July 21, 2014

I'm trying to understand now how I first got myself into this mess.  I needed a job. My father's advice, "Try a restaurant," he said, "They'll always be hiring. Even if it's just washing dishes." 
    
And that's really where it all started for me. I feel like it used to start that way with every job.  The American dream says, "Start at the bottom.  Work hard.  Advance over time.  Take a step up.  Work hard.  Advance over time.  Take a step up until one day, you'll be the guy at the top.  You'll have a ton of money.  A nice house.  A nice car."  I don't know about the later, but I think that maybe people nowadays try to bypass the good ol fashioned way of making something out of nothing and have forgotten that you have to work to get anything.  It takes time.  If instant gratification isn't the name of today's game, then I don't know what the game's name is.  Maybe I'm just getting to be a bitter old man.  A bitter old man surrounded by a whole bunch of knives and fire.  Really though, I'm not sure what it's like out there in the real world beyond the kitchen door.  Nor do I know what rung of the ladder I'm on in my world.  Somewhere around rung 4, maybe.  I'm not really sure.  
     
Back when I first stepped up to the plate that is restaurant work, I was a dishwasher.  I was thorough, but slow as damn molasses.  Slowrough could be the invented word for what I was.  I had a sick pair of yellow kitchen gloves to save me from getting Hep C or Salmonella or any other random disease.  I never wore those gloves, and based on no scientific evidence to back my claims, I'm convinced that I'm more immune to disease than normal folks because I didn't wear those gloves. 
     
It was more of just a job back then.  I didn't really see myself washing dishes forever.  I hated it. But I did it.  I imagine my bosses hated me because I was so slowrough.   I was allowed to grill once.  Once meaning one piece of chicken.  You don't get a whole lot of chances on the grill.  I bricked it.  That being said, I'd like to go ahead and apologize to the person who ordered the grilled chicken on the first night they allowed me to cook on the grill.  You might have noticed the chicken being heavy on the seasoning and as dry as the Griswold Christmas Turkey.  I bet you were fooled by all the beautiful chicken dishes that you saw coming out of the kitchen before yours.  "The chicken looks awesome," you probably thought, "I'll have that tonight."  See, food has this magical way of turning a bad day into a good one in a nanosecond.  Unfortunately, the chicken I made for you that night would've turned the greatest day of all time into a complete nightmare.  It wasn't your mistake in ordering.  It was mine in attempting to cook.  After that one piece of chicken, I was promptly exiled back down to the bottom rung of the restaurant ladder, only to resurface 10 years later, much like Godzilla, leaving a wake of kitchen destruction, determined to blow your mind with the power of a flame grilled piece of bird.  For that I have to thank you, whoever you are.  ...To be continued.