Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Professional Envy

Last Saturday, I had to hire Joel again to help me with a party in Brooklyn. We did the initial setup, but had to wait a couple of hours before we could go back in and serve, and then take back my display. While we killed time, he told me he was teaching classes in a community center in Queens. After describing how he handled his class of 50 people, I was thoroughly envious.

I wrote his reports and papers back when we were in culinary school because the man could barely string together a coherent sentence. I reworked his recipes, organized his kitchen logs, and even corrected huge mistakes he would often make. He passed the academic side of school because of me.

Now, he's doing what I always wanted to do! He is even using recipes that he and I created during our own catering days. I grumbled a stoic "congratulations" to him and wished him well. But, I'm thoroughly green over this. He isn't even using very challenging demos. Some of his techniques are all wrong. He still pronounces "mirepoux" as "minnie pwa".

He's a speed demon in the kitchen. His food tastes good. While I loved doing the more fancy dishes we learned about in school, he was all about the fast, hearty, "regular" food that you could probably pick up at any cafeteria luncheon. Lasagna, penne alla vodka, sliders, stir-fry, etc. Nothing fancy. Easy food. I guess the people he's teaching sort of want that kind of food, but what a waste of an education.

I know I sound like I've got a mouthful of sour grapes, but I expressed this very opinion to him. His reply? 
"This is what I like to cook. I can get you a guest class if you want. You can do a really good baking demo if you bring in your Kitchenaid."

I turned him down, even though I was tempted to accept. This was his gig, not mine. I probably wouldn't have been as generous with him if the roles were reversed. And the topper? I wrote down my favorite port wine reduction recipe just to show my support.

If there's one thing I can say about that ex of mine; he makes things happen for himself. Most of the time, he's picked the wrong things to happen, but he makes shit go. Maybe I should take more pages out of his book of getting shit done.


  1. Shit takes time. That's why it's so hard to get it done! You should teach classes though! :D

  2. Damn right shit takes time! I really do want to teach, but he's already used my simple baking demos to teach his classes. And that kinda chapped my ass, too, but we weren't greedy in the kitchen professionally before, so I don't want to start now. I wish him luck. He seems very happy doing it. We just have two very different styles. In an arrogant sort of way, I worry that I'll do so well that they'll ask me to stay on and they'll get rid of him. He's not exactly a "people person". But, that's just how things play out in my own mind. =P

  3. What? No! You should totally snake your way into their good graces so you get the job! Then when they hire you and kick him out, you go, "MESS WITH THE KAT, AND YOU GET THE CLAWS BITCH!" lol ^_^

  4. After having dated my share of snakes, it's just not my style to fuck someone over like that! It's not that I wasn't tempted to do it after he told me the recipes he used and the way he teaches. I could teach circles around this man. But, that would be a really fucked up way to go about things, and I really do believe that you reap what you sow. I don't need that kind of Karma in my bank. ;-)

    I'll let fate and circumstance claw these fuckers up! I like to keep my hands clean in that regard!

    If he asks me to be a guest teacher again...I may do it. Only because I haven't taught a class that large yet, and I'd like to improve my technique.