So, if you have never been to this show that I operate every month, here is the low down. I have four rooms of dealers, 100 tables total and 65 to 70 dealers. It is one of the larger shows around. Managing all these people along with hundreds of inquiries a month from interested new dealers and questions from customers, is incredibly time-consuming.
One of the problems is that I charge too little for tables and may bump it up next year. We also get a large crowd every month and folks want to talk to me about the show, about their collections, about the dealers, about the weather, about everything.
It is a little much. I am stressed out.
My biggest problem are the dealers that reserve a table and then do not show up -- the "no-shows." Thankfully, at the November show there was not a big run of dealer cancelations like last month. It is a show promoter's worst nightmare when dealers cancel right before the show. I had a handful of cancelations before this show. One dealer showed up, paid me for his table, then said he had to go to work. Fine, I guess I can't get pissed off at him. I had only one actual no-show at the November show which might be a record.
But I have a conundrum. I have this huge waiting list that I have been desperately trying to bring down over the past year. I opened up that fourth room at a great expense to me, really no benefit to me, I am losing money on the room. I just opened it to get more dealers into the show and try and reduce the amount of people bugging me for tables.
Along those lines, I am trying to weed out the guys who reserve tables then don't bother to show up -- which is causing a conflict. I am standing firm on this one, though. If a dealer reserves a spot and does not show up, I don't ever want that dealer to set up at my show ever again. It is not fair to me, it is not fair to the show and it is not fair to the 50-plus guys waiting to get space in the show.
Quite a few guys are pissed off at me because I won't let them back into the show after they no-showed me. Which is fine, comes with the territory. Then there are two guys who no-showed me over the summer. They texted me later that night, after the show, and said something came up. Well, I did not want to let them back into the show. They kept asking and I kept ghosting them. My mistake was I should have been up front and told them I did not want them back in because they no-showed me.
So they confronted me at the show on Saturday and accused me of being racist. Really?Now I am a racist because I won't let no-shows back in? Is that something in the Klan Instruction Manual? Because I am not a racist and in order to become one, I would need an instruction manual. I would think that banning guys who skip out on the show would not be considered racist... but what do I know, because, apparently, I am a racist.
To be fair, I should not have ghosted them but they reserved space at that previous show and did not show up. Why would I give them space again? I'm no damn racist, just trying to operate a show and deal with one knucklehead after another.
Besides, I do not even know their race. Apparently they are Latino because they complained there were no other Latino dealers at the show -- NOT TRUE. A lot of false allegations here, mainly, I want to get across that am NOT a racist. I could care less what anyone's race is -- it has never mattered to me and never will.
As far as the dealers go, I don't see a race but I do see two different types of dealers. The first are the good responsible dealers -- which is by far the vast majority of dealers that set up at my show. The second are the bad irresponsible dealers -- a minority at my show. To the bad irresponsible dealers, wake the hell up! If you don't show up when you reserve a table, I consider you a bad irresponsible dealer and I don't want you at the show. It has nothing to do with your freakin' race! Get over yourself!! Did you ever hear the story about the boy who cried wolf?
Did the two guys who accused me of being racist and who skipped out on that show over the summer ever pay me for their tables? No. Did they ever offer to pay for their tables? No.
What has this got to do with race?
One of the guys claimed they skipped the show because his son had COVID. Okay, legit excuse but why didn't the other guy set up? There are two of them. Why didn't they say initially that they could not make it because of COVID? I would not have been pissed off it they told me the truth... or if that is even the truth.
Anyway, I was soooo insulted. I wanted them to leave and never come back. They even threatened to call the Salvation Army and tell them I am a racist.
What have I learned from this little episode -- I am an idiot and too nice of a guy. I felt bad for ghosting them, so I decided to give them another chance and am going to let them set up again. If they skip out again, they can call me all the names they want but I won't be letting them back in the show.
I even noticed after the confrontation that I had previously placed them back on the waiting list, so I did not totally ghost them. What a horrible racist thing to do on my part. They would have gotten another spot eventually. Nobody has any patience. They are all me, me, me, now, now, now!
So any dealers reading this blog, here is the story. If you no-show me, you're out. Don't ever expect to be let back in the show. You can call me all the names you want, but I will not let you back into the show.
Next, when I kick someone out or a regular dealer cancels, that is when I pull someone off the waiting list. If you are on the waiting list, you will eventually get a call or text from me. Be patient!
New dealers have to start out in the Game Room and bring in their own tables. When space opens up in the Fellowship Hall, I transfer these guys to that room. When space opens up in the gym, I transfer guys from Fellowship Hall into the gym. I find this system fair.
Everybody wants the gym. I don't have enough space to place everybody in the gym. It is my freakin' show and I don't even put myself in the gym, so chill out!!!
It is enough to make me want to throw in the towel. I really felt like handing over the keys to the guys who accused me of being racist. They can run the show and deal with guys like themselves around the clock. Man, it sucks!
End of rant.
Next, there is the ongoing issue of theft. A dealer caught a teenager stealing. He dragged the kid over to me. The kid was shitting bricks. The dealer got his cards back. I felt bad for the kid, he was shaking, was all white. He promised not to do it again. I did not do anything else. I think some dealers might be pissed at me. I could not bring myself to give this kid a hard time, he was cowering. It would have been so much easier if he was a dick about it but he was just scared. If he does it again then I am going to track down his parents and let them deal with it.
I wish I could be allowed to have some fun at my own show. I operate the show for fun. I collect, buy and sell cards for fun.
It really was a good show. We had one of our larger crowds. The good folks at the Salvation Army rearranged the back rooms, opened them up, combined them and it was a really cool space.
We are going to lose some space in the Game Room next month as the Sal needs to store toys in there for their annual Christmas toy drive. I'll still have dealers in the Game Room but not as many. Hopefully, they can open it back up for the January show.
I'm trying not to be down. I received so many great compliments during and after the show. You guys don't know how much that means to me. I appreciate you. Please, just don't call me racist. I'm really, really bothered by that one.