Last night, I volunteered at Diman Tech in Fall River, which was one of the sites of Deval's Town Hall Meetings. I've been working on it for a few weeks now and the event was a complete success. He made his quick speech, the kids got to meet the Governor, lots of people got to ask questions and I got to meet all sorts of cool people - and then, when it came time for the Q&A section, I was supposed to be one of the Mic people.
If I ever dreamed of being a political event planner, that dream is pretty much over as of last night. So, what happened? Mr. "Oh, I know how to use microphones really well because I've been in lots of musicals" holds the Mic for the his first question to no sound. Panic was setting in and I had no idea what to do. People in the back were saying "we can't hear you." Oops. The Governor had to save my butt, by walking very, very close to the person asking the question - and giving me his microphone for the lady to use. Then I had to hand his microphone back to him. So, yea, it was pretty much a personal disaster - not one of the real disaster varieties, like Katrina or Tsunamies, of course, but the type that my future spouse will someday tell my laughing children about... "one day, Ryan got to help the Governor and fucked it up. Har, Har, Har."
Of course, it totally wasn't my fault. The Mic wasn't configured right backstage (and that's when my spouse will say "oh, sure, Ryan"), but my cheeks were Tomato-esque nonetheless... and I'm sure Mr. Governor didn't blame me. Just Sure.
Immediately succeeding my question, I ran to Diman's principal and he fixed my Mic. All was well - he even checked it for me. All was well until it was time for another question from my area, of course. This time, instead of not hearing anything, everyone in the room got to enjoy seismic pains in their heads as the Mic screeched and scratched like a banshee with an hangover. Oh, yes, I went there.
"You're Mic isn't working, is it?" Pleaded the Governor to me, as he passed me his microphone over yet again. This time, however, it went straight to the person asking the question - as if I was bad luck or something. Deval, being a smart man, can sense those kinds of things - so he was probably right. It was at this point that mortification seemed to be something that was set in stone. All I could do was laugh in my head.
The third and last question I was tasked to help with more or less worked (yay!), as I had realized the reason why I had Mic problems the second time was the fact that a sneaky radio reporter was holding his Mic very, very close to mine. Mics are kind of like magnets with the same charge; they just don't like to be near each other. Of course, I had to hurriedly explain this to Deval Patrick's paid staff person before the third question - just so something drastic wouldn't have to be done (like me sitting on my ass while someone else handled my third q). The good news was that the third question really riled up the crowd - as it was on the Fall River LNG situation, in a Fall River school... and the guy asking the question was a riot.
Thankfully, the Town Hall Meeting at Fall River wasn't all fun and laughs - at my expense - and I have a lot of pictures and quotes to prove it. I'll post those later tonight, when I have access to my camera and notebook, so make sure to check it out then. For now, though, I hope you all enjoyed the laughs. That seems to be all that I'm good for...