I've been working in kitchens since I was 14. Started by busting suds, moved on to prep/pantry, took off from there. That was 16 years ago. I've worked as Sous under very reputable people in my area and I've run a few kitchens of my own. My commitment to my work is legendary. I've never said "close enough" or "5 second rule."
I've got a 10-yr old son. I missed a lot of his childhood, working 70 hour weeks at times, but I strive to be a good father. He's coming of age now and he tells me that he wants to be a chef, like me. Part of me is intensely proud, that he wants to do what I do. He's very receptive to what I teach him and I can proudly say that he can turn root vegetables blindfolded. Another part of me is hesitant...he doesn't have an eye for detail, he cuts corners on chores...maybe that's all part of a 10-yr old's mentality, but I wasn't like that when I was his age. Heck, I did chores because I was told to, not because my father would pay me to do them. I'm at a loss here. I guess what I'm asking is, what do you guys think about pushing him either into or out of the kitchen? I don't want him to make a life choice just because he thinks it'll make me proud of him; I'd be proud of him not matter what he chooses to do, but at the same time if he really DOES want to begin cooking I think I can get him started at a really early age. He could be much much more than I could ever hope to be if I start him on the right path so early.