March 25th, 2005

The General

One down, one to go

Well, that went fairly well. Not all of our department heads were at last night's AD2005 post-mortem, but most of them were, and we can deal with the rest on April 2. I met with drunkenphlower before the post-mortem to go over the hotel bill, which I think we're going to have to go over with the T-bird again because things aren't adding up quite right, The way I see it we should have gotten some money back on the function space side of things and not paid so much on the room side, since we made our room block (and then some) and it doesn't look like some things were charged and/or credited properly. Nothing that can't be fixed.

I led off the post-mortem by taking full responsibility for the staff room screwup (since the hotel staff wasn't there to take their share of the beatings) as well as the disorganization in Operations, which is, after all, my bailiwick. This may have softened the blows that followed, since I had a fairly lengthy list of things that need to be worked on for next year, starting with intra-staff communication, which was just abysmal at times and not helped by some young idiots thinking they could function just fine on three hours of sleep. I pointed out that while technically they might be correct insofar as shuffling papers and handing out badges was concerned, biting the heads off our members and fellow staff was not okay and tended to happen more often when we got tired. Praise was also handed out along with the criticism; by and large, everyone did a pretty good job, but there's always room for improvement. Third time's the charm; after learning from this year's mistakes and continuing to beef up the staff, we should have things pretty much down...provided we write all this stuff down so that we can check it when (as will inevitably happen) somebody else needs to pick up the ball and run with it, or we can't remember exactly what we were supposed to be doing. "Write this in the book of procedures, and rehearse it in the ears of the staff," to paraphrase the Book of Exodus.
dead wombat

Taking stock on Good Friday

Good Friday seems oddly misnamed. It is a Holy Day, but one that commemmorates a part of our history we'd rather forget. Nobody who has meditated on the Passion of the Christ needs Milgram's experiment to convince them of the dangers of conformity and obedience to authority; the scenes in the Temple when the crowd cries for Barabbas to be freed reminds us that we are all Jews, all equally guilty of demanding the death of the innocent Jesus. Yes, it's the horrible sacrificial death that must precede the joyous resurrection of Easter, but it seems far too dark and filled with horror, perhaps because it forces us to examine the parts of our souls we really don't want to look at, the parts we want to forget.

It seems an appropriate time to look back and consider how I've done this Lenten season. Obedience to the Law of the Fish (including fasting on Ash Wednesday and today), check; repentance and confession, nope; attendance at Mass, ditto. I'll make it to Good Friday Mass at St. Olaf's today, and very likely to the 8 AM Sunday mass at St. Edward's before I head in to do video stuff at Minicon, but I really should have made time to get to Mass more often.