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Red Lipstick & Green Ink [userpic]

Happy Flag Day

June 14th, 2009 (07:53 pm)
current song: All We Ever Wanted Was Everyth - Bauhaus

I suppose I should get some of this down, before it becomes simply details
and I forget what I learned.

My Brother works at a very strange place.
It is acres and acres, and a Hall....

A whole wall smokes the meat.
Ten pound chunks of cow become brisket over night.
Even now, I believe my mobile smells of the smoke.

I enjoyed working there.
It was different from anything I have ever done, it was
the hardest physical work I have ever done in my life.

Early mornings, leaving the house before the family woke...summer sky still grey.
Driving along winding TX Farm Roads in his truck
watching the wheat get cut and the corn grow
in just the time I was there.

We drove for nearly an hour each morning, as the sun rose.
Through farms and over freeways.
Work was simple.
More simple work than I have had in a long long time.

We made food from scratch for a thousand and more...on a regular basis.
LARGE food. When you chop onions--it is a hundred pound sack.
Making baked beans? 18 hotel pans--serve a hundred folks each.
Potato salad? I never realised how hard it was to make the stuff.......
HUGE pots of water put to boil on a Mediaeval stove top?

I laughed when every day was done, slap happy--telling Mum I was glad
I never knew what was going to happen in a day
because I would not be able to do it.

Simple stuff was made, but the process was actuated by only THREE PEOPLE.
And I think now, dear gods, before my stay and after--it is done by TWO.

I came home at night and Brother and I just collapsed.
Wild eyed. We ate, we slept, we went back again.

In two days I carved 500 pounds of brisket.

My hand was brutalised
but did what I did not think possible...
I calloused.

The wet under my blue gloves made for a tight little blister,
but that had once been a callous before--it hardened over night.
The water went back into me, and left me something I haven't had in years.

A knife callous.

My Brother's worn Henckel broke me in proper.
Weight and balance--my hand remembered.

I slept in my carpel tunnel brace.
I marveled at my sudden callous.

Hands were numb most mornings, I plowed through.
I got good at it.
Meat is such a strange medium.

I learned how it worked, even when it was almost too hot to touch.
There is a natural split in the muscle--with fat.
I was shown where it was, I saw that it was better to feel for it.

I learned to slide my hand inside, peal it back......make the cut
when you have pan after pan after pan to fill?
It wasn't like waiting tables, there is no chatter.
He runs a really quiet kitchen.

I brought my Shuffle finally, and just played my running music.
I slid my hand into that beast and flopped it apart.
And slowly at first, and faster later--I learned to take it apart completely.
Fill a pan in slices.

I left Austin with a great deal of angst.
I thought I could no longer be a part of the restaurant service industry
because it was meaningless.

I wanted to learn how to do something in my caliber that could make a better influence.

The largest gigs with my Brother, off site and on:

All of the Methodist Hospitals--three HUGE ones,
we catered their EMPLOYEE APPRECIATION days.

Then we catered the Fire Fighters and EMS of most of Dallas.
Their "Appreciation" days... (*swoons*)

Lastly, we catered the BIG BROTHERS and BIG SISTERS of Dallas.
On site.


I remembered why I do what i do.
I am good at it, and it matters.

Do not know what I am going to do next...
but I am Home, and I know more now than I did when I left.

I wish I had written all the stories,
they were wonderful.

The moments.

I may never catch up.

Why did she call me Ginger anyways............

*head in hands laughing*


I'm good for the tummy.


Posted by: Coffee Shop Whore (skidspoppe)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 02:45 am (UTC)

Welcome back, dear one!

We have many stories to share... I think Wednesday or Thursday may be a day of phone calls and catching up.

Posted by: Red Lipstick & Green Ink (ginger931)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 02:55 am (UTC)
Don't Panic

Thursday is always best.


Posted by: Clayshaper (clayshaper)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 02:56 am (UTC)

There is someting SO intimate, so /personal/ about FOOD... going to a place, sharing a meal with people you have just met, or have loved forever... a wedding celebration, a business lunch... Breaking bread is so viceral!

What you do DOES matter!!

Posted by: Red Lipstick & Green Ink (ginger931)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 03:03 am (UTC)
Ginger Root


*laughs and smiles and laughs more*

Posted by: Organizational Anarchist (napalmgod)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 03:55 am (UTC)

Dallas? Where are you, anyway?

Posted by: hairypolack (hairypolack)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 08:39 am (UTC)

Ive heard you say many times you should be a caterer and how awesome youd be at it

I told you should be a movie set caterer- they pay great and its the most amazing challenge for someone like you!

Posted by: Heresiarch (radixx)
Posted at: June 15th, 2009 01:27 pm (UTC)

As always I'm so impressed by you...and very thankful of late as well.

Posted by: Gregory Parks (tokenpants)
Posted at: June 18th, 2009 06:44 pm (UTC)

Food is prayer: both in the making and in the eating. Food with love tastes better!

Posted by: ((Anonymous))
Posted at: July 14th, 2009 01:42 am (UTC)
I know why I love you!

I was gonna ask in a facebook comment if you were blogging some where and I thought "duh!" and went to you info page and now here I am....pulled deeply into your story as you lavish images with your words of something amazing that you learned!

Well spoken? Damn Straight! You Go Girl!

I can excitedly agree with so many of your interests...and remembered so many conversations we had at CM...I think back lovingly to working there 'cause I am a customer service junkie!

I am glad life is feeling good!

Posted by: Red Lipstick & Green Ink (ginger931)
Posted at: July 14th, 2009 02:59 am (UTC)
Re: I know why I love you!


wow, so good to hear from you--yeah I have been here on Livejournal
for about 8 years. You um, you do know this is how I lost my job at CM?


Most of it is locked for those on my list, but this I had to open
for my Brother. He gave me something gorgeous.

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