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This is a question Restaurants, Kitchens and Bars... Oh my!

Many years ago, I went out with a chef. Kitchens are merely vice dens with food. You couldn't move for people bonking and snorting coke in the store room. And the things they did with the food...

My personal vice was chocolate mousse - I remember it being very calming in all the chaos around me. I think they put things in it.

Tell us your stories of working in kitchens, bars and the rest of the nightmare that is the catering trade.

(, Fri 21 Jul 2006, 9:58)
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Xmas cheer
Maybe I’ve always been a grumpy old man, maybe life has forced me into this role.

In 1991 I was bar supervisor (wow) at a Toby Grill in Yorkshireland. It was a stop-gap job until something better came along. After four months, the pressure was beginning to tell, I had a wife and a 4-year old daughter and worked most evenings and every weekend, especially bank holidays. The regulars were all wankers in the way that only regular drinkers at a Toby Grill in Yorkshire can be.

Christmas was coming and the punters were getting pissed. We had muzak on a looped tape that was playing the usual Xmas schlock. I’d been on since 11 am with a couple of hours break in the afternoon, it was now quarter past 11 at night and I wanted the punters all to go home, when suddenly…’Mull of frigging Kintyre’ came on for the fifth time that session. Now, some of you might not know the song, some may fondly remember it as part of the backdrop of your youthful Xmases, as for me, I was a punk in 1977, and hearing that bagpipe-a-shite virtually non-stop over Christmas/New Year 1977/78 was HELL. So I ran to the tape machine and hit the stop button.

Silence for maybe a second, then chief regular’s wife at the bar shouts “Oi, what happened to the music, I was listening to that.”

“Well,” I said, remaining very calm, “It’s well after 11 and I can’t take this music any more tonight, so it’s staying off.” As I said, calm – don’t forget, I was sober as I had to drive home after work and tired. They were all very pissed. The punters start shouting at me to put the fucking music back on, I politely refuse. Then, the manageress came out of her office.

“Oy, Pat, Che’s turned the music off and won’t put it back on!” Pat immediately put the music back on. I walked round the bar, grabbed a pool cue, came back around behind the bar and beat the tape machine to scrap while everyone watched jaws open. I climbed up on the bar, dropped my trousers, pushed bum in Pat’s face and told her to stick the frigging job up her flabby arse and marched off into the night.

…well, no, I didn’t. I stormed out the back and smoked two fags. Came back in when the music had stopped.

Not funny really, just bitter and twisted. I AM Mr Biswas.

So sorry.
(, Fri 21 Jul 2006, 11:56, Reply)

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