The Hubs Party

Posted on: Friday 08 July 2011 11:06am


Jayne Kirkham parties on behalf of everyone…..

Oh My Goodness…. last night…

I do know how the pizza people fared but I don’t care because over in the Forum we barbies had a great time.  The buffet allowed fluidity between strangers without throwing drinks.  And huddling for warmth on the terrace meant we got to know each other very quickly.  So that, plus explaining to overseas delegates why the Morris men were revealing the contents of their hankies to each other, meant we got a new set of business cards and learned a whole new thing to do with a jingling Johnny.

Full of ribs and sausage, we converged with the Pizza people and strutted like girls in LBDs past Sheffield’s clubs and bars to The Hubs.  James Mason led the way like the pied piper (but without a pipe.  Or a Pie) with people running to join his joyous band.  Of course the enthusiasm to keep up may have had something to do with someone at the back whipping in stray delegates, trying to sneak away for a quiet night in the Mercure.

What can I say about the Hubs party? There had been fears it would be like a hideous family wedding where everyone wants to talk and no one can. But in fact the venue leant itself to catering for all. The disco was tucked away in one of those big alcoves, with another alcove given over to quiet contemplation – I think that’s what they were doing – and the terrace for talking, leaving the bar for drinking.  So while I don’t have a voice this morning, it was I’d say pleasantly shouty and dancy, with the emphasis on having a good time rather than earnest pitching which of course is the best way to do business anyway. 

The fact you had to go past the bar to get anywhere meant that journeys took longer  than expected, with people hiccuping a little more on their return and I noticed several people doing the CMC, which as we all know stands for the Children’s Media Crumple: that almost imperceptible sinking of body when talking which means the listener has to bend over in order to maintain eye contact as the ‘crumplee’ heads south.  Quite a few conversations were thus conducted at ninety degree angles.  It may have been the result of lurid student cocktails at lurid student prices.   But I like to think delegates were just trying out a new perspective – in the spirit of the conference they were… Thinking Differently.