All finished!

After some trickery with front and back page printing, I’ve just printed out 233 pages worth of journal entries. That was so, so, so much better than hand-formating each entry. And as long as I keep the link in my journal, I can go back, create another document, and print from where I left off.

Happy-Happy-Joy-Joy!

One of the things that I didn’t talk about here on the journal, or in my paper one, which I do scribble in occasionally, was about Canada Day. I should, though I wanted to avoid whining about what happened immediately.

Canada Day I had off, which was very cool. Top of my list of things to do that day was to head to the Canada Day celebrations at the Sudbury Arena. While there would be the expected Blowing Up Of Things That Go Boom ™ at night, during the day, the city gets together for a big cross-cultural food event! It’s great, really – different nationalities highlight the foods of their homeland/culture for a nominal price. I sampled some great samosas, tried taboulleh, had a yummy chicken curry with this incredible toasted coconut, and a six-pack of sushi (though I had pointed at the gyoza and was given the wrong package). There were long line-ups at the usual suspects: Italian and Ukrainian. Come on, people! You’ve had lasagna and perogies a million times. Branch out a little!

Anyways, while eating my tabouleh, and sitting with Todd in the bleachers, a guy from my past approached me. Mike. Long-time readers (who might care, or might not) may remember him from my time at cooking school. Bit of a dick, in a harmless, Drizzt-fanboi, geek-who-married, whiny-bitch sort of way. He was the one that had initiated the competition between myself and Suzanne over top marks. I worked with him at Pat & Marios, and in printing out my journal, recall vague feelings of bitterness at the fact that he was able to work on the line a few nights, while I was stuck back in prep and back-line appetizers. I chalk that up mostly because I’m a girl, and frankly it was all boys on the line, and always would be. He came up to me and starting chatting, all the while I was just wishing him away so I could eat my vinegary taboulleh.

He wanted to catch up on the other student gossip. He talked a lot about Suzanne, and how while they worked together at the Horse Track buffet restaurant in town, she was good for the first two weeks, and then morphed into a control-freak bitch. And that even Colette, whom Suzanne constantly sings praises for, was exasperated by her behavior, even asking Mike why he recommended her. It’s nice to hear the other side to the story – Suzanne would go on and on about what an idiot he was. Then about Sherri, who is still at Montanas (a terrible local restaurant) doing management stuff but is now on maternity leave.

Then he asks, “How are you on getting your book signed off?” He’s got that head-bobble of superiority coming on. I tell him, “Just meat and fish portioning left. Going to be heading to a butcher to do the former when work dies down a bit, and then bring in some fish for one-on-ones with my chef.”

“I got my Red Seal a few months ago. Boss signed off the rest of my book for me. I passed it first time with a 76% and the Ministry guy even came to work to congratulate me.”

The Boss, in this case, as far as I know, has no Chef papers. He cooks, yeah, but has no qualifications that I am aware of, like most of the road-houses in town. I know for a fact that while they do a hip on Sunday brunches, every other piece of meat comes there cryovac’ed. So where he got his training on portioning meat or fish, I dunno. But I guess for some it doesn’t matter.

He just came over to brag. That’s all. So. Infuriating. At the time, at least. I’m in a better place about it now. Even when I was talking about it at work, John was a little horrified. “He’d be useless in a real kitchen, like a hotel.” “I know,” I replied.

In thinking on the kinds of work we do, though, I’m glad I didn’t stay at P&Ms. It is a road house. At the Idyie, I get to invent new specials, be in charge of signature dishes, help with ordering, help with directing the new staff, and actually learning the real stuff. I cut all the steaks off of a single striploin last Wednesday for men’s night, and they were bang-on. I’m going to go to a butcher and learn about meat from a professional. I’m going to spend time with John cleaning and portioning fish until I get it right. My book will be signed off with meaning behind it, not back-scratching.

So, normally a day when I get sort of teary-eyed when I look at how Canada celebrates its nationhood, with people from all backgrounds coming together to share what they love, got squashed on by this guy coming over to brag about, basically, cheating. Guh. I ended up leaving early, so I didn’t even get a chance to see all the booths, or any of the dancing. I shouldn’t have let it bother me, but I sometimes feel powerless to do anything to stop it. John suggested meditation. 😉

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