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Y Did It Have to End So Soon?

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Sure, we made it home safe, but we’re not happy about it. We wish the Y Conference in San Diego could have lasted a whole week. Now we’ve heaped praise upon these stars to the south before, and it’s not really news that this little regional conference is no longer little or regional. What Y is, however, is small enough for even the lowliest student to hobnob with the biggest of big-time speakers. The conference fee is relatively cheap. And we don’t think we have to mention the beyond-perfect climate (72 and sunny; okay, make that very sunny).

As we smooched old friends goodbye at the Red Circle Cafe Saturday night, realized that were it not for Y regulars Stefan Bucher and Petrula Vrontikis, we’d have never known about the wonder of Y. We thanked Terry “Stampy” McCaffrey for changing the way we think about those little perforated stickers. And we praised conference chair Adam Rowe, who has been doing this for an incredible seven years, although we’d like to offer one popular thought to mull over for the next year: 12 white guys and only two women?

On our way out we were busy describing the plot of Idiocracy to Tucker Viemeister when his eyes drifted towards the ceiling. “It’s a shame we can’t get these guys some lightbulbs,” he said, as we followed his gaze to two burnt-out lights over the bar. Ah, the curse of the man who can do everything. Next to him was Mirko Ilic, forever cursed as the only man confident (European? crazy?) enough to take his shirt completely off while sunbathing in the lawn of the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice. We may have missed hearing Ilic speak, but it didn’t matter; he was pretty much presenting all weekend.

Finally, we got totally busted by our newest best friend Stefan Sagmeister who promised to bore us again and again with his deja vu-inducing presentation. We turned bright red and said that we didn’t think everyone felt that way, it was just that we happened to be at every single conference. “But so am I!” he laughed. Man, that Stefan Sagmeister is downright impossible not to look up to–and not just because he’s like seven feet tall.

So if Y was the question, what was the answer, you ask? Probably the most important thing we learned that when you Ask a Ninja (and believe us, we did), the answer is most likely going to be “Thomas Kinkade.” See you next year.

More Y Conference coverage.

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