• Carmen Milligan

Rift in sorority space/time continuum

Updated: Mar 31, 2021

Remember how I told you a couple of days ago that my dad was a man of truth? When I was summarizing the alumnae sorority drama to my mom, he listened silently then said, "You're too old for this kind of shit to be happening in your life."

And, by damn, he's right.

So, here's what happened: there is a group of three who nominate the officers for the next term, called "slate". I thought another member, who had been very active, positive, and held two VP positions in the last 4 years would make an excellent president, so I determined to nominate her from the floor. Before I did that, though, I wanted to make sure that others were like-minded. If there were no supporters, there was no sense in nominating another person. Evidently, this was seen as "campaigning". Once I had a clear understanding that there were several other alums who would get behind my candidate, I contacted the woman who had been nominated. I wanted to explain why I was nominating another candidate, and make sure she understood where I was coming from, and that it had nothing to do with whether or not I thought she would be good or bad. She was gracious and fine with me nominating from the floor.

Enter another alum, who moved two hours away, was slated for a VP position in another city, but paid her dues so she could vote in our election. I know, it's confusing. Suffice it to say that she probably feels a sense of ownership because she graduated from the local chapter, was president of the alum group a number of years ago, and her mother is the current president. There is no rule against being a member of more than one chapter, but I didn't really see what her investment was. But she was livid that a nomination from the floor was happening. She started texting members to find out if they had "been contacted about the election". She was angry that I had encouraged members who had not yet paid dues to pay so they could vote. And she, historically, is very vocal when she doesn't like something or someone. I mean, why was she so invested in this election?

Unless she just doesn't like me, which is altogether possible. And I was nominating from the floor, making her mom's job of holding elections over Zoom a bit more difficult.

So, everyone knows I am nominating. There is no surprise coming, and you have a month to get your ducks in a row for the election.

Wow. That meeting was a total SHIT SHOW. It was a nightmare from the beginning. The president is a self-confessed neophyte when it comes to technology, and that certainly didn't help. There was one alum who couldn't get her camera to work. Well, hell! We can hear you, and unless you are wearing a new dress that you want all of us to see, there is no need for the entire 40-something attendees try to troubleshoot your video issues. I couldn't get my mike unmuted before said alum made a motion to close nominations.

Side note: According to Roberts Rules of Order, there is no motion necessary to end nominations from the floor. The president, when she is satisfied that there are no more nominations, closes them. Looks like if she was in such a lather, she would have updated her knowledge of the rules that govern our process.

She makes the motion MAYBE 5 seconds after the president asked if there were other nominations. I had to interrupt her to get my motion in. Then, someone suggested she rescind her motion, to which she vehemently shook her head.

It was well into an hour before we actually voted, and ... well, you can see where this is going. SHIT SHOW.

It was very painful, and if I had been the president, I probably would have cried.

But! After the meeting was blessedly over, I got a text from the woman mentioned above. A very snarky text, telling me that she was sure that I had enjoyed myself immensely at the inept job of handling the elections.

Can you even? I mean, we are freaking adults, not middle school girls. I told her that me exercising my right to nominate from the floor in no way caused the chaos. Her reply? "That's an interesting perspective".

Needless to say, I am glad she will soon be busy with another alum chapter, and will hopefully keep her talons out of the business of ours.

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