tl;dr

(for those not familiar with the title – it stands for “too long; didn’t read”)

A few days ago, I was happy to add a newbie to my art crew.  We needed the fresh blood, and frankly, I needed the help as it was clear to me through their actions (or lack thereof) that the old crew was tired and unmotivated, thereby leaving me with most of the work.

I sent the old crew and email saying “hi, this guy is joining the crew. I have asked him to come to the event Thursday. Then after the show, we will need to clean up our area and talk about the upcoming year – I’ll schedule that second meet later.”

That was truly the 2 sentence summary of the 10 sentences I sent them.

Both showed up assuming that we had to work after the show was done – as in immediately following the show while the party was happening above us, we would be in the basement cleaning.

HUH?

I asked two questions: 1) when I have ever even suggested we try to do  anything art related immediately following an opening? and 2) when have any of us had the energy to do something – anything – immediately following a show?  But but but but….was their response.

I asked why, if this sounded out of the ordinary, they did not asked immediately but instead said “sounds good”.

Uhm……

One of them finally realizing that I was not going to back down and apologize for their stupidity, lashed out “but the email was too long and boring and so I stopped reading.”  At this point, they were still doing this but now with a crowd.  The crowd chuckled and murmured their understanding to the poor guys.

“Yeah, being an adult fucking sucks sometimes – it means reading information in emails even if they are boring – because that’s called being responsible for the job you have accepted.”  And walked away.

I have been working with these fuckers for about 3 years now.  What the fuck?!?

Ironically I overheard the main instigator telling people that this was his event – yeah, he puts this show on.  When he caught me standing there the second time, he quickly backpedaled and commented that it was a team that does it.  He had better backpedal quickly because given how little he did to make that even happen, he had no right to take credit for the event.

Later, I was talking to the other guy as I was giving him a ride home.  He commented that he really is just sick of hanging and promoting the shows. He wants to do more.  I mentally reviewed the list of things that are not hanging or promoting and realized there really isn’t much more he can do.  Communicate with artists – but last time I tried that, I ended up micromanaging him to make sure he was answering emails and sending the right info.  In the end, he gave it back to me, not because I was micromanaging him, but because doing that is hard work. Yep, communication is hard when it has to be timely and accurate.  So, I asked “what are you hoping to do?” because I was curious at this point.

I want to do the website, and until you let me interact with the owner, that isn’t going to happen.

Dude, that isn’t happening for a whole host of technical reasons.  Nothing to do with me not letting him interact with the owner. And to be honest, last time he interacted with the owner, he riled the owner up because of their different communication styles.  The owner needs direct with no bullshit – and this guy is wishy-washy, non-committal and really oozes “I’m telling you what I think you want to hear.”   Huge mismatch.  And when Mr. No-Bullshit encounters Mr. I’m-Blowing-Smoke – Mr No-Bullshit worries he isn’t getting all the information and shit is being hidden for a reason.  Needless to say, it affirmed why it needed to not happen. Plus, the owner doesn’t want to know everyone – he has his leaders, he wants his leaders to deal with that bullshit.  The less he hears from me – the happier he is.  My predecessor taught me that.

I tried gently pointing out to this guy that the website is important but is not making or breaking the show attendance.  And that the show attendance is what we are measured by – not the site – which is why promotion is critical for these events.  It’s no different than parties, theater events, music events, whatever.  You can have a beautiful site – but if people don’t show – it’s worthless.

But I want to do the website – was his response.

Translation: I want to move up and away from the perceived grunt work and let someone else do it.

Issue? This isn’t a company – it’s a volunteer army where everyone is doing the grunt work too.  There is no elevation above the grunt work.

All of these things are signs of people who want the benefit but don’t want to do the work – don’t want to grow the event to where it needs to be and should be.

Yeah – my gut is right – replacing these guys is overdue.

Because dealing with childish antics is not something I tolerate from my children.  Why grown-ass people think I’ll tolerate it with them…..shrug….beyond me.

What do you think?