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Back from N'Awlins!

Issue Date: Tuesday, Jul. 22, 2003

Oh what a wild ride it has been…

I know, I know, it has been a frillion years since I have updated and I am remiss for letting it go this long. No excuses. Ok, maybe a little one.

For the past week I have been in New Orleans putting on a convention for almost a thousand people. And for the few weeks before that I was putting the finishing touches on said convention. Does that count as a good enough excuse?

It was wonderful. I am exhausted, but it went very well.

I arrived in New Orleans Monday afternoon to have my pre-con meeting with the hotel staff and the production managers from GES. GES is a decorating company that provides the logistics (shipping and storage for my vendors), the pipe and drape for the exhibit hall and the signage for placing around the hotel and at the entrance unit.

If I may say so, the man that they paired me with, Brett, is truly worthless. Sure, he’s cute. But what do I care that he wears great ties and has a devil may care smile? He’s Useless! I have no need for a production manager that cannot manage the production of a show. His boss [who was so sick the weekend before I arrived that he had burst blood vessels in his eyes from the force of vomiting (ick)] was even there when Brett wasn’t. His poor shipping people did all of his work for him.

Starting day of the show was he there? Not until 11 am. Ending day of the show when all of my vendors have to break down their booths and ship everything back ‘from whence it came’ (love that… eh heh)… was he there? Not until 11 am again.

::: Sigh :::

I wish I had his schedule.

Monday’s pre-con meeting went pretty well. I met all of the managers from the different departments at the hotel. My main concern was the security staff and the banquet or catering staff. I had about $150k in meals to be served to my attendees, my vendors and my board of directors over the next five days. Things needed to go smoothly. The security concern stemmed from the fact that I had about 12 vendors bringing in several million dollars in merchandise. The “vault” that I arranged HAD to be tight. No exceptions.

Monday night we all met up at a restaurant called Mullate’s for the P.O.B. wrap up dinner. The P.O.B. is a Harley ride by a bunch of members of my association. They go on a 300 mile ride every year before the convention. The dinner was great. I love the camaraderie.

The board of directors meeting was Tuesday, that went well. I set up a great lunch for them while they were electing the new executive offices. I am quite intrigued to see how the next two years will go with the new president that they elected.

GES set up and added more booths than were on the schematic and delivered a few vendors’ freight to the wrong spots. No problem, I handled that.

To be honest, there were several problems this week. Not that any of my attendees ever knew. I ran about like a little fairy putting out fires quietly on a daily basis.

I had to fire my main door security and request replacements for my guard in the vault. I do not like to fire individuals, but if they insist on reading the want ads while on post at the front door of my exhibit hall, walk around begging for freebies from my vendors and basically giving off the impression that they are from the shallow end of the gene pool then I have to get all firm and stuff. If security guards do not give my attendees or vendors a feeling of being secure, then is it just me? Or are they not doing their job?

I don’t like wielding the power or anything, but if forced, I can get all Xena on your ass.

The convention days went very well. Many a vendor would stop me on my “rounds” to tell me what a great convention it was. The traffic was high, the faces were new and the business was being written. It was great!

Monday was for tying up loose ends, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday were my convention days, Tuesday and Saturday were my Board of Directors meeting days, and Sunday was for driving home.

Did I tell ya’ll that Mister came to get me?

He drove all night Wednesday night to get to New Orleans so I could wake up Thursday morning and see his sweet face. Isn’t that precious?

I was excited that he got to come of course because I was missing him terribly but also because I got to show him off at the Mardi Gras Party and Dinner on Friday night. He looked so handsome in his pretty suit with his new shoes.

He got a haircut and trimmed his beard really short.

I tell ya’ll what… that is one handsome man.

On our drive home Sunday, we went through Nacogdoches, TX. I lived there for so long but I hadn’t been back in over three years. Mister wanted to see where I lived and where I went to college. My old place of employment and the bar(s) [shut up, I lived there a long time] where I used to go dancing. And to top it off we went into the scariest place on earth. The Super Wal-Mart in Nacogdoches, TX. We had to tinkle.

About six years ago I saw a girlfriend of mine, Stacey the ‘Possum Killer, in said Super Wal-Mart. She said to me…

Stacey: Yanno Suz, Greg wants to live here when we get married.
Me: The Super Wal-Mart?
Stacey: No goober*, in Nacogdoches. But I don’t think I could live here.
Me: Why not? Would you be too far from your family? Is it the poor economy?
Stacey: No, it’s the language barrier.


*She probably did not use the term goober… gimme a break, it was a long time ago.

Aaaaaaaaannnnnyway, the point I was trying to drive home (like frikkin Miss Daisy) was that Nacogdoches is not on the cutting edge of technology, fashion, music or even dental hygiene, and the Super Wal-Mart is crawling with barefoot babies. Ick. Why in the world would people let their toddlers walk around a public market with no shoes on?

So I showed Mister my past and drove out of that town feeling like I was walking (driving, whatever) on air. I was done with that part of my life and realized I would never have to drive approximately 20 miles to get a gallon of milk again. Yay!

I’m back ya’ll. Let me hear from ya!


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To understand this dear reward (above) at all, you must hie thee on and read gatsby’s grape ape entry and my comments.

And because of said comments he sent me my very own dream turtle in an email titled wee gift with these words attached, “my purple monkey is booked solid so i ordered you a tangerine turtle. hope he proves helpful.”

The Graphic Below Courtesy of Papernapkin.

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