I recently posted about Kickstarter and Natali, who wants to start an “UberDork Café” in Milwaukee, and just came across an interview with her about her project over at Game Couch.
I’ve got a few views on this project… First, I’m behind it. Why? Because I love to see someone who is passionate about building community take action and make things happen. Will it work? I don’t know… but it’s great to see it take shape, and hope for the best possible outcome.
From another angle, I see this as related to things like BarCampMilwaukee, where we pull together people who aren’t afraid to call themselves geeks or nerds and do some pretty interesting things. One of my favorite BarCamp memories is the “Popsicle Sticks 2.0” session I lead at BarCampMilwaukee2, where it ended up being almost totally dominated by kids. I didn’t plan it that way (but then, what type of planning do I ever do for sessions besides facilitating them?) but it was great to see people comfortable bringing their kids to BarCamp, and providing a creative environment for them. (Bucketworks also provided paper, crayons, markers, and plenty of art supplies.)
DrawCamp was a similar experience, where we created an environment where everyone who came (young, old, people who could draw well, people who could barely draw at all) seemed to genuinely enjoy themselves, and fit in just fine with people of similar interests.
A lot of Natali’s concerns seem to be based around wanting a place where she (and her kids) feel comfortable being themselves, and building a community of people who “get” who and what they are… and I applaud that.
Secretly (ok, not so secretly) I hope that there can be connections made between things like BarCamp, Bucketworks, and the UberDork Café.
I also admire Natali’s attitude. I grew up in the punk rock music scene, where if we had an idea, we executed it. If we didn’t know how to do something we figured it out, we tried it, and if we failed, we tried again… This is where I got my DIY ethics from, and they continue today it almost everything I do. We don’t wait around for someone else to do it, we do it. Is something stopping you from doing what you want to do? Find a way around the obstacle, find partners in crime… Don’t sit back and wait for others, stand up and make it happen, and get others to go along with you for the ride…
Stay excited, keep building communities, and share the stories… We could all use a bit more inspiration in our lives.