all away.

    And that in the end, I am not owing anything to anyone, and I am not turning myself inside out with the kind of generosity people will talk about for years, about how selfless I was, year after year, becoming ever more gracious and giving to the thankless and faceless crowds that grow greater and greater each year – no, that’s not it at all. In the end, it can only be what it is, what I will allow it to be, and that is my party, and every year for as long as I want to, I will hold my party, and when it becomes unfair, or when it fails to meet someone’s expectations, or when it becomes a subject of some kind of scrutiny, I will just have to shrug my shoulders and say, well, it’s just my party.

    And that’s how I look at it, and that’s how I hope people will look at it, with that kind of understanding, both in terms of what I can accommodate and what they can expect from this kind of gathering. Because the answer to both is the same – not much.

    And eventually I will probably just take my ball and go home, and that will be okay, because everyone is going to clue in eventually that just like I am struggling to figure out the rules in a landscape where there aren’t rules, this is a whole wide open THING and it’s not just for SPECIAL PEOPLE, because I am the most average of the average, and last year we had the most average of the average times, and it was SO GREAT, and all I did was decide to do it.

    This really should have been a whole other thing because I don’t think I’m even remotely related to your comment.

    BUT ISN’T IT INTERESTING? How it seems like there are things like… BlogHer and EVO and Bloggy Boot Camp and all kinds of things, and it’s like you have to wait for them to come along at a time that you have A) the time and B) the money and C) the nerve and D) the desire to go to one of them that even remotely begins to match up with something you even WANT to attend, and then suddenly it hits you that these are not MAGIC PEOPLE that came up with these gatherings, they are just PEOPLE.

    And you (or me) are ALSO PEOPLE. And so you can pick a time and a place that is affordable and convenient and talk to the people that bolster your nerve and say, HEY, come over, let’s do this specific thing or things or NO THINGS that line up with our specific interests or NON-INTERESTS, in my particular case, and everyone jumps on it, because everyone kind of WANTS to go, but A, B, C, D, never quite line up and it never occurs to us that we just don’t have to WAIT for a magic person to set it up and for ABCD to land on us, we can BE the magic person and we can jigger things around so that ABCD are WORKABLE AND REASONABLE for everyone.

    I’M NOT EVEN MAGIC! I DID IT! I’M DOING IT! I FEEL SO GOOD! AGAIN!

    LemonFresh Reply:

    I love this comment. I would hug it if it were a person.

  4. Laura Lou

    Yes. All of this, yes. It is your party and you get to say how many people can attend. I wish I could be one of them, and I thought after last year that I was definitely going to try if it happened again, but finances will not allow anytime soon. Ah well, I will enjoy reading about all the fun you have.

  5. Carrie

    I understand how people could get up in arms, but it makes sense to me. It is in your HOUSE. I couldn’t accommodate people at my house. No way, no how. It is very generous of you to host at all.

  6. Delicia

    OH MY GOD TJ. I am not able to go, and wasn’t planning on going, but now I’m INDIGNANT that this isn’t open to everyone and their nephew’s brother’s sister JUST IN CASE I wanted to go!!

    I just don’t under*giggle*stand why you can’t *snicker* get a bigger house and AHAHAHA… dammit. I was totally going to try to keep a straight face when I said all this but I just can’t.

    I think it’s awesome that you’re limiting attendance, it makes it special, and more fun, and more personal, and a LOT more manageable.

    I’ll be reading about it from the sidelines, everyone post lots of stories about it!

  7. Elizabeth

    If you ever want to have a lengthy email exchange about this, holler at your girl, because I too find it interesting/slightly anxious making/exciting and I would love to talk more about it, except maybe not in the comments here because I am paranoid and I might like to broadly insult several popular exclusive internet “events.”

  8. Erin

    The title of this post just made my day.

    I think you are doing the right thing. There would be no way to keep the fun-pajama-party-weekend-with-your-girlfriends aspect of the party if the numbers grew every year. It’s just going to have to be one of those things where sometimes you can go and sometimes you can’t, and if you can’t then there will always be another chance to get together. It sucks, but you have to do what keeps you sane. (It’s like parenting! And here you thought Penny would be an only child. PJs at TJ’s will be your baby long after Penny has grown up and decided she hates you because you won’t let her wear a thong outside her pants.)

  9. Aleks

    I think a big difference between your party and the Shmoad Summit is that you: don’t have sponsors, don’t have “sessions” about being a better person and blogger and achieving some greater THING. It’s a slumber party in your HOME with no perceived benefit to people who don’t or can’t come besides a couple days of lounging and talking and candy eating. You’re not expecting people to post a raving rundown of the $200 shoes and camera bag they got or the beach yoga session. So, not like you’re asking my of anyone’s permission, do your thing and don’t feel good about it.

  10. annabelvita

    Will you cry if you want to?

    I think the whole point of PJs at TJs is that you realised after a big blogger party: “hey! I would have preferred a small blogger party with less planned near/in my house”. So, 1) it’s totally cool for you to hold onto that vision (IT IS YOUR PARTY) and 2) What’s to stop people hearing about PJs at TJs and thinking “Hey! I would have preferred that I was able to go and also that it was more formal, and male and not at Temerity Jane’s house. I will call it DJs at not-TJs”. The whole point is the realisation that you don’t have to wait for a big, sponsored, behemoth blogger event to hang out with blogger friends. You can just have a party with them!

  11. Therese

    I think your PJ’s at TJ’s sounds pretty awesome and the restrictions on attendance quite reasonable. It makes sense to say that you have created a party and due to logistics, finances, keeping with the culture/theme of the event… registration must be limited by numbers. It also makes sense (at least to me)that previous attendees get first dibs on registration (your pen and paper). My assumption would be that not everyone can make it every year and so there’s hopefully always a spot for a new person. In addition, my most important take away from this is “If the current blogger “events” are not meeting your needs/wants for whatever reason, then just plan your own.” I’m very supportive of the taking action to get what you want type of behavior (you know in a respectable way, I don’t advocate stealing or anything).

  12. Elise

    I have nothing new to add about the surplusivity of your party, since I agree with everything already said. So I’ll say a DIFFERENT redundant thing instead: your baby is adorable! And I would pay good money to see that documentary.

  13. Susan

    I just wanted to say that I was actually in Arizona last week and it did not even occur to me to give you a call and say hello. But I was pretty preoccupied with two teenagers and my brother (let’s not even go there) and the fact that I walked INTO and OUT OF the Grand Canyon, yes, all the way to the bottom, and then Phoenix airport and I didn’t get my only chance to meet you.

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