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Question of the day

Monday, Jan 24, 2022

* SJ-R

Last week, Rep. Dan Caulkins, R-Decatur, virtually attended a House energy and environment committee meeting while driving himself and his wife back to Illinois.

“I was returning from Rochester, Minnesota,” said Caulkins. “I pulled over, and we switched places.” […]

Caulkins said that working remotely has hurt his ability to be an effective lawmaker.

“It’s awkward,” said Caulkins. “We should be able to meet in-person, spread out and look each other in the eye.”

Caulkins added that he thinks the result of remote work isn’t “as good of a product” as when lawmakers can meet face to face.

* The Question: Your most unusual Zoom meeting?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - thechampaignlife - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:00 pm:

    ===We should be able to meet in-person=== and ===I was returning from Rochester, Minnesota===

    Well, for starters, you would have to be in the State of Illinois to meet in-person.

    To the question, I have had a few international calls with folks from UK, Germany, Swiss, China, Singapore, NZ among others. Logging in at 3am is not unheard of for one of us. I was also on a call with UIUC leadership that was Zoom bombed with pornography early in the pandemic.

  2. - Take a closer look - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:01 pm:

    Caulkins should probably wear his mask when he’s at the Capitol then. If you take a closer look, his name is frequently cited by the person in the Chair asking him to put his mask on.

  3. - Dotnonymous - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:10 pm:

    Sorry Dan, pandemics can be “awkward”.

  4. - PublicServant - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:13 pm:

    I had a “social” zoom with members of the office drinking in the “room”. A colleague, let’s say, over-imbibed, and heaved all over himself…so typical day at the office I guess, lol.

    Working from home is the new normal for creatives (artists, designers, engineers). Talent is hard to find, and retain. Many people prefer working from home, and are as productive, or more so than in office work. Businesses that don’t accommodate talent are going to have a harder time hiring. As for the legislature, like I said, you need to accommodate talent, so it may not apply to certain representatives who flagrantly demonstrate disregard for any semblance of interest in what they were hired to do.

  5. - TheInvisibleMan - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:17 pm:

    Having been working remote for the better part of a decade now, almost all of my most interesting zoom meetings came right at the start of the pandemic when people were suddenly tossed into working remote unprepared.

    But I would say the best one was a guy who about a week in just lost his marbles and went on a rant about how the only reason he went into the office every day in the first place was to get away from his wife and kids, and now he’s forced to spend all day with them.

    I sat back with a huge grin on my face, completely satisfied with all of my life choices.

  6. - Chito - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:21 pm:

    I second thechampaignlife. Also maybe don’t publicly admit to violating state laws.

    (625 ILCS 5/12-604.1)
    Sec. 12-604.1. Video devices.
    (a) A person may not operate a motor vehicle if a television receiver, a video monitor, a television or video screen, or any other similar means of visually displaying a television broadcast or video signal that produces entertainment or business applications is operating and is located in the motor vehicle at any point forward of the back of the driver’s seat, or is operating and visible to the driver while driving the motor vehicle.

  7. - duck duck goose - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:25 pm:

    My most unusual Zoom meeting? Well there was this one time where I appeared to be a cat…

  8. - Michelle Flaherty - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:26 pm:

    I don’t think it’s remote work that’s hurt Caulkin’s ability to be effective.

    Also, he doesn’t like remote work but he went to Rochester, Minnesota when he had scheduled committee work? Did the Democrats tell him he had to go to Minnesota or was it Durkin?

  9. - Senator Clay Davis - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:26 pm:

    ==Caulkins said that working remotely has hurt his ability to be an effective lawmaker.==

    I’d say planning family trips that conflict with his work schedule is hurting his ability to be effective a lot more. If he actually cared, he would be participating in committees from his desk. Of course that wouldn’t help him “own the libs.”

  10. - South Side Lawyer - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:29 pm:

    Had to appear in Court for a client via zoom while I was traveling to an in-person meeting. Pulled over in a subdivision in Darien to handle the status call. Of course, just as I finish I see a squad car rolling past and tap it’s brakes to get a better look at me. As I pulled out I knew I would be pulled over so I drove the speed limit until the officers curbed my car.
    I rolled down my window and they asked “What are you looking for?” I simply responded “I’m an attorney and pulled over to call into zoom court”
    They let me go.

  11. - fs - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:29 pm:

    == Also maybe don’t publicly admit to violating state laws.==

    I’d need more than two hands to count the number of times a legislator has been clearly and obviously driving while participating in a committee hearing the last two years.

    Zoom meetings with participants being at a bar/restaurant has happened more than I would’ve expected.

  12. - Michelle Flaherty - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:34 pm:

    To the question …

    A legislative witness testifying from a wedding reception was a new twist to proceedings, probably on both ends.

    I’m of the belief it’s a good thing to open the process up to more voices via technology. But I could very well be wrong.

  13. - Rich Miller - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:37 pm:

    Watching Darren Bailey cast a Senate vote from a helicopter was wild (turns out it was a campaign swing).

    Also, I got a million texts that a certain someone might not have been wearing pants during a remote committee hearing, but later claimed to have been wearing pants that appeared flesh colored on the web cam. Now that was weird.

  14. - Bruce( no not him) - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 3:40 pm:

    I mean c’mon, don’t all of us have flesh colored pants?

  15. - Dan Caulkins - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:21 pm:

    thechampaignlife - I would have been in Springfield if they were in- person meetings but you obviously don’t know that they haven’t been for many months. Check my attendance record.

    Take a closer look - name 1 time I’ve been asked to put a mask on. Never happened. What is your real name?

    Chito - if you cared enough to look at the hearing instead of assuming the facts put up by another keyboard warrior you would know I was in the passenger seat; on my phone. The driver had no view of the screen. What’s your real name?

    Senator Clay Davis - We were returning from Mayo Clinic. I didn’t want my wife to drive by her self this time of the year. We couldn’t get back in time to be in my District office. You see, I do actually care. Check my attendence in committe and session. Thanks for your concern. What is your real name?

    fs - I did not violate any laws. You would know that if you watched the meeting. And, you are correct about seeing lots of members participating from vehicles and vacations. What is your real name?

    I’m sure all of you are wonderful people with full and productive lives who actually get out of the basement on occasion. I’m impressed that some of you answered the question. Thanks to the person who shared this thread with me. Reminded me why I never read this…

  16. - ArchPundit - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:26 pm:

    The Representative pointed this out, but when someone is returning from Rochester there is usually one reason. Perhaps don’t assume it’s a random trip.

    Rep–I hope she is doing well.

  17. - Demoralized - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:33 pm:

    That response from @ Dan Caulkins can’t possible be from the real Representative Caulkins. He certainly can’t be that thin skinned and be dumb enough to have such a “big baby” response. If it is him then I feel sorry for his constituents that they have to be represented by a guy who evidently gets his feelings hurt so easily. If it is truly the Representative he definitely needs to grow the heck up.

  18. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:33 pm:

    === I’m sure all of you are wonderful people with full and productive lives who actually get out of the basement on occasion.===

    He’s a delight.


    Most unusual? One was, with ear buds, a person in a waiting room of sorts, for a dentist, wearing a mask too, speaking.

    They were alone, “next” to see the dentist, and jumped on.

    Masked on the call, waiting room (which is now an ancient thing?) kinda odd and unusual

  19. - Demoralized - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:36 pm:

    Any zoom meeting where there are more than about 5 participants always gets interesting. Still have people who can’t seem to understand how the whole mute thing works.

  20. - Huh? - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:50 pm:

    “actually get out of the basement on occasion”

    Got out of the basement today after changing the furnace filter. Got out again when I went looking for a socket set.

  21. - Huh? - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:55 pm:

    “Reminded me why I never read this…”

    Obviously, you read it and felt the need to write a post.

  22. - Huh? - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 4:57 pm:

    “flesh colored pants”

    Tan chinos?

  23. - Huh? - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 5:11 pm:

    “I was in the passenger seat; on my phone. The driver had no view of the screen.”

    “(625 ILCS 5/12-604.1)
    Sec. 12-604.1. Video devices.
    (a) A person may not operate a motor vehicle if … a … video screen, … is located in the motor vehicle at any point forward of the back of the driver’s seat, …”

    Since you admitted you were in the passenger seat and not the back seat, will you be asking for a moving violation?

  24. - thechampaignlife - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 5:14 pm:

    ===We were returning from Mayo Clinic===

    Sorry to hear that. Best wishes.

    ===I would have been in Springfield if they were in- person meetings===

    Have you asked your fellow committee members if any of them would like to meet in-person and share a Zoom connection? That might be a stopgap to get you more of the in-person experience for those willing to meet that way.

    But, honestly, if you have something as important as a medical matter to attend to, I encourage you to take leave for the day(s) to spend with family.

  25. - Frank talks - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 5:20 pm:

    When you are on zoom, if you’re holding the camera in front of your face while standing up, please make sure there isn’t a mirror behind you that will show off what you’re actually wearing or not wearing.

  26. - Chito - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 5:40 pm:

    Oh man, I hope that really was Dan Caulkins posting as himself.

  27. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 5:43 pm:

    multiple continent Zoom of 200 hundred of us watching some heavy hitters in an interesting field. a person in an apartment where one presenter was staying walked past full frontal. Zoom topic and presentations were excellent. unfortunate incident hilarious and not noticed by some of the presenters.

  28. - PublicServant - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 6:06 pm:

    === Authorizes House Members to Participate Remotely Until June 1
    No ===

    That was Rep Caukins vote on HR 595…So Dan, don’tyou think it’s a wee biy hypocritical to be be doing anything remotely? I mean seeing how you voted against the bill, and all…just sayin.

  29. - hisgirlfriday - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 7:17 pm:

    Most interesting for me personally was hearing police show up at the door in the background.

    I don’t mind a rep participating from their car if they are a passenger. As long as they are not causing an accident, pulling a Toobin, or being like that Madison Cawthorn guy creepily cleaning his gun during a hearing it’s probably going to be OK.

  30. - Guy Probably - Monday, Jan 24, 22 @ 8:10 pm:

    I’m a HS teacher. Last year during remote school, I had students zoom in from: an RV, Las Vegas, their bed (without a shirt), Mexico. And those are just the places I know about.

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