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Welcome to my snarky corner of the web. Join me as I discuss everything from wine to chocolate. There may be a few other topics mixed in there too. I talk a bunch about my amazing offspring, 19 and 17. I sometimes go on and on about my secret crush on the amazing Mike Rowe. I talk about things that irritate me or things that make me happy. Sometimes I just talk to hear myself talk. Feedback is always appreciated but please make sure it's respectable. No nudity or profanity. I'm the only one allowed to be profane. But any and all snark is welcome and appreciated!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Lazy people really boil my lobsters...

After reading this post by the lovely and talented Robyn of Hollow Tree Ventures, I was inspired to write my own take on this issue. It's one that I just had to deal with on a major scale and it pissed me off. It's something that has happened for the past 3 years, and for some reason, this year it just really churned my butter.



Let me 'splain it to you. I am the coordinator for our High School band's spring banquet. My first year (16's freshman year) I co-coordinated with my friend Mimzy (you can read her blog here, she's awesome). That year, her son graduated and she had one year off after that before her youngest was a freshman, so 16's Sophomore year, I took over the job. Confused yet? Good.

Here's how we do this every year. It's a potluck dinner that we hold in the cafeteria, and each class brings something: Freshman bring salads, Sophomores bring sides, Juniors bring main dishes and Seniors bring desserts/beverages. Are you with me? Good.

Now to the aggravating part. Every year we send out a blanket email invitation from the band director explaining the deal, asking for the folks to bring stuff and reminding them to RSVP to one of us (me or Mimzy, who is back in the HS in full swing with her youngest). This same message also goes out to all parents in the county's school portal, Livegrades. It's on the band's website. Every parent should see this in one way or another. The kids all talk about it. So explain to me WHY in the WORLD NO ONE RSVP's??? Yet they show up! And SOME show up EMPTY HANDED!!! Here's a little breakdown for you:

2012 -  125 kids in band,  59 families RSVP, 215 were expected, over 300 people showed up
2013 -  147 kids in band,  57 families RSVP, 220 were expected, over 350 people showed up
2014 -  155 kids in band,  64 families RSVP, 244 were expected, OVER 430 people showed up

This year, we ran out of chicken before the last table was sent up to the buffet (the band booster organization provides the chicken each year). We ran out of forks. We ran out of plates. Why? Because HOW can you POSSIBLY plan a banquet when you expect 250 people and almost 200 more show up? How hard is it to respond to an email? Make a phone call? Send a damn text? Shit, I see a great many of these folks at sporting events, concerts and even the grocery store! Couldn't you just say "Hey there will be 3 of us at the banquet, see you then!"???? Is that so friggin' hard?? I could scream!

I walked around that cafeteria saying hello to folks and under my breath I was whispering to myself: "You didn't RSVP, YOU didn't RSVP, and oh, there's ANOTHER family who didn't RSVP." Yes, I must have looked nuts.

Now, here is our big quandary. Next year's band will be the biggest we've ever had. We have 180 kids signed up. Our cafeteria seats 450 UNcomfortably. Seriously, this year at 430 attendees, we were packed in there like sardines. We are averaging about 41% of band families RSVP'ing to the event. Let me put it to you plainly: WE. ARE. SCREWED.

So I'm putting this question to you, my dear Snarklings: How do you get people to listen to an RSVP? And what measures should we take in the future to ensure we have enough room? Do we make it band kids only? Or only invite Senior parents?  I like the Senior parents idea, and if you are a parent of a kid in another grade and want to attend, not only is RSVP MANDATORY, but you also have to come and help set up and stay for clean up. Damn right I'm bitchy about this subject.

27 comments:

  1. This boils my lobstahs, too.

    Work out some sort of "ticket" system. No ticket? No fucking grub.

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    1. P S A roll of tickets like you get at a carnival or arcade are very inexpensive at Wal Mart.

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    2. Great suggestion, we may go with tickets. Or baseball bats.

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  2. I'm totally with Toby (not a real Dumbass). Ticket system. In next year's communication, in all caps, tell them WE'VE HAD TO MAKE SOME CHANGES TO THE PROGRAM TO ACCOMMODATE OUR BAND FAMILIES. In order to attend the band banquet, YOU MUST HAVE TICKETS FOR EVERYONE IN YOUR FAMILY. (Tickets are free, but must be acquired by RSVP).

    Spread the word early in the year about the changes and keep reminding people. Have the students (do you have student officers?) take the reins on that and bang that drum. No way you should have this much stress because some people really are lazy dumbasses and don't RSVP.

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    1. Hell...I'll donate the tickets to keep Snarky's lobstahs from getting boiled!

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    2. I'm thinking maybe charging a dollar or two for tickets, make money for the band and keep people accountable. And Toby, my lobstah's thank you!!

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  3. it's bad enough when they don't RSVP for birthday parties....but this? Oh yeah, I'd definitely do the ticket system. If they show up at the door with food in their hands and no tickets... tooo bad....but they can donate the food. LOL

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    1. Exactly. Leave your band kid and your food, come back later for pick up/clean up.

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  4. I don't know when, in our society, RSVPs became optional, but that seems to be happening everywhere. And it pisses me off so much. How fucking hard is it to RSVP for something?! It's so rude and obnoxious to not. I like the ticket system too. That way, if they don't have one, you have a great excuse to say, "No soup for you!"

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    1. I would like to think that people still use common courtesy, but sadly, that's dying off like the dinosaur. And you can be our Soup Nazi!

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  5. I love the ticket idea. "We have tickets for the first 400 reservations, so RSVP today!" "Due to the band's popularity, we have more families than seats! Don't delay, RSVP today or you'll miss out on it!"
    Other option is for you and Mimzy to NOT coordinate it, and instead go out for a nice quiet dinner that night. (Says team mom/class mom/coordinator to all kinds of kid things) ;)

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    Replies
    1. Jolie, THAT is the best idea I've heard all year.

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    2. I'm with Jolie...
      Signed,
      Burnt-Out PTA Mom!

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  6. I agree with everyone else - no ticket, tough luck. We did that with a recent school auction, and people got with the program. Plus, it gives you a guilt-free way to turn people away at the door, which I'll be happy to come over and do for you because it's the sort of thing that warms my evil little heart. (And thanks for linking to my post, that was so sweet - it's good to know I'm not the only one stewing!)

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    Replies
    1. Robyn, I may take you up on that offer to be our band banquet bouncer!

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  7. I remember those days!!!!! Happens probably at most sport banquets! But you know what annoys me the MOST???? How about rude people who don't RSVP to wedding receptions, ect. !! I guess no one cares that dinner's on us! hahha!!! There needs to be a lesson on how to RSVP because it's apparent some idiots failed the lesson the first time!! BTW...ticket idea.....verrrry good!!!! :) Nina

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    1. It should be taught in schools, Nina. How to be a proper adult. RSVP, keep your word, raise your children to be respectful. Definitely needs to be taught in schools.

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    2. Sad thing is...kids COULD learn it at school but then you still have parents who refuse to be respectful!! And parents are SUPPOSE to be the main role models...tsk-tsk!

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  8. No ticket, no dinner. Or no RSVP, no dinner. Have someone with the RSVP list at the door. Those whose names are not on it, sorry Charlie. Oh, advertise the hell out of it, that you have new rules. They don't follow a simple request, they are out of luck. Maybe next time they'll pay attention but don't count on it!

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  9. Yes to the tickets!!!! No RSVP = $7.00 per person at the door. That should encourage them to RSVP. It could be used as a last minute fundraiser. :) There will probably be more RSVP's!!

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    1. We should get one of the band kids to be the bouncer because as much as I talk a mean game, I'd be afraid someone would hurt me if I barred them entry. But tickets AND a fundraiser to get in are a GREAT idea!

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  10. I agree with the ticket or a wristband solution. No ticket, no admittance. Maybe when sending the invites dictate that there are only a certain amount of seats and not all can fit. Cut it off at 250 people. First come first serve. Have a cutoff date to rsvp. If any show up without an invite don't let them in. Period.

    People nowadays are very inconsiderate and selfish. Teach them a lesson.

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    Replies
    1. Phil, you're a big strapping lad, would you come be our bouncer? We'd pay you in fried chicken.

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  11. This brings back memories of my high school band banquets - thank you for volunteering your time! But, to the yucky part -- as technology has improved, people's social skills and decorum have declined. I have no idea why people no longer feel inclined to RSVP...even when you make it stupidly easy to do so. I feel for you, I really do!

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    1. That's the thing, Lauren. There is no longer a need to pick up the phone and RSVP when you can send an email or a text indicating that YES you can come or NO you can't make it. Not sure what makes it so difficult.

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  12. Tickets or if your name is not on the RSVP list, you don't get in, food or not!

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