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The Saddest Swag: DIY Swag for BlogHer Food '10 Pity Party

Swag-bhf10pp Yesterday, we drank a little lot and made the saddest swag bag.Today we conjure up the swag to go in it. Go grab your swag bag and let's get started. (Mine? Um, printer didn't, migraine did, can't find card for camera. Pity me.)

There are two ways of going about this, depending on your level of piteousness.

  • If you are alone and pitiful, the first set of options are for you.
  • If you have someone who is sympathetic to your BHF10PP plight, there are some thoughts at the end that might net you extra bling.

First, the universal options. 

  • Gadgets Reach in the very back of your gadgets drawer and try to identify things by feel. When you encounter a gizmo you can't identify, close yor eyes and slip it into the bag. Repeat until you run out of unidentifiable items or decide you have enough sadSwag.
  • Cookbook Obscure your vision temporarily - put on/take off glasses, smear a little dish soap on lenses, squint, whatever works - and go to your cookbook shelf. Stand at a distance where you can not read titles. Scan books and be amazed at how many you know without seeing words, right up until you see one that you can't place at all. Put that in your swag bag. Repeat a time or two.
  • Snacks Here is where we get truly pitiful. You know the stuff in the back of the cabinet/fridge? The things you can't see easily? (See where I am going with this? Getting scared yet?) Without looking, reach into the back of the cabinet and see what small items are hidden there. Stuff a few in your bag. Repeat with liquor cabinet but don't put it in the bag, start drinking it! The refrigerator may hold more treats but it is an advanced sadSwag topic and I leave it to your discretion.
  • Gift Certificates Get a small plastic bag, preferably one without any fancy zippers, too upscale for this. Reach into your change jar, pocket, wherever your loose cash lives. Grab a handful, put it in the container and slip into swag bag. This is your cash replacement for a gift certificate. If it's not much, use it to buy a tiny indulgence like a small amount of very good chocolate.
  • Got an Amazon Wish List? Go to your wish list page and see how many items are on it. Mine has 95. That's pathetic. (Actually, what is realy pathetic is that I have half a dozen more wish lists; apparently I want lots of stuff.) Now go to and let it pick a number, then hop back to your wish list and buy that thing.

If you hang out with someone who has taken pity on your piteousness, it's time for the big guns: pitySwag. Note that this swag may be of a high enough quality to make you not so pitiable, so talk about it with discretion lest we decide to no longer pity you.

You know best how to manipulate convince ask your friend for favors, so go with your strengths. Sweet-talking, tears, promises of sexual favors, whatever works. A couple of basic points to help you along:

  • You saved at least a thousand bucks by attending #BHF10PP instead of BlogHer Food. (In fact, maybe you saved enough to buy two items off your wish list if you are shopping for yourself.) You deserve at least a small percentage of what you saved as a reward.
  • Reinforcing staying at home instead of going to conferences could save a LOT of money in the long run. The blingier the swag, the greater the reinforcement.

Once you have a bag of sadSwag, hang onto it until the close of #BHF10PP and we can all break into ours together. Also, virtual swag tomorrow. Last call for donations!

Lest you feel like you are missing out on some insanely great swag by being at BHF10PP instead of BlogHer Food, don't. I asked a friend what was in the bag and she said "olive oil, snacks, chocolate, water bottle" - which is pretty much what is strewn across the kitchen counter I need to clean. And by strewn, I mean ground into the countertop until it is a permanent part of the surface that no amount of bleach and scrubbing will remove. I am sure there is more in the BHF bags, but it's not like the first yeat at IFBC when the bag was worth double the price of the conference.

What's going in your saddest swag bag?

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