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*****Calgary French Rendez-Vous.

From: Kichiji
Sent on: Sunday, November 2, 2008 9:16 PM
Hello, everyone.

Please read at least as far as the seventh line. Thank you.

In this message:
-Meeting dates and venues.
-Congorama, film night at at La Cite des Rocheuses.
-Polls.
-Conversation topic.
-As much as possible please avoid replying "MAYBE".

There are four meetings in the near future. The first will take place THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, Tuesday, November 4th, at 7:00pm, at Caffe Beano,[masked]th St SW. The second will take place on
Friday, November 14th, at 6:30pm, at Higher Ground Cafe, 1126 Kensington Rd NW. The third will take place on
Wednesday, November 19th, at 6:30pm, at Good Earth Cafe in the Calgary Public Library, 616 Macleod Trail SE. The fourth will take place on
Wednesday, November 26th, at 7:00pm, at La Cite des Rocheuses, 4800 Richard Rd SW.

These are 2, 12, 17, and 24 days from now.

Please go now and RSVP at:
http://french.meetup.com/36/calendar/list/

Please pay special attention to the event on on Wednesday, November 26th. This is a film night at La Cite des Rocheuses. This is the film "Congorama" in French with English subtitles.

Michel, an eccentric Belgian inventor, learns he was adopted and was born clandestinely in a barn in Quebec. He goes there, and meets a man driving an electric car. He accidentally uncovers a secret connection between seemingly unrelated people that changes all of their lives.

At the Genies, Jutras, and London Canadian Film Festival this film won five awards including Best Director, Best Actor, and Best Screenplay, and was nominated for three more.

Please vote in our polls.

To vote in our polls go to:
http://french.meetup.com/36/polls/

For the past three years we have had the new tradition of every summer having the three topics of
sex, politics and religion. This has been a lot of fun, because
members enthusiastically participate, and there is much laughter and
near misses at fisticuffs.

This summer I completely forgot, so we started late.

Tuesday's meeting will be the perfect day to finish up the topic of politics, as we will have heard the results of that day's election in the U.S.A..

After that, we will start the topic of Sex.

As I mentioned last year, this topic does not require us to reveal any personal facts, nor does it require that we be crude. There is a high road. We can discuss Anthopology and Sociology. We can discuss sweeping changes in North American society caused by Masters and Johnson's "Human
Sexual Response", The Kinsey Reports, and widened availability and acceptance of
contraception. We can discuss the effect on and by the women's movement. We can discuss AIDS and HIV.

On the other hand, if we want to spend the meetings telling dirty jokes, that's okay, too.

Some of our replies to my message in August were very positive and supportive. Thank you for your warmth and support.

However some of our replies tell me that at least some of us did not understand my message.
I was NOT complaining about attendance. Our attendance is pretty good, or at least it is
not worse. As a percentage of the active membership, we have dropped from about 11% to
about 6%, but in the last couple of years, our total membership has ALMOST DOUBLED, so
actual attendance is about the same.

What has changed is the number of "MAYBE"s. Let me give an example. Before I started to remind us about the rule, at a typical meeting 6 people would RSVP "MAYBE" and 7 people
RSVP "YES". Then on the actual day of the meeting, 6 of the "YES"s would show up, and one of
the "MAYBE"s, for a total of 7.

What happens now is that 3 people RSVP "YES" and 10 people RSVP "MAYBE". Then on the day of the meeting, the "YES"s show up, plus 4 of the "MAYBE"s, still for a total of 7.

What I was saying in my message in August was that we don't need to be afraid to RSVP "YES".

I know that the word "rule" is a scary word, but there are at least two reasons why we don't need to be afraid to RSVP "YES".

Firstly, the rule doesn't say that if we RSVP "YES" we must show up. Most of the rule is about what we should do if due to unfortunate circumstances we CAN'T come to the meeting. The rule
is pretty flexible.

Secondly, the rule merely codifies good behaviour, common sense, and respect. All of us are good people, and for the vast majority of the members of this group, the rule is what we would
do anyway.

Ironically, some of the people that are most annoyed by the rule are people who think that the rule is common sense, that good behaviour should be on the honour system, and that we don't
need an explicit rule.

The further irony is that I agree with these people.

I want to get rid of the rule because it makes work for me. If we can follow the rule close to 100% of the time for a few months, I will drop the rule.

Let's FOLLOW the rule to GET RID of the rule.

The number of people who really don't care enough to respect the other members of the group is very tiny. In my opinion, most of the people that don't follow the rule now are just good
people with bad luck or bad memory.

If you are a good person that has bad luck or bad memory, please just reply right away if I send you a message reminding you that you replied "YES".

I have some helpful advice. If we do the following things, our replies should be pretty accurate.

-As early as we can possibly estimate our attendance, go to the site and reply "MAYBE", "NO", or "YES", whichever corresponds best to our
estimate.
-Three or four days before the event, go back to the site and reappraise our estimate, and choose "YES" or "NO".
-On the day of the event, if we have replied "YES", do our best to show up, or if life happens use the rule to guide us.

If we go now and look at what the rule says, at...
http://french.meetup.com/36/about/
...we will see that what I say is true. The rule is very flexible, and is mostly what we would do anyway. You will find yourself nodding your head. Thus, the rule is not scary at all.

The problem with the "MAYBE" response is that it gives the organiser and the other members of the group no information at all. The only thing worse than a "MAYBE" is no reply at all.

I know that for good reasons, a very small number of us really can't know what we are doing even a couple of days from now, but AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE, please avoid the "MAYBE" response.

I thank all of us sincerely for our cooperation.

I am looking forward to seeing us at the meetings!

--Kichiji.

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