Conference Survival Guide: Part 1

I regularly go to conferences as part of my work at a certain art school. Although they take place in hotels, conferences are devoid of the usual good time antics of a family vacation or post-prom party. Here’s how to survive.

On the first full day of the conference, you will have this thought: “I am the sexiest person here.” Enjoy the next three and a half days of your potent hotness because after the conference, you’ll go back to being just attractive enough to get a biweekly complement from a coworker. For now, roam the conference halls in your last season, on sale dress from Macy’s like you’re Gwyneth in Tom Ford at the Oscars. This is your moment. Werk.

However, if you don’t want to be the tall poppy at the conference, here’s some advice on how to fit in: Buy business casual wear from Kohls, or, if you’re flush, Chicos. Make sure to wear nylons under your business sandals. Definitely use the neck-fanny-pack that you got at the conference registration table. Use both a backpack and a smart, leather wallet-on-a-strap in addition to the neck-fanny-pack. Don’t use the backpack for the many papers you accumulate. Carry them. For sure, brew coffee in your hotel room and carry the cup until the first coffee break. This way, you will have both of your hands occupied and will have to wait for other people to push elevator buttons for you. Forget about smiling.

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