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nceca issues

updated wed 12 jan 11


mel jacobson on tue 11 jan 11

just to clear the air again. i am sure that people
will tell you that there are rooms available for all sorts
of things. `hey, we will get you a clayart room.`
but, most often what we think will be there, is not.
no reservations made.
`oh, sorry, it won't happen next year.`
mel has to scramble like a maniac.
`oh, and by the way, the fee on that room is 800 bucks a day.`

those are the parts of a big conference that annoy me.
one person says one thing, another cancels it.

and, each year is different...different folks, new town, new rules.

like when vince, snail, po and mel gave a presentation.
we went early, vince and snail had computers all set with
our images to project....we practiced, i found the house
lights and mic control box, and we made it all ready.
(i have been down this road many times.)

we showed up the morning of the show and nothing worked.
four presentations
were cancelled that morning because things did not work.

ours went without a hitch...because we did it ourselves. and all four of
us knew beforehand that we had to be on our own. also
i think i was only one of about 30 that had their information,
tech info and presentation sent in on time. some never did
turn in their materials. but, they still got to present.
(well, if the tech worked.)

i am sure i called ten hotels and talked to the convention
director. in each case they hemm'd and haw'd. ` don't know
what we can do for you...we are really busy.` odd for a down
economy. but that is the fact. laguna called many hotels and
got the same run around. maybe it is the culture of tampa, i
don't know. as i have said before...mel and clayart has a
4 star rating as a group in the hotel rating system. that is as
good as it gets. but, it mattered not to those folks.
life goes on. new folks will step forward. i have no idea where the
mug exchange will be. i don't know where t shirts will be sold.
you sure won't be able to have a dishes show. and who knows
where acers will hold their meetings. potters council will have to
make other arrangements. we have always provided them space
in the clayart room.

i have no ax to grind with any members of the nceca staff. they have
their hands full every year. and it is more than frustrating for them
too. it is what it is. i hate to say it, but often nceca is directed
by sheer amateurs. folks that teach someplace and all they
have to do is pass responsibility to others. that does not
work when you do a conference. you are totally responsible. they go
to a bar and drink and party. `oh, did i have to do that?, i didn't know.`
and, i have a notebook full of notes about that very issue. it is sad.
some work their tails off, and do a great job, but some only think they
get a fancy badge and get to go to parties. it takes great commitment
to make a conference work. some do, some don't.
it reminds me of an old gallery owner here in mpls. i stopped on a
monday after a big opening. there he was, sweeping, taking out
wine bottles, and cleaning up cheese stuck in the plants, wine
spilled all over...and he said...`mel, few know what it takes to run
a gallery and make a buck, they think it is just a great party.`
reminds me of nceca.

from: minnetonka, mn
clayart link:
new book: