Tuesday, August 12, 2003

For the love of...
A friend of mine was complaining in a list about how the management of a venue where they host monthly excursions were complaining about noise. Before you know it, there were voices that complained about how the management most likely was (mal)treating them for not being official artists. The main claim was, "We're not doing this just for fun. Its because we love poetry."

I found this strange.
Because when I used to host these events, many got onto my case for not "giving others a voice." Or according to some, "For not letting others have the chance to be in the limelight in decision-making." Heck, there were even a few who demanded I was being "Racist" and "Discriminated against people."

And now, for a simple request to be aware of noise levels, they claim it to be a question of respect. The lack of being recognized as something "official". The want to be treated as established artists. As people with every right to do the event any way they want to. A question of respect. And of being identified as something more than just people who do love poetry but as people who officially can turn the bookstore into a screamfest if they so desire.

Why can't they see it merely as a store that does have to cater to people who aren't attending the event as well.
And franky, where does boisterous laughter have a place in poetry reading? I can understand at times it happens, but its not intended to be the main thrust of a reading is it? So why is such a request such a big deal?

Its not like they said, "Don't read your poetry out loud."
They said, "Try to keep the noise level down."

Its a big difference if you as me.

The store has every right to make the request for toning down, in my opinion. It doesn't matter if other events have a whole band and circus ensemble. The point is, it is STILL their venue and their activity. The people who attend it, as well as map out its events, are merely participating in the event. That has always been the case. When the question of regulations comes in, the venue has EVERY RIGHT TO MAKE WHATEVER RULES THEY PREFER just as the participants have EVERY RIGHT TO LEAVE IF THEY DON'T AGREE WITH THE MANAGEMENT's DECISIONS.

So is it really a complaint about respect?
Or the same "this is ours to do as we want, no one should tell us how to regulate it" scenario I was verbally attacked with in the past? Is this simply a sign of the same stubborness to simply host events that love poetry in-line with the guidelines of the venue, or is it an unspoken yet evidently desired need to be treated with respect since there is a belief that the event is theirs and not the venues?

Frankly, if the event was theirs... like how a show band's performance is theirs... or how a respected artist's fame is his... then the management would have been paying them for every event they accomplished in the venue. Obviously, that's not the case.

To those of that particular group, I do hope you read this as food-for-thought and not what every statement I make seems to be so easily misinterpreted as. I opted to post it here instead since frankly, it's pointless to post it on the list. I'll just be another target for everyone's slanderous words. No thank you. Just realise though, there NEVER was such problems with management in the past. Not when I handled relations with them. Why? Because I knew what role we really had then.

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