This is part of the post I deleted yesterday, I wasn’t happy with the overall negative tone, so I reworked it and present it again.
I read recently on Table Hopping about the death of local chef John O’Leary. I didn’t know John, but I understand he was a very nice man and ran a solid and well-maintained kitchen. The fact that he was a fellow chef who died at such a young age is sad, and it affects me.
I’m finding that too many young cooks are not prepared for the life of a chef. I recently texted an employee ten minutes after his 2:00 shift was supposed to begin and was met with “I slept in today, I’ll be there by 3:00.” My response was “don’t bother, If I have to do your prep, I might as well cover the station tonight.”
I find myself wanting to teach less and less as I age. I never really had a teacher and see myself a self-taught chef. I consider myself to be very observant and able to pick up techniques by watching other cooks whether it’s a coworker or on the youtubes. I find that I explain what I’m doing less and less lately and have adopted a “why don’t you just pay attention to my work and perhaps you’ll learn something.” I’m not sure it’s a great quality in a chef, but it’s certainly where I am right now. I suppose a retirement gig as a culinary instructor is out. At least I’m self-aware.
While I never had a teacher, I find myself channeling various chefs that I’ve watched over the years including Thomas Keller for his devotion to high standards, Daniel Humm for his declaring “make it nice,” and Jim Rua for his passion for making food taste good, and Mario Batali for his ability to crush a bottle of wine or two.
I really need to stop drinking, I don’t want the comment section of the report of my death on Table Hopping to read “well, he drank too fucking much.”
I know I’ve been saying that for months, oh wait, it’s been years. Time for professional help.
Yes, you heard it here first, I think I could use some help with the booze. Today is day two, time to make some calls, wish me luck.
It’s been said that the harder you work, the luckier you get.
Hit my FB inbox or email if you’ve got any suggestions on who I should call. Therapists (I currently don’t have one), outpatient programs, etc.…. firstname.lastname@example.org Thanks in advance. Oh, nothing religion based please.
I guess all I want to do at this point is spend my time cooking for people who enjoy what I do without having to show people who can’t get out of bed how to follow a recipe.
My wife just told me that you can’t dance with the devil on your back.
I know I’m a grouchy old man sometimes standing on my porch yelling at the kids in the neighborhood to stop riding their bikes on the sidewalk, but I do appreciate you allowing me to vent here, and let it be known that it helps.
When poor service spoils the food and the server blames the kitchen.
You went to culinary school and cannot make a simple vinaigrette? Who’s to blame here?
When a kid graduates high school and cannot read who do we blame?
Schools, teach them the fundamentals of cooking, we’ll teach them the rest.
Interesting sight at Health Living recently. As I tried to enter with one of those little “I’m not going to buy that much” carts, a woman in front of me happened to be blocking the entrance while she was detailing her cart with one of those sani wipes provided for people who think there are germs only on grocery cart handles, but nowhere else. Within five steps into the store she was digging into a bowl of sample chips that everyone who passes has put their potentially filthy and germ laden paws into. Please don’t delay my entrance into the vegan scented grocery store with your pretend cleanliness again.
Where’s the intensity?
Thanks for the therapy session, I’ll send you a check.