Sunday, August 10, 2008

Higlights from Helping with the Crusade

I just got back from working my Company's big convention this weekend and when all is said and done, I got off easy. I was scheduled to work Tuesday-Sunday, because I'm salary, but my hourly apprentice wanted to put the time in and make some extra cash. As it was I was totally unable to get out of working the big show, 12hrs on Fri, 12 on Sat.

I had pledged vocally to my boss that I was going to arrive then blend into the crowd and vanish like a ninja, I so didn't want to work, but when I got there, I was given probably the easiest task around. Floater: i.e. Stand somewhere and point people to their assigned seating 1.5 hours before the morning session, 1.5 hour before the afternoon session. Pretty much just paid hanging around.

Many of my fellow coworkers who work in the call center are very young, and as a result, don't have a lot of character in their faces. So if I stood around with them, invariably I would attract more questions and conventioneers than they. This was no problem because I really enjoy helping people.

As a result I ended up being some sort of, for want of a better word, a floor boss and I began directing other seaters and sign carriers around, eventually getting a key to the "sign room" by the real Floor Bosses and being a sign repair dude, calling shots.

It was odd, but pleasant. I'm not used to just falling into responsibility, but I noticed that all of my coworkers began doing things for me if I sounded like I knew what I was doing!

Let it be known that the convention is a vehicle to hype up the troops to go out and sell, sell, sell. The centerpiece of the big show was a 139' Statue of Liberty, only 20 feet shorter than the real deal, limited by the roof of the Dome.





Different Realities

It was clear from the outset that the world I inhabit and the one the conventioneers, speakers and owners inhabit are the same stage showing different plays.

I'm going to dance the fine line here. The Multi-Level Marketing mentality is not for me. Nor is the Inspirational, Sales and Success lifestyle. It's a worldview that kind of creeps me out, even if it pays my salary. The people I've met have been very nice, and they appear sincere in their desire to achieve their success through helping other people get what they want out of life, but I instinctively turn away from people who first praise God for their success, "Nobody can take away what God has given me and this company." or "Choose Faith instead of Fear". This January, the man founder and figurehead is going to start a mentoring program to produce, "10,000" millionares". Me, I'll be working to make the product website much friendlier and easier to use. I just have neither the faith nor the drive to "fire my boss," and "Not analyze it but just go out [and sell] day in and day out, because I was "born to live a life of excellence." Sorry. I'll be more than happy to work behind the scenes and help you do it, it's just not my bag.

So, I spent most of the time sitting on plastic box in the back of the room with another woman, drawing people and things.. Every time either of us would find a chair we would end up giving it to a handicapped guest, and back to the Good Ole Blue Box we went.


Occasionally I would be called upon to push someone in a wheel chair or ask someone to stop recording video, but it was very stress free.

Before the last session yesterday, a woman told me she had seen both guy selling bootleg t-shirts and someone else pushing a competing business. I told her I was "just a pion" but I would go and alert one of the floor bosses immediately. She lightly smacked me in head: "Haven't listened to a word this weekend? You are valued. You HAVE value."

Me: "Um, no. I've been drawing all weekend." I show her my sketchbook. "But it's just a figure of speech. I don't really think I'm a pion. I have the key to the sign room. But I will take care of it right away." And so I did. Take that bootleg t-shirt huckster! I narced you out.


Later during that last session, one for the speakers was a former pro-football player, and he spoke in sports metaphor as well as actually giving some sort of play by play description of when he was playing The Greenbay Packers in the the 70's. I took that time to nap, temporarily away from blue box.

Another amusing anecdote from Friday: During the the opening session, a bald eagle was supposed to fly down to the stage and land on the bird wrangler's hand. But the bird got lost in the dark and hung out in the rafters for a while until they were able to talk her down.

Here is a picture of me with the eagle. Let it be said that I am not unpatriotic. I now have both a flag and an eagle to prove it.


At the time of the photo I am thinking: "Don'tpeckmyeyes,Don'tpeckmyeyes,Don'tpeckmyeyes, Yay America!

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And I you are sporting the red (vest), white (shirt) and blue (beard).


I'm gonna shut up now.
Yes, I noticed that too. That's what stopped the eagle from plucking out my eyes.
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