The Laid Off Diary: Dear Diary…this sucks.


Guacomole Success!
May 7, 2009, 11:02 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

guac

Dear Diary:

I am having fun cooking for myself. Today, I made fresh guacamole to put in my seasoned chicken and asparagus whole wheat wrap. (FYI, keep the seed of the avocado and put it in the left over guac to keep it from turning brown/black).

I feel like I’m getting my life in order, which sounds funny because I’m unemployed without much direction on what I want to do next. But I’m eating healthier, working out, exploring my interests, reading the books I’ve wanted to, meeting with friends without the feeling I need to be somewhere soon or have a deadline, and finding out what I really want to do and what’s important (re-prioritizing is a humbling experience because you have to be completely honest with yourself about who you are and where you stand and figure out where you can go and where you hope to go).

My friend suggested that I go to culinary school. But culinary school is similar to law school (but with slightly more pot heads). So many people come out and can’t find the jobs they want or are cooks for catering companies or line cooks or bread makers or even work at meat cutting factories.

A few, like us, make it into the BigKitchen. A friend I know has worked about eleven years to get the sous position he has at a highly reputable establishment in NYC (and he’s definitely put in time as a cook at less than reputable places) but the things he complains about are many of the similar things I’ve complained about.

I assume that the executive chefs are much like partners in BigLaw. Chef Ramsey of Hells Kitchen may be over the top because of the TV cameras on him, but the stories I’ve heard from my friend about the exec chef makes me think that Chef Ramsey is pretty close to what really happens in the kitchen of these high pressure establishments. They all have big egos, high stress, high pressure, and many were probably assholes to begin with (as many contestants on Top Chef have proven. yes, I get all my facts from Bravo and reality TV shows.)

But it’s not just the bosses, it’s the work itself. I had asked him once whether he enjoyed doing his job–he went to culinary school because he had a passion for cooking (I’m guessing the majority of people who went to law school didn’t go because they had a passion for the law) and he said yes and no. He said he liked it when he was actually cooking, but all of the administrative b.s., or interpersonal politics, or personnel issues drove him crazy. And, when you turn a passion into work, it becomes just that–work. This was the same for me. I really did enjoy doing my line of work when I was actually practicing law (and I mean, doing something substantive and with more responsibility, not monkey shit like drafting or redrafting resolutions and secretary certificates because the monkey below me messed it up) but all the ego yelling, political bullshit, competitive back stabbing, and administrative redtape was just a distraction and a waste of time.

If BigLaw could clean up its act and let us be lawyers, I think most of us would be more content and better lawyers. But to be fair, it’s not just BigLaw–it’s any large organization. This is probably why I went to a private liberal arts school and not a huge state school like my parents wanted me to do (ah, another way I’ve let down the Parental Units, which my dad brought up again in conversation yesterday). Awesome.

For now, I’m enjoying my time, keeping an eye out on the market and job opportunities, but also getting my life and me in order.

–Enjoying my guac/chicken wrap and time off from BigLaw

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4 Comments so far
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From your Texas poster, where mexican food is King (or “El Rey”):

Putting the seed in the guacamole to prevent it from turning brown is an old wive’s tale. Exposure to oxygen is what causes the color to change, and the pit thus only protects the area covered by the pit. Use lime juice (or lemon, if no lime) in the recipe and cover it an airthight container, or with plastic wrap.
Also, Spanish lesson of the day (unless you’re different than most New Yorkers I know and understand how to pronounce Spanish words). The “g” is sort of an “h” sound when followed by a “ua”, i.e. it sounds like “hwacamole”, not “gwakamole.” Same thing for “Guadalupe”

Comment by Son of Dolemite

oooh, I put in lime juice so that’s probably why the guac (or hwac) didn’t turn brown… and I thought the seed thing worked…

Comment by laidoffdiary

I have heard the same thing about the seed just blocking the brown from the part its actually covering. However, I reject your saying Guacamole is soft h. One of the few pleasures in life is saying guacamole with a hard “g” and I refuse to give it up (Gwak-a-moe-lay!).

Comment by Nasrin

NO, I REPEAT NO hard “G” in Guacamole 😉
If you want to sound like a Northerner, feel free, though

Comment by Son of Dolemite




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