James and George created this tribute to Rick Stilwell. James will say that he AND George made it; George will say that he just contributed a few bits but that James did all the work. He said/he said aside, this is a bittersweet video for those of us who knew Rick... It's nice to hear from him again, it's funny, he was funny, and he's just so missed.
The thing for me, though, is that this tribute video is especially important for me: It includes a bit of footage where Rick talked about me (!), suggesting that people should be following me on Twitter. Me! Of all people! I'm just some dweeb, and he was talking about ME! I seriously couldn't believe it. Rick was the coolest of the cool kids, and I was a total nobody... at least, an in-person nobody, and he was talking about me? That's why I'm here talking about him, to tell you not just about this video, but also about that day.
If memory serves, the day Rick recorded the bit about me was a blazing hot day in late August, 2011; it was the day when I finally got to meet Rick in person, on the steps of Cromer's Pnuts during Food Truck Food Court. I heard he would be there, and told The City Girl I wanted to meet THE Columbia social media guru. She made sure to find him; rolled me right up to him in the middle of his lunch, and made a proper IRL introduction (we'd known each other online for ages). That August day in 2011 was a big deal day for me in a lot of ways: It was the first time I beat back the social anxiety enough to attend any of the tweetups; the first time I met most of the "Real Twitterati". I was just standing up the social media department at work for real, and I needed to turn my virtual connections into real ones. Everybody who was anybody knew: RickCaffeinated was the guy you talked to about that in Columbia, SC.
So there I was: Sweaty, self-conscious, scared, nervous, and by the end of the day I had a raging sunburn, too. As it turned out, though, every single person I met was not only super fun and kind, but 100% welcoming and friendly, just as if we'd known each other forever... which, well, we had. Rick was so nice to me that day, answering tons of questions, inviting me to Social Media Club Columbia, and telling me he would happily tell me about how to do what he did, for his going price of a cup of coffee. :)
Anyway. I have been wondering what happened to that clip, and to find that not only did The Misters K and N locate it, but that they chose to include it in this tribute... well, that just means the world to me. In mid January 2013, the day after Rick died, I would go back to Cromer's - which now houses Jamestown Coffee Company - along with lots of the same people who were there that day in 2011. In 2013, we raised our mugs in toast to Rick, shared memories, and said our goodbyes to him.
Please take a minute to watch. Thank you.