Monday. A word that often brings dread and loathing. It gets a bad rap.
I definitely have had my share of Monday dread as I am sure we all have, especially when not caffeinated enough.
However, I have found a reason to look forward to Mondays. Although I am unable to say exactly how I discovered it, I have dug around and can see that I have been participating in a fun (late) food lunch hour twitter chat since early spring of 2011.
So what exactly is #FNIchat? It stands for Foodies Night In chat and originates in Cincinnati, Ohio every Monday at 4:-00 to 5:30 pm Eastern time, so 1::00 to 2:30 pm Pacific time. It is led by @CookingwithCaitlin. a trained chef (by a Chicago affiliate of Le Cordon Bleu), her sister Kelly, and crew.
Each week, food lovers gather on-line via twitter and have a fun hour and half or so to have chat about that week’s specific topic. It is often seasonal, e.g. summer cook outs, Thanksgiving, or can be a cooking technique or a course, and generally take two formats – fewer questions with more in-depth conversation about the topic, or a rapid fire/gut reaction response format. Both are fun, and provide a lot of learning and “favouriting” of tips and recipes to check out when there is more time. Sometimes, there are some sponsored posts with prizes and coupons from that sponsor. So depending on the format, @FoodiesNiteIn tweets a question at regular intervals and you comment including the #FNIchat and reference to question number. Others may ask you a question or share your comment, and sometimes you can get a dialogue going, sometimes beyond the scheduled hour and half.
For me, that is actually the best part of #FNIchat. I love the community around this weekly “meet up” and that is why I have been participating for over three years. I truly believe that social media mimics real life, and “like finds like” – you will gravitate towards those who share the same interests, views and humour – and the time spent on line together feels similar to hanging out with your friends in real life. Over three years, some of them feel like long time friends, sisters even!
Check out the FNIchat page or @FoodiesNiteIn to find out what the upcoming topic is. Please say hello if you join in!
Do you participate in any weekly chats? Do you feel a sense of community with those you tweet with?