How can I say I liked the work but not the food? Easy. Have you ever been driving around your hometown and become lost in thought and suddenly realized you are already at home? That's what working in a kitchen was like for me. A series of rather simple tasks that you repeat over and over that after a while become second nature. That one day when you are standing over the grill and your hands begin to reach for things without you having to remember where they are, where you feel the heat and the burn but it does not bother you, that is a great day. When you can drop a spatula and then lean down to get it "off the bottom shelf" without breaking stride preparing whatever mix of things you had on the grill and then there is this thing you prepared that will feed another human being. Think about that. Most of the food you eat that keeps you alive is being prepared by people so used to cooking that thing they did not have to think about it. There is something very freeing for me about that certainty, that power.
But I hated smelling like a kitchen after each shift, especially the bleach we used to clean everything with, so I left and went into libraries. Same amount of people drama, but less knives. I miss the kitchen sometimes. Nothing like it.
So, yes, I am enjoying this book. His obvious love for everything food is on the surface awesome and I admire that passion as well as the rawness of the kitchen "life style." Plus, I have had too many drunken memories of nights hanging out with cooks and waitresses to not also feel a little nostalgic when reading this.