I ask you kindly not to read this blog if you are not planning on reading the whole thing. Skimming through will not allow you to understand what's going on here, and will take everything out of context. AND I wrote this over the span of 2 days, so sequentially it may not make sense. The benefit was Sunday Feb. 17th.
Before I get started writing anything, I think that it should be said that I am aware of the fact that I am about to sound like a world class piece of shit, but I just can't help the way I feel. Nobody can.
First of all, those of you who may not know, I run the club. I know everything that goes on there, all the time, and EVERYTHING that happens there only happens because of the things I do on a day to day basis. If it's happening, it's because I let it happen, I orchestrated it, and I'm behind it. I'm the boss, I'm in charge, and I'm the top of the totem pole. Understand?
Ok, so I just came home from a charity event we were hosting at the club tonight. It was for a foundation that I am involved with that is very near and dear to my heart. (The One Step Closer Foundation- It benefits those with Cerebral Palsy and the like.) I have been involved with kids with Cerebral Palsy for over 10 years now, from therapy, to office work, to changing diapers and wiping snotty noses and drool. Anyway, this foundation was created by my friend Jacob and I am on his board of directors. We have been working together on various ideas for months now, trying to come up with some worthwhile events to raise some money, raise awareness, and get us prepared to host a big Charity Poker Tournament in Vegas within the next year or so.
About 3 months ago, I offered to use the club for the first event. It seemed like a practical choice, being that my involvement in both the club and the charity would make it fairly easy to overlap the two. So we decided on a date, I called in some favors from a couple of comics, and we were on our way. We decided to do some catering, bring in a DJ, and have a little reception beforehand to thank everyone for coming.
I got Jerry involved, and he was nice enough to do some serious promoting with his radio show with Outlaw Dave, online with Outlaw Nation, and all over myspace. (what a sweetie!) Of course, I had the Laff Stop website, the Laff Stop myspace and the Laff Stop emailer blasting this thing all over Houston as well... every little bit helps! The Chronicle got interested at some point, and got with Jacob & his family. They later came to the club & I spent about 4 hours talking with them, taking pictures with them, etc. etc.
After looking at several caterers, I found that we were not going to be able to do catering for under $1000. Well, since it's a charity event, seems kind of silly to pay $1000 for food, when the object is to RAISE money, not spend it. So I decided to do it myself. Jacob wanted to stay under $500, so I ordered the food from my food vendor, saving us over $600 and spent all day Sunday cooking everything MYSELF and getting ready for the event.
A huge thanks definitely needs to go out to the owner of Buddha Lounge who donated a few bottles of Smirnoff Vodka for the reception, DJ Stacy Stylez who flew in from New York to bump some tunes, and Albert Im who came in from Austin to participate in the comedy portion of the benefit.
Now here comes the unfortunate part:
*So far we've established that this benefit was:
my ticket selling website,
my email blasts,
my fiancee doing radio promoting,
I paid for the catering,
I did the catering,
and I paid for my design guy to design the fliers
AND I had the fliers printed and distributed.
The Chronicle story finally came out on Friday. There was only one sentence mentioning the Laff Stop & they failed to include my headliner in the promotions. Nothing from me, nothing from the club, no pictures, missing headshots, & pretty much no content on the benefit at all. In essence, these people wasted hours of my time for nothing. (And those of you who know me, know that I have VERY LITTLE time to spare these days.) Needless to say, I was pretty miffed. The story was pitched to me as a promo for the benefit, but not only did they not really promo the benefit after wasting all of my time, but what little they did promo, they didn't get right.
Now, I know most of you don't know much about "the business" but rule of thumb: you don't promo your headliner, your headliner WILL pull the date, and therefore you have no more show! Luckily, the headliner was Jerry. Jerry's moral convictions, and the fact that his word is as good as gold kept him from totally bailing on the show. (And it probably doesn't hurt that he's my fiancee, and he would do it for me if I asked him to.) But anyone else would have pulled the date and this blog would stop right here.
The unfortunate part is that it does not stop here.
I decided on Sunday to swallow my pride, put on a smile, and just make the best of it. I spent all day running around getting ready for this thing, all afternoon cooking the food for the reception, and getting everything in line for the event. At the club, I'm handling the food and the waitresses, making sure everyone is well educated on the hours d'vours, and fielding questions for everyone and their dog in between.
Finally, I have spoken to everyone, thanked everyone for coming, settled everyone in their places, and we're ready to start the show. I'm thinking I'll hang around and see how it goes, and enjoy finally being off my feet and finally not having to play point for an hour or so.
Mason goes on stage to emcee, and takes Jacob with him. They proceed to thank everyone and their dog for their participation and help. Everyone but me. Then he proceeds to tell everyone that this whole thing would not be possible without Jacob, that this was his brilliant idea, that he worked so hard on getting everything put together, and was 99.9% responsible for all facets of making this benefit a success.
EXCUSE ME? WHAT??
It was all I could do to not break down in tears right there in the showroom. I have busted my ass over the course of the last 3 months, I've called in all kinds of favors, put in over $6,000 worth of goods and services, and not only do I not even get a thank you, but Jacob gets to take credit for all my hard work? I was crushed.
I just couldn't stay.
And I don't believe I will be working with them or even speaking to them for quite some time.
P.S. I later found out that this was all a "school project" for Jacob. I hope all my hard work got him an "A".