Long story short - the conference was fantastic, the panelists were really interesting, and the food was great, too. So all around, a nice two days. I even got a chance to talk to some of the other attendees about their jobs and who they work for. Perfect.
So call me naive, but I was in awe at the entire "business card" protocol. I'm sure it is standard procedure, but I was amazed at how quickly into conversation the business cards come out of the coat pockets and are exchanged. "Hi, I'm..." BAM! Before you hear their name, you get their card.
Don't get me wrong. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this, particulary coming from my perspective where A) I tend to forget someone's name 2 seconds after they tell me and B) I'll take whatever connections I can get at this point. But the process was almost too easy. Too fast. Too nonchalant. Reminded me of the Tupac song (yes, Tupac) "I Get Around":
"Hate to sound sleazy, but tease me, I don't want it if it's that easy..."
Tupac was obviously rapping about something else, but the point is the same. Little did I know that I had entered the red light district of business cards. And I don't want business card STDs (which I assume would resemble paper cuts more than the clap). Sure, I'd love to network. But if everyone gets a card, no one gets a card... Lata suckas.