If you work for any sort of corporation or relatively large business, you should be aware that September to October is considered the "let's milk our employees of their hard earned money by throwing 50 events where team members are expected to fork over money for events as well as buying things from events (food, crafts, more food, talent show, food, um...food) all in the name of community support."
My company, which shall remain nameless, does this. Not only does my company do this, but my organization within the company does this all.year.long. Yes, that's correct. Not only do we all have to get all gung ho about this time of the year, handing out money left and right, eating totally fattening foods (because, if you don't, you will be shunned like you've never been shunned before), and be asked if you are going to this event or that event and why not and so what and who cares that you pay XXX for daycare each week!, but we have to suffer through this torture all.year.long. All year long, people! All year long!!!
In other words, it's darn fun. And I do a lot of hiding. I'm really glad I work at home two days a week. You don't know how convenient it is to simply tell the pesty solicitor, "Oh, darn...I won't be in that day...."
One event that's happening next week is a bake sale. For whatever silly reason, I decided I would bake something. That something turned into four things. Those four things turned into one healthy and one bad version of banana bread and apple bread. And yes, I decided to do this because as I usually do, on Monday I think how great something will be, but then on Saturday I'm kicking myself for making that commitment.
Why I decide to do these things, I do not know.
Since I don't bake that often anymore (that whole "diet" thing I like to play around with), and since I never actually look at what I have on hand before planning a grocery list and just go from memory, I felt I needed to buy basically EVERYTHING needed to make all four breads. This included butter, oil, eggs, sugar (which I don't use at all, so I'm not really happy I'm going to be stuck with a half a bag of sugar, but thems are the breaks), flour, bananas, apples, unsweetened applesauce, and baking soda. Oh, and vanilla. Because these breads call for a lot of vanilla.
To save money, I decided to go to the Foodmaxx across the street. As I started looking for everything I needed, I realized how much everything has increased in price. It is scary and ridiculous at the same time. Cheese? Expensive (this was for something else, I wasn't going to put cheese in the bread, although cheesy bread always hits the spot). Yellow and orange bell pepper? Oh, save 1 cent by buying it from the cheapo discount grocery store (again, for something else). Butter? Way too much for something I won't use after I make the breads. Vanilla? Forget it. I ended up buying some Mexican brand that was the finest of Mexican vanilla plus some ingredient I never heard of before. It was in a huge bottle and really cheap. I had to buy two pans for the breads because I didn't want to use the two pans I had twice, and I swear the sign said 3 bucks, but when I got home and looked at the receipt, they were 5 bucks each. I should probably go back and look, but I know me, and me doesn't do that because me's time is precious (and me is very lazy).
All in all, these four breads are probably the most expensive fruit breads ever created. Maybe if I made like, oh, 20 breads, they would pay for themselves. But since I'm making four (why oh why did I say four???), they aren't.
I know it's all for a good cause, and I should be glad to do it, but man oh man, I will never do this again unless all I need to buy is a few bananas or apples.
One time I got it in my head to make some fabulous and delectable tasty treats from scratch. I told my husband what to buy on his way home so I could make the whatevers (I think they were brownies). The ingredients alone cost about 25 bucks. Something I needed was incredibly expensive, but since I put it down, my husband bought it for fear I would yell at him for not buying it because it was stupidly expensive. Since then, we often joke about the 25 buck dessert, and how 5 bucks would have got us probably the same thing, but from a box (or from the pre-made dessert section at the grocery store).
Homemade foods only make sense if you are a bazillionaire.
So this is where I'm not going to be sensitive. I think it's horrible that a really large corporation forces their team members to participate in supporting other people by using fear tactics, guilt and pesty solicitors. We live in the Bay Area for poopsake! It's expensive here. Everything is expensive. Rent, houses, gas, the stupid BART train, property tax, food and daycare. Everything.
The only thing that's cheap is clothes, but since you can't travel on them or eat them or make housing from them that will sustain, what good is that going to do?
I just loathe this time of year. It's a horrible year in our household for random bills and xmas gifts. It's hard enough having to fork over money for everything under the sun, but to have your own company, that could easily make it rain with 100 dollar bills on the communities it sits in, pressure upper management to pressure lower management to pressure the gruntlings to do this for them? All in the good name of the XYZ company?
It just makes me mad. Madder than a box of frogs, I tell you.
So tomorrow, I will be spending all morning making four loaves of fruit breads, and tomorrow evening I will be slicing and wrapping each slice. Ingredients + time spent = disgruntled Nut Nut.