For the first 80% of the day, pretty much everything that could have gone wrong did. First of all, the 3pm call time for the bartending gig had changed to 2pm (screwing up some other scheduling), then the bus that I take down to the CTC decides that it's a "special" that doesn't go that far west. making me walk an extra half mile and miss being able to pick up a beverage. Then my 10am meeting with a job coach ended up not having made it "onto the books", so my purpose for being down there was fucked (I did get a later slot, so I just hung out). Over the weekend I'd designed name badges for this promo event that CTC is doing next week, and I'd brought in the files, only to discover that their computers wouldn't let me install the fonts I needed, despite trying every trick in the book. Then I discovered that the meet-up location for the temp gig (which I called to check on thee times) was wrong, so we (about a dozen of us got the same bad info) had to walk about another half mile and were defacto (albeit not dejure, as we had been where they told us to be when they told us to be there) late. Then I discover, despite the very specific information that I had been given when I took the gig, that I was not at the gig as a bartender, but as a server. And, it was a lot hotter and sunnier than I had hoped for it to be. I came very close to simply throwing in the towel and just going home, although I was ultimately glad that I didn't ... while my supervisor did switch me to a bar, I didn't have my full kit (I should have "smelled at rat" when they told me to just bring minimal gear), so when an "assigned" bartender showed up for space I'd set up, I let him take that, and went back to the supervisor, who then put me on "support" stuff (like cutting extra fruit for the bars and schlepping ice, etc.), which I could live with.
The event was a party for 3,200 outdoors in Millennium Park, in and around the Pritzger Pavillion ... the sponsoring insurance company (it was the finale of their convention) had spent a ton of money on this ... and part of that was on entertainment ... which we pretty much just got to sit on our butts and watch between doing the dinner and the desert/cocktail part of the party. They had all sorts of folks (that I didn't catch, still schlepping stuff around) to start, but they had Chevy Chase MC'ing their (interminable) awards presentations, then had ELTON JOHN for the musical feature!
Now, I've been to a lot of conventions over the years, and typically a "big name entertainer" comes up, does five or six tunes, and it's over ... Elton John was on for over two hours and did fourteen songs! Here's the list:
Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me
I Guess That's Why They Call It The Blues
Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word
Candle In The Wind
Take Me To The Pilot
Benny And The Jets
and, as an encore ... The Circle Of Life
This was then followed by a really remarkable fireworks show which had been set up all around the Pavilion and Great Lawn, with most of it going up right over the Frank Gehry designed concert stage, with the Aeon Center (3rd tallest building in Chicago) as a backdrop.
Now, by the time the event was over (I was "on the clock" from 2pm to 1am) I could barely walk (it was a challenge to get over to catch my bus, and I was doing the "Igor shuffle" today), but it was very cool to get to see Elton John, in a concert that would have usually been something like a minimum $150 ticket, not only for free but being paid (if only a paltry pittance) to sit around and watch it!
Unfortunately, I've totally lost trust in the Temp group at this point. I am not a waiter, I am no good with trays, and I'm useless when it comes to table service (which, thankfully, never came up as a possibility last night). As cool as it was getting to see that concert, I was lied to about the gig, and was once again in a non-tipped role getting paid a lower hourly rate. I really can't see making the effort (especially if these other bartending gigs come through) to even touch base with them again (well, after picking up the check for this gig).
I just hope that all these efforts down at the CTC will help get me a "real job" in the near future!