In My Write Mind
6.14.2005

Oh, These Kids...LOL

"BLOGS FROM THE BEACH"--DAY THREE, TUESDAY 11:41PM

Here we go. It's conference time. Everything is prepared, signed, sealed, and delivered to Miami Beach and ready to get started. The actual conference begins on Wednesday, but people have begun to arrive on Tuesday night.

And they put me in charge of the students. Oy.

And this is no easy task. I'd rather be in charge of changing diapers at a retirement home. Seriously. These students are no joke. And so are the schools. Aside from the schools replacing or adding students and only telling us at the last minute, this making it more difficult to find them rooms at the hotel...there are no chaperones for these kids. And I call them kids because they're younger than me...and away from home...and on SOUTH BEACH WITHOUT CHAPERONES!!!

Which makes me--since I'm in charge of making sure they're OK--feel responsible. And hate the task. "But Will, WHYYYYYY?, you may ask. They're semi-adults. If they're old enough to go to college, they should be responsible." OK, I would give you that. Except that most of these kids go to school in their hometowns...and haven't been out of the state they grew up in since they were born, let alone to friggin' SOUTH BEACH WITHOUT A CHAPERONE!!!

And that's where I come in...making sure they're at every session, not wandering off to go shopping, or to the pool when we have sponsors who expect these kids in the seats at their workshops. Not oversleeping or eating breakfast while they should be in attendance. They should be at least acting like they're trying to hear what these folks came here to say. I know it can be boring at times, but ummmmm...did I mention that THESE STUDENTS ARE HERE FOR FREE?!?!?! From their hotel accommodations to their stipends (YES...STIPENDS!!!), they are here to learn, to network and to try and secure internships and jobs...NOT to be out on the beach with their homies, or flirting with men/women, or to shop or just sleep in their comfortable hotel room beds. NOPE!!! Not with me on the watch.

Tuesday, I made sure that all the students were present and accounted for. Even called some rooms to make sure they got in and that they weren't out "exploring" Miami Beach the night before their 9am sessions. The way I figure it is this...when they get older, and pay their way to Miami for a conference, THEN they can have the choice as to whether they want to attend the sessions assigned them. Until then, they will do as they are told and do what is expected of them. And realize that it is all for their benefit.

Or they can hate me. I'm absolutely fine with that.

So, sure there were the students who weren't in their rooms when I called. Sure I had to check down in the lobby and in the restaurants and out by the pool to make sure they were on the premises. I did it because I care. Ummm, about the sponsors. Oh yeah, and the students, too. LOL

Hey, I've been there. So I know how it is to be away from home for the first time. But now that I'm on the other side, all that empathy goes out the window. Now, I'm a slave to the corporate and government agencies that pay my salary and support the program for which I work. The students should realize this...and for the most part, they do.

But there's always a few...and I love them. But I love my job even more.

Now that I got that off my chest, let the conference begin!

scribbled by Will at 6/14/2005 11:41:00 PM
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Mind Droppings

I write entirely to find out what I'm thinking, what I'm looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear. (Joan Didion)



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Will. Lefty. Since Summer 1971.
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