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Author Topic: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!  (Read 1318 times)

scottstephens

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The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« on: April 19, 2021, 12:44:59 pm »

Well,

Event number 3. Sunday. Old church.  We get to the venue and no one was there,  the doors were locked and there are about 26 steps up into the building.  Love my job.  Thankfully, after about 10 minutes, I get ahold of someone who gives us the backdoor code. We park by the backdoor on the sidewalk.  We go in and there are about 20 palm plants in the way, a baptismal thing and the outlets are there; all we have to do is find them.  Scramble, scramble, scramble.  About half set up and people start arriving. 

I did a contract, asked all the pertinent questions, had plenty of time to set up, or so I thought. That's my fault.  I should have billed for another person or at least taken another person.  Again, my fault for trying to be nice and not upset the family harmony by giving them a discount price and "helping out" a family member.  I am a dumb ass!!!!  After 20+ years you'd think that I would know better.  And after being told that all we have to do is run sound, the treasurer says:  we need you to record the show as well.  Me: Contract!  Them: You were told wrong.  Me: add this much.  Them: already over budget. Me: I will stay home. Them: Ok, but we will have to send you the check because we need board approval.  Me: ok, I will be a nice guy and keep peace in the family.

Power issues.  A/C kicks on and my electric went from 117 to 102.  I scrap the wireless, and tell them to use the mics that are there.  I get by. The client is happy, the kids did a great job. I was helped with load out and we all go out to dinner. I get a check.

Next year I will know what to expect.

Happy Mixing.

Scott

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Brian Jojade

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2021, 03:21:49 pm »

Yep, same old problems as always.  Being nice never ever seems to work out.  It's no wonder that seasoned audio folk tend to become curmudgeonry.
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Brian Jojade

Tim McCulloch

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2021, 03:38:55 pm »

I never give a discount to or for family members.  NEVER.  I don't work for free, either.

I'd rather be a guest at the event than a technician.  It's my family, not my crew.
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

Steve-White

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2021, 04:19:41 pm »

Setup a DJ system at place called the Twin Gables Hall in Clovis, CA years ago.  It was the 2nd or 3rd job that day and we were running a little late for the load-in.  They had setup the hall for a wedding reception, tables, settings, cake, everything but the gifts and guests was ready - everyone gone to change clothes or freshen up or whatever.  Nobody around, parking lot empty.

Pulled the hinge pins from the back door and did the load-in and sound check.  Nobody around still, shut system down ready for DJ to show up later and rehung the door.

Did a repeat performance around 2am for the load-out.  Hall was about 3 blocks from the police station.  Opened the back door and turned the lights on - not a soul around.  Finished the load-out in about 30 minutes, rehung the back door a second time and drove off.

Never heard anything about it, DJ got paid and paid us.  :)
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Chris Hindle

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2021, 12:40:56 am »

Last century did a "variety show" in a High School auditorium. I supplied stage and FOH, and tied into the school PA.
I passed by a week before the show, and the janitor was good enough to let me in for a look.
They had a decent little RH system, so I wasn't worried about volume or quality.

Doors were 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
i get there around 5...
Locked doors....
Band starts to trickle into the parking around 6:30...
Locked doors...
Punters start showing up....

A band member points to someone "He's the organizer"
i go up to him, and ask why we're locked out...
"I booked the auditorium from 7 to 10. Is that a problem?"
when the doors did open, he had a line of 100 people to unload the truck.
I stood at the entrance and pointed where I wanted everything to go.
Took about 3 minutes to empty the truck, another 15 to build the rig and stage.
No soundcheck, just GO.

Show started 20 minutes late, finished 10 minutes early (they skipped a sequence or two), and the same bunch that unloaded the truck got everything out of the auditorium and beside the truck by the time I got the board back in it's road case. A few of them hung around to help me pack the truck.

Here's the surprise... Cables were properly coiled, lids back where they belonged, NOTHING bent, twisted, scratched, broken or missing.
I'm guessing that's just how they roll.....
Scary and impressive, all at the same time.
It was a subcontract for another company, so I never saw them again.

Chris.
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Ya, Whatever. Just throw a '57 on it, and get off my stage.

Steve Litscher

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2021, 10:56:25 am »

Oye. There are some "good" life lessons in the posts here; guess I'll contribute one of my favorites as well.

5-6 years ago, I'm doing my first "big" festival (essentially a block party but with a few stages/performance areas). I get one of the smaller side stages and I'm stoked. The organizers were always "too busy" to meet me for a site survey prior to the event but they assured me "no other company has ever had issues" as the event was (then) going on it's 10th-11th year.

I arrive extra early on the day of the event and start to unload the trailer. I find someone in charge and ask about power - I was told there would be at least two circuits available to the stage.

"Yep, there's power on that condo building over there (motions about 100 yards away) and on the back of that retail building over there (about 80 yards in the other direction)."

Both circuits are 110V GFCI outlets literally on the outside of each building. I brought 300ft of 12AWG extension cord, thinking it would be plenty. Nope. It got me "most" of one run. So I sent my friend to the hardware store to get more 10/12 AWG extension cord. He came back with a bunch of that neon green stuff, which we hoped would be OK.

He ran the new cable to "the other building" and huh... no power. No power at the outlet. He's an electrician by day, so he removes the outlet and finds there's power to the receptacle, just no power through the receptacle. Bad GFCI outlet.

We inquire with the organizer and they say, "Well we never had a problem before and we can't get into that building so I guess you'll just have to do it with one outlet." Oh, ok, no problem. (This was when we were using PL380s, PLX3602s, and so on)

My friend says, "I've got a new GFCI receptacle in my truck, I'll rewire it." I beg him not to as I don't want him getting zapped and he gives me the "do you have any idea how many times I've replaced a live receptacle/switch in my life" look. I tell him (again) to not do it, but before I know it, he's replaced the receptacle and we now have power (albeit around 100V after the power makes its way to the stage).

Event goes off fine; two days - no issues, everyone loves it, blah blah blah.

From that point on, I always made sure to do a site survey, no matter what, and I also learned the value of having a generator available at a moment's notice. A Honda EU6500/7000 would've been a heckuva lot easier (and cheaper to rent vs buying 4x100ft cords). Live and learn.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2021, 10:59:01 am by Steve Litscher »
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Geoff Doane

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2021, 01:00:40 pm »


I passed by a week before the show, and the janitor was good enough to let me in for a look.


Anybody else ever notice how it's a good idea to get to know and be nice to the janitor(s)?

When you need a favour or information, he's the one who can help you.

He (or she) is probably also the one who will be the last one there cleaning up when you're loading out.   ::)

GTD
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Brian Jojade

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2021, 01:15:11 pm »


From that point on, I always made sure to do a site survey, no matter what, and I also learned the value of having a generator available at a moment's notice. A Honda EU6500/7000 would've been a heckuva lot easier (and cheaper to rent vs buying 4x100ft cords). Live and learn.

Even more important, with larger events, is to include drawings and maps indicating locations of everything.  Then, have it in the contract that if the resources needed aren't present, it's on them to fix it, or there will be additional charges for you to have to scramble and get stuff together.
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Brian Jojade

John L Nobile

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2021, 01:34:43 pm »

Anybody else ever notice how it's a good idea to get to know and be nice to the janitor(s)?

When you need a favour or information, he's the one who can help you.

He (or she) is probably also the one who will be the last one there cleaning up when you're loading out.   ::)

GTD

Being nice to the bartender is an even better idea.
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Tim McCulloch

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2021, 04:27:37 pm »

Be nice to "the help" because when you have a problem or need something they are folks in a position to help (or at least send you to the people that can).  Custodians, building engineers, food & beverage folks, security, valets, housemen, local crew.

If I can drive to a venue or site in 3 hours or so, I'll do it rather than risk day of show problems... I've been 'bit' a few times relying on local information:  "I need 3, 20 amp circuits", "you'll be okay, outlets everywhere."  Yep, and every one of them on the same 15 amp breaker.  "I need 32 inches of door clearance width"  "no problem, they're 3 foot doors."  Yep, 36 inches *rough opening* so with the door hung, there's 31.5 inches of opening.

Local volunteer crew - a series of shows we did for a small radio station group usually got the local community college athletic teams but one year we got Boy Scouts.  Having been a Scout long enough ago I'd forgotten how much 'boy' was part of Scouting.  It was a long load in.  We got some additional adults for the out...

 
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"Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possible can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something."  - Kurt Vonnegut

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Re: The Stupid, Frikin' Doors are locked!!!!
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2021, 04:27:37 pm »


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