Thursday, April 7, 2011

Absent without leave, but with good cause.

Today, Text, from The Man Who lives in My House:  "Want to meet me for lunch somewhere?"
Me:  "I would avoid being around me at all costs, if I were you."

A little later, my cell rings, it's my mother.  I know she'll call again if I don't pick up, so I answer: "Hi mom, is it an emergency?"
My mother, "Well no, I just called to chat."
Me: "Mom, it is going to have to wait until Saturday.  But call or text if it's an emergency."
My mom is laughing as I click off.

Why would I turn down a lunch date with a cute guy?  Why wouldn't I enjoy a chat with my mother? Am I crazy?  No.  I am in charge.  In charge of the school auction, in a year where we are facing a budget shortfall so severe that we may lose one of our 11 classroom teachers.  Normally we raise money to keep Reading support, P.E., Music, technology upgrades, library upgrades--"frills"  like that.  Now our funding is so short that we may lose a classroom teacher, in addition to the "frills".  So this auction gig.  No pressure.  

I am homesick for blogging, and normalcy.  Right now I live in auction land.  It is extremely fun, but very time consuming.  I have been an auction wingman for several years now, but the parent who has run the show decided it was time to step down.  I'm not sure whether I stepped up, or whether it was just kind of a default thing, but the power went straight to my head.  I am El Jefe.

So I sort of changed it up--instead of a kid inclusive family event, I got the local public golf course to let us use their clubhouse (for free), and the local brewery to donate a keg, and a local vineyard gave us ten cases of wine--which are currently stacked all around my living room.

This could be a great idea, because who doesn't like a party?  And we will raise extra $ selling beer and wine.  Actually we cannot legally sell the beer and wine, but we can accept donations.  There will be an enormous pickle jar with a big sign that says "DONATIONS."  I think people will get it.

It also could be a total flop.  People could be having so much fun socializing that they forget to bid.  That happened a few years ago, when the school-located auction fell on a gorgeous spring evening.  The kids all ran out on the playground, and the adults were having so much fun chatting and keeping an eye on our kids...we kind of forgot to bid as much as usual.

Still, I am El Jefe.  And I like parties.  I like going to them, and I like throwing them.  If it's a flop, I will do penance by helping with the Jogathon next month.  (We are having a school budget crisis, can you tell?  Lots of fundraisers.  Lots of pressure.  That's a whole 'nother post.)

There will be pizza and music. I think every babysitter in neighborhood has been booked, but just in case, we have childcare available at the school.  I have not even started to go on and on about the donations, but I'll say that an army of minions is running around doing my bidding. I call them the hunter-gatherers. We have bikes and beach weekends and museum memberships and gift cards coming out of our ears, organized by me (not my forte!  Painful!) and also stacked (in orderly piles) around my living room.  The minions all have done this for years.  They remind me about what I should be doing.  If we make some money, they get the credit.

This blog gets credit, too, because I've basically used my blog energy to send out updates to all the hunter-gatherers a couple of times every week since the beginning of February.  I tell them what is done and what's still needed.  I try to make it funny and I hope I don't sound like I'm complaining--I truly am having a ball.  It's a great excuse not to exercise.  Either somebody volunteers to do it or they tell me how to do it, and I add it to my list.

I have had to repress the urge to procrastinate:  I have never been so tempted to paint my bathroom!  Hopefully I can tap in to that urge when this is over  (tomorrow!).

Anyway, I must return to my auctionizing, auctioneering?  Auctionagonizing.....I'll be back next week.


  1. Good luck with the auction. I always admire people who can do that sort of thing. I'm awful getting donations.

  2. well. That explains it. I have been anxiously checking your blog for updates and wondering if you had given it up. Good luck with the auction and I'll look forward to to more pithy commentary on whatever later!

  3. the trick to getting donations is to be a regular. I never ask for stuff at places where they don't know me. Plus that way, I'm not going out of my way. I just ask at the music school while my kids are taking their piano lesson....the grocery store where I seem to have to go every other day, the gas station where I fill up (free oil change? Please?). Your good customer-ship combined with your belief in the worthiness of your cause will get amazing results. It also helps to patronize locally owned business as opposed to big box stores. There are ways to get big box places to donate, but you have to go through corporate offices many months in advance.