It's about half nine on Saturday 5th May. Portsmouth Guildhall is packed full of scrubbed, polished and groomed sports bods. Sports Sabb Jodie Austin is in charge of the mic, and up on stage, a little bald Spanish chap by the name of Fraggy is looking like he's about to have a heart attack as he prays - and prays, and prays, and prays - that the AU Dinner video, the result of two weeks' solid work* from him and Mike Cooter, works first time when he hits "play"...
This year's event was a first for many reasons: it was held in the (very plush) Portsmouth Guildhall, it sold out faster than ever before (and I think more people attended than ever before), I was there for the first time (ok ok, nobody cares about that), and instead of having a guest speaker we were treated to a video of the Union's sporting achievements this year, seasoned with a sprinkling of words by a few sporting bods.
For many people attending, the video was definitely the highlight of the evening's entertainment. As they appeared on the big screen, each club raised a deafening cheer, and the round of applause at the end of the video was testimony to the video's popularity.
I think this could be a really good sign of things to come - bigging-up the efforts put in by clubs and societies doesn't just have to happen through awards - everyone likes a bit of publicity, and if we can improve clubs' and societies' numbers and confidence by getting (good) videos of them played all over the place, and put online, then I'm all for it.
Of course, everyone at the dinner looked Fabulous, Darling, with only a couple of people getting blatantly wrecked (lightweights ;o), and the occasional evil glare between girls who'd worn the same dress. I don't understand that mentality, I'll be honest, but I'm sure someone will explain - with diagrams - why it's such a Bad Thing (TM).
A big well done to Fraggy and Mike for their efforts over the last couple of weeks (and a well done to everyone else who helped organise and run the night so well), and also a thankyou to Fraggy and Mike for opening up a new area of UPSU Media for me to play with/break/push forward. Apparently, I'll have to learn to do this next year: oh dear...
Randomly, during the evening I was once again asked - this time by Sam Wilson (one of my opposition candidates in the elections) - whether I was going to cancel Purple Wednesdays. In hindsight, I think I was lucky to escape with my legs intact when I thought it would be a good idea to wind him up for a bit, saying it was definitely being cancelled (it's not!) - the look on his face was, err, priceless. Sorry Sam!
p.s. The video was great. The Apple Mac it was playing on worked fine, and everyone lived happily ever after. Or something like that, anyway... :o)
* Yes, apparently, Fraggy actually does work. Shocking, but true... ;o)