Monthly Archives: July 2014

2014 SN Diary: Day 12, July 3

SN 7-3Projected (as of 5/31/2014):
• 671 entries
• Morning events: 73 pools of Y12 Men’s Foil, Y14 Men’s Saber (flighted), and Y14 Women’s Epee
• Later in the day: 25 pools of Y10 Men’s Epee and Y12 Women’s Saber (flighted)
• Expected end time: 6:25 pm

The ID number for the gold medal bout of the Youth 12 Women’s Saber was 12525. It wasn’t actually the 12,525th bout fenced, because we’d had to correct errors and reprint pools or DEs a couple of times over our 12 days and the numbers increment each time, but it gives you the general range of the numbers we processed through the whole tournament. We finished at 6:10 pm, 15 minutes ahead of the projection.

With only the 5 smaller events for the last day, I was able to start releasing strips to the armorers by 1:00 pm, and by the time the Youth 12 WS moved into their DEs, the only strips remaining in service were their 4 pods and the B replay pod. The layout in Columbus was especially good for teardown: throughout the day, as we needed fewer and fewer strips, we moved the competitions closer to the BC, heading toward the replay pod and finals strip, so the crews pulling up the strips and carpet weren’t at all in the way of the fencing. Some of the saber girls hadn’t even noticed that most of the hall was down to bare concrete by the time they were done.

Joe and Marc were able to get most of the monitors and monitor stands disassembled and packed before the WS was done, and the rest of the BC staff worked on cleaning up and packing all our gear except what was still being used, so once the fencing was done, it took less than 2 hours to get everything into our 3 big shipping crates.

By the time we were done, we were too wiped out for much celebration. Seven of us decided we’d stop in to see if Barley’s could seat us immediately, and if not, we’d probably opt for room service. Turned out they could, so we sat and stared into space, and realized that after spending the previous days feeling as though we’d always been running fencing competitions inside the GCCC and always would be, we suddenly felt as though it hadn’t happened at all–except that we were so tired. (We were exceedingly grateful the waiter could give us separate checks, too–having to figure out how to split a bill would have been beyond us.)

I miss the big celebratory last-day dinners we used to be able to do with most of the BC staff. They were great debriefing and bonding exercises, where we talked about what went wrong and what went right, what we could try to make better, and told all the newbies tales of fun and horror from past tournaments. Those big dinners weren’t just fun–they were a useful part of building the camaraderie and teamwork essential to running our events. Losing those hurts us.

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2014 SN Diary: Day 11, July 2

SN 7-2


Projected (as of 5/31/2014):
• 914 entries
• Morning events: 71 pools of Cadet Men’s Foil, Y10 Men’s Saber (flighted), and Cadet Women’s Epee
• Later in the day: 61 pools of Y14 Men’s Epee, Y10 Women’s Foil, and Y14 Women’s Saber (flighted)
• Expected end time: 7:35 pm

Nice straightforward day with no major problems, aside from a number of officials needing to rebook their flights home after cancellations due to the hurricane.

We stuck to the plan Jill and I had made the previous afternoon, and the day flowed somewhat more smoothly–if inevitably more slowly than projected–than Tuesday had. I sat down while pools were out in the morning and mapped out the strips for the next–last!–day before the difficult-but-necessary-to-resist urge to nap hit me, on the assumption that I wouldn’t be able to do it at all later in the day or the next morning.

Only about 2 hours later than the projection: done around 9:30 pm.

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2014 SN Diary: Day 10, July 1

SN 7-1


Projected (as of 5/31/2014):
• 982 individual and 66 team entries
• Morning events: 59 pools of Y12 Women’s Epee, Y14 Women’s Foil, and Cadet Women’s Saber (flighted), plus 29 Jr Women’s Epee teams
• Later in the day: 80 pools in Cadet Men’s Epee, Y10 Men’s Foil, Y12 Men’s Saber, and Y10 Women’s Saber, plus 37 Jr Men’s Foil teams
• Expected end time: 8:25 pm

Ah, yes–Day 10, when the mind knows it’s only the 10th of 12 days, but the body thinks it’s time to be done and get home.

Tuesday was another of our jammed-up days, where the morning events had to finish up to make room for the later events. My own playground was the Junior Men’s Foil Team event, for which we checked in teams from 8:00 to 9:00 and expected to finish by about 4:30. But because of the strip crunch, for most of the event we had only a single pod of 4 strips and a crew of 6 referees, which meant that the round of 32 was quadruple-flighted.

With such a small group of referees, each had to handle 3 or 4 matches to get us to the round of 16. At that point, we chose to pause the event and have the captains set their bout orders for the round of 16 while we let the referees eat a (relatively) leisurely lunch before they tackled their remaining 3 or 4 matches each. The medal matches finally ended at about 8:00 pm.

Jill, who was BC chair Tuesday, and I were both fried enough that we sat down together in the late afternoon to lay out the whole next day’s strip plan. I don’t think either of us could have done it working alone by then.

Eventually (after I’d left the building), the Cadet ME concluded the day’s competition at 11:49 pm.

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2014 SN Diary: Day 9, June 30

SN 6-30


Projected (as of 5/31/2014):
• 1129 individual and 81 team entries
• Morning events: Closing at 7:00 am instead of 8:00, 115 pools of Jr Men’s Foil (flighted), Cadet Men’s Saber (flighted), and Jr Women’s Epee (flighted)
• Later in the day: 48 pools of Y12 Men’s Epee (flighted) and Cadet Women’s Foil, plus 81 teams in Jr Women’s Saber and Jr Men’s Epee (triple-flighted through the round of 64)
• Expected end time: 11:00 pm

No major disasters with our monster day–just not enough referees working too many hours on not enough strips, so progress was excruciatingly slow. The Youth 12 ME finished around 10:00, the Cadet WF around 11:00, and the everlasting gobstopper of the Junior ME team competition finally ended at 1:15 am. Brutal for fencers and officials both.

There were a few mitigating factors: this was the day designated as the officials’ casual day, so most wore the polo shirts provided by the Greater Columbus CVB (though the venue was so chilly many added the usual jacket or blazer just to keep warm. Both Jeff Salmon and Becky Douville provided cookies and pound cake and other snacks at regular intervals throughout the day, which never ever hurts morale.

I crashed into my wall in the early afternoon. Brandon, my BC co-chair for this part of the week, came in around mid-day and we synced our strip planners, so that when I ceased being able to deal with the strip crunch during the transition from the morning to the afternoon events, he took over and kept things from falling apart. Our decision to always have at least two co-chairs for the difficult days proved to be a good one. (Thanks, Brandon!)

1:15 am.


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