Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned.I told a big, fat lie. A couple of months ago, before I left on that big family cruise, I proudly proclaimed, "I am not a blogger. I'm a writer." I puffed up my chest and declared that I'd never accept guest entries, never host a giveaway, never write on some gimmicky theme. (Honestly, if you're going to take Wordless Wednesday all the way, just don’t post at all.)
But I lied.
I put on my shiny blogger shoes a couple of weeks ago. I attended the Athenos Hummus Two Truths and a Lie event under the guise of bloggerdom. I played games. I was rewarded for playing these games with free stuff. (Specifically? A big, fat gift card from Crate & Barrel, my full-time obsession and one true love.) I ate snacks made with more hummus than you could shake an olive branch at. I drank wine. I meeted. I greeted.
I liked it. And I'm not sorry.
The event took place at SUB51, the bass-thumping, clubby underbelly of a bass-thumping, clubby River North restaurant called HUB51. The restaurant's menu suffers from a serious identity crisis, and the bathrooms suffer from unnecessary attendant presence. (I will never need my soap pumped for me at 6 p.m.) But I was greeted warmly by Maggie, my point person and blogger handler for the night, then promptly furnished with a glass of wine and some vegetables with hummus dip in adorable little glasses. Hors-d'oeuvres were passed, and the night became a happy blur of blended chickpeas and howling laughter.
I played a trivia-based form of "Two Truths and a Lie" that made me wish I'd never canceled my cable service or that trial subscription to Us Weekly. I learned that Athenos is the only major hummus brand made with 100 percent olive oil (as opposed to safflower oil, or grapeseed oil, or motor oil — I think that's the big truth they were hinting at). I noshed on hummus and other Mediterranean-inspired snacks, including meat on sticks. That was a crowd favorite.
I talked to Edelman's Athenos brand manager and made his night when I shrugged and told him Athenos was the only brand of hummus I ever bought anyway. Because it's what I grew up on, if it's even possible for a WASP-y girl from Kansas to "grow up" on hummus. (And, I mean, how can you not love it? It's so smooth and creamy and not too tahini-y and delicious with pita and kalamata…) We had a moment.
And now that I've had a big, hummus-y taste of blatant bloggerism, I almost don't want to go back. That kind of treatment, that much fun? Something I could get used to — even if I don't really have the energy to keep up that level of activity. My lust for fame is creeping back. Maybe I stirred it up when I brought those blogger shoes out of the closet. I want to embrace shameless self-promotion at various social media events and wear T-shirts with my Twitter handle and give away cookbooks and Nintendo Wii consoles. I want to get blogrolled and retweeted and live at the top of your Google results.
Final straw? I'm on the waitlist for BlogHer, which takes place in August in New York, a city I miss so much lately that I could just scream. BlogHer is like Mecca for female bloggers, from what I've heard, and one of my friends today told me it sounded like the third circle of hell. I'll bring a personal cooling fan with me, Mr. London Street. (And by the way? If someone with power is reading this, you should definitely consider taking me under your wing slash hiding me in your suitcase and letting me attend with you. I'll take you to Shake Shack.)
Oh, lord. It was a good night, thanks to Athenos — but this blogger schtick is a slippery slope. Covered with hummus.
As I prepare to remove the blogger shoes and shove them to the back of the writing closet again — and slip into something more comfortable, like the pursuit of some noble conclusion that closes the loop of my original, beautifully detailed introduction — I present you with the following disclaimer. In the spirit of truths and lies, here's some full disclosure for you: This post is connected to the Athenos Two Truths and a Lie Party in Chicago, where they gave away a lot of cool free stuff and introduced us to a new side of Athenos hummus! Keep your eye out for the Athenos team in this year's Shamrock Shuffle. I've been compensated by Athenos, but my opinions are completely my own. My toes hurt.