Sunday, August 15, 2004

We had elections for the non-profit corporation that runs that convention I mention from time to time. My candidates won, for the most part. It looks like I'll be taking over the registration department, much to my surprise. I used to be a leadership guy in the organization, but after a one-year stint as president, I had enough of such things. I hadn't planned on running anything again, but the head of registration is taking some time off, and the other people in the department are either not interested in running things, or have gotten themselves into the figurative doghouse.

Registration is one of those departments which is difficult to staff in a volunteer organization. It's a colorless, grinding, grey-flannel-man sort of place. The people who work registration have to be dedicated, concentrated, and resilient. In a registration environment like ours - where tens of thousands of members need to be processed in two five-hour periods - the stress on the line staff in the department is considerable. Furthermore, the organization is full of fun, creative alternatives to registration's austere, vital drudgery.

The great irony here is that I was arguing in speech in favor of one of the presidential candidates that fan-based organizations normally suffer from an excess of inspiration; I now find myself in a position where I'm going to have to summon up enough charisma to inspire a number of staffers to abandon the bright, shiny, entertaining portions of the organization for my monastery of a department.

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