Monday, September 19, 2005

The Report

3:00AM: Awake before the alarm. Remember I forgot maps at the office. Wash face. Brush teeth. And for some reason, put make up on. (oh, vanity!) Get dressed.

3:45AM: Arrive at donut shop. Order 2 dozen donuts. (I'm hungry!) (JK. They are for the volunteers.) Two blearly eyed fellas are there getting donuts. As they are walking out the door, they hear me order and one of them says to other, "Who needs two dozen donuts at 4 in the morning?"

4:00AM Driving on deserted roads in the dark, cool morning is sort of eerie. The stars are still out, hanging out with the moon. The Beatles come on the radio. I sing along. I can't believe how awake I am. And I'm even in a good mood.

4:20AM: Arrive at the site with copied maps from office in hand. Two stupids left their cars in the parking lot overnight exactly where I was going to stage registration. Change of plans. Oh well. I can roll with the punches. I am determined to keep a positive attitude all day. Besides, the weather is predicted to be a beautiful 68 degrees. It's going to be great!

4:50AM: After unloading my entire Honda CRV by myself, my first volunteer arrives. She has only slept 3 hours. She isn't really awake. I send her to put up the banner on the overpass. She takes so long doing it, I call out to her, worried that she may have plummeted to her death or been kidnapped. Turns out the railing was just wet with dew so she couldn't get the tape to stick. Phew.

5:00AM: Supple, my trusted early morning friend, arrives in her 4 door Honda loaded down with soda. She tells me there was an earthquake around 12:30 that night. Huh. Didn't feel a thing. But I DID wonder before I went to bed, "Wouldn't it be weird if there was an earthquake and it ruined my event?" Now I think, maybe, possibly, I MADE the earthquake happen. You know, power of suggestion and all. . . Hmm. I am powerful! Ok, back to work.

6:30AM: Other volunteers have arrived. They have assembled canopies in the dark. They have hung signs, set out tables and chairs, unloaded car after car. Registration begins and the cyclists continue to arrive in a steady stream until about 9:00AM. No disasters. All goes smoothly. People are chipper and smiling. Someone asks me, "Where is the mush?" I say, "Excuse me?" He says, "I read on your website that you were serving oatmeal before the ride." I say, "We have never served oatmeal at this ride. Would you like an Odwalla bar?" He says, "I read it on your website. Check your website." I say, "I wrote the entire text of the website and I can safely say there was no mention of oatmeal whatsoever. Would you like me to put that down as a suggestion for next year?" He laughs and his friend takes a bagel and they ride off.

9:00AM: The parking lot is full. Some people have double parked. The Sheriff arrives and tickets them. Uh oh. They are going to be maaaad. I get called over to registration. A cyclist is arguing the price of the ride. He is on a tandem bike with his friend and doesn't want to pay $90. He says to me, "I just wasn't prepared to pay $90. That seems like an awful lot." I respond, "Sir, the cost is not per bike it is per rider. Besides, this is a fundraiser for an AIDS organization." He presses me with his, "Oh it just seems like so much. . .I would prefer to pay 50 or 60 dollars." What an asshole, haggling over the entry fee at a fundraiser. I just want to get rid of him so I say, "Sir, you can pay $70 but that is the lowest I am going. This IS a fundraiser after all." And I walk away. Later, the bike shop hottie who was providing maintenance to riders called me over. I thought he might want to make out in his VW Bus, but alas, he wanted to tell me how the tandem guy does that haggling thing EVERYWHERE- at bike shops, centuries, you name it. We share a laugh over his audacity and roll our eyes. We never make out even after I offer him a donut. Donuts nor charm can persuade him. Bummer.

11:30AM: I've been awake for 8.5 hours. The DJ arrives and we realize that the speakers we borrowed have no amp so we are musicless. After running many different scenarios of how to remedy this situation, we come to an agreeable answer and go without music for a little longer than I would have preferred. Cally, my co-chair of the event, calls me about every 30 minutes. At least she isn't a stress case like last year. We are impressed with ourselves, having pulled off the work of a 8 person committee by ourselves. The registered riders are at 717. That is more than we expected. Awesome! Um, I hope we have enough food?

12:30PM: Lunch is being served by the caterers. The music is blasting. Massage therapists are busy with a line of tired riders. Cyclists keep coming up to the table to say how great the ride was, how our ride has the best food, etc., etc. There were a few problem areas on the route. Turns out one of volunteers who was supposed to mark a whole stretch of the course forgot. Cyclists had to back track because they missed an important turn. We had one rider down with road rash and a couple others with flat tires and no equipment to repair it. The safety drivers don't have any major problems. This is good news- way beter than the year people had to be picked up because of heat exhaustion because of the 100 degree heat, way better than the year one cyclist had a heart attack and died while riding the course, way better than the year the girl fell off her bike and broker her collarbone.

1:30PM: Uh oh, some of the rest stops are out of food. We do some scrambling and cover it with food from rest stops that have closed. Major disaster averted.

3:00PM: I have been on my feet for 12 hours. If I sit down, I might not be able to get back up. But oh how I want to sit down. My nose is sunburned.

5:00PM: Sorting 4 parking spaces full of leftover food, water dispensers, canopies and coolers. Trying to figure out how to fit it all in the cars we have available. Cally gets stung by a bee under her arm. Bees love soda. They swarm the recycling bins. The caterers tell me they had to go back twice to their kitchen to get more food. Some people went through the buffet line twice. We will likely be getting a big bill.

6:30PM: Cars are loaded in record time. I follow a caravan of cars going back to the office. We unload, restock the supply room and get the hell out of there. I need to lie down. My feet are killing me. I have no energy left. I have to lean on the elevator wall to keep myself standing.

7:30PM: Arrive home and immediately run bath. Barely can get out intelligent sentences to my housemate and his girlfriend. Must. Lie. Down. Must. Soak. Tired. Body.

9:15PM: 18 hours since the start of my day, I back in bed. I start to run through the day's events and within seconds, I am fast asleep.

Present Time: My body is still very sore. My mind is fatigued. I have a bunch of stuff to run around town to return. But, I am really pleased with how the event turned out. I just hope we end up making lots of money off of it. At least everyone had a good time.

Thanks for thinking good thoughts for me.

16 comments:

Her Daddy's Eyes said...

Wow! That was a great post! I feel like I was there! I so would have sung along with you in the car, and I so would had your back when the guy was aguring about the price, and I so would've told the hottie what he was missing by not taking you back to the VW. Crap, I SO should've been there!
Glad is was worth the pain and sleepiness!

~Eyes

kim e said...

Congrats on a job well done!

CN said...

so, besides that, what did you do this weekend?





j/k. congrats on a smooth running event.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sizzle said...

eyes- yeah, you shoulda been there! ;)

kim- thanks!

cn- har har.

anonymous- i don't even know what you are talking about. and i don't think "over-covetous" is even a word?

CN said...

anonymous people can fuck off... anonymously, of course.

amy said...

Wow busy day. Am proud of you for pulling that off. I used to help out with nonprofit events in my past life.... many years ago so i know how much hard work they are, etc.

you should change to halo scan for commenting...you can delete the anonymous fuckwits that way and manage your comment sites. i love my halo scan and it's free. easy to install, etc....

how much money was raised for the Aids thing?

Have a good day. inky

Jenny said...

Sizzle, the event was a super success. Everyone I talked to said it was great! People were happy with all the food and gifts and even liked the ride alot! They kept saying how well organized it was, how they loved all the cheering and fun at the rest stops. Great job, lady...props to you!!!

Mo-Pie said...

I'm still on my way, Did I miss it?!

...Does anonymous mean Over-Jealous or Over-Eager or something like that...?

Did you write this on the fly (Laptop in hand) or did you remember these little details?

Good job by the way....!

Sizzle said...

for those of you just joining us, there was an anonymous post, but I deleted it. because i am in charge over here at sizzle says, that's why. ;)

mo-pie, i did remember all those details. somethings burn in your brain.

jen jen, thanks for being a volunteer! you were so much help to me. i appreciate it!!

inky, i think the estimates are at $35,000 but we still have some outstanding expenses. still better than last year and it ran a lot smoother. ;)

Krisco said...

Hi Sizzle,

Congratulations! It sounds like it went great. I am sure there was a HUGE amount of background planning involved for the day itself to go so well. Great job.

Fun to "ride along" vicariously.

Krisco

Lushy said...

Of course you did a great job! I hope you are enjoying some nice relaxing Sizzle time!

Bill said...

I had my own busy day today though nothing like yours. Sounds like yours was as close to perfect as we can hope - I'm jealous! Although I still can't get over the bonehead haggling for the price for a charity event. Where do these people come from? What are they thinking?

Anyway ... long, busy, successful and spent outside on a beautiful day? As I said, I'm jealous.

Paul said...

My favorite part was when you ordered the doughnuts.

Bex said...

Congrats, sounds like a great event! You must be so relieved. Have fun spending some time recuperating and rewarding yourself for pulling off such an awesome feat :)

sue said...

Hmm...makeup? A must! But to have created an earthquake...wow..I'm in awe...I didn't know you had THAT much power! ;)

Thanks for taking us along on the ride...sounds like it was exhausting, but successful. Way to go,Sizzle!!