Judges Blog… 4
As a judge you are in some respects acting as not only an ambassador for the CACC but also the club you represent. In this regard there are a number of critical key points to remember before visiting other clubs, confirm your booking, be absolutely sure of where you are going, understand what you are judging and most critically ensure that you wear as clean vest and pants. (I’m only remembering what my mum said – in case you get knocked down!) oh and of course arrive punctually!
It’s the last point which I have had a bit of an issue with recently. I always try to ensure I arrive at least 5 mins before the door’s open. “Can I just confirm the time once again please” – “OK That’s 7:30 for a 7:45 start” As I don’t normally get home from work much before 6:15 anything earlier than this will usually see me stuffing the last of my dinner in my mouth as I am pulling off the drive.
Sometimes I must admit I have cut this rather fine particularly if battling with west London traffic, getting caught in Watford’s notorious one way system or travelling half way across Oxfordshire in a blizzard however, I think I can safely say that I have never been actually late for the official start time of any competition.
I have unfortunately attended numerous clubs where the all important published start time has for some reason, and I will be polite here, been somewhat ……….’overlooked’. For example:
- The projector arrives a minute before the scheduled start with “Sorry, Roger normally has this in his car” followed swiftly with a muffled “Bugger” much panicking and “Sorry but the power lead appears to be missing!”.
- Another was that the laptop running an original 1987 version of ‘Windows for computers’ is having “boot up problems”.
- A regular favourite is “I’m not familiar with this new software, we bought it yesterday”!
- How about “The screen’s a bit wonky so we are sending out for a white sheet we can pin up on the wall”. (Yes, this did actually happen!)
- Or the old classical favourite of “We’ve forgotten the extension lead”
- My all-time howler is “The hall was broken into a fortnight ago” “We’ve only just found out about it as our club secretary is away on holiday, they appear to have changed all the locks and we haven’t got a key” could we possibly re-arrange?”
On a night when I wolfed down tepid cottage pie in 5 mins, had a quick shower, found my glasses, struggled for over an hour through the remnants of Hurricane Tyrone, repaired a puncture en-route, driven at 75 mph, got caught by a speed camera, clipped two pheasants, was breathalysed, picked up some pain killers from the chemist on-route, along with hitchhiker going in the opposite direction and answered 3 phone calls (hands free of course) oh and yes I did manage to change my pants still to be here for 7:30………….I don’t think so!!
I love being a judge…. till next time
p.s. In your boot keep a spare power lead, HDMI Cable, 5 mtr extension lead, 4 x AA batteries, tin of boiled sweets, a mouth organ, a large white sheet, oh and a few of your old prints with which you can gainfully discuss for half an hour whilst you’re waiting for normal service to be resumed and you’ll be sorted.
Thoughts of a judge
Alan Taberer IMAGEZ