Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Femme Fatale


I am a female cook/chef/head lacky should be sitting pretty sweet after 24 years in the "Biz" ,right?


Being a female in food service, like any male dominated field, sucks. Not only do I have to prove myself time and time again but i have to do it with a smile and a baby suckling from each breast. Oh and  a clean house and fresh laundry.

Fuck that!!!

If I am going to be the big wig and earn the bigger bucks and work 7432984132431 hrs a week, then don't expect a Stepford Wife house . Sorry, but even a monkey can do laundry...haven't the time to even put it away sometimes.

Female Chefs are expected to pull their weight as if they are men. There are no accomedations when we are pregnant( read this as a women who was 8.5 months along with baby #2 and working the grill at Disney.) if we want to retain some dignantiy....what little we have left cause sister...who in their right mind wears makeup in a 100 degree kitchen. You can't look your best with sweat dripping from your forhead, your ears, your breasts etc. And the reality is you have to be a cunt( pardon my language)..you have to  be stronger than the " boys" at every step of the way.

And trust me...they may love having a pussy in the kitchen, but if your better than them ( and you probably are....even my own brother realizes this) christ...look out. These sweet nice men with toss your ass so far under the bus that the crossing guard will pitty you. And it gets worse as you get older because your deemed as a realic to some of these young hot shots with their frozen cream top avocado essence..blah blah.

And you know what is worse than men in the kitchen....another women. OH GOD NO!!!!
I rather eat hiss cockroaches than work with females in the kitchen( not on my staff more side by side) I work with a female catering director and while I love her to death...i swear one of us is going to knife the other during an event ( i say that with love and affection).

Oh and god forbide you want to have kids let alone sleep with someone other than a coworker( dont sleep with coworkers.....remember these people are your backbone as your side of line goes into the weeds and if the sex sucked well forget them setting your plates for you.) or have a life.At 38 I still have what only may look like a life....I have a partner and kids ...but I am social weirdo and inept.....

I think I did right by my sons and had them when I was in my early 20's. They grew up with my long crazy hours and sleepless nights as I tried to figuare out the meaning of fiddleheads. They realize that there are times when 5pm really mean 8pm and that mommy sometimes needs to veg out for an hour before her mind snaps back into reality of mommie mode before asking her "whats for dinner?"

Your body as a female chef/cook takes the real beating. Once were long slender limbs replaced with tree trunk legs and hobbit feet. My knees are blown, my feet hate me, i have burn scares all over my body, my finges..heck  even my hair hurts. Our bodies were not meant to haul 75 boxes of chicken but we do it( and blow out our backs the first time trying).

But i suppose there is no other way ...baptism by fire i guess. Funny enough the whole industry has gone very PC. You can't raise your voice or talk stern to an employee or coworker without someone crying foul espically to females. For me don't patronize me, don't call me sweetheart when i am trying to voice my thoughts, don't smack my ass( unless I am naked in private),i will scrub the grease trap as long as skippy does the same. You can call me a dumb bitch in german ,french yiddish etc..and guess what, I will understand you. I will smile at you while you try to fuck with me and you will never see me break...till the year later and I break and cry like a little girl at you after I have yelled at someone for asking me for the hand blender.

I will never be anyones bitch.....it is the one thing I have earned after 24 years.


Rain said...

I have massive respect for the girls in the kitchen. I have seen really awesome people just crack from the stress. I've see break downs and throwing up and screaming matches. It's fucking ugly in the back but at least I'm not a waiter.

This has all reminded me that I am both loving and dreading the idea of moving to a new kitchen in a year. I don't do line but it gets fucking stupid in prep/production here.

I am fortunate enough to be the darling child in the kitchen at the moment, the boss loves me and I can do no wrong but I'm in a tiny hick down and I never get to make anything new or fun or challenging. Also I don't get a lot of actual backing ...which is well.. what I do.

Gretchen said...

I am still sort of the darling even though I am and executive chef....though not so much with the higher ups at corporate...lol

And some of my staff dislike me cause I am blunt. I think it is hard for women to be in this position because we have worked with men all our lives and existentially act like them because we have to survive somehow.

I have had spataulas at my head, been burnt by other cooks, had fryer baskets placed on my arms etc....I bear my scars and really none of it bothers me. What bothers me is when people can't understand the brutality of it and how even men have to face crap but it is a lot harder for women. It's either build a strong back and deal with the crap or become a pastry chef.

Rain said...

Yeah I'm to fucking pretty for this shit. I want my fondant back.

I like the crew alright save this one cunt. Precious is the lead chefs little brother which is the only reason his ass is not out, he can't read, can just barley communicate in non 'thug life' English, screws up constantly and is..here it comes...A SKIN HEAD!

...we don't get on.

But I love everyone else, they are all good at there jobs which is most of what is needed to secure my love at work.