Thursday, September 18, 2008

gut check

seems like every gig i cater for, there is an inevitability of a thought process that i'm working through.  somewhere around the third tray of empty champagne flutes, small plates, wine glasses, and soiled napkins, i think to myself, "i have a masters degree."  and then begins the mental sideshow that is unseen by my colleagues.  i have found that many of them have similar situations.  catered a party last week with a guy who has a ph.d. in psychology.  last night with a girl who also has a masters.  yet we play our role in this city providing service for party people who are hungry and providing jobs for people like myself who are living the dream.

i also find myself thinking about two people who some might say were misplaced with respect to their mental ability.  i can't say i'm in their league at all.  merely that i've been thinking about them and the satisfaction that they appear to have experienced in their lives.  brother lawrence as he simultaneoulsy peeled potatoes and deep theological connections to god in the kitchen of his monastery.  i think of his menial task and its provision for others as similar to the service i'm providing.  it brings a smile to my face and helps me care for the people i meet.  so many of them are in difficult places right now with all the financial meltdowns.  

i also think of henri nouwen and his work with mentally disabled people.  this is not to compar the people i'm serving to those that henri served, but to say that he could have been, and was, in far more prominent situations.  he chose to change that and serve in a less public venue.  

all those waiters and stuffed tuxedos that i remember growing up or seeing in restaurants, now have a new member in myself.  they are hard workers with dreams of better lives and the transitory world of food service is a ready support mechanism.  they are easy to overlook.  this may be what's difficult for such a social creature like myself.  that sense that i'm overlooked and taken for granted.  it's a good lesson for an ego the size of mine.  afterall...i have a masters degree! 

1 comment:

WENDEE HOLTCAMP said...

you're awesome Mark. And by the way I love Henri Nouwen, he's one of my all-time favorite writers and people!