Feast or Famine, now with 100% more famine Dreamed 5134 days ago | | 763 words

And all that should have been

After getting everything unpacked into the house, basement and barn the next day I thought the drama in my life was pretty much over.

I hooked up with my friend and business partner and our client / new employer for a few meetings prior to the big upcoming event that was planned for the end of May.

Things were good, the web site was getting hit like crazy. We were getting major traffic and play from area radio stations and a few large corporations were pouring ad money into the stations too.

The event was set to be huge!

The month went on pretty normally. We had business meetings, spent long hours planning logistics, eating pizza and planning some more.

Then the week of the event rolled around. I show up Monday morning along with my partner. We sat around most of the day from 10:30am to around 3pm when rest of “the crew” would be there.

Once they arrived, we set up scaffoldings for security and lighting, partially in the pouring down rain.

We worked until late that evening. Which is when we received the bad news.

We were going to be “working” the event. Now this was news to us, since we thought we were going to be there just to take photos, walk around and keep the web site updated with the day’s events.

What we ended up doing was towing digital message boards out to I-66 and 234, helped setup sound equipment and cameras, ran the ticket window, made signs and forms (most of which were never used) on our computers. Yes, we supplied our own machines for this thing. We drove people around, settled disputes and generally were the Geeks On Call all week(end) long.

The event itself was only 3 days, but we were there all week. Most of the time waiting on something to do, or just told we needed to be there when in fact, we did not.

The event did not go well. At all.

Author’s note: I can’t really say much about the specifics of the event due to pending legal action.

Once the event ended, we were promised payment over and over and over again. Just like we had been since the beginning of May when all this started.

See, the promoter, (our employer) was putting all his time and money into this thing, so we worked basically for free with the understanding that after the event, we would receive payment for our services (nearly 10 months of web design and development, in addition to nearly daily updates the two months prior to the event.) We had worked out asses off on this thing to make it fly.

The week of the event, my partner and I had put in over 120 hours in one week. Many nights we did not sleep, tending to something or another. We had hotel rooms, but we did not get to see much of them as half of the nights we had them for, we slept in our office or car because we were too tired to drive to the hotel.

Holding onto the hope of payment after this somehow made it seem a little less awful.

Well, that’s when things went from bad to worse…

After the event ended we were paid a little something to “tide us over” until the ticket money was deposited and there would be enough money to pay us in full.

This never happened.

We never saw anymore money. Two weeks after the event, we were still trying to track down the guy we thought we were employed with. He ignored our calls, was constantly out of town, and we heard nothing.

We took the site down, all his sites. We had 3 sites live, and another 3 in development for later in the year.

Still nothing.

We contacted him via email multiple times asking when we could expect payment. Nothing.

Finally, it got ugly when we said we would seek legal action for the now 10+ months of work we had done for him, he got very angry and replied to email with threats. Accompanying the email was a voicemail. One for each of us. Both very angry and irrational, accusing us of trying to extort money from him.

It was then when it fully him me, this was over. There never was going to be any employment. I was never going to work as a web designer for this person.

At this point, my life was in shambles, I was living off my dad, with my savings nearly depleted. I had to do something fast.

I had to find a job. Somewhere. Anywhere.


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