Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Día Colómbo

Bunches of stuff.
Happy Columbus Day. The Irish discovered North America, (link: http://www.castletown.com/brendan.htm) and then the Norwegians followed. The Italian explorer Colómbo (who we call “Columbus” in English) who was working for Spain wasn’t even looking for new land. He was looking for a shortcut to the Spice Islands. That’s right. He was on a grocery run and would not stop for directions. Éireann go Brách!
Mae closed, and my fac advisor loved every minute of its run. I feel like a star. The author gritted her teeth. See previous posts re: her being against a white woman playing the part.
Work, work, work. I work in a restaurant, and also in a sports bar. I’m amazed at how hard cooks work for a living. I read somewhere that it takes about 5 years for a top-level cook to be trained before they can really go on the line by themselves and be expected to work without direct, constant supervision by a manager. And the pay just can’t possibly compensate for it. I know that a lot of them are immigrants and perfect English is not really a job requirement. Hell’s bells, a lot of the wait staff are immigrants and the pay is way better. Most of the bus staff is made up of non-English speakers and they make tip percentages. So how do the cooks survive? I don’t understand the native-born cooks, why they put up with it. They maybe make $8 an hour, with no tips. They work their butts off. The heat is intense, the pressure unreal. I thank them every day. They seem to do it just for the appreciation. I know that the Hispanic guys could work construction, could coop to own businesses, and could do a million things that don’t require a high level of formal education or English skills. But they cook, instead. It amazes me.

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