Monday, March 23, 2009

The End (The Doors)

All finished. The International Flair event went off quite well. During multiple trips to buy decorations and food during this weekend, Michael and I commiserated about how busy we would be until late Sunday night and how wonderful it would be to get into the week and away from the weekend.

The university's budget plan for student groups needs to go under some serious revision. Making students pay out-of-pocket and then be reimbursed? If we had the money, we wouldn't be asking for it until after the fact, would we? Needless to say, this was the subject of much griping between Michael and myself. All I have to say is that I have about $300 worth of decorations that the university owes me for. Not to mention this weekend's record-breaking 23 hours of labour to put the room for the event together. Thankfully it all came together in the end.

Approximately 250 attendees turned out for the inaugural fashion show - equipped with free food from local restaurants to bribe people into staying to the bitter end. Our DJ, Jonathan, was an absolute god-send. Many thanks are due him for stepping in at the last minute to help us out with this. I don't know how many times yesterday he heard me tell him the words, "I'm sorry this is so disorganized!" Even our models, dancers, and actors thanked me for my Nazi-like leadership over the weekend. I was the model of German efficiency: inflating and constructing two towers of helium balloons, designing a photo collage board for the food table, putting together the centrepieces I designed with Nneka, hanging flags all over the room, running dress rehearsals for all the performing groups, and being that person you always see on the Victoria's Secret fashion show who stands backstage with the clipboard and headphones to shove the models forward at the right time, whispering furiously, "go now! Go!" Of course, we were low-budget enough that I went sans headphones...and my clipboard was more a stack of construction paper and a scribbled on copy of my schedule for the evening.

The scribbles I had so hastily fitted all over that schedule I printed out ran the gammit of details: the lighting for each part of the show, props needed for skits, the order and names of each organization's models, my mandated protocol for the changing room and general backstage area...I have new-found empathy and respect for event planners of all stripes. (Except, of course, those who can't get the job done.)

It was funny to hear all the other students come up to me with smiles on their faces and say, "thank you so much for doing all of this!", "we couldn't have done this without you!", "I can't believe you're leaving; that's so sad!" It made me feel pretty good, really. It was nice to be thanked and congratulated after channeling Albert Speer and Dwight Eisenhower all weekend.

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