Tuesday, July 27, 2010

If this whole JD/MBA thing doesn't work out, I could always become a scullery maid

From medieval times until the early twentieth century, the scullery maid was basically the lowest of the lowely household/kitchen servants, responsible for washing pots and everyday dishes, scrubbing floors, boiling water, and performing other such unsavory tasks as plucking chickens.  The position is one that has (fortunately, I think) generally gone the way of the horse and buggy, but somehow I recently managed to find work as a scullery maid.
The Scullery Maid (L'Ecureuse)
Jean-Simèon Chardin (French, 1699 -1779)
From http://www.corcoran.com/
Yes, that's right - a Brown University diploma, a year of the MBA program at Darden, and impending matriculation into a Top 10 law school has landed me a position as a scullery maid.  Well, technically, the position is "Assistant."  And it's actually kind of fun.  A few months ago, the Wine & Cuisine Club (WACC....B-school humor at its finest - hahaha!  ) at Darden took a cooking class through the Charlottesville Cooking School, which also hires folks to fulfill the scullery maid function in exchange for either pay or free classes.  So for a couple nights in the past month, I've donned an apron and some gloves for 4+ hours after putting in my time at the internship.  While there is a LOT of dishwashing (particularly for the sauteeing class), I also get to listen to most of the class, and the assistant/scullery maid always gets fed part of the meal that the class cooks, too.  All in all, it's been a pretty neat experience (for dishwashing), since I learned some new knife techniques and recipes, and I'm looking forward to signing up to take some classes myself - I earned them, after all!

Now, I signed up for the scullery maid job at CCS, so I knew exactly what I was getting myself into.  What I didn't expect was that my summer internship would also necessitate serving as combination sous chef/scullery maid last week!  The local biotech start-up that I'm working for this summer hosted its first Advisory Board meeting last week, which was kicked off by a dinner at the CEO (who is technically my client/boss)'s house.  His wife was out of town until right before the dinner, and he needed some help pulling everything off, so I showed up a couple hours in advance to chop and dice and make crabcakes, and I ended up serving as combination cater waiter/scullery maid in addition to "guest" and "company representative" during the dinner. I'm guessing a good number of MBA students would have been displeased with that arrangement, but I enjoy cooking, and my mission this summer was to be as helpful as possible, and that's what the company needed at the time....so I did it, and my help was appreciated.  Like I said....if this JD/MBA thing doesn't work out, I'm going to buy a nicer apron and hire myself out.  Anyone else need a scullery maid?  Will work for food...

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