Friday Fun: Conference SWAG

My husband has been in Las Vegas this whole week at a Microsoft conference, learning about the latest things going on with Microsoft and the web.  Before he left, he asked our sons if there was anything they would like him to bring back from the trip.  My youngest son (age 4) replied, “Can you bring back some more brains daddy?  I lost mine.”

Now only a medical librarian (or spouse of one) would probably understand that the brains my son referred to are the  squooshy stress ball brains that some of the vendors like Ovid hand out. 

Squooshy Stress Brain

My husband smiled and told my son that they may not have any brains where he was going but he would try his best.  My husband and I had a quick laugh over all the inside brain jokes, and that was it.  Earlier this week in one of his phone calls to me he mentioned that he received an XBox Kinect for attending the conference.  Wow, kind of cool.  That is some serious conference SWAG.

Clearly SWAG from a Microsoft conference is different from a Medical Library Association conference.   This got me thinking….  What is the best SWAG that you have gotten from a library conference?

If you ask my kids, the squooshy stress reliever eyeballs and brains are winners.  They even like the blue/green long twisty things that Ovid once handed out.  The boys call them snakes and create elaborate Lego, Playskool, and Hot Wheels battles involving the “snakes.” 

I know there are librarians who love the conference bag.  They are handy and are great for groceries, day at the beach/pool, etc.  I have to say my two favorite things I got from a library conference were a sports water bottle and a USB drive.  While others (including my kids) may not think a water bottle or a USB drive may be cool, I was thrilled to get them because I use them a lot.

What things have you gotten at a library conference that you were thrilled to get and why?  Is it the squooshy brain or the USB drive?  Or were you one of the lucky ones to win an iPad for putting your business card in a box, although that is technically not SWAG (Stuff We All Get), but if I won something like that it definitely would rocket past the water bottle.

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