Welcome to the 21st century

Sandwiched in between my two careers in the information technology business, I spent six years working for the youth theatre guild that my children participated in. I was really a sort of glorified volunteer in a way. It was a very small non-profit organization and so I was paid a small stipend. This was fine with me for a very long time. I loved the organization and the work. Even when I didn’t. And it provided me a way to be involved with my teenage children without, you know, being involved with them but that’s a whole ‘nother story. And I am not sure they would see it that way.

Anyway, when I became the administrator of the Ann Arbor Young Actors Guild waaaaay back in the late 1990s, almost the first thing I did was drag YAG onto the World Wide Web. I loved the theatre training and experience that my children were getting but I didn’t like that rehearsal schedules were published sporadically and many times the only way I could figure out when my kids had their next rehearsal was to ASK someone when I picked them up at the end of the current rehearsal. I did not want to drive all the way across town during rush hour only to find that my children were not needed at that particular rehearsal. There had to be a better way.

Trial by fire. Back in those days, YAG didn’t have its own domain name. I ran the YAG webpages off the free space we got with our family’s email service. The url to get to the actual YAG content was about five miles long. The denizens of the Planet Ann Arbor are usually a bit ahead on the tech game and so a lot of people had email and web access then but getting to our website was still a challenge. But more and more people managed to get there and we also set up a Yahoo group and some people joined that and some didn’t. But we were underway and I’ll never forget that somebody at the cast party for hmm, Alice maybe (?), mentioned the new website and everyone in the room cheered and visiting dog barked and everything. Man oh man, I felt like I had arrived.

I kept the website going as long as I worked there. I never really got it to be as interactive as I wanted it to be but I was diligent about keeping the content updated. No one ever cheered me again. Some people even complained, “You didn’t say this or that or you did say this or that and it was confusing blah-de-blah and you spelled this wrong.” And that was okay. Being a webmaster is what it is. I learned a heckuva lot from running that website and sometimes it helps me in my second IT career, the one I am currently working in and am paid pretty dern well, thank you very much.

So, back in the late 1990s, I tried to drag YAG into the 21st century and I had some success. The folks who are hanging out with YAG now have gone beyond my meager 1990s efforts. YAG is now on Twitter and Facebook.

All I have to say is YAY FOR YAG!!! It is a wonderful organization that changed my childrens’ lives, not to mention my own.

I have a lot of photos of YAG plays somewhere around on this electronical beastie but this is one of the few I could easily find. It is of Mouse (long hair) leading a cast of younger children in warmups before a play at Scarlett Middle School. Which play? Darned if I can remember! She was either the assistant director or the stage manager, I can’t remember that either. Mouse was not feeling well at the time (garden variety virus) and during one of the performances I had to call the GG to come and pick her up and take her home. I love my current IT career but I do sometimes miss the old YAG days.

One Response to “Welcome to the 21st century”

  1. Margaret Says:

    You miss YAG the way I miss being involved with gymnastics in the Booster club. You can’t go back and recapture those times, but they sure are fun to think about! (mostly)