Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I did not coin the phrase, but fully intend on stealing it and using it.  

Last week, the Professional Association for SQL Server held its annual Summit.  This is basically a world-wide user group, ran by users, for users, with a little help from MS and CA.  There is a board of directors that have been elected, by-laws, volunteers and the rest of the members.  Each year, those that get to go get a chance to meet the movers and shakers in SQL Server communities world-wide.  I have often said to other SQL peeps that I have probably met at least 1 author of a SQL book they probably have in their office.  So far, that prediction has been 100% true.  I have been able to sit at the feet of the giants in our community and learn from them.  Some have even become my friends.  And i get to see them each year at the Summit.  As my attendance has increased, i have also met and made many friends that are repeat customers, like myself.

Someone else at the summit coined this phrase, and i stole it too.  Summer Camp for DBA's.
This is an eerily accurate portrayal of the event.  We all show up from across the world, and slowly remeet each other.  Excited handshakes and embraces are exchanged.  We talk about what we've been doing, what we want to do, what our plans and dreams are for our careers and systems.  We learn from others and each other.  We attend classes during the day and learn tons.  We play at night and revive old friendships and new ones.  When its over, we are exhausted, tired, a bit homesick, but sad to leave our summer camp buddies.  We go our separate ways, but continue to stay in touch.  When we return home, we have a renewed vigor for our jobs and a thirst to apply neat new things we have learned.  We could not attend all sessions, so we thirst for the missing knowledge we skipped and watch it on video.  We attend to our various volunteer efforts with new ideas.  We discuss new ideas outside our scope of influence. We tweet way too much with our newly found friends.

This is the High i and others are talking about.  Its a natural high from an amazing week of camaraderie and learning and mayhem.  Each year i attend, i come back with this High and hope it doesnt go away.  Its enjoyable to have the SQL endorphins running through my system.  Menial tasks seem to take on an extra significance.  Rote discussions seem to trigger latent memories of learned skills from sessions attended.  Life simply seems more enjoyable and less dull.

As i start my holiday weekend (thanksgiving in the USA) i hope to retain some of this feeling.  Maybe simply postpone it until next week when i am in the chair in front of the db's again.  I have set myself some goals for my volunteer efforts, and plan on documenting these for myself, so that i can remain focused the entire year.  I have written an article already about my experiences with Twitter and the summit.  I am working on getting that published. I have a notepad file of notes that i need to traverse and assign out as tasks. 

If nothing else, PASS Summit has sparked that inner light in me to get up and move a bit more, do a bit more, be a bit more effective.  I believe that this High and versions of it received from other events is what has propelled the folks i termed 'movers and shakers s in SQL Server communities world-wide' previously.  they simply got excited years ago about their jobs and stepped up a notch.  Continual stepping up a notch has posed them as 'movers and shakers'.  Do i hope to attain this alltitude someday?  sure. Will I? Who knows.  What's important to me now, and i hope in the future is to simply step it up a notch myself.  Make myself better tomorrow than i am today.  In the end, wherever i end up on the scale will not really matter, only that i am a better person for it then, than i am now.

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