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Ár nDraíocht Féin
Three Cranes
Chaos Matrix

January 11th, 2007

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10:05 am - ADF Nominations/Elections, and the odd feeling of popularity. . .
ADF nominations have come in, and I feel awkwardly popular.

[This will probably be my only post regarding ADF elections, should I choose to run. I feel very awkward (again) using LJ in any way to advance an election, mostly because the number of ADF members on my f-list is so high and using LJ would just. . . make me feel dirty. And not in the good way :)]

I have been nominated for four separate jobs. It's an odd feeling: On the one hand, it's nice to have people thinking I can do a decent job at things. On the other hand, I try and avoid the spotlight and most actual leadership positions as much as possible because I feel that they tend to interfere with the work I do in ADF.

Of course, it's also nice to see that the members of ADF have a strong sense of humour surrounding the elections. . . but I'll get to that last. . .

Here's what I'm nominated for:

ADF Secretary - one of the most powerful positions in ADF (if, indeed, any position can be called "powerful": it sits on the executive committee and gets to help make decisions, but the power is off-set by the sheer amount of work that has to be done. I totally don't want to do that job. That's easy to decline.

Regional Druid - Heartland - An interesting job, one that doesn't require a lot of tangible responsibility: it's easy to be a mediocre RD and do the job competently, but hard to be a really good one. I really like the idea: the traveling priest who works to build community between Groves and solitary members. It would give me the excuse I sometimes need to go out and meet our solitary members and help connect them to the larger organization: druidkirk's tenure as Southwest Regional Druid was inspiring to me. The problem is, I would do just that, and I cannot afford it right now, even with an RD travel budget.

Still, it is attractive, especially since it's not an actual Director position.

Members' Advocate - This one caught my attention immediately. Right now, I do some of the work of the MA just by virtue of being in contact with so many ADF members: Grove members, solitaries, LJ users, people who work through WotY, etc. Many people contact me with their problems because I'm so darn accessible (and I don't mind this one bit). To accept this nomination, though, would be a deeper step into that. More frigtening to me, though, is that it would also be an official step in that direction, and I am not so keen on doing things from an official standpoint. Not that any good Discordian would be.

The MA job also requires a *lot* of time. I expect that I would need to remove myself from several jobs that I actually like in order to do this one. I've already given Vedis a heads-up about the potential need to stop working on proofing OL if I take this nomination, and there are a multitude of other jobs that I might need to give up that I can't even begin to enumerate.

Despite the general fear and time requirements, though, the MA job most attracts me. But I still don't know: deepening my official leadership role in ADF isn't something I really thought I'd be doing right now, and I don't know how it will affect things down the road. I know how hard it is to take a break from leadership in ADF: once you serve on the Mother Grove, you don't want to leave. There's a feeling that ADF can't run without you, or that you're suddenly very disconnected from what's going on. It can be scarier to leave leadership for a time than it is to enter it.

To really understand my interest in both the MA and RD positions, you have to understand that my vocation, I have found, is more than just being "Grove clergy". Recent experiences have led me to see that my vocation is much broader, and that calling myself "ADF Clergy" is more accurate. My Grove, it is obvious to me, is going to need to share me with the rest of ADF in order for my vocation to truly be expressed in a manner that causes me to feel fulfilled. Because of that, both the RD and MA positions speak out to me, as they involve being available to the community at large, and they will also get me closer to the people who I really care about: the members of ADF.

I was asked to run for Preceptor a while back, when romandruid resigned. At that time, I told the people who asked, "I can't take that job. Right now, I am more needed on the front lines than I am in the war room." The real question is: where is my vocation taking me?

Finally, I'm not sure how to react to the email indicating that I've been nominated as the Site of the Annual Membership Meeting of ADF. "Who on earth would come to that party?" I find myself wondering.

This led to some fun thoughts, some of which are these:
  • Would my girlfriend let ADF hold an annual meeting whose site was me?
  • Would erienc's fiancé let her attend?
  • Could I finally get healing_coyote to come to another festival?
  • Would this cause ADF's membership numbers to increase, or drop dramatically?
  • What happens if I accept? Do I get disqualified on a bylaws technicality, or can I prove that I am supported by an ADF subgroup (my Grove) and was "held" last year and will again be "held" between May and September of next year?
Oh, the questions I think up on long drives late at night.

In the end, I'm completely undecided about running for anything at this moment. I need to get a cut-off date from the Election Official so I know how long I have to contemplate this thing.
Current Location: Southeast of Disorder
Current Mood: amusedamused
Current Music: "Something So Feminine About a Mandolin", -JB

(54 comments Leave a comment)


[User Picture]
Date:January 11th, 2007 07:33 pm (UTC)
*nods* If I wanted to push my categorization, I'd say that that's a feeling of a lost sense of accomplishment. But I don't see much reason to. :)

And I feel special and warm :)
Date:January 11th, 2007 07:37 pm (UTC)
You watched me burnout-- I'd say I felt rather accomplished throughout it all. :D

Don't feel too warm, I plan on leaving next year. Too tired of dealing with it (time better spent elsewhere, blah blah blah).

But, do continue to feel special.
[User Picture]
Date:January 11th, 2007 07:55 pm (UTC)
This is true. But then, I could see that affecting anyone the way that it affected you.

One day maybe I'll come up with a criteria set that can predict it. There's already a couple of key behavioral patterns that might indicate a pedophile, and that's really damn hard to predict (though I doubt you'd be surprised at what they are; I'll send you an article if you're interested). Maybe something could be come up with that would fit all the burnout issues? Probably not :) But it's nice to dream.
Date:January 11th, 2007 08:00 pm (UTC)
I do not think the difficulty would be to create the prediction for burnout, more the preventing it. For instance, I do not think it could have been prevented in me unless one were to remove the instigators and create a support network (and let us face it, ADF is often a popularity contest).

It is still nice to dream... especially when that dream involves people being less about their own egos and more about helping other people connect to their personal religion-- which you do!

Damn, I think this means the solution to burnout is... you? :D
[User Picture]
Date:January 11th, 2007 08:16 pm (UTC)
*does the no-burnout-no-more dance!*

I dunno. I have my ego. Narcissism is a necessary component in clergy, to some extent. My ego drives me in a lot of ways, too.

Any democracy is basically a popularity contest. ADF is pretty darn democratic, especially on the national level, and so it will always be controlled by the popular crowd.

The trick is to make sure that the good people are also popular :) I'm better at that than I am at being popular myself. :)
Date:January 11th, 2007 08:24 pm (UTC)
But I said "less about their own egos"-- one can have an ego (and should) but when everything becomes about feeding it then it is wrong. Everyone should have self-worth, but it does not mean you should spend all of your time and all of your actions grooming it.

Some people, though, were not meant to be popular nor do they want to be-- they just want to get the job done and help people. When things become a contest of popularity they also become a contest of politics. People should not have to play games to do something good for all involved. Hell, I can barely send anything to a list that I am "leader" of; anything I say will get ignored, disbelieved, and/or attacked.
[User Picture]
Date:January 12th, 2007 01:32 am (UTC)
Some people, though, were not meant to be popular nor do they want to be-- they just want to get the job done and help people.

Amen to that. Often, it's the quiet ones (like you) who do the most for an organization.
Date:January 11th, 2007 08:38 pm (UTC)
I suppose I should clarify. If I sound angry I apologize, my writing style is rather matter-of-fact and I honestly stopped being disappointed in this over a year ago. I have accepted that no matter what I do it will not be good enough, that the stress is not worth it, and my time is better spent elsewhere.

But, what I am attempting to say is two things: one is that you and I are on two different sides of the fence. You are well liked, you put yourself out there on a daily basis, and you can play the game (which, is really a good thing, it gets more things done quicker and more efficiently). I, on the other hand, can barely say that two distinct religions are not the same (which, is odd considering so many people enjoy saying how Druidism is not Wicca and that is ok) without being told I foam at the mouth, am trying to "get" people, that I need to "get over" myself "like, seriously", and all other sorts of paranoid delusions. We will always see things differently and I will never see ADF as supportive of me, the specific religious belief in question, or wanting the truth in regards to said belief.

The second thing is (which is the most important thing) while you and I have not had the same experiences within the organization you are still open to mine being valid and I think (correct me if I am wrong) you see where I am coming from and understand it. The fact that while you can play the game while understanding those who cannot (or will not) still have value and can bring something to the table-- this would make you a good Members Advocate. You look at people as individuals and want to help them.
[User Picture]
Date:January 11th, 2007 09:13 pm (UTC)
Don't worry, I understand your writing style :)

And you're right, we do come from very different experiences in ADF, and while I do not see the issues you have seen as often, I accept that they occur because I accept that your experience is unlikely to be the same as mine.

I also understand the nuances in your outlook and know a chunk of backstory that tells me why ADF will never be supportive of you. I'm an historian, though, and I'm interested in that sort of stuff: I like to know the influences and what makes each story unique, and I especially like to look at them in contrast with other stories.

That's why I'm so interested in your particular story with ADF: it is so radically different than my own, and so I seek to understand it. It helps me gain perspective on my own experience within my church.

Hell, we have had radically different experiences with the exact same people. It's really amazing to me how much I can learn from your experience about my own.
Date:January 11th, 2007 09:26 pm (UTC)
All of this is why you would make an excellent MA (and eventual AD!). You are one of the few people in the world who can have an experience but not feel it in invalidated because someone else had it differently. And you are always interested in the truth when many people are content to live with pretty lies-- you like knowing how things tick because you know it helps you relate better to yourself, your peers, your gods, and your church.

I do not know if you realize what an asset that is, not just with holding an office but also in being my friend (anyone's friend for that matter).

P.S. Please stop visiting me in my dreams and visit me pher realz!
[User Picture]
Date:January 11th, 2007 10:08 pm (UTC)
Centrally, I think it's the idea of relationships and how they interact that really gets me going.

I am currently intently focused on the relationship between me and myself at the moment. I'm trying to work that out, and it's hard. But I think I've got a handle on its direction at the moment, and that's vitally important.

Regarding visiting, when would be a good time? I presume sometime before April? :)
Date:January 11th, 2007 10:14 pm (UTC)
Looking at my calender... errm, I think when I see you in Greece will end up being the best time. Haha.

We leave in February for Japan, then Thailand (which spills into March), then Greece, then the UK, and then back to Greece for April.

So, the best time is .... April and after April. :D

P.S. If we're going to work out this climbing Olympus we need to do so before I leave on February 1st (and I am not sure at this point if I can do it because my surgery). I will not have e-mail access after that.
Date:January 11th, 2007 09:29 pm (UTC)
Ok, so I don't know who you are, but I so. hear. you.

Just, FYI ;-)

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