When we are children we are told to never talk to strangers. Now that I am an adult, I must share with everyone tht if you ask, you shall receive. The only way this happens is by talking to strangers. If it was not for us all talking to strangers then we wouldn't ever have any friends. Speaking of friends. Have you heard about our new friend of Variété D'arts Society, Brent Braidwood? "Braidwood clearly wears his inﬂuences, such as The Beatles, Nick Lowe, Matthew Sweet, Squeeze, Nilsson, Emitt Rhodes, The Odds, cheezy 60’s pop, Klaatu, Ian Gomm, innumerable one-hit wonders, Gilbert O'Sullivan, Marshall Crenshaw, Queen, and many, many more. Braidwood brings 40 years of musical experience to the table. Like a perfectly aged wine, his songs have mellowed into ﬁne & fun, highly melodic pieces of classic-style pop rock ready to pour. It's clear Braidwood understands melody and pop song construction, with strong melodies and lyrics that are clever and catchy. Well crafted melodic rock tailored to a more discerning, mature audience. As a singer-songwriter, Braidwood’s songs fall within the classic pop rock genre, but stylistically, they’re pretty varied — a little bit of something for everyone." We look forward to hearing more from Brent. He will be taking the stage at Countryfest in Maple Ridge this year on July 24th 2016. If yo saw the show, please feel free to comment below. We love what this community can do. We are pretty tight here in Maple Ridge / Pitt Meadows. Anything is possible.
Take charge. Don't ask, tell.
When planning an event, someone has to make the decisions whether they are right, or wrong. If words like liable and responsible are not for you, then you want to reconsider this. My name is going to be floating out there in the world. This is not a fake name. I am a real person with real responsibilities. I have to protect my interests to the best of my ability.
Where are my interests you ask?
My immediate family must come first. This is where my precious time with my children must not get compromised.
I don't wish to be an absent Dad. I was fortunate enough to be raised in a family where my parents were there for me. I have great childhood memories of playing sports, camping, fishing, travelling the coast, performing music, and flying to exotic destinations when financials permitted. That is of course if you consider Florida, Bahamas and Barbados exotic.
But what about taking charge? What experience do you have?
It's funny you ask that. I have been working as a Fire Alarm Technician for over 20 years now. Many people won't understand what a fire alarm technician does but if you have ever worked on one of my sites you have seen me in action. Fire Alarm Systems in High Rise Buildings are very complex these days. It's not as simple as just ringing the bells when you activate a pull station. And no, the sprinklers don't start flooding everywhere when you activate a pull station either. (That only happens in Hollywood) Our systems work together with just about every other function of the building. From the floor tiles we need to drive our lifts on, to get to the 60 foot high ceiling that our smoke detectors are mounted to, and the roof we need to walk on to get to the Elevator room our relays are located in, we are dealing with every other trade in the building. All of this has to happen on time and to the best of our ability, on budget. I get that. I understand it. In other words I am used to dealing with people from all walks of life. I do my best to work WITH the other people on site and approach all my sites as a TEAM. Now I often get caught up in the deadlines and pressures that are that of a construction deadline but I still must maintain the highest level of safety, integrity and personal pride in the end result. Quality will always be number 1. When I come on site I expect people to treat me the way they want to be treated. "We are all in this together" as Red Green used to say to us on his TV show. By working together as a team we can all work together and not compromise each others interests. I like to work with the people directly on site. It's, thankfully not my place to tell other trades what to do and when to do it. I respect other trades. I don't want to make any enemies in the construction world if I don't have to. It makes for a much more pleasant day at work when everyone can respect each others territory so to speak. I normally ask the other trades when an important piece of the puzzle may be completed. (This is a big one, IF,MAY,MIGHT,PROBABLY) They are all uncertain entities. The last thing that I ever what to say to a construction site General is IF. When you think about the word IF, IF can be just about the biggest two letter word in the English dictionary. IF can mean so many things. For example IF you can make a battery that will last 700 kms for your electric car between charging, and have complete recharging take only a few minutes, and make an electric car that costs only a fraction of what a fossil fuel powered car costs, THEN you can get the hard working, commuting people of our planet into a sustainable green planet friendly mode of transportation. WOW....IF sure can mean a lot. If you are still reading this blog at this point, then thank you. I will continue with my podium speech. Going back to what it takes to be a fire alarm technician, as I was saying, all the trades cross my path at one point or another. I like to take charge of situations. No. I can't tell other trades how to do their jobs, but I can talk to them respectfully and get better idea of how I can mange my own time. I will personally talk to the tile guy for instance and say, "Hey man, (or woman, sometimes it's a tile woman,) may I walk on this floor tomorrow?", Sometimes the conversation goes well and their answer is, "Yes, you may walk on here tomorrow." Other times I'm told to go F myself and a mud trowel is thrown in my general direction but hey, everyone has a bad day. I get that. I will talk to other trades like the sprinkler fitters, the Elevator technicians, the drywall installers, the security installers, the parking area floor sealer appliers, the glaziers, the ceiling tile installers, the Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning Technicians, and just about everyone else that can help or hinder me along the way to the main goal of finishing the commissioning and verification of a Fire Alarm System. In addition to all of these in the trenches on site trades, I also correspond with design engineers and other technical support staff. Our systems have to start up, and / or shut down certain fans and activate others systems in a building based on some very specific specifications and applicable building codes. Codes are continuously changing from one site to another as they are continuously being improved, and approved along the way. Fire systems are everywhere in a building and cross paths with everybody during construction at one point or another.
Why am I talking about work? You thought this was about a music and Arts Festival.
This is my thought process. Being a fire Alarm technician has given me the ability to learn excellent people and organizational skills. My favourite skill is talking to strangers. I can talk to just about anyone as long as it's English. Yes, I learned some French in high school, but living in BC doesn't give me much practice. If you are bi-lingual I would absolutely love for you to join our team. As this festival is striving to be a National Festival, we must have French Canadian inclusion. So what I am saying is, I have the people skills to drum up the interest and spread the word. Summer 2015, we will be visiting Ontario, in an effort to spread the word of our pending National Festival with a target date of September 2016. Also, in the summer of 2015, I will be volunteering at other festivals here in BC Canada, to learn as much as I can about the planning of such an ambitious event. If you are a festival either in, or close to Maple Ridge then I want to hear from you.
Peace Love and Happiness to All,
So I wanted to plan a festival. Well here is what has happened so far. First I played as a performer at a festival and started talking to strangers while I was there. The more I talked to people the more helpful information I took in regarding my goal of holding a festival here in Maple Ridge. There are many people out in the festival world that are really helpful in sharing information. I began Facebook friend requesting people from the first festival I went to and kept up to date on where there were and what they were up to. This was a great way to discover other events I would otherwise know nothing about in BC. I waited and watched for a year before I jumped with both feet in the fire to proceed with my plans. In the meantime I volunteered at several festivals and took notes like who are going to festivals. What do other festivals have to offer like workshops, artist merchandise for sale, food vendors, camping, parking, shuttles, food for the artists,portable hot showers and washrooms with flush toilets from Sunrise Rentals for example, ticket sales options like early bird specials. In other words there is a lot you can learn just by going to a festival but you can learn much more when you volunteer. One thing that I really thought was brilliant was the elimination of bottled water at the Mission Folk Music Festival, they brought in a watering station from gvrd to handle drinking water needs of the people attending the event. In addition to that they were selling refillable water bottles with the music festival logo on them to generate revenue, save the planet and advertise the festival all in one shot. In addition to performing at a festival and volunteering at a festival I went to a festival as a patron. The next step will be going to a festival as a vendor to see what that experience is like. I plan to set up a tent at possibly the farmer's market to get the word out about our festival.