Saturday, November 7, 2009

The Joys of Volunteering

The Chef at the club where I worked until this past week, and where I will be returning in April, has volunteered his entire kitchen staff's time today to a cause of his. He didn't ask us if we were willing to volunteer he merely told us he needs us on the 7th and not to make any plans. Only later on did I find out that my services were actually volunteered. A bad, manipulative move, no doubt. I wonder if it was intentional or if it was his organization and communication skills that made it appear so. Maybe he thought he told us we'd be volunteering? Maybe he meant to say as much, it just didn't come out that way? Maybe he thought some staff from previous years knew it would be volunteer work instead of paid work? Regardless of what he thought, I find it in poor taste.

This matter, however, brings me to ask myself a question, perhaps a moral one. A year ago, having no kitchen experience whatsoever, I would have given almost anything to be in a professional kitchen, even as a volunteer. In fact I was prepared to offer volunteering in one just so I can learn, and was ultimately surprised by my Chef who offered me a paying job in his kitchen. What happened then, during the course of the year, that made me harbour resentment towards that same Chef who dared volunteer me (and several members of his staff) to cook today for a fundraiser event? Was it the fact that he didn't ask me before putting my name down? Or is it that since I now work in a kitchen and having a weekend off is so rare I resent anything that takes me away from my partner, a good meal at home with her, some wine and my Saturday night movie premiere on The Movie Network?

I have yet to decide if I will show up for this event today. I am not obligated to but feel compelled to go only if to not disappoint Chef. Must be the desire to please that's so deep seated I don't even know it's in me. Or maybe it's that I have to work for this man next year and don't want the awkwardness, although I doubt that he'll remember any of it by next year.

No comments:

Post a Comment