So, this morning, I called my executive chef an ineffective leader.
Well, specifically, what I had said in response to him saying “You should be embarrassed by how negative your attitude is.” Was “What embarrasses me is when the front of house comes up to me and asks, ‘what does he even do around here?’”
It went about as well as can be expected. I was told to clock out and take the rest of the day off. After a single hour of work.
What could possibly have led to such outbursts, you ask? Well, let’s start by knowing my schedule during the last few weeks. I’ve been getting Mondays and Thursdays off, Mondays, because it’s generally the slowest day of the week, and Thursdays because it allows me to get a little rest prior to the shit show that is our weekends. The other five days of the week, I’m working 10+ hours during one of the busiest show seasons the local theatre trust has scheduled. So I had yesterday off, and I come in this morning and see that yesterday’s prep list for my stations was only half finished, and a handful of things that should have been on the list that weren’t (that points to XC not actually filling out the lists, properly, but that’s another complaint entirely.)
So I bring my complaints to the opening supervisor, who has the exact same problem over on his side of things, and had already brought them up to XC. XC just so happened to have walked out of whatever hole he’s usually hiding in, and hears me. He lets out a confused ‘What?’ to which I repeat my complaint about people being unable to do their jobs.
His response is something I’ve come to expect from people over the years: “Don’t be so hard on people.” “At least ‘X’ got done.” And my personal favorite, “Every day you complain about something, your negative energy really brings me down.”
I respond in kind: “I shouldn’t have to do double duty every time I take a day off.” “About time somebody else finally did ‘X’, I’ve been the only one doing it for 3 months, now.” And topped it off with “maybe if you, being the executive chef, ever fixed the problems your people bring to you, there’d be a lot less to complain about.”
We end up getting into a shouting match because his only solution is to come down on me for having the unmitigated gall to speak out against having to constantly pick up another person’s slack. He seems to have this idea in his head that just because his name’s on the door, he’s somehow above reproach, untouchable.
I’ll be the first to admit that I take my work very seriously. It’s a high volume, high stress kitchen, and if something goes wrong on my end, I have to fix it. Quickly. I’m not perfect, and never will be, but if there’s one person who should be striving for perfection, both from himself and his employees, it’s a fucking executive chef. The fact that he is so lackadaisical about it all until someone gets right in his face about it is just plain sad, and that he process to double down on the ‘well, it can’t be helped, so get over it.’ bullshit disgusts me.
Yes, I’m ranting at this point, and yes, there are far greater concerns in the world than this. But, maybe it’s because of those greater concerns: a bloated orange child in the highest office in the land, politicians trying to force a proven liar, homophobe, and denier of Rights through a confirmation despite numerous forthcoming allegations, the very public resurgence (I only say resurgence because they’ve stopped hiding behind ‘reasons’ and are just straight up doing racist shit) of racism, and any other number of problems. And what’s the average response from people in this country? “It can’t be helped, so get over it.” Five-Piece-and-a-Biscuit is degrading the office of the President? “It can’t be helped, get over it.” Men in power have been using said authority to abuse women? “It can’t be helped, get over it.” Racists marching in the street and committing violent acts? ...you get the fucking idea. Maybe it’s because of these problems, and our ineffectual leadership, that when I see the same culture emerging in a place where I actually have a little bit of a voice, and can do a little more than be a face in the crowd, I rail so hard against it.
I need to take a walk...