Hello Internet! I am finally resurfacing after the big event thingy I've poured my blood, sweat and tears into the last six months. The event is now over: multi-day event, thousands of attendess, over 100 folks from the media, nearly 100 speakers, and about half a dozen Congressman, a handful of the most powerful CEOs in the world, a Cabinet member, one of the richest men in the world, the President of one of the nerdiest/smartest universities in the world, AND
a Former U.S. President.
Thrown in for extra measure. Because I wasn't sweating enough as it was.
I was the lead planner, so it all sort of hung over my head -- A LITTLE STRESSFUL -- and PRAISE THE LORD it was a huge success. But that wasn't because of me, that was seriously because God provided multiple miracles and an army of people making me look good. I often feel like Forest Gump in my life, continually plopped down in places I have no business being in, but I have to say I love the adventure and you'll be happy to know - I have several new fun stories to share.
I'm probably already repressing some that will come out later but here are just a few highlights:
-I logged my first 17 hour day with my current company. I literally sent a note to my time card approver that basically just said "don't judge."
- I finally completely understood the Cheryl Crow line "I've been living on coffee and nicotine" except I don't smoke so I was literally just living on -- coffee. Adrenaline has a funny way of making you feel full. Good to know if I'm ever stranded on a desert island, I can apparently just get really hyper and stressed and I'll be good without food for at least 4 days.
- I heard my staff utter things like "I'm going to treat myself and actually use the restroom now...."
-I found myself at the end of one day sitting in my car, forgetting to start the ignition because I was furiously typing away on my blackberry. Then driving a little ways to stop for gas -- and forgetting to start my car again....then driving a little further to my apartment and forgetting to get out of my car. On the way there, I also turned my lights off and turned my blinker on in my confused effort to get my windshield wipers to stop....
The Roles We Played:
Let me set the scene: At several points during the event, I was attached to a cell phone, a blackberry, and a radio/ear piece - simultaneously answering all three, plus questions from actual humans who would approach me every! single! second! (ahem, not that I got flustered at all. ever.) for items ranging from free tickets for their spouse to extra pens for a breakout session, to asking me to find a Senator that had wandered off and was needed on stage.
I will be a KILLER mother one day -- multi-task Black Belt now, I tell ya.
So here are just a few places I found myself:
-practically shoving members of Congress into tiny dressing rooms in an effort to keep everyone straight because of course everyone showed up earlier than expected, or their Security details showed up, and at one point I was juggling two CEOs of major corporations, a Senator and a very powerful member of the House, a cabinet Secretary, and
One of the world's richest men.
Who snapped at me when he lost his aide and didn't know how to get back to his holding room.
Yes. Holding. Room. I soon began to see all these titans of industry and power as a string of really really important pets who needed to be cornered, cared for and fed.
I had to get one of the richest men in the world a HAIR. BRUSH. people. You can't make this stuff up.
I got to where I wasn't even introducing myself to all these high profile people. I just started immediately telling them where to go or grabbing someone else to lead them somewhere. Oh hello, One Of The Brightest Minds On Earth, we are so glad you are here -- could you just go with Sally here while I go pick up the former leader of the free world? K thanks. Ya look great. Don't even need a hairbrush.
At one point I told my Deer-In-Headlights looking assistant to go in and ask Mr. Richest Man, a former White House Chief of Staff, and a cabinet-level Secretary which side of their face they wanted their wireless mic.
That moment will now be known as The Point At Which I Broke My Assistant.
She couldn't go through with it. I had to do it, while pushing off the security detail of the Deputy Secretary of another major federal department.
-At one point during the week, someone casually mentions that there is a substance that someone will be looking at later that is being stored under a table in one of our rooms.
I was then told that substance was the only one of its kind in the world and was worth about a million dollars.
And it was being stored.
In one of my rooms.
Under a table.
By that point, my brain had melted and I couldn't even suggest logical alternate locations. That container filled with a million dollars just lived there for a day.
-At another point, I was asked to get a name tag for a Nobel Prize winner because he was disappointed he did not have one (he did not need one, but we got him one anyway). Of course.
-The event was rounded off by me instinctively throwing my arms around my assistant on my left, and a former President on my right, while taking a photo. Then I realize in horror that no one else is doing the whole We Are All Camp Buddies pose like myself so I start to let my arms fall a bit during the photo and I'm now convinced there's a picture out there somewhere of me and a former President with my arms spread out inexplicably like wings. Sigh.
I came home just in time for my cat to pee on my bed one last time, and me to fall into a 13 hour coma.
Just another week in this city.....