Thursday, September 24, 2009

Not Every Kitchen is Hell, Just the Two I've Worked In

Working in a busy kitchen is one of the most stressful environments anyone can work in. The only way one can have more stress is if they have someones life in their hands, have millions of dollars at risk, or they are getting shot at. I know what your saying, "But I have a deadline for a report for Friday", yeah well in a kitchen you have a deadline every 5 seconds and if you miss it the boss is hollering at you, which tends to add to the stress of the next order and it's all down hill from there.

A few summers ago I worked at Woodman's of Essex, the place where the fried clam was invented by a man who was not so ironically called "Chubby". Woodman's is a family run business so as a result there are something like 25 people you have to listen to. Though I may not have liked the way they treated their employees or how they seem to think you should pay for the honor of eating at a hot and sticky clam shack where you have to pick your food up at a window, I still count it as a large and fairly positive experiment in my life. For if it wasn't for Woodman's I wouldn't have learned how to fry, to mop, to wake up at 5 AM, what it's like to smell like fried food for days, or the amount of time and effort that goes into preparing a restaurant each day. Nor would I be working for Bartley's where the only reason I was hired was because "I've never worked with someone who worked at Woodman's before, so I guess I'll have to give you a try."

Bartley's is a whole different animal then Woodman's. First off I actually like the food we cook (Burgers), second, all I do is put the toppings on the food and place it in the window, no burning myself required. The biggest thing of all to me is that the guy who does all the hollering and demanding actually works in the kitchen and the kitchen would not be able to run without him. I admit it sucks getting yelled at, but when it's coming from someone who is doing something much harder than you and not just standing around dictating then there is nothing you can do but shut up and do it right.

Yeah I stand on my feet all day and yeah I get paid far less than I would if I was sitting in an office at a computer with a fraction of the stress and physical labor but in a small way it's rewarding and eye opening. Yes I will keep telling myself that.

No comments:

Post a Comment