mallory ortberg slayed
Even with amazing talks from Heather Armstrong, Alex Blumberg, Zoe Quinn, Eric Meyer, Amit Gupta, Kathy Sierra and more, it’s Mallory Ortberg’s that will stick in my mind. The Andys’ programming was spot on: they put Mallory right after the 20th reunion of the Suck crew, who perfectly revived their late 90s tone of “preemptively jaded.” Mallory, in her first ever talk, walked on stage, threatened to throw up the chocolate milk she had just drank in the green room, and then owned the room by reading her slides.
The Suck panel told a story of excess fueled by disappointment: in their Wired overlords, in their audience and most of all, in each other. (As I said, they nailed the tone.) In contrast, Mallory (who, rumor has it, had never even heard of Suck before the conference, and why would she have?) told a story of passion, hard work and smarts…wrapped in self-deprecation. If you take her word for it, and I do, she literally had no idea what she was getting into when she started The Toast, and did it anyway. Because she wanted to. Because she had to. And it’s working, in her definition of working. Which, really, is the only one that matters.
I can’t wait to watch the YouTube clip of this, because seriously. She. Read. Her. Slides. And slayed.