In the morning, I bandaged the other toe. It turned out that the bandaid on the toe beside it had rubbed all the skin off of one side. So Sunday my toes actually didn't hurt. Good thing, because my legs were really feeling the strain. What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, and I *do* feel that I've gained some muscle and stamina.
Sunday morning we checked out of the hostel, packed the car, and drove down to the CC parking. I was terribly afraid we'd be too late - one other time the lot was full by the time we got there - but in spite of the dozens of cars turning in to it, we got in all right. No walking! I don't think we could have done that another day.
I was at my post before 11:00, ready to face another day of helping the crowds get where they needed to be. I handled everything alone for about a half hour again, then grammahobbit (GH) showed up to help. At noon we went up to the 700 level to share the photo-op with LN that I had purchased, and then returned to our post. (Since He was up there, the line just waited, and there wasn't that much that needed doing.)
And then about 2:00 Annoyance showed up in the form of an unneeded volunteer. I forget her name, which is just as well since I shouldn't use it here anyway, but she's very short and very round and has a smiling, bubbly personality that makes her at first appear very likable. But she's bossy, self-righteous, and doesn't care whose toes she steps on. I'll call her Pipsqueek.
GH is telling the photographers where to stand and autograph buyers where to line up, so Pipsqueek starts telling them that. I'm calling down the line about money and preparedness, so she starts doing that. After being moderately in the way for awhile, she disappears again.
Later she returns and starts being annoying again. Now this would have been only annoying, except that her real motivation came out at the end. In previous years, I had recognized that I simply had a private peeve with her (and so did many others), but this time she went too far, and I suppose she has done this regularly and I simply hadn't been there to notice.
The line was ending. LN was going to leave essentially as soon as it was gone. In the meantime, a few people had missed the photo-op session, so he arranged a time to simply stand in front of his booth with them and allow someone with a camera to snap the picture. These spur-of-the-moment photo-ops were also sold for $60, and he did several, then finished up the autographs.
Gary had promised me one. I had timidly asked whether I might have two, and he said no, so I took what I was given. At this point, as LN is finishing up, I saw that my book was lying on the desk unsigned, and reminded Gary of it. He pushed it over to LN, telling him that it was mine, then gave it back to me. Now, while I was over on the other side of Gary, Pipsqueek comes running up, waving her arms and hands around and excitedly exclaiming something like, "Oh yay! Now I get my autograph!"
I stood there with my mouth open. I couldn't believe it. Of all the gall, to have worked a couple hours for LN, and without first clearing it with Gary, she simply assumed that she had earned an autograph! I shamedly admit that my first thought was jealousy - that she should so easily get what I had worked so hard for. It wasn't until later that I truly realized what she had done.
After getting the autograph, she climbed right up beside LN, stuck her face next to his, and told someone waiting to snap the picture! THEN, she called to all her friends to come up and get a picture with him!
Unfortunately, the very large volunteer hadn't been sitting there. It just hadn't seemed necessary right then. And I'm not sure he'd have had the wits to figure it out faster than I did anyway. But think about it:
What we're there for is to protect the guest from just such behavior! And we failed him. And I feel awful about that. Of course he's going to just go along with it! The star can't be rude to his fans. It's our job to protect him from that. I would suppose that she's been getting away with this for years, blissfully unaware that she has no right to impose like that, that in fact she's supposed to be preventing it.
As if all of this weren't bad enough, she now volunteers to escort him to the green room! That is supposed to be done by staff! She actually took his hand and dragged him along! (Well, it would be pretty hard to drag that man without his cooperation, but by her actions and intent that's what happened.)
I got my autograph (which I earned) and my photo-op (which I paid for), but best of all was Gary telling me, just before he left, that he couldn't have handled it without me. And asked for a hug! Ah! Appreciation! But I just said (which is true), "That's what we're here for."
And then I went and reported Pipsqueek to the head of the volunteers, which made me feel better. Something will be done.
After that, things were winding down. LN left about 4:00; at 5:00 I had a photo-op with Walter Koenig; I talked with another volunteer that I hadn't yet seen that weekend; found Daughter and left. Anticlimax. Like all good events.
My one regret is that I didn't get Gary's email. I thought about asking at one point, but couldn't think of any reason I'd ever need it. Now I just really wish I could apologize for those last few minutes when I was too much taken by surprise to act.