I normally write about sessions and cutting edge information when I attend conferences. I try to convey some of the thoughts and ideas that germinate here, and give a sense of what is on the mind of attendees and professionals in the industry.

But this week is Orlando. The annual conference here could easily have the tag line, “Welcome to Orlando; Bring Bail Money”. I can’t write about what is on the minds of many here. I would get censored. Suffice it to say it is a conference that never lets a good session get in the way of a good time. It is a conference where the industry keynote gets 30 minutes to speak, but the comedian following him gets an hour. It is a conference where, if you are not careful, Joe Paduda will embrace you in a giant bear hug and kiss you on the cheek.

I’d rather not talk about that. Dave Depaolo is still crying that he didn’t have his cell phone out to capture the moment.

To be fair, Paduda was the industry keynote, and he seemed quite happy with his allotted 30 minutes. Plus, the comedian following, Kathleen Madigan, brought even more laughter than his prognostications for the industry did. And a good time was had by all.

There are good sessions here, and certainly good information to be found. I attended one yesterday on Emerging Issues on Workers’ Compensation that was very good, covering issues from ADAAA to immigration and FMLA. I think the 100 or so in attendance, out of the reported 7,000 registered, found it quite useful.

The plethora of hospitality suites that are available here are legendary, and I must say, the band performance last night was impressive. For a band that died in a plane crash in 1977, Lynyrd Skynyrd plays quite well. I was not originally going to the concert, but my “dinner date” for the evening, “Big Don” from Texas talked me into it. Texans, as it turns out, really love Lynyrd Skynyrd.

So it is early in the morning, and I couldn’t sleep. I work my way through the carnage in the hallways to head downstairs for some coffee. The couple making love in the elevator seems a bit annoyed when I ask them to push the button for the lobby, but are otherwise unfazed. 

And another day begins. I recognize that I have used some artistic license here, and that this post is relatively pointless, but that’s ok. This is Orlando, and that is kind of the point.


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