I’ve been trying really hard to be generous with the backyard bakery. Making extra large loaves, being accommodating around special requests and the like.
But sometimes I’m my own worst enemy. Take this week for example.
I opted out of baking on Saturday because that’s Remembrance Day. I don’t want to be working that day – it’s a day for veterans and for peace. So I moved the second bake day to Sunday instead.
The only thing is, nobody was ordering for Sunday. Maybe 20 loaves total, spread across 5 kinds. 4 Seeded Rye. 2 Pain de Campagne. 1 demi baguette.
It’s crazy. It’s a waste of wood to get the brick oven hot for 3 half bakes. And how do I even mix a single 300g baguette?
So I cancelled Sunday’s bake, but offered to bake the bread on Friday along with the Friday orders. Friday wasn’t so big; one extra bake will cover it.
But I forgot about the varieties.
I’m off to bed early tonight, because tomorrow I have 10 mixes to do. Granted, some are quite small (those 10 mixes will cover 5 bakes) but it’s going to be a pretty hairy day to keep everything straight and hopefully have everything proof at a predictable rate.
But you know what? That’s the point of the whole project. To be generous. To go the extra mile for people. So I’m not complaining, even a little bit.
I don’t want to waste wood (hence cancelling Sunday) but I also won’t disappoint my bread buddies. So I’ve made good notes, double checked all the labels on my little preferment containers and will give it an honest go in the morning.
There’s reading about it, and then there’s living it.
I’m a big fan of Steven Pressfield’s “The War of Art.” The book is a kick in the head for all creative people, including writers and entrepreneurs. It both names and to helps fight the Resistance, that shitty part of your brain that stops you from doing the (seemingly) risky, scary and essential creative work you were meant to do.
I’ve read all of Steven’s non-fiction work and it helps. But oh boy it’s not helping this month. The damn Resistance has me hard. It’s clawing at my brain stem right now.
Some may call it a migraine, but I know exactly what it is. You don’t just get a migraine when you sit down to write. But I’ve had three over the past week. Each time it takes me three days to get the courage up to write again.
I tried to trick it, by painting or recording a video instead of writing. Smart, eh?
Well it wasn’t me that was being smart. It was that f’ing Resistance again, deflecting the whole time. Don’t create! Research a new medium instead. Look for tripods. Adjust the lighting. Watch yourself umm and ahh on video instead of writing clearly like you can.
It took a ‘knock me in bed’ migraine today to finally get it. I See You. You prick.
I’m writing about you now, Resistance. Then I’m hitting Publish.
Then I’m finishing my article. And starting another one.
Cindy and I walked down to the Farmer’s Market today. It was fun to see the vendors again and catch up on things. It’s been two years since I baked for the Market but lots of people still want to see our bread there.
There was lots of interest in our trip and what we saw. There was even more interest in what we were doing next. Sadly, I think my response was a poor one.
I have this habit of telling people I need to figure something out, because I can’t be “unemployed” for much longer. But that’s the wrong answer.
I’m already talking to several places in town about starting or improving their bread production
There are people signed up to The Baker’s Bench who are ready for another baking course
I’m running into people on the street who say they enjoy our travel blog and want me to keep writing
So whether I say it or not, I’m already a baker, a teacher and a writer. And I’m doing all those things. I just didn’t get paid today.
It’s too easy to describe ourselves only in terms of what we do for money. That’s a trap. There’s a lot more going on in all of us.