True confessions of a chef #1
After 10 years of cooking professionally and trying with all the might my small yet determined physical self can offer, with all the passion in my glowing heart, and with all the smarts in the multiple folds of my brain, I only make a few dollars (literally a few, this is not a dramatized statement) more an hour than when I graduated from college. 10 year of toil, turmoil, and complete dedication. I make less than I did before pastry school. I make so little that I was upset when minimum wage got increased. I make so little that I got a pimple of stress when my great job offered its shiny spot to me.
Eating is the number one necessity to living, but the work involved is not valued. Like teaching your children, these building block of society our overlooked and negated to the needy.
I have preached it before and I will continue my soapbox speech. Tipping is ridiculous and at this point it proves nothing. You tip because you have to, not because you want to. Since the industry has exploited the goodness of your dining generosity, it needs to be restricted. Servers, food runners, hosts, cooks, dishwashers, and bar backs, we all deserve to make a living wage, and just like a capitalistic system, the wages should not be so binary. Front of the house makes it rain, while back of the house is in the drought.
The system is not working, and this in turns makes it very difficult to want to go to the kitchen day in and day out, taking that precious passion and putting it towards you.
We are the overlooked crowd. You read about running a restaurant, and the service involved in making the guest have such a grand experience, and the struggle or impute of the chef is never mentioned. It’s all about that happiness in the dining room, the articles never mentions the that person under the bandana. It is starting to get to us. I see a lack luster in cooks because we are not getting enough out of this bargain. Someone has to speak up, and it will be Marigold and her golden wit.