I Already Know the Answer

I brought in a lot of revenue to the restaurant this evening, on what would otherwise have been a dead Monday.

It’s all relative. No one else is happy about it.

Chef thinks I spend too much time on private events–you know, the actual bottom-line money makers. Fine. Say all you want that you don’t want to book private events “every night.” Really? Not on a Monday or Tuesday? Not the first date after New Years? Not on a cold, cold February Wednesday? Because I have ’em all ready to pony up.

I am just that good, after two weeks from opening.

Right. I should be doing more “on the floor.” Clear a plate, run some food.

I have landed in the middle of some of the most talented, rising stars, ever. I have learned more in the past month-and-a-half than I ever thought I could about this biz. And, given a few more weeks, I could learn far more.

But sometimes egos get in the way. Sometimes high-school attitudes in coworkers live on, well into their 30s. Jesus, all I want to do is what I do best. Do you know who I am? Do you know how well I already do for you?

Instead, it’s, “Psst, chef, she doesn’t know how to do so many things. But I do!”

Give me a f—ing break.

I have lived a lifetime and more around these kids. I am sorry they don’t get it.

My GM does. He’ll help me through. He gets it.

No, I wasn’t fired today. But the writing is there, all on a cluttered wall.

This ain’t home.

And I cried to Mr. Restaurant Gal about it, at 1 a.m., waking him up to drone on and on.

And he felt horrible.

I felt worse.

Then I came downstairs and read my email, both personal and to Restaurant Gal.

One note to RG explained how her brother had not survived in Iraq, and to hug my friend’s son ever so tightly.

Another note to me, Restaurant Gal mom, explained how a student at Restaurant Gal Daughter’s college had tragically died in a car accident this past weekend. Counselors would be on hand to help students.

There’s no answer to this. There’s no way I can measure my work angst against this kind of ultimate pain.

I know the answer to work–get the hell out and move on. Big deal.

On the way out, would that I could take with me even a little of these families’ pain away from their hearts.

I know the answer to that, too. Nice thought, but no can do. So impossibly impossible.

How is it that life is so damn short?

I wish I knew that answer.






13 responses to “I Already Know the Answer”

  1. Amy Avatar

    Never, ever call them Chef. It will only lead to heartache.

  2. Restaurant Gal Avatar

    Amy–Too late. My heart is already broken.

  3. Rev Smokin Steve Avatar

    As a guy who enjoys eating out way too much, I enjoy hearing about this end of the business.

    As a guy who has worked in the hospitality field as a DJ for events, I know how planning private events can be. Guaranteed money is better than potential money, that’s for sure.

    I’ll keep reading. And consider yourself linked.

  4. Papillon Avatar

    Please don’t give up, and don’t give in. Those are their thoughts, and you have yours.

    Know yourself. Doubt is just another form of self-sabotage.

    I remember when I was new to a rather popular restaurant.. and the girls there made comments behind my back. When someone told me those comments to my face, I cried and quit.

    Immediately after I was hired at another well-known cafe, and became entrusted in a leading position after just a few days of work. I was only 17.

    You’ve got this.


  5. Serdic Avatar

    Illegitimati non carborundum. Don’t let the bastards grind you down. =) Seriously though, while they may say you don’t know things, it goes both ways. You can do things they can’t and you’re open to learning what you don’t know. By attempting to belittle you, they’ve shown they’re unwilling to learn.

    Speaking for myself, I don’t expect my manager to be able to do my job. In fact, I’m quite content if they just stay out of my way and let me do it. I do appreciate it when I can go for them to get advice/suggestions on how to handle a difficult situations or even help fix a bad situation. I can learn from them, and that’s what I need in a manager.

    As Papillon said, you’ve got this. Believe in yourself. I know you can do it (a sentiment shared by many, I’m sure).

  6. Mr. Restaurant Gal Avatar
    Mr. Restaurant Gal

    Darlin’, all I can say is you’ve got the nicest friends who read your blog. Wow.

  7. Restaurant Gal Avatar

    My readers are incredible friends. Who knew? You’re not too bad yourself, Mr. Restaurant Gal.

  8. Jessica Avatar

    Keep your chin up, chica. Co-workers who don’t appreciate your strengths when the big boss does only end up making themselves look like the sniveling little bastards they are. Quality restaurant folks know that it takes all kinds of management strengths to make a place work.

    Also, as a veteran server, I hate hate HATE when managers hit the floor and start doing my job or my support staff’s job. This is what I’m good at – just shoo away from my tables and let me do it. I trust if you have a good relationship with your waitstaff and make it known that you’re willing and able, they’ll let you know if they need your help while secretly snarling at the overzealous wannabe-waiter managers.

    Finally, my personal theory is that any chef who wants to be called “Chef” is a jackass, kinda like lawyers who put “Esquire” after their names. If one needs a constant reminder of one’s status, one has problems bigger than not realizing that private events pay the mortgage.

  9. jali Avatar

    We’re rootinmg for you!

  10. jali Avatar

    R-O-O-T-I-N-G (see previous ignorant looking post)

  11. what? Avatar

    You are a very nice, reasonable person. And one can infere that you work hard. I like your writing, it’s veru insightful.

    Don’t give up. All the pressure, the comments…take them as a test. You gotta ace it, you have everything you need to do so.

    Have a nice day =)

  12. LB Avatar

    Just because our pain isn’t as great as that of others doesn’t mean that it isn’t valid. Don’t feel bad about letting yourself feel it. Then you can be through with it. Feel it, resolve it, get back out there and kick some more butts. The naysayers will be eating their own words soon enough.

  13. Restaurant Gal Avatar

    Jessica–Actually, we don’t have to call him Chef. They do during service, in the kitchen, of course. And they should, because it’s as top-notch and professional a kitchen as I have ever seen. We have only been open three weeks and the BOH makes it feel like we’ve been at it forever. Actually, so does the FOH. Anyway, I use Chef in my posts because I never use real names.

    Jali–Don’t you love typos??? And thank you.

    LB–Why are you wise beyond your years?

    What?, Serdic, Papillon–thank you, too. You are so nice to comment and be so supportive.

    Rev. Smokin Steve–Link away, baby. Love your site.

    –The Gal