8-Nov-2001 (Thu)

Halloween was a blast! There were a lot of amazing costumes. We had quite a lot of people show up, but it felt like more than it actually was, because on Halloween, people take up way more space than usual, with the wings and rakes and bustles and so on. There are some pictures in the gallery. But not nearly enough! I saw a lot of people there with cameras, but only two folks have sent me their pictures. If you took any, please send them my way.

Last night, we tried something new: the Connect party was upstairs in the lounge only, instead of in the main room. We just made a path from the front door to the stairs, and did everything in the back. It worked out pretty well; for the number of people we got last night, that was a more appropriate sized space; we didn't have to worry about getting over the ``it feels empty in here'' hump.

Of course, webcasting from there turned out to be an adventure. We'd never actually tried to webcast from the lounge before, you see. Months ago, I was told that it was all set up and ready to go, but of course in my boundless optimism, I believed that, and never tested it. Well, I didn't really believe it, but I knew we weren't going to be webcasting from there right away, so I didn't test it right away, and in the meantime I forgot. So about an hour before doors, I started trying to figure out what cables went where, and trying to decipher the cryptic labels on them (asking myself ``what could `slave 2 return' possibly mean in this context? `return' to where?'') Well, by the time doors opened, I had figured out what I think the intent of the various cables was, but of course, they weren't actually hooked up to the DJ coffin! So it was a mad scramble to find appropriate connectors (thankfully Dan, one of the promoters, carries a huge first-aid kit of connectors with him everywhere.) Meanwhile, the house lights were down, and we were open. And still no webcast. Well, I still don't know what the problem was, but the cables that (seemed to be) the ones running from the lounge to the webcast machine, weren't.

So we finally got the webcast working by feeding the lounge coffin into the main room coffin, and webcasting in the usual way. This was tricky, as we didn't have any long cables. But, we managed to scrounge together enough cables by connecting a bunch of our microphone cables end-to-end; running that from the lounge coffin down to the main stage; and from there, we did it like we do when someone is DJing from the stage: we plugged into the snake head, which got us up to the live board on the main room DJ platform; and from there, into the main DJ coffin; and from there, to the webcast.

Kludge-o-riffic! But it worked. Well, except for some weird popping that happened occasionally: probably a grounding problem due to the halfassed way everything was connected together.

Then today I came in, and found that the guy who had done visuals on Halloween had screwed me: he brought in a pair of video screen and his own projectors, so we had two screens showing mirror images of the same thing, which looked really great. But for some unknown reason, he also took my projector down, instead of just not using it. And when he came to get his stuff, his interpretation of ``put everything back exactly the way it was'' was to hang my projector wrong-side-up; not plug it in; and not do the fine-tuning necessary to make it actually fill more than half of the screen. So again, I'm standing on a ladder half an hour before doors.

And! Apparently last week some prima donna DJ in the lounge actually said to the manager, ``if you don't turn up the bass, I'm walking out.'' The subs were already up as high as they can go without pissing off our neighbors. It's a good thing it's not my job to deal with people like this, because what possible answer could there be to that kind of attitude besides ``don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out''? Well, apparently the answer he was given (hereafter known as the right answer) was ``no problem, I'll go see what I can do.'' Followed by leaving the room, staring at the wall for a minute, coming back, and saying ``how's that?'' Apparently that was ``better.'' Meaning he'd managed to mark his territory and assert his dominance.

I wish I could be crafty enough to come up with answers like that. But that takes a level of restraint of which I am not capable.