Yesterday I got up extremely early to finish a cake before work. I do this a lot. I work best under pressure is what I tell myself, in reality I always just leave things until the last minute. I’m probably not the kind of person cut out to juggle 2 part time jobs.
I drove the 20 minutes to work, walked in and was told I no longer had a job. It was like a break-up, the classic “it’s not you, it’s me” line. To be fair I was not alone, many of us fell victim to the ‘curse of the staffing budget’ with immediate effect (nobody has real contracts anymore, we don’t get notice, we are instantly disposable).
The drive home, longer owing to terrible traffic. My radio wouldn’t tune in, unwilling to allow my brain to ponder in silence I put on a CD, Harry Bird and The Rubber Wellies were singing about a sinking ship but at least their chirpy pop-folk tones put a slightly more positive twist on the situation. Home, a glass of Malbec and a cigarette, because drinking pre-noon (it was 11.45!) and smoking even when you’ve given up (the man in the shop gave me one of his) are both perfectly acceptable in these circumstances.
So, I am unemployed. Desperately seeking a job, or inspiration, or anything, because I can’t tell my children that I wasn’t good enough, or that they’ll have to go another year without a holiday, or that the mean kids in school will probably spend another term mocking them for being poor. The same kids whose parents tell me that a 3 tier custom designed cake is way too expensive at £80. You know what my hourly rate of pay works out at for that over-priced cake? About £1.50, and I don’t make any profit.
I’m not going to rant about the price of handmade and decorated cakes vs supermarket cakes, its a discussion that has raged since well before I first picked up a spatula, it goes around in circles and is ultimately pointless. I definitely couldn’t afford to order a bespoke cake, I totally understand budgeting. I know that it’s entirely my own fault that I don’t incorporate an hourly wage and % profit into a cake quote, it’s because I’m reasonably sure that the people that wouldn’t pay £80 (“why is it so expensive? It’s just eggs and sugar, I’ll go to Tesco”…), certainly wouldn’t pay £110. It has become painfully obvious that business is not my area.
So, do I fight with my ex colleagues for Christmas temp jobs in the local shops, carry on giving my time away making cake? I don’t know. Guess its fingers crossed for a lottery win 🙂
Until I win my millions, I am going to have a little game of ‘Cupcake Catchphrase’ to pass the time, I’m off to bake a batch of caramel cupcakes and then decorate them according to a theme, whoever guesses the phrases correctly wins!