Plug and Play Organizer
i’ve organized lots of different types of events: conferences, arrest actions, political campaigns, social gathering, work parties and festivals. The job of organizing often splits into two broad parts – logistics and content.
Logistics organizers make sure that all the registration fees are paid, that ride shares are organized, that the site is prepped, that speakers or workshop givers are picked up at the train station, that the press releases goes out and the promotion is done, that the event program or action fingerbook is compiled and proofed, that the dry erase board has working markers or the participants know their rights and have lawyer numbers written on their arms, that the food is prepared or the pot lucks don’t have 16 deserts and no main course, and that there is bail money somewhere to get our people out of jail if needed.
Content organizers figure out who is going to present and that they fit together thematically, they translate materials from brilliant facilitators into something accessible for participants to help them decide which workshop to attend, they do the media interviews about the event or action and with some regularity they present or facilitate parts of the event.
Typically, organizers are dominantly one type or the other. But when you get lucky, you find an organizer who is a universal donor, who can do both parts of making an event happen. I call them plug and play.
Angie is one of these gifted types. A handful of days before the Loud Love event she agreed to come to the last disorganizers meeting (her lack of car and need for a ride to go shopping played into my hands). As we went over the long list of things which still needed to be done, both on the content side and logistics, she kept volunteering and i started relaxing. She would write the event program, she would coordinate the kitchen, she would create a new logo, she would run registration and manage the money, and sure she could give an edgy kick ass workshop as well. And she would do it all in just 3 days.
Over the long arch of our relationship we have had more than a couple of conversations where i was describing the relative disaster of the organizing state of something i was trying to manifest and she calmly accessed the situation and pulled it together. Like the time she got together $5000 in cash, after all the banks were closed, to bail me and a handful of other scruffy activists out of jail. But that is another story.
Thanks Angie, for everything.