Last night was the first night of our October fundraisers. Yesterday was also the opening day of my October to March volunteer coaching gig. I actually traveled to Manhattan around 8AM, met with everybody, and we taught two classes. After we were done with the kids, I went for two not-too-punishing rounds of randori with my great and good friend Gentle Jimmy G. In the locker room after our workout, I mentioned to another player, "Jimmy'll kill you, but he'll never hurt you." The general consensus among us (judoka, wrestlers, MMArtists) is that he is the perfect opponent- someone who plays hard and smart, but clean... you fight with him, and you'll be in Asskick Central for three to five minutes, then you'll leave the dojo feeling tired, but physically intact.
I got to work at 4PM and hit the ground running- we had to prepare the parking lot and a couple of satellite lots for the influx of visitors, then the event started. As longtime readers will remember, the organization had a round of layoffs last January. A lot of the tasks that used to be handled in-house are now handled by contractors. We have one custodial worker, an extremely nice guy from the Dominican Republic, who is cleaning three sites during the week and doing interoffice mail on an ad hoc basis- "Can you stop by head office on your way to the other site?" For the weekend events, custodial duties are handled by a cleaning company.
The two cleaners who worked this weekend covered two of our sites- they worked a daytime event then hotfooted it up to another site to work the evening. Last night, while they were preoccupied with traveling from Point A to Point B, a custodial nightmare took place... there was not a single square of T.P. in the women's restroom. I didn't know what sort of arrangements had been made for the weekends, so I was operating under the assumption that we were custodianless. Our shop manager called me in a near-panic about the situation (luckily, we have a second women's restroom and a handicap-accessible bathroom) and I had to step in to fill the vacuum. I had to rummage around in the custodial closet to find the set of housekeeping keys, then I had one of our part-timers, the daughter of our office manager, stand guard at the women's bathroom door while I figured out which key opened the T.P. holders. I then had to grab a bunch of rolls of paper to fill the holders completely (each holds two rolls). After that, I decided that the place needed a good sweeping, because there were paper towels all over the place... I feared that the night would be a long, onerous one, and I was scheduled to work until 8AM.
Staffing is a major issue now- the "realignment" that sent 10% of our workforce packing created a situation in which we could cope, through a great deal of creativity and hard work, with the day-to-day operations of the organization. Now that we are in our major fundraising month, with multiple events each weekend, the short staffing has the potential to put us in crisis mode. Speaking for myself, I don't mind the occasional challenge of having to jump through hoops of fire, but it's not something I want to sustain for a month.
I got home around 8:45 in the morning today and slept until about 1:45PM. I woke up stiff and a bit sore, feeling every bit like a not-so-young guy who has had a twenty-four hour beating. A long, extremely hot shower allowed me to crawl up the evolutionary ladder (yeah, I know evolution doesn't work that way) so I was human enough to work four hours this afternoon. I need to be back at work at midnight.
I always joke that my job is extremely cushy, except when it's not. This is firmly a "not" month.