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Narcissism and chefs

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
Is it a requirement? Frequent outcome of work environment? Or does it just attract us for some freak reason?
post #2 of 11
Well its not narcissitic if you are the greatest ever to swing a knife, but for the rest of you folks...... Ok not me either. Seriously though, I would think that it comes from the artistic side of a chef. Like any creative disipline, you create something unique and appealing and you get the positive reenforcement from your patrons you feel good. Chefs, like any other artisy disipline develop a following, that feeds an ego. That tends to go to peoples heads and if they let it, they become narcissitc.
post #3 of 11
It's because you need that belief to get through the tough times, I tend to swing wildy between believing I'm the best and thinking my food is shit.
post #4 of 11

I think a deep sense of insecurity is essential to becoming a great chef.  Unfortunately that can either manifest in a healthy of unhealthy way.  It usually takes me about 2 weeks to start hating a dish I created and as a result I have a deep urge to change it as soon as possible.

"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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"If it's chicken, chicken a la king. If it's fish, fish a la king. If it's turkey, fish a la king." -Bender
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post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
How do I manifest it in a healthy way? I'm fairly sure I've got all the unhealthy ways down.
post #6 of 11

Through a healthy grasp of reality and humility. I am good at what I do, but I am not the only one that can do what I do.

 

My wife also unknowingly helps. She is a retired emergency room nurse. When she used to drag herself home at the end of a particularly brutal shift, she would smile and say we saved a life tonight as she sank into her chair to take off her shoes. Keeps things in perspective for me.

 

When science finally discovers the center of the universe, while I be shocked if it is not me?

Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
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post #7 of 11
Talk about putting things into proper perspective Cheflayne !

Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
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Petals
Réalisé avec un soupçon d'amour.

Served Up
(165 photos)
Wine and Cheese
(62 photos)
 
Reply
post #8 of 11

I love what i do but its hard when those that i depend on to serve or sell it don't care.

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
I understand the need for perspective but the emotions I feel when someone doesn't like my food is that of a teen rejected by a girl he has been working up the courage to ask out, it devastates me every time. I cover it up so people don't feel bad for criticizing me, but it seriously feels like a knife in my heart. I've had many people tell me to not take things so seriously but it drives me so hard that I don't want to give it up. When I was younger I would put a gun to my head after bad reviews have it loaded with +p and everything.
post #10 of 11

Beastmasterflex I feel your pain.

 

After being in the industry for over 35 years and then making the change to the private sector I can tell you, without a doubt, that having someone tell you that they don't care for your food is exceptionally humbling, especially if said person knows something about how food should be cooked and or presented.

 

After going through this I have found that the relationship between your culinary prowess and personality are 2 totally different things in the eyes of the customer.

In my case, I am up against family recipes, cookbook recipes that have been "tweeked" with countless side notes and comments.

There is almost no creativity allowed when working said recipe and it must be followed word for word explicitly.

 

My question has always been...."why have a professional Chef if all you want them to do is follow someone else's recipes?

 

If you know in your heart that the food you put out is quality work and the customer doesn't care for it you have to understand that it is not you,

but them. Remember that food is subjective. You can cook the same dish for 100 people and there will always be some who don't care for it.

It takes hubris I believe, to overcome this. It's certainly not easy....

post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks Ross
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