05.20.2002 (Monday), 09:52 PM

Anthony Bourdain is My Fucking Hero

Back on that plane going the wrong way...

OK, it's not really a vacation but the yearly (arrgh) trek to the Boston Terrier National Dog Show. Yeah, we show dogs and this is the one event Janet looks forward to even if it means that she'll have to spend three grueling days in a car driving to Louisville, Kentucky. Yes, I said Kentucky. Janet left last Friday--I took a place today.

The usual hassle is magnified by all of the security measures in effect at the airport. They actually pull people out of line for boarding for additional searching. In my usual garb--all black right down to my underwear--ahem TMI--I thought I would be detained for sure but it wasn't to be. They seemed to be just randomly checking as the Middle-Eastern guy in front of me passed without a problem.

The four hour flight allowed me to do many things which I had already worked out in advance: do some webpage work, read a bit, listen to my iPod, read some more and so on. However, Anthony Bourdain's mega-excellent Kitchen Confidential kept me from my prearranged mission. I ended up reading nearly all of it in the three hours or so of available time. That book pretty much convinced me that I need to really think about becoming a chef because you just don't become one, you earn your way to that position. Now, I knew this but I had never had this hammered home as hard as I did reading this book. There's just something so honest about Bourdain's writing that it soaked me to the core.

I'm sure there is more to it than that and his approach is probably not the only one but like most things, unless you've lived all aspects of a job then you are probably kidding yourself about being "serious" about it. That's why I keep looking at the open kitchen at the Left Bank in Menlo Park. I suspect that it's a hectic and sometimes hellish place to be in but I want the experience of the line chef, the prep guy, perhaps the runner too because I don't want to be half-assed about it.

All I need to do now is decide to give up the well paying gig for the chance. Someday.

Posted by wjc