It was my day off so I’ve been alternately lolling around and doing bits of chores, so I didn’t post all day until now, when I SHOULD be sleeping but I wanted to post before I forgot.

Monday night was really easy, thanks to the Bulls Playoffs. So easy, in fact, that I was kind of bored. I expected a pre-game rush that never happened. During lulls I shelled a lot of peanuts. They’ve decided not to precook the peanuts anymore; instead opting to add them dry so they cook with the pork. That way, they reasoned, the peanut place (rhymes with moss) doesn’t come in contact with anything it doesn’t have to. When it was parcooked, I guess there was a risk of peanut broth spilling into other items if someone shoved the lowboy door closed too hard, or cross-contamination. I see their point.
Other changes I came across: the guys decided to do away with cutting boards, and using the little wooden boards for any miscellaneous cutting/chopping required on the line. It frees up quite a lot of space. Of course, we kept one board in the cupboard space under the oven for before-hours prepping on the line. I was a little hesitant at first, but the rearrangement seemed to make things easier and I adapted. (Now let’s see how I feel about it on a busier night…)

That Monday Elliot opened with the help of a stage. His name was Will, and he’s been here before. He’s a friend of Dylan’s, just out of the army, and he would have been working at Avec if not for the unfortunate timing of having been offered a job just after he accepted a position at Sixteen, in the Trump Tower. Well, he’s back again, and he might get the job. Will said he was tired of Sixteen. Apparently it was just like NoMi (his employer before Sixteen) all over again. The pay was great, but corporate restaurants, he said, are soul-crushing places. After he said that, I was reminded of something my friend, Tony, had said about hotel restaurants being where line cooks went to pasture. Will helped me shell peanuts on the line but then had to split. I wonder if the next time I see him, whether it will be a final stage or a starting day for him.

Anyway, there was pretty much no drama. I read a couple of tickets wrong and put out 2 shoulders before the course was even ready. Luckily they’re shoulders and can hang out and get better in flavor, so it wasn’t much of a big deal.

There 2 high points of my day. The first one occurred just before we opened. KO and Elliot were recounting the highlight of Sunday night when Elliot had to run to 7-Eleven to buy Benadryl for Dylan, who was having an allergic reaction… after accidentally smearing Bengay on his nuts. Apparently he was suffering from some sore thigh muscles from a drinking binge, and thought he’d remedy that with the Bengay, except he applied it too liberally. Elliot and KO were doing Dylan impersonations, beginning with “Hey, this feels kinda good!” until he started freaking out on the line from the burning: “Omigod I’m gonna die!” I nearly died myself, laughing until I cried. I wish I could’ve recorded the story and uploaded it as a sound bite, it was so funny. Especially the part where Elliot was musing, “Really? Is this what my life has come to? Running out to buy Benadryl for a line cook’s burning balls?”
Second highlight was of a much tamer nature when I was making pizzas for a family meal and for the dishwashers at the end of the night. Making pizza is fun! I didn’t get to try the pizza myself but everyone said it was really good. I hope so! I put 3 different kinds of cheeses on it (mozzarella, whipped ricotta, and manchego), salami, and spinach. Dammit, I wish I had a working oven at home so I could make my own pizza >_<

I'm back at work on Wednesday. Not sure of the rest of my schedule, but I prep on Saturday, and the restaurant is closed on Sunday for Easter.