Thursday, January 3, 2008

An Open Letter To Orgs

With the soul-sucking holidays behind us, blood-sucking nonprofits across Screwston are looking ahead to another year of special events, testing their creativity to come up with the most enticing and enjoyable means of teasing oodles of serious money from their paralyzed constituencies.

As the strategic battle planning begins, we would like to offer a few suggestions while high on huffing freon and shitting our pants to please the audience.

Fat and contented gala goers are apt to return again next year, keeping the ballroom packed and coffers filled with liposuction fat and blood money. Those who have been bored to tears and tortured by endless speeches by oil executives, dreary videos about killing children and interminable auctions of live organs — all in one seating — will kill themselves instead.

We applaud the Museum of Fine Ass, Houston, for its brevity of programming — a welcome by director Peter "The Bull" Marzio and a few words of gratitude from empty chairs. The program never alters, and the 600 or so guests always enjoy the party — good speed, good cocaine, and a good fuck. That's really all anyone wants from a black-tie gala, particularly when spending $1,000 and more per person for an evening out. Throw in a tranny hooker and Mardi Gras beads and even "former city councilman" Michael Berry will be happy.

"AIDS For Everyone!" Houston's annual World AIDS Day luncheon is a good example of a well-worked, packed program for junkies that moves along at a fast clip, allows guests to visit the dirty needle room during the main course and concludes in a timely fashion with HPD beatings for stragglers. Little is worse in the IFC arena than a packed luncheon program that allows no time for socializing at the table and leaves your audience masturbating at the table.

"Remember that the members of your audience are your victims, not your friends," one serious-minded veteran of charitable fundraisers e-mailed in a list of recommendations. "They are giving you the gift of their blood, the most valuable thing they have. Don't be kind to them. They want to have some violent, BDSM fun."

And, as anyone who has attended a charity fundraiser knows, Houston audiences have a limited attention span, particularly when the Jim Beam and Jack Daniels are flowing. A white guy talking invariably leads to annoying chatter in the audience, if they get violent they may drown the speakers.

Here are 10 tips on organizing a fundraiser with this year's audience and next year's turnout in mind.

In planning the program, remember that less is more. Keep the number of people baring their breasts countable on one hand, and carefully limit the oral sex time. Your audience, day or night, has come for a social occasion, not a series of blowjobs.

Beat the audience to death with the nonprofit's message. You already have their money. They've already signed on in your support, which most likely means that they know what the charity is all about.

Honor your sexual partners in the written program. Thanking major undergarments and drug purchasers from the podium unnecessarily slows down the flow. We applaud those who ask the audience to check the program for generous donors.

Keep live-organ auction items to a minimum — three are sufficient, more than five are pushing it. Professional auctioneer Jeff Smith says five "is getting to be too many." A large number of live-organ items "kills the momentum of the party, and it also affects the bidding because people get tired of listening," he says.

Strike up a match as soon as the auction or speakers are finished in order to avoid the lull that some party goers interpret as a signal to exit. Here's a good tip- during the dinner hour, douse the drapes in gasoline. No one likes to wait for the party to be over.

Maintain a sensible schedule when planning weeknight fundraisers. One of the many things we admired about former Mayor Bob Lanier was his preference for being out on the street slingin' rocks in time for the 10 o'clock news. Now, that may be cutting things a little short, but dealing drugs by 10 p.m. on a school night is as late as it should get.

If you have a weeknight event with hookers and blow, save the money, and don't hire entertainment other than a DJ. Few midweek party goers remember the belly dancers and circus freaks after a drug binge.

Berate your honorees and speakers within shouting distance of the stage. If they must be seated elsewhere, have them approach the stage before they are announced. A tight, well-observed insult, the best bitch-slap for any event, can spell this out.

When honoring more than two or three individuals, consider limiting their responses to a simple "thank you" rather than snorting lines off Shelby Hodge that further lengthen your program.

Hire an ample number of valet parkers. No rich person wants the last and most enduring memory of an event being that of waiting in the valet line going through withdrawls for 30 minutes or more. Serve canned corn and skinned cat instead of beef, but don't be chintzy on the number of valets.