if you asked me to describe myself, I would tell you first, I am a chef. Through and through no doubt about it. I have food memories from very early on in my childhood. I remember meals, dishes, convo had during said meals, what I was wearing, what you were wearing, what the room smelled like. It’s uncanny, but it’s true. I am hyper aware of food and all things surrounding it.
This is not always a great thing, trust me.
First, no one wants to go out to eat with me because I’m an analyzer. I can’t help but be. I can’t turn it off. If there is a seafood “special” at a not so busy place on a Monday…chances are the fish is from the weekend, still hanging out. I can’t un-know that. Should I tell you that fact, my lovely dinner companion, or would you just like me to sit back and let you play roulette with the shimmery fleshed “catch o’ day”? Usually, everyone pauses somewhere between their first bite leaving their plate and it ending up in their mouth…to secretly look up at me to determine the fate of our dinner vibe. Does Angie like her dish?
No one wants to have me over for dinner either. (aka- no one wants to cook for me). “They” think I’ll judge their taco night or backyard bbq. Little do they realize or believe, but I’m down with ground beef, the packet and some old- school shredded, orange cheddar cheese. Just because I can cook doesn’t mean I’m complicated or fancy. Normal schmormal is comforting to me too.
I get in trouble with my partner. Yup, can’t avoid it no matter how hard I try. She’s a great cook and pretty much the only person that will cook for me… See where I’m going? So, I have to avoid offering up any “tips”. I could just express a puzzled look, and I get the sigh and…”what now?”
My outfit matches when I cook. Ask my crew. They tease me often, but I don’t care. If you look fresh, you feel fresh. I have a variety of chef jacket colors, which match the corresponding chef clogs, which must be coordinated with my apron, socks and watchband. It’s not a big deal to coordinate, right?
I’m obsessed with sharpie markers, post-it tape and labeling.
I smell every container I pick up before I put something in it. Ever been out for brunch and taken a bite of that big juicy orange wedge on your plate or rim of your glass, only to be disgusted by the strange taste of garlic or onion? It’s because that item was prepped and stored in a container that still smelled like the guys before them. You weren’t losing your mind at all.
My lunchtime is somewhere around 4 pm.
I say “behind you” to people in the supermarket who are absolutely puzzled and think I’m creepy. Behind you is a phrase used constantly in a busy restaurant to keep the team safe and warn them you are behind them with something sharp, hot or heavy as to avoid any sudden movements and trips to the er.
I put little reminder notes in my pocket, and they end up all over the wash.
I drink a lot of coffee. I eat meals out of plastic deli containers. I can’t throw away the purple asparagus rubber band, and I usually end up wearing it as a bracelet
8 o’clock Saturday night will always mean something to me. It’s the time you feel most connected to your crew because you experienced a simultaneous beating and made it to the other side.
My first thought when someone mentions a powdered doughnut is not a sweet one, but instead, I think of a torn open box of cornstarch in the staff bathroom in August. If I had the ability to turn it off, now would be the time.
I am often angered by a restaurants lack of ability to use salt and pepper. Pretty basic in the restaurant business people. Maybe you should start there first actually. See? That’s the beginning of my rant every time it happens. Another reason to support my lack of dinner companions.
I love who I am and what my profession has made of me. I won’t apologize or try to be someone else…it wouldn’t do any good anyway.