Re: [Harp-L] 36 harmonica fests, an overview
- To: Harp L Harp L <harp-l@xxxxxxxxxx>
- Subject: Re: [Harp-L] 36 harmonica fests, an overview
- From: Joseph Leone <3n037@xxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Fri, 5 Apr 2013 19:27:35 -0400
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Due to the upcoming spah event, and the influx of new members (both list and spah), I feel this sheet could help. Keep in mind, this is TWO years old.
Pay particular attention to point 3 a ii. Which I fell is negated this year.
On Apr 28, 2011, at 2:16 PM, Joe Leone wrote:
> Ok, where do I begin? To say that I'm excited about the upcoming spah is an understatement. So last night I was at the gig and it was all I could think of. As I walked backwards through my mind (aka memory), I couldn't help but come up with some thoughts that I might like to share.
> After 36 fests, I have developed a mind set. Which goes as follows:
> 1... To go to a fest, you first need the time. I remember my first fest and at that time I had only 12 years seniority, had to pick my vacation time by Jan of the year. It was nigh impossible to get that first week in Sept. (which was when it was originally held), so I had to weasel other ways around that.
> Then you need money..but that is so obvious I'm not even going to give it a category.
> 2... So now I needed transportation. If I fly, that means an airline ticket. If I take the wife, that's 2 tickets. If I drive, I can save money on the airline tickets, but now I'm looking at gas, food, and maybe motel stays. It turned out that with 2 of us, it was usually cheaper to drive. BUT, now we have another problem. If the drive is long, we need a motel EACH way, meals, and other expenses which can negate any benefit we received from NOT buying TWO airline tickets.
> a... I used to have a policy. Since the earth is 24,901.55 miles in dia, I will allow a total drive of 2,490.1 miles. (or 1,245 one way). This means I have two days driving to get to a fest. 2 LONG days. Ergo, I am basically driving 4 days for a 5 or 3 day fest.
> b... Someone mentioned the price of gas being a factor. This really isn't. A drive to Garden State entails 100 gal. If the price of gas goes up 10%, that's a difference of $35.oo. The TAXES and other ridiculous charges on the hotel rooms is more than that in only 2 nights.
> c... There have been times when a hotel was supposed to have a shuttle and when I got to the airport I find that they lost their permit. Whaaaaa?
> So, in other words, any doofuss can drive to an airport, but a shuttle needs a PERMIT? Here's your local govt., a govt that is supposed to be encouraging visitors, and some could use the revenue, throwing the ole permit, occupancy tax, room tax, amusement tax, state tax, monkey wrenches.
> 3... Now you need lodging. The spah staff goes way above and beyond the call of duty to find the best deal they possibly can. I don't think everyone realizes that they do this for nothing, it costs THEM, and they go into their own pockets. And for what? For fame? hah. For glory? ha. To show off? hah.
> a... Remember, they have a list of criteria that they have to go by. In it the priorities are listed in order of necessity. At then end of that list are the: "It would be nice..if" list. There are things regarding the food service(s), the gala dinner, conveniences ON scene. Spcl. note: The ONLY things that I have EVER said negatively about any fest were:
> i... The place is too dang cold
> ii.. There is nothing nearby in the shape of a convenience store/gas station/late night diner/donut shop...for us late birds.
> iii. The staff at a particular hotel was snotty, or loud (in the morning).
> 4... Now you need a ticket. This is gonna be short. You can't beat this deal. Especially if you're a spah member
> a... The shows are mostly done by people whom are not only NOT getting paid, they are generally paying to even BE there.
> b... The few who are being paid..deserve it. After all, they are professionals and as such put on a professional act. And since this is their livlihood, they have bills to pay. Just like an (say) electrician. Many of them are giving up their OWN gig schedule to be there. Some actually loose money on the deal.
> c... The seminars are generally done by people whom are NOT being paid. Some that are having their expenses covered are being covered by our gracious sponsors. Thank God for that, as we could never do it otherwise.
> 5... The gala dinner. Some have said that they could do without the dinner. Some even feel that the awards ceremony could wane. Hmmm, weel, the way I see it is that we are already under appreciated by other groups of musicians. So, if we can't honor and respect our own FAMILY..who then?
> I have never had a bad dinner at one of the fests.
> 6... The spah staff. Now where the he!!(ck) are you going to find a more congenial bunch of people. I mean, when I pop in the door, I am actually looking forward to seeing them. Elizabeth Atkinson is already working feverishly on spah 2012. So is Valerie Redler & Phil Caltebellotta with Garden state. So is Danny Gajovski with trying to re-float Buckeye. So is Tom McCraig with Cardinal state. How about Paul Davies? Craftily cajoling people into doing things for the benefit of others. Himself selfless. What about Winslow? Using guile and artifice to get harmonica stars to drop what THEY're doing and play at spah. What about our wonderful sponsors? Helping to hold us up like a giant crutch. What about Tom 'Strykeforce' Stryker? Holding it all together. L. J. Atkinson? A phone practically attached to his ear. And out great secretary, treasurer, and membership people. HH editors Juan and Phil. Dang, I know I forgot some people, but I think you get the message.
> 7... Hotel staff? Once we moved from Romulus, I never had a problem again. The staff at Romulus just WEREN't meant for the hospitality industry.
> 8... Sometimes we have other guests sharing the hotels at the same time. This is to be expected when the hotels are big enough to accommodate us. That usually means they are big enough to accommodate others too. It's just something that we have to live with.
> 9... Holding fests outdoors or at a camp ground. Nope. Here's why. The girls (God bless em), like bathrooms. Specifically: their OWN bathrooms. They like water. Specifically: HOT water. They like to wash their hair. Specifically: they like to rinse their hair.
> Me? I am 98.6 degrees (when I'm breathing) and as such, I prefer 78.6 degrees. Anything much hotter and I like A.C. Much lower and I like HEAT. I once had a camper trailer, but at my age, I think I am past that. I spend a lot of time outside, but knowing I can come in and take a 'nappie-pie' is just oh so comforting. Nope, some cities are too cold at the time the fests are held. Some are too hot. In Dallas, you can get branded by a seat belt clasp just getting into your car.
> I have to go now, I thin the boss is calling....... smo-joe
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