TechEd 2007: The Chow Starts Now


This is a completely non-technical blog entry. It occurs to me that, while there are 10,000 or so of my closest friends here in Orlando for TechEd, that means there are hundreds of thousands of you who couldn’t make it here for one reason or another. So I’m going to share some of my TechEd experiences.

One of the things that never ceases to amaze me is just how huge TechEd is. I mean… jynormous. 10,000 people is a lot of people. There are a lot of bands that would kill to have 10,000 attendees at their concerts… a lot of teams that don’t get that many people to their games. And these folks are here, together, for an entire week. It’s a stimulating crowd, now, but I’m sure within a few days it will be a fatiguing throng.

By the way, that’s one reason why I like the Connections events so much: DevConnections, Windows Connections, SharePoint Connections—these events are large enough to provide a fantastic networking and peer-solutions benefit, but small enough to be sane and enjoyable.  (BTW, I apologize in advance—I’m sure I’ll be “comparing and contrasting” TechEd to the Connections events several times this week!)

Now… imagine feeding this many people, not just once but two or three times a day, plus keeping them filled up with snacks, beverages, and other oral-fixation-satiating mechanisms.  And feeding 10,000 people in one hour. WOW!

This is what the TechEd Kitchens are stocked with in preparation for the week (per the TechEd web site):

  • 46,176 eggs served for breakfast for the week
  • 12,500 lbs of breakfast potatoes
  • 184,329 pastries will be baked fresh
  • 259,255 ounces of meat & poultry will be served at lunches
  • More than 174,039 snacks will be consumed in 5 days
  • 18,911 pounds of fresh vegetables will be consumed

Again… WOW.  Just add up the “pounds” (and I’ll assume 4 oz per snack): that’s over 90,000 pounds of potatoes, meat, poultry, vegetables and snacks. If everyone is eating about the same amount over the 5 days, that’s almost two pounds of food per attendees per day. Yowza! Good thing there’s a lot of walking involved with TechEd—another entry will deal with that.

Nothing like focusing on that much food to obliterate any pangs of hunger. I’ve pledged to myself to try to eat healthily here. I’ll be attempting to “go veggie” because there’s nothing more sketchy to me than 260,000 ounces of mass-processed, mass-cooked, mass-delivered meat.  I’m also going to try to minimize my consumption from the omni-present coolers stocked with free beverages for all and to drink mostly water. If you run into me here and I have a carb-loaded snack or soda, feel free to smack me (ask me to drop any stain-inducing items, first, please).

So, I propose a new “tag line” for TechEd 2007: The Chow Starts Now!

Ciao, tutti!

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