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post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
I guess I'll set the stage:

I'm a Sous chef at at an event facility with the total capacity of about 4k.

The volume is substantial, and we cater out also.

Of course the holidays are coming, (most chaotic time of the year) and I have 2 cooks quit with a third probable. (out of 6)

The Chef, who is also my friend, has been giving me heck. (worse actually, but this board filters bad words) Our relationship is pretty straightforward. He tells me what to do, and I do it.Always. But now I'm catching flak over things that really don't mean anything, and the slightest expression of disagreement sets him off.

He is very demanding which I accept, but naturally this means me applying pressure on the crew, which they resent. Many of them are already upset over wage/hour issues (low on one or both).

No matter what, they see me as one of them, and not a manager. At heart, I AM one of them, but that's beside the point. I seem to not be able to get the kind of response the exec does.

Chef got angry with me because I disagreed with some personnel issues, and after a day and a half of the silent treatment from him, we had it out.

I didn't quit (I'm loyal).
I didn't get fired. (Lucky? Valued?)

Many good chefs are control freaks and my chef is very good.
But unfortunatly, this undermines my own authority, for every virtually decision I make is changed, many times arbitrarily. Work assignments, production plans, scheduals, the works. I have never failed to do as he demanded. Ever.

It's ok for the Chef to be upset, but not me. Sorry, but I'm merely flesh and blood.

The crew see me as a sock puppet. Chef has a bad habit of telling me what to tell each crew member to do, in earshot (or better, with them standing right there), then having me tell them again.
Chef drives himself to burnout and poor health, and I can't get him to just go home and let me handle it. I am very capable of doing so. I think. When he does this, I'm not so sure.
The downward pressure applied on me gets applied to the crew, I can't help that, I'm pretty stressed out trying to keep them under control and keep chef happy.

Now they are bailing out. Wages and hours(total worked) issues get them angry, then they start taking potshots at the nearest target, me.

I don't cook enough some say. True. The reason I refrain from doing what I like best is so that they can make some income. I could pick any three and fire them, and do it all myself, no problem most of the year.

So for my thoughtfulness I get no credit.

They dont like my temper. If I show them and tell them three times what to do and they still screw it up, and the chef rakes me over the coals? Sorry, they get it from me. I don't like it. Sometimes it's calculated, sometimes I'm just upset. Then I go home a feel bad.

This has predictably, had bad effects on my health and outlook. Therefore, I will simply stop.

I have talked to most and this is my plan:

A cook that screws up is resposible. No more protection from me, no reminders, no follow up. Nothing. They get told/shown ONCE. I do QA their work, but It's simply impossible to see everything before it goes out. If chef wants to give me some lumps I'll take them, pointing a big, fat, calloused finger at the offender all the time.

I'm also going to go back on the line, produce as much as possible, and take as much money out of the crew's pockets as possible. Every one of them knows I can throw down serious volume and quaility. Maybe they need a reminder.

I am quite angry with the quitters. They also have a point. Our wages suck and we offer no benefits. It's a tough place, and a tough kitchen, lots of chaos.
I'm a symptom, not the disease.

I tell chef that our place has exactly the staff that the ownership is willing to pay for, no more, no less.

IF we can hire replacements, I'm faced with a raging chef, uncaring ownership, a goofball GM, a disconnected and discourteous sales/contract department, AND having to babysit a few newbies during the busyest, most taxing and aggrivating time of year.

Happy Holidays. Shoot me please. Riv.
post #2 of 24

Hey "sock puppet"...grow a pair!

I can't believe that you are a bonefide Sous Chef and whinning like a little girl like this. You are "middle management", bro. Your job is to be the a-hole when the Chef doesn't have time. Your cooks are giving you crap? Tell them to work faster and be more efficient...then SHOW THEM HOW! Lead by example and kick a*s and take names. There is no room for cry babies in this buisness. Show your Chef your loyalty by firing the first cook to give you "...'da buisness" about your asking him/her to do their d*mn job. Start chopping some d*mn heads off and maybe you'll get their f'ing attention! Your Chef wants to be reassured that you are the right person for the job based on how you DIRECT the crew. If you fail at that, your head is the next one to hit the floor with low "clumping" noise.
post #3 of 24
Thread Starter 
I totally agree with you juan.
And I have been doing exactly as you describe, for over a year now, with good results up to a two months ago.

Problem is, my being an @hole is now being cited as a primary reason for staff losses.

I have become a convienent excuse.
As to firing, if you have read some of my past post, you would know I have made that happen too.

Being a cook in our place basically means working like a slave for chump change. The janitors make more than highly skilled cooks.Thats the real problem, and nobody wants to admit it.

In the local area, cooks are in demand, even mediocre ones. Even bad ones.We are simply not competetive anymore. Our unhappy staff has plenty of options.

I can be whatever kind of sous you or anybody tells me to be. If my staff can't pay the rent or buy food, they will leave. The state of denial over wages and hours has nothing to do with me. I refuse to be scapegoated as a poor excuse for the desire for discount labor.
post #4 of 24

Do you guys ever have staff meetings?

A lot of times, grumbling by hourly staff can be alleviated by giving them a chance to voice their grievances to those that have the power to address them (or not.) At least the suits can give them a clear reason for their low wages.
Meetings are also helpful for clarifying production standards-all at once, all at the same time so there is no cofusion or "Chef said to do it this way" "no, Sous said that way". You can also make a clear plan for what you want to happen on a daily, weekly, monthly basis. Another useful thing about these meetings is that work and authority roles become clear to everyone.

Of course, you must collaborate with the chef and the suits as to what roles are and how you need info and authority to be disseminated. That way you are not undermining each other unintentionally. If it is intentional on either part, well, that's a whole other can of worms.

Just an idea, but it sounds to me like the operation has two problems.
1) Communication (top-down, and bottom-up) is unclear and inconsistent.
2) Standards of performance are ill defined and without clear consequences for non-compliance. "If you don't do better, you're fired" is a not specific enough, a poor motivation technique, as well as unrealistic when faced with the larger recuitment competition problem. Try to enlist the efforts of the hourly staff to solve the obvious problems and setting priorities for which ones to address first.

In most cases it's more cost effective to redefine and retrain than to hire and train anew. On average, it takes an investment of at least 90 days to train a new recruit as a replacement for even a marginal experienced staffer.

Let's see, how many days until the holiday party season begins?

Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!


Liquored up and laquered down,
She's got the biggest hair in town!

post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 
There is no bottom up communication. The ownership and GM are stone deaf to the chef, myself, and the entire kitchen. The never even come in to look.

One on one, each employee will bring issues up. As a group, they go mute, because they know neither I nor the chef can do anything about wages, hours, or benefits.

My collaberation with the chef is limited to me doing exactly as he wishes. There is no good cop/bad cop.
His role is anything he wishes it to be at the moment; that's his right.
But he fails to understand how he undermines his own sous.

Today, I continued one on one interviews to gain insight.

True, my crew don't like it when I'm tough on them or yell. But for all but the very young, wages, hours, and working conditions usually get much higher attention on their problems list.

This is unlikely to change. Our shop is a revolving door, and no matter how I try to explain that retention of trained, qualified employees is a cheaper alternative, chef and I are powerless to make it happen. Thus, we start from scratch with each new hire.

We ran an ad for two weeks for cooks a few months back and recieved exactly five applications, only one of whom was qualified, and he's one of the ones leaving. Locally, we have a very bad rep as a workplace in the community of cooks and chefs.
Example: This place has chewed up and spat out 10 executive chefs in 14 years of operation. Well over a hundred sous chefs, cooks and dishwashers.

We will deal with it, but it's old. Worse, it's totally unnecessary.

So I'm changing my personal style to deal with the criticisms. This is they way it's going to stay, and if my friend the chef doesn't like the result, what happens next is his call. I'll deal with it either way.
post #6 of 24
10 execs in 14 years? Try to get to the bottom of what's up with chef. He might be real unhappy. My guess is he's thinking real hard about leaving.

If you play your cards right, you're it, or you will be until a new chef gets hired.
post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 
He is unhappy. He does want to leave.
I believe the problem he deals with is twofold:
Age discrimination, and a high salary requirement.
He certainly delivers results for whomever he works, there is zero doubt about that.
Our one lung, crippled operation adds big money to the owners bottom line, a lot of it. In spite of them. Sooner or later his fortunes will change, and my intent is to exit as soon as he does. Although I am capable, and can run the operation, I'm no substitute for his capabilities and decades of experience over the long haul. Only this has allowed him to cope at all. He has many tricks, and uses them all. Of course, I apsorb it all like a sponge.

I'm not interested in being the exec here, at any price. Putting myself on that casualty list of ex-chefs is not on my short list of career goals. My past experiences tell me to never take an exec or sous job again (done both). If income were not an issue, I'd just cook. But I'm trying not to let my current experieince sour me on the industry. I'll take on my own kitchen and crew again at some point. Very carefully.
post #8 of 24
Remember that old Dire Straits song, " Industrial Disease"? That's what the place has.

Chef of the year, 4k+ capacity, hungry owners, lousy staff attitudes, lousy pay, etc. When you start cooking and taking away the hours from the cooks things'll get worse, and then Joe, who left a few weeks ago will get a bunch of cooks to come over to here he works, and then your Chef will have either a constant face like a rotten strawberry, or be in intensive care at the local hospital. Can't get any decent cooks if you don't pay what you need, top brass won't pay, so the only way to survive is to rely even more on finished products and cheaper cooks. Industrial disease....

If you're in tight with the Chef, tell him openly and frankly that you'll be at his side at his next post. Plan your escape together. Just my two cents...
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
post #9 of 24

Head for the hills

You say:

Our shop is a revolving door...
Locally, we have a very bad rep as a workplace in the community of cooks and chefs...
The ownership and GM are stone deaf to the chef, myself, and the entire kitchen. They never even come in to look...
It's a tough place, and a tough kitchen, lots of chaos...
I'm faced with a raging chef, uncaring ownership, a goofball GM, a disconnected and discourteous sales/contract department...

What's keeping you there? If the owners aren't prepared to invest in their employees, then you will quickly reach a point beyond which enjoyment of your job and development of your career are impossible. The way I read your comments, you've reached that point.

Run; run far, run fast. And find the job that you deserve, in an organisation where the kitchen is respected.
post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 
I stay out of loyalty to my chef. He's done me a couple of good turns in the past. He befriended me when I needed a friend. I have learned a lot from him.

But business is business. He will cut my throat in a second if I don't deliver.
As I have high expectations for myself, I find that arrangement acceptable. But his personal and work issues are weighing heavily on him right now, which translates to making my life very difficult for me.

He's trapped at the moment, and abandoning him in the trap wouldn't be right. But he's exploring my limits right nowto the point where I'm loosing it.
post #11 of 24
Didn't say for you to abandon him. First rule in physics, politics, and military is that the fecal matter moves in a downward motion. If you're in a lousy postion, he's in an even worse one. Last time I was in a position like yours,(11 years ago) my Chef died of um, neck injuries, self inflicted ones... There were alot of other factors involved, but the main ones (at work) were the same ones you listed in your first problem, I call it Industrial disease.

Like I said, talk to him frankly and tell him that if and when he moves, you will be there with him. No one can view this statement as a threat or even as bad news, only a sign of loyalty.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 
We have discussed it at length for a year now.
He knows I'll stand with him. And go with him.
He also knows that in any sort of battle with the ownership or GM, they can simply count me out as any sort of alternative.

I just wish he'd climb down off my back long enough for me to help him. He has great ability to rachet up the tension level, mine especially. I then react in response. And I have not figured out a way to react that mollifies him that doesn't yank everbody's chain and puts the whole kitchen on tilt. Buy he's angry with me.

The difference with me, is that if I get angry with a cook, it's over at the end of the day. Forever. Next day, clean slate.
Chef gets mad at someone, and it's seemingly never over. And he's mad at me.

I'm violating all sorts of personal rules about work for him that I have developed to maintain my own happiness over the years:

Never work a job that makes you feel stupid.

Never work a job that puts you in a position of hassling good subordinates.

Never work a job where politics is more important than results.

Never work a job where money is your sole motivation and focus.

Never work a job where forced into responibilty for outcomes where you have no control.

Perhaps all I can do is (try to) maintain my composure until january.The first six weeks of the year the place goes dead, More cooks will quit because they won't get enough hours to live on. And once again, the circle will be complete.
post #13 of 24
You're in deep. If Chef knows he can rely on you, and you won't be salivating over his job, it does make things wee bit better.

But like you said, the place goes through about 1 Chef a year, and I can only assume that your Chef is under great pressure. You're his right hand man, so you get it too, and I guess the only thing right now is to suck it up. And as that dirty "C"word (Christmas...) comes closer and closer the pressure will really be on, if he blows his top once too often there won't be anyone left in the kitchen. I feel for you, both.

From what you describe of the owners and F & B, and what you describe of the natural "lull" in January, looks like they'll stage the coup and plant in a new Chef about then. Heck, they may be greedy, but they ain't stupid, they'll milk all they can out of you when the milking's good (Christmas), then get rid of the cow. Like I said before, start planning an escape route, now. The planning will be the only way to deal with the pressure.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
post #14 of 24
Thread Starter 
You are very perceptive foodpump.
January is traditional firing time for chefs here, but the owners problem is that my chef adds so much to the bottom line with so few rescources, they may as well close shop. It would be the stupidest thing they have ever done, but I wouldn't put it past them. Stupid is their stock in trade.
And my chef is definatly under great pressure both at home and work.

Things seemed on an even keel today with some important functions going smoothly. Maybe I made my point, maybe not. He would never admit it anyway.
But as long as I'm going home not feeing wrapped around the axel, I can deal with the rest.
post #15 of 24
Part of the chef's job is to deal with staffing problems. Seems like he needs to know what percentage his labor is running. If it is really low, he should confront the GM about wages. Low labor is great, as long as you can keep the staff to get the job done. Low labor should be addresses in this situation, because keeping a good staff, or hiring a quality staff, has become impossible. Pay should be competitive in the market you are more, no less. You are seeing the market at work.
Your chef is in a real pickle if his labor is already running high. This leaves him few cards. Either the staff is being mis-managed or the menu pricing is off.
My GM gets nervous with a large staff, but paying everyone 30-40 hours a week is better than paying huge overtime on too few people.
If everyone is getting overtime, it might be usefull for the chef to give the gm a math lesson to show him that paying slightly higher wages to a bigger staff will save him money by eliminating overtime.
You and the chef have more power before the holidays than you will in January. Push now.
You are nice to the staff and they quit on you. A lot of good that did you. Empathy and being human is needed, but don't forget your position as sous. There is always some good chef/bad chef chemistry. Something has gone wrong if they are quitting on you in numbers. There are always quitters in a group, but half the staff? As sous, you never want to loosen the staff too much by being friendly. It only sets them up for failure.
Some people will stick around if the food is good, the environment is good, and the reputation is good. Young cooks often thrive if they are learning or gaining responibility that they would not get elsewhere. There is often a mindset that "I can make better money down the street but it might suck to work there". You are in big trouble when the cooks get the mindset of "I can make better money down the street and it can't possibly suck as bad as working here".
post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 
Any overtime in our kitchen (if there is any) goes only to the best, most useful, and most productive employees. It's not money ill spent.

Labor is expressed to us as a percentage over or under the same period the prior year, with no consideration as to total revenues, costs, or results.

As to power, I would point out that there is total, irrevocable disconnect between the chef/kitchen, and sales/ownership. There is little to no consulation over menu/pricing/food costing with the chef or myself. There is none at all over the labor required for certain menues vs others. Other than outright blackmail, we have no power so to speak, and we both need a paycheck.

In short, we have no idea whatsoever how prices are set, and ownership isn't interested in giving us any insight. We do have comparisons over the performance of past years however, and we are light years ahead of past crews. But we always seem on the ragged edge.

Neither the GM nor the owners have shown any interest whatsoever. The GM is usually absent from his post (especially when the ownership is not around).
post #17 of 24
Rivitman, the history of your place, I can't get it out of mind. 10 Chefs in the last 14 years or was it 14 Chefs in the last 10? That kind of history speaks volumes about the owner.

You said the Chef makes lots of money for the owner. Now, your Chef could be running at a 10% labour and 10% f/c, but from the owner's point of view, the Chef doesn't make him any money, the sales dept does. Ah, kiss their golden butts, those guys and gals just keep on hauling in those cheques... As far as most industrial disease owners are concerned, the Chef is just a production manager, he doesn't produce the bucks, just the food.

The "chef of the year" business, can't get it out of my head, and then you describe that top brass throw the Chef in a corner, make sure he has no access to information, and purposely have as little as possible to do with him. In places over-run with industrial disease these are very pronounced traits. Why get friendly with the Chef if you're gonna toss him out in a year? In places over-run with industrial disease you get in a crappy Chef, work him over, fire his butt for screwing up, then get in a good Chef to clean up the mess, then get rid of the good one so you can get another crappy and cheaper one.
So many Chefs leaving, you can't ignore that history, and if the owner AND the GM have been there since firing the first Chef way back when, I can guarantee you they'll be right on track with your Chef, especially since they're not giving him any information, other than more function clip-boards. I'm assuming your Chef is reaching for the golden ring: A bonus of some sort based on volume or food or labour costs. The owner will be very p.o.'d if your Chef actually grabs the ring and claims his prize. ****, he's not suppossed to actually pay out the bonus, it's only like an, oh what's that word? An incentive, that's all.

Christmas is a-coming and you'll be working your butt off, too busy to plan out your escape route for January. Do it now, preferably with your Chef.
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
...."This whole reality thing is really not what I expected it would be"......
post #18 of 24
One reason I left the food biz was having to deal with all the prima donnas and children with ego problems. Hey, its a job. Just do it.
post #19 of 24
Thread Starter 
I have to confess that there are more bits to this story. I hoped that in the process of doing the venting Iv'e done so far, an ironclad solution would pop into my head. And I kidded myself that these details were irrelevant.

I would reiterate that from my point of view, the story told so far is 100% accurate. But after today, I fear that this one is going to end soon, and unhappily.

At wits ends, I finally asked another manager why chef was abusing me.
Now I know:

My friend the chef believes I have betrayed him personally.

That was the answer.

Someone told him that I blame him, and him taking the time to care for his wife and brother as the reason for my unhappyness. That I was tired of babysitting the crew while he dealt with these tragic personal issues.
This constitute high treason by chef's standards.

It's not true, it's a gross mischarachterization.

Chef's wife is terminally ill. It may take take five years, maybe more, but her condition is without recourse.

Chef's brother is suicidal, and has been near death several times in the past months.

Chef has his own self destructive behaiviors. He never rests. Never takes time off. On his days off he works till the wee hours on housework, yard work, his brothers home. He doesn't get much sleep by choice. Again, I can not get him to let me help by simply going home and leaving me in charge. Nothing has ever gone wrong in his absence, I see to it. When his wife was having a five way bypass, he spent the day at work. When his brother is in hospitial, he is at his bedside or remodling his house, then naps a bit and drives in to work a full day.

At times, his mood is so sour and hostile he is impossible to cope with. He will ask the same question several times. He will barrage me with questions so rapidfire, five will be put beofore the answer to #1 is even past my lips.And again, he arbitrarily and capreciously overrides my decisions. And he has been giving me a really hard time for a couple of months now. He's sees defect where there is none. Laziness where none exists. His outlook is somewhat conspiratorial,always seeking ulterior motive for actions by anyone that seem unfavorable, such as being late, quitting, or fouling up in the kitchen.

This, plus the workload, puts big pressure on me, and makes me either depressed or ornery.

Everybody in the kitchen knows and talks about his personal difficulties. We all feel horribly for him, and pray for some sort of relief for him.

I try to explain to the crew that chef is tired, or chef is worried, chef is under pressure at home or work,and giving me an exceptionally hard time, and he is angry with me, and that I inappropriatly pass on to them the same anger at times, my tension level having been spiked into redline territory.
I have been wrong here, I admit it. But stretched to wits end it happens. I always regret it and have apologised for 'loosing it' several times.

Chef has always had me to talk to. I have been by his side through some very tough times. I listen to his personal problems and care about the outcome. I have always covered him, and covered for him.

I have nobody to talk to.

And by abuse I mean this: Today he authorized a cook in the kitchen to make work assignments today. And ignore mine. I lost all control over my crew today. Never a word said to me.
Chef had to hurry his wife to hospital this morning. He didn't call me. When he called the kitchen to check up, he told me to hand the phone to the other guy.

Otherguy is a former cook and sous, who abandoned the Chef with a no-notice walkout last december, in the middle of the Christmas rush. Otherguy has had and quit three jobs since, and somehow, begged his way back in.

So unless I can fix this personal strife, I have lost a friend, a mentor, and a job.

No solutions here I suppose. Only hope that cooler heads prevail. But all in all, I'm weary of the politics, and the drama.
post #20 of 24

Two words: Sleep deprivation.

Will make you psychotic. Combine that with stress...

This is not a good mental state to be in while playing around with knives and fire.

Equally not good: Managerial skills. Dealing with reality. Friendship.

I hate to say it, but it looks like you might as well call this place The Titanic Diner.

I feel bad for everyone involved in this situation, but...this ship is sinking and if you can find a lifeboat go for it.

I know you consider him to be your friend and all, which makes it worse. What you have to ask yourself is if you just hired on into this situation, not being a friend of the chef (or the chef you knew), would you tolerate it? I certainly wouldn't consider anyone a 'friend' that treats me like that! Don't get me wrong, I'm sorry for his situation but in the hospitality business you really have to leave it at home. In a 'team' situation (which is what it sounds like you want but the reality of it is ...?) yeah, you treat everyone with respect. Every aspect of it is what makes the restaurant run smoothly.

You have to look at this situation realistically. Staying out of loyalty is one thing, but it seems that it's a one way street at this point. You care, but are having a hard time with why he doesn't care. You know a lot of the reasons why he is the way he is, but they still don't justify his acting the way he does. Plus these things are just going to get worse, not better.

Seriously? Start job hunting. Your loyalty seems to be totally wasted in this instance. (You know, the pearls before swine thing)

post #21 of 24
Thread Starter 
Sadly, I have made the call to start looking.
Even if our professional relationship can be repaired, our friendship is irrevocably damaged. And that was more important to me than any job. If what occurs is not deliberate,or with goodness of heart or not at all, no betrayal can occur. If any offense was comitted, it was strictly unintentional.
No chance has been afforded me to beg pardon. None forthcoming either I imagine.
But what was done towards me in return today was beyond the pale. Bad for me, bad for chef, and bad for the business. It was ment to cause anguish. And it was done based on the flimsiest of heresay.

In less pleasant terms, I am simply a casualty in an incident of culinary road rage. Injured and unable to respond.

The most apt analogy is Melville's Moby Dick.
I have been Ahab's loyal Starbuck,an uncommonly conscientious seaman who despite my misgivings, felt myself bound by my obligations to obey the captain. But Ahab invariably destroyed himself, and all around including Starbuck.

Best regards to Starbuck.

All envy to Ishmael:

"Is he mad? Anyway there's something on his mind, as sure as there must be something on a deck when it cracks."
post #22 of 24

It appears to me that you have taken this culinary challenge to the point where you are just out of road so to speak.

From everything that has been said I agree that the boat you are on IS sinking, and sinking fast, and it does not appear that it is through any fault of your own.

I would have serious questions about an establishment that has gone through such a large number of executive chefs in 14 years. The problems there seem to go much deeper than just the exec. in the first place.

You appear to be making the best choice in a very bad and volatile situation. I wish you luck.

post #23 of 24
Thread Starter 
Even though I have come to a basic conclusion, I'm still having a tough time dealing with the reality of the situation.

Looking at this weeks schedual and contracts, I don't see less than a 66 hour workweek ahead. I'm fortunate that I got a day off yesterday. And I'm going to have to work my staff like coolies as well. And not have them go off on interpersonal hissy fits.

Then I will have 2 new faces to deal with as well.

Chef an I had a sit-down, with him in chef mode, and me in survival mode. Not the best way to fix a problem. Some issues were adressed, some not. Actually, I doubt any were, but for now, I think the chef realizes to some small degree, that I have hit my limits, and has backed off a tiny bit. Very tiny, but perceptable.

But no real difference to me. I'm gearing up for the job search. Most places seem to be digging in for the holidays and have their staffs set, so I'm going to have to do battle and survive for the next ten weeks.

I'll get chef through another holiday season if mind and body can hold up.
The butcher's bill was big last year. Illness and injury shredded the crew. It was as they say, "a near run thing". Save myself and a former intern and one dishwasher, there is nobody left from last years staff.

Then I plan to make a reasonable salary demand of the owners that they will very likely reject (bringing me up to the mean average for the area as documented by the state employment dept).

Then I can use money as the reason for my departure. The Chef doesn't loose face, and maybe I don't loose a shot at a half decent reference.

"Against the wind he now steers for the open jaw," murmured Starbuck to himself, as he coiled the new-hauled main- brace upon the rail. "God keep us, but already my bones feel damp within me, and from the inside wet my flesh. I misdoubt me that I disobey my God in obeying him!"
post #24 of 24
Good luck to you
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