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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here.
See, that's humor, boys & girls. Those of you who know me are chuckling right now.

If you read my code camp recap, you may have noticed a few things:

  • I had a blast.
  • We had a lot of people.
  • Some of those people suck.

For those of you just tuning in, it's this 3rd point I'd like to address.

I find it perplexing that out of everyone who attended, and we're talking about a lot of folks (see point #2), the only (yes, ONLY) people that were rude to me were volunteers. This is perplexing for a couple reasons.

  • Usually it's a higher percentage than that. ;)
  • They were freakin volunteers, man! Technically, they were MY volunteers.

Let's ignore the first point and focus on the second one. All of the attendees were nice, polite, well mannered folks, even when lunch was almost late (for the record, we call that "on time" here in the south.)

Most of the volunteers were quite nice as well, however... there were a couple that apparently did not know I was the Code Camp Chairman/El Presidente/Leader/King/etc... (I left my crown of thorns at home this weekend.)

Frankly, I could give a damn if you're rude to me (not entirely true, I'll bitch about it for weeks, but I enjoy that part... and you deserve nothing less than my very best.) However, if you're rude to me based on some arbitrary criteria* like "he's overweight" or "he shaves his head" or "he's got tattoos" or "he's wearing an ugly shirt" then I have to assume a couple things:

  • You're an idiot.
  • You're probably that rude to everyone else as well.

Again, let's focus on the second point here. Say what you want to me or about me (just be prepared to back it up) but don't be an a-hole on my behalf, I can do that just fine on my own. I don't need YOUR help. When you're volunteering at an event, you are representing said event (and the leadership), like it or not.

Basically, if you're a volunteer, you aren't there to judge (unless you're volunteering to actually JUDGE something, in which case I apologize, but I digress.) You're there to HELP. Not "help" as in "help yourself and your spouse (who wasn't volunteering) to the most expensive items on the menu" and not "help yourself to sitting around and doing nothing even when ASKED to do stuff." No, you're supposed to HELP the attendees. Whether this means carrying stuff in each morning, or holding a door for someone, or even taking a few moments to be nice to people, it's your JOB.

This brings me to another point of perplexion. Why do people volunteer to work at free events and then not help? I could see volunteering so you could get in free to a paid event, but why (oh why) would you even bother volunteering at a free event if you have no intentions of actually helping? Was it because you thought you would get a cool t-shirt? Sorry, no shirts this year. Was it the free meal Friday night? Hope you enjoyed it. It was a free event... you could have done exactly the same amount of work and been rude to JUST AS MANY PEOPLE without actually volunteering. Get it?? Why screw up a perfectly good thing?

Ok, I'm done.

* the fact that I meet all four of these criteria, while sad, is completely irrelevant. Posted on Tuesday, September 19, 2006 6:10 AM General Interest | Back to top

Comments on this post: This is the one where I complain

# re: This is the one where I complain
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Chris, sorry to hear you had so many problems putting this on. If it is any help, I didn't notice the issues from a Speaker's point of view. Everything seemed to go smoothly as far as I saw. Additionally, the attendance at my session was the fullest I've given in the 5 cities I have done that talk so far. All I can say as try not to let them get you down. Live and learn and make next year's all that much better (hopefully with more organizational assistance).
Left by Jim Wooley on Sep 20, 2006 6:43 PM

# re: This is the one where I complain
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Jim. I am glad to hear your session went well. I had great time this past weekend. I probably didn't stress that enough.

Blogging the negatives just helps me get it out of my system. :)
Left by Chris Williams on Sep 21, 2006 5:00 AM

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