In response to the recent call to RoK readers to produce positive articles on self-improvement, there have been some excellent entries of late.
I had to cringe, however, at the sight of an article about cooking, which forced me to say aloud, “Why the hell didn’t I think of that?!” It was a good read, and I commend OMYG on a job well done. Soon, however, I realized that he left open one area in which I actually have a unique experience, namely working as a cook in a professional kitchen.
Taking a job in a kitchen has many benefits. Besides the skills and knowledge you attain in a culinary sense, you will meet people that may change your life. The kitchen is one of the few places in which I have worked where cussing and inappropriate jokes are actually encouraged. It’s a great place for you to have the freedom to be yourself, to work under the tutelage of confident, skilled men, and to receive invitations to some sweet parties.
I was 15 when I started out as a dishwasher in a retirement home. The labor was disgusting, grueling, degrading, and paid shit. Despite all of that, if I could go back in time, I would do it all over again.
When I wasn’t scraping pots or spraying silverware, I was spending time with the real chefs of the kitchen, who served as male mentors to me in my young age. One such man was a German chef who had catered for the Olympics and for some tragic, unknown reason found himself in this hell hole, forced to seek new ways to prepare grilled chicken for the rich, crabby geezers that lived on the property.
Whatever his story was, the man had talent. I used to watch in awe as he would crack four eggs at a time with his two hands in preparation for the omelette station. Even though his position is not something culinary artists would strive to attain, he performed his duties with refined skill and with dignity. When he said frog, I jumped. If he told me to clean the floor–the one task I hated more than anything–I scrubbed every last corner of that red-tiled kitchen.
Any man on the path towards alphadom must understand the importance of serving under a strong male leader. Scrubbing a kitchen floor may seem like beta chump slavery to you, but if done for the right instructor and for a purpose, it can change you permanently.
I paid my dues in that kitchen, and it earned me the credit I needed to open other doors in the industry.
After the high school drudgery, I took another dishwashing job as a freshman in college, and this proved to be rewarding in a different way. Besides the opportunity to finally handle some of the food preparation, I was introduced to the fun dark side of the food-and-beverage industry culture.
My first day on the job, three of the employees–one of them being the executive chef–asked me to meet them in the walk-in freezer for some “job training.” We met in the cold space, a welcome break from the West Texas heat, and they passed me a lit pipe packed with a special herb, saying it was time for my “drug test.” I took a nice, long hit, and they were pleased to inform me that I passed the test.
Back in the dish pit, the chef and her girlfriend would take frequent breaks to make out and have lesbian sex in the bathroom next to me. Towards the end of each night, I always ended my shift with an exquisite plate of food and a couple of beers on the house. Not exactly a tale of sexual conquest, but it was a great environment in which to learn culinary skills, and the women who worked there treated me with nothing but love, affection, and respect.
It made sense to drop out of college that year, and I had to turn down a hidden trove of pussy that I discovered at the end of the spring semester. It was my connection to the chef and her friends that opened up this new door of possibilities, but as fate would have it I was destined to return to Central Texas.
Back in the Hill Country, I worked in a handful of restaurants and even helped open a new one. I manned all parts of the establishment, from waiting tables to preparing food in the kitchen. Without a doubt, the sixth sense I developed about food ingredients during that time was the greatest benefit that still persists today. To second what OMYG said in his article, you create an air of independence and intrigue when you cook for a female.
College became necessary again, so I re-enrolled, this time at a different school. I remember this one girl I had met and made out with one night. She successfully resisted my advances that evening, despite me showing genuine concern for her interests and sharing my sensitive side (we all know how well that works).
One night shortly thereafter, I randomly ran into her at a bar. I walked up to her and said in her ear, “I’m having you over for dinner on my birthday. It’s in a few days, and we’re having steak.” She agreed immediately.
The morning of my birthday arrived. I woke up and had sex again with the girl I had taken salsa dancing the night before. She left, and I made preparations. The evening came, and I made bacon-wrapped filet mignon with creamy gold mashed potatoes and sautéed asparagus. All cooked to perfection. My date and I enjoyed a gourmet meal in my home, and I got laid on my birthday… twice. So I guess it helps to know how to salsa dance, too?
At the end of that semester, I took a summer job as a cook for a camp site. It seemed like a great idea–I would get to travel, see the mountains, and perfect a skill. Little did I know, this company had signed me up to cook for a scout camp, Girl Scouts to be exact, hundreds of them at a time. It was too late to back out so I went along, miserable at the prospect of having to slave away for the thrall of whiny little princesses whose parents thought it would be a good idea to expose them to the outdoors.
The company caravan took me to Southern California, in the mountains as I had expected, far from civilization as I had hoped, and far from any colleges or bars as I soon came to lament. But being the young, unwise chap that I was, I failed to foresee the fact that a camp full of female scouts would have to be run by a crew of adult female staff members.
Impossible to foresee, however, was the phenomenon known as “summer work exchange,” wherein young women from foreign countries visit the United States to work in our nation and practice their English language skills. At that particular camp, during that particular summer, there were women in their early twenties from Russia, Spain, Colombia, and one I shall always remember from Ukraine.
It was the summer of a lifetime.
If you have the liberty and free time to pick up work as a kitchen hand, I highly recommend it. Whether it’s a summer gig or long-term employment, it’s something you should try at least once in your life.
The Most Interesting Man in the World probably worked in a kitchen, and he’s not even real. Go work in a kitchen, and you’ll be more interesting than he is. Because… you’re real.