Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Crapping on the front porch

What’s going on? What’s going on? I live here. And you’re crapping on my front porch, that’s what’s going on...
A young white man, a little chubby, in shorts, red faced, is yelling loudly, standing over Human Being, who’s sprawled out on the top of the steps. This is the apartment building on 87th that used to be  a Section 8. Where Gertrude used to live. Now market rate. Which is why she lives here no more.  Human Being isn’t saying nothing.  An African-American woman security officer in summer white is approaching. And I’m on my way to work.
At the steps, I can see by the cardboard where Human Being spent the night.  Coulda been my front porch he was crapping on.  John and Ted are waitng for me as is another meeting on the business plan, the budget. A lot of marks not hit this month.  Things getting tighter.
John wants me to get serious about church growth. To take my ideas. Turn them into a strategy with target numbers and associated dollar figures. It gives me a headache, but he’s right. We have to move to a plan that leads to sustainability, not dependent  so much on grants and fundraising or even rentals. 
As they leave, Danielle arrives. A lot to get done before she leaves. Not looking forward to this. Marc arrives with his team for another tour. Danielle asks me to talk to him about session. The need to listen. To their vision of their church. To shape strategies accordingly. Whenever I miss that step, I always pay for it. But he can go full speed ahead on the gala. 
The Woodshed people are here in full force, ready to get to work. 
When I get back from car moving, Dave is back at work on the lights. He’s got a plan to light the archival exhibit.  And he’s been checking out other things. Found four speakers under the stage.  Removed the clanging fan from the ladies’ room. I take him to see the speakeasy and he’s ready to do a solo gig, Jimmy Buffet style, with guitar.  
Back in the office, I’m struggling with responses to a lawyer. To the administrative commission. Also trying to get down details with Danielle. Multitasking. And waiting for Mim. The Woodshed people drop in to say goodnight as the leave for the day. 
Mim  arrives as Danielle is almost ready to leave, so we start with her summary of what’s been going on.  Not having her focus, direction, detailed work for a week, that’s going to be hard. Then Mim and I talk. Working out the agenda for tomorrow’s meeting. Trying to keep the big picture in front of us, even while bureaucracies, church and state, wear us down, sap our energy.
Mim leaves. Back outside, I see Human Being is alseep in the south doorway. Too late to call Project Outreach. Closed for the day. As is everything else around here. Guess he’s in for the night.

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