Me and Issy twitteringKnitters Guild AGM 2009
Saturday started with a bang with the 2009 Knitters’ Guild of NSW Annual General Meeting. I’m always a little nervous for these, seeing as how I have to give an official report on the state of our website. There was added tension this year due to various guild-related scandals of the last six months: Ravelrygate, allegations of election fraud, members of the Executive Committee openly insulting members, secret spies tattling to the Guild about online discussions, etc etc. After all was said and done, three of “our people” had been elected (well, there weren’t enough nominations so no election was needed) to the Executive, and it seemed unlikely that some of the Old Guard would be willing to let go gracefully. I decided to embrace the madness with my outfit. I wore my Ravelry T-shirt and “Hello my name is: webgoddess” badge, along with my Guild lanyard and convenor’s pin. I also wore my Space Invaders socks (with a skirt so you couldn’t miss ’em). I got there to see that our folks had pretty much stacked an entire aisle across the auditorium, right down in front. It was a veritable who’s who of the Sydney Ravelry community: me, missfee, redambition, RandomKnits, knitabulous, WittyKnitter, yarna, Pompom, KatieV, GrandmaFlea, diane, gemma, sandrah, 1funkyknitwit, and probably a few others I didn’t even recognise. It was on.Sally fired the first salvo. Fifteen minutes in, we were asked to approve the Treasurer’s Report for 2008, and Sally (quite reasonably) asked how we could be expected to approve a complicated financial document that we’d only just seen. It went downhill from there. After nearly every report, someone would raise their hand to ask why the information wasn’t available on the website. I could hear both mutterings of approval and whispered insults in the rows behind me. My turn eventually came and I gave my website speech. (They all made me show off my socks first.) I could see some nodding heads when I talked about ideas for the site, which was heartening. I thought we were going to make it through unscathed. Then out of nowhere, a scandal erupted over a seemingly-harmless motion to add some wording about the Guild archive to the Constitution. Apparently the rules state that all new motions have to be sent out to the members at least two weeks before the AGM. The submitter had sent it in plenty of time, but the Guild newsletter was delayed and it was only sent out 12 days before the AGM. Ergo, no motion. The submitter was (rightly) pissed. Other people were (rightly) pointing out that the Constitution allows for members to request a special general meeting in cases like this. And some people like myself were thinking that we were lucky the motion itself was so non-controversial, otherwise we’d be wondering if the Executive had killed it on purpose. So yeah, all kinds of craziness. Issy and I were both twittering from the peanut gallery, as seen in the photo. Finally the new members got “pinned” and it seemed like the worst was over. It was time for lunch, so I mingled a bit before making a break for home. It was nice to catch up with all my buddies though, including Ailsa and Donna (who’d made a special trip to attend). I figured that – all things considered – the meeting went better than I expected.

I should’ve known I left too soon. Apparently after I left, things got even worse. The President and the Secretary got into an argument that left the President apoplectic and the Secretary nearly in tears. (She resigned later that day, probably setting a record for the shortest time between inauguration and resignation.) The special afternoon speaker never even turned up. What chaos. Mary-Helen has a big run-down of the problems that were exposed. Sally and Kate have their work cut out for them…

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