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Just found out I'm going to Amsterdam (woo woo)

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Three days ago I got offered a trip to Amsterdam from the Dutch Tourism Agency. The Dutch were very excited to organize a first-ever trip of bloggers (they invite journalists all the time, but have never invited bloggers). But as it was their trip, I didn't want to scoop them on it by telling you guys on Tuesday. Well, today they told the public about it, so today I'm telling you about it.

Basically, the trip is really an in-kind blog ad buy - they get a month-long ad on the blog (the ones in the right column), and they pay for the ad with a trip instead of cash (the trip is actually valued at much less than the one month cost of the ad on this site). But still, I'd be far less likely to spend the money on a trip had they paid in cash, so I kind of like being nudged into going.

Anyway, it definitely sounds like fun. It'll be 6 days at the end of February. We're not required to blog about the trip or anything, but I will anyway - as my regular readers know, I travel a lot and like to do travel blogging. I've asked the Dutch if they can hook me up with any bloggers over there, and any interesting meetings with local political types etc. I'd also love to meet up with any AMERICAblog readers in the area, if there are any. The trip isn't until the end of February, so we have time.

Of course, as is to be expected, there have already been a few naysayers calling me Jack Abramoff for going on the trip. Yes, you see, I have this secret expose I'm planning on a scandal involving the Amsterdam sewer system and those darn crafty Dutch finally figured out a way to buy me off - pay me LESS than the usual price for an ad on my site! My God, how they didn't take over the world is beyond me.

Anyone seriously worried about me being bought off by the crafty Dutch, talk to the folks at Syriana the movie. They ran an ad on my site, gave me a free ticket to the movie, I went, kind of hated the movie, so I came back and wrote that I didn't like it. They then didn't renew the ad for a second week. Oh well.

I calls 'em like I sees 'em. And in any case, someone is always going to be unhappy with something I do or something I write (hell, I get shit every time I ask for donations). All I can do is charge ahead and have you judge me and the blog by what we strive to accomplish and what we do accomplish. And I'm happy to be judged by that standard any day. (Still the criticism bothers me, thus the long post - though Joe tells me I need a thicker skin :-)

And with that, I am so off to watch Sci-Fi Friday on Tivo. And don't worry, the orchids are coming...

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