1.002 Docent, A/V work

Funny thing now. Yesterday I had worked out the 11th floor mic setup — or so I thought — to supply a single hand-held mic. I woke up at 1:45am with the thought, “Was that all they wanted? Because I was given a copy of the event request form (ERF), and why the hell have I not actually read it?” So I got up, turned on a light, and read the ERF, and oh crap, they want a lectern with a podium mic plus a hand-held.

I put on some clothes and in the deep quiet of Channing House at 2am, I go up to the 11th floor. Desperate exploration reveals a little podium (brand name “Lecternette”) which appears to consist of just a speaker cabinet on a wheeled cart. The instruction sheet taped to it refers to two wireless mics on channels 3 and 4 and a podium mic, but all I can see is this speaker cabinet.

I go back to my room and compose an email to the other members of the A/V committee asking for some info on this, where are these two mics supposed to be? Then go back to bed.

Wednesday, 12/4/2019

I have a docent tour at 11, so I have to leave at 10. I shower and shave and dress in my nice docent clothes, then go to breakfast, then go to the 11th floor and resume inspecting the A/V gear. After poking and prodding the “speaker cabinet” I finally discover how the top of it opens up to reveal a lectern surface with a light, a nice mic stand, a mic to put in the stand, and in another concealed drawer, two wireless mics. I plug in the power and with only ten minutes of futzing around, I have the podium mic and one wireless hand-held working. No idea why the other one won’t, but there it is.

So I go off to the museum and lead a tour for a group of 22 college students from Mexico, who have, according to my info sheet, “good English”. They better, because I talk fast and have nada de Español. Pat Buder is there, a 1401 docent, getting ready for the Wednesday afternoon 1401 demo, and volunteers to do a private demo for my group. He also suggests that maybe I should do 1401 demos, too. I demur, having plenty of things to do already, although I agree to “sometime” let him show me the ropes.

The tour leader tells me they have “maybe an hour.” Why do groups do this? I get him to agree to an hour and a half. Then I rush through my tour, skipping several points I normally make, and get them to Pat at 12pm. This group was, in Pat’s word, “squirrely”. Of the 22, I don’t think I ever had the full attention of more than 10 at a time. The rest wandered around or gawked at their cell phones, or cracking each other up with jokes in Spanish. Well, some seemed interested anyway.

So, straight back to CH, skipping my usual Wednesday FOPAL stint. Nancy, a CH resident, was already at work setting up the 11th floor for the Canopy party. I moved the podium out to the right location and got it all ready, then helped Nancy move tables and chairs around. Eventually Maika arrived. She was one of Marian’s favorite people ever; Marian adored working with Maika on her Canopy volunteer days. Maika was surprised and pleased to see me, as was Catherine, the Canopy CEO. The two of them had visited Marian a couple of weeks before she died. At that time, I’d asked them for advice on what to do with Beau, the 7-foot ponytail palm. Catherine remembered that and asked about Beau’s fate, and was glad he had a new home.

With the help of a couple of staff from the CH kitchen, they set up a big table of catered goodies and wine and mulled cider. Eventually 30 or so CH residents, and a dozen invited guests, drifted in to nosh and listen to Catherine and three others describe Canopy’s work, and make a low-key pitch for volunteers and donations.

By 5:15 people were drifting away, so I struck the podium and put everything away, and was just in time to join the other 6th floor exiles for the monthly 6th-floor supper. Except I’d eaten so many snacks I didn’t really want supper. But anyway we were joined by future residents Leon and Margaret, I think mentioned them before, and one more person who has bought in but can’t move in until February, and whose name I forgot as usual.

Watched about 3 hours of impeachment proceedings I’d recorded on the DVR. And so to bed, hopefully not to wake in a panic at 2am.

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