I'm trying to keep my business, my triplets, and my waistline under control. I excel at one of those, fail at another one of those, and one is a work in progress. Which is which is day dependant.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

The truth about commercial kitchens

We don't wash our hands as much as we should.
Some chefs eat, smoke, go to the toilet, etc and don't wash their hands afterwards.
We use knives for more than one thing, without washing them in between uses.
We often wipe our hands on the same disgusting tea towel all day.
We are expected to go to work when we have contagious diseases.
Sometimes we lick the bowl, or taste with a finger and then keep cooking.

Disgusting? Yes. Reality? Also yes.

I'm exposing this because today (and yesterday, and the day before), I have had one hell of a head cold. My body is tired, my sinuses are blocked, my head hurts, and I'm alternating between freezing and boiling. I called in sick for work tomorrow (giving almost 24 hours notice) because, unlike most chefs, I think it's just not cool to work with food when your nose is dripping snot. Call me crazy, but I like knowing the food I buy doesn't come with a helping of mucus. The part that kills me is that my workplace was annoyed by this - my saying, "Sorry, but no, I don't think I can bring my snot-and-mucus infused miserably-sick self into work at 4am tomorrow." I know it makes a nightmare for them, rostering wise, especially in a small team...but I still think this is perhaps the one super crap thing about hospitality. I don't mind working when others have public holidays off. I don't mind the pay, the hours, the sticky messes, the egos in the kitchen, the sometimes rude or demanding customers..but I DO mind going to work with a drippy, sticky, wet, snot-filled head. So sue me.

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