The Chocolate Life

Discover Chocolate and Live La Vida Cocoa!

For those of you that have been following my dramas with the AoC (your numbers are stunning! I had no idea!)... it is time for me to wrap it all up.

After requesting once again that they forward me their alleged evaluations and once again receiving no reply... how long does it take to compile notes? I wrote them a rather less polite letter. This time I stated that I wished for my money to be returned as they had failed to fulfill their end of our agreement. I told them that I did not believe any actual evaluation was done as it should not take six months to put together some papers (that were already in a usable state, to make selections). Finally I stated that I would reject any offering of evaluation at this time, as I believe it would have just been disparaging randomness thrown together to shut me up.

After several weeks of silliness with their bureaucratic and banking dramas, their check (as it were) finally cleared.

I'd like to call this a victory... I mean, yeah I was parted with some money temporarily and some chocolate forever and that part sucks. On the bright side, I learned several valuable lessons:

1. Never trust the English... the Irish side of my family has been telling me this for years, but I just didn't listen.


2. Don't be insecure; if you like something, it is good. Seeking third party validation is no better in the chocolate world than it is in the afterschool special world... so just say no to drugs, that cute boy that pressures you for sex, and the Academy of Chocolate!

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Comment by SU on August 4, 2009 at 7:40pm
I saw pictures of the AoC award ceremony on a different chocolate blog and it looked very informal. Maybe this is a side effect of not being a formal organization? The title "Academy of Chocolate" brings grandiose visions of a professional organization, which may not match reality and therefore breed resentment with their inability to meet professional standards. I felt similarly about the "Chocolate Salon" in SF I attended a couple years back. I didn't realize how young they were as an organization and thought they would have more event planning experience and have chosen an appropriate venue. Instead, the venue wasn't airconditioned and there were unshaded lines to get in. The venue was small, so people had to leave to let new people in. But organizations learn from all feedback, so there's always opportunities to grow and develop.
Comment by Artisan on July 5, 2009 at 10:05am
Happy for you that you finally got your money back. This year the AOC has decided to organise a conference rather than organising the awards. I strongly beleive that it is linked to the controversy around the lack of professionalism of the organisation. So a small victory except that none of the Academy members have had the courage to come and talk to us about the concerns raised.
I think one of the key members, the only one with some international recognition, is also leaving the AOC.

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