Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Timing, Location and Eloquency

Some days are relatively easy-going, laid back and smooth. Those are the kind of days that ease you out of bed, keep you moving well past lunch, with everything in its place, and every problem surmountable and solved by the late-afternoon slow-down.

Today was not one of those days.

The day started relatively easily. I had a check-up at my doctor's office, and I wound up getting to his office early, which is a rarity for me. So I was pretty pleased; that is, until I wound up sitting for a half hour, received several voicemails and realized I needed to get out of his office before he saw me.

Luckily he didn't let me run out and did a quick run-through on the basics: weight, blood pressure, breathing, blood, allergies and the miscellaneous other niceties. Everything was good -- ie going in the right direction -- and before I slipped out the door I got my annual flu shot.

Thereafter, I got to the office -- about 45 minutes later than I normally walk through the door -- and jumped right in with both feet, so to speak. First I prepped an Application that needed to be addressed, then got the materials together for a biggie meeting I had downtown with a client at a City Agency.

Anytime a client requests a meeting with a City Agency, that means one of three things: a) he/she is unhappy with the City's progress and wants a first-hand response as to why things are moving so damn slow; b) he/she is unhappy with YOUR progress and wants a first-hand response, with you sitting there, as to why things IN YOUR OFFICE are moving so damn slow; or c) he/she wants to get explicit instructions as to what will be necessary for you -- and he/she -- to obtain, provide and/or furnish to said City Agency to get everything done.

Luckily, today's meeting was not requested by my client at all, but by me. The short version is that I've been working on an Application for awhile now -- far longer than I care to admit -- and because my client hired someone who was paid a lot of money to perform a service but instead wound up taking most of that money and disappearing, which is definitely a criminal act -- it's been left, thus far, to me to clean up the mess. Today was my alert to my client that I've done everything I can without some more assistance from he and his people.

It might not sound like it's significant, but when a $750,000 matter hangs in the balance, managing egos, bullshit, attitude and frustration -- both on the part of my client(s) and the City Agency with whom we met -- is not easy. The meeting, however, went really well, and I breathed a virtual sigh of relief once I managed to head out and back to the train to return to the office.

Before I left, I arranged a meeting for the end of November with another guy in a different department but whose involvement would be equally significant to another matter on which I've been working.

Incidentally, I discuss pretty much everything that happens during working hours with Kaia, and she and I both have noticed that most of my day consists of me balancing, massaging and appeasing -- and of course, solving problems -- for people that seem bent on giving me headaches. Today, however, despite the chance for failure, was a resounding success.

I wrapped my work day and got home; there was a lot to be done once I arrived. First, a friend and I have been planning a party for this weekend in midtown. Since he's been largely out of touch -- his PC is DOA, he is out of touch at work, and his phone isn't functioning -- it's largely fallen on me to juggle the 150 party guests, the venue, the music (more on that later) and the various other vagaries that come with the title of Party Planner. People need info on where the party is, where the nearest trains are, how to get there from the East Side, from the West Side, from downtown, from across town, and from the airport. They need hotel info, good ideas for restaurants nearby, ticketing info, questions regarding people they want to bring, and the ever-popular questions about "what should I wear," "what should I bring," "how much should I bring" and "is Some Random Person going to be there?"

This time, however, the questions have been limited, easily-handled, and each and every time someone hits me with a request -- "Boogie, can you tell me the closest drugstore near the place in case I need to buy more condoms" -- it's not as irritating as it has been in the past. Either I'm getting better at this party-planning thing -- or the crowd we're in the process of assembling is getting better at trusting us with throwin' a bitchin', burn-the-house-down kinda shindig.

Which leads me to my next topic du jour.

Despite the fact part of the venue we've hired includes the services of their in-house DJ, since I don't know him/her and I get tired of the same party/club house music, I opted to throw together a disc or two of my own stuff. I don't particularly dig club tunes, but I figured I would prefer to have a say as to what I was listening -- at high volume -- at my own party. So I sat down with Nero Soundtrax -- an incredibly powerful, incredibly simple music processing/mix application, and got started. Six 80-minute cd's later, I've finally achieved nirvana. I threw together two chock-full discs of loud, party rock -- stuff that makes parents cringe, clergymen cry and young, nubile teens writhe and squeal. On top of that, I tossed up two more full discs of lounge tunes, which are an updated version of 80's-era-Sonny Crocket cool. And finally, two full discs of bouncy, mindless club tunes that blend and bleed into each other and are guaranteed to serve as 160 minutes of virtual, musical sex-olympics -- sort of. Kaia kicked in a lot of assistance from start to finish, and I ran everything I included by her, for the most part, since she's into pop stuff far more than me. I'm really pleased with the outcome, and while the final verdict will be the on-site reaction by the party crowd, I'm anything but concerned that the reception for this stuff will be overwhelmingly positive. Plus, I made sure to include some snide commentary in the form of Pink's "U + Ur Hand" buried somewhere among the tunes :)

So finally, after getting all six discs burned, labeled and sleeved, I called my contact at the club to check in. After all, despite having my name on a signed contract, the party is Saturday and I wanted to insure everything was set to go. It is. I also verified we can bring a sheet-cake in for my co-host's birthday. We can. And finally, I made sure we can bring and have the DJ spin the discs I produced. We can.

All in all, not the smoothest of days, but then again, I'm looking forward to hangin' with friends, meeting new ones, and surviving another maniacal party weekend.

The only negative is that Kaia won't be here -- but that means I'll be able to focus on making sure everyone has a blast without feeling guilty -- or crappy -- if I'm not spending my time strictly with her.

Plus, she'll be here in a week or two, so I'll be able to show her the pictures, regale her with stories of the Latest Party, and we can enjoy the music on our own -- in private (wink wink) :)

I'll make sure I swing by here prior to the gig happening, and for those of you planning on being in attendance, it is indeed BYOC ;)

More later...

1 comment:

Linny said...

Can't wait~