Monday, 17 December 2012

A silly thing that's annoying me

A girl I met today, though we didn't really exchange names, recognized the place I worked at when I mentioned I had just come from it. She said something along the lines of, "yeah, "native Australian cuisine, right?" I confirmed, and she replied, "Are there any native Australians working there?"

No, there isn't at the moment. I didn't know how to respond. I said there wasn't, and that it was owned by a French chef before it was even owned by an Australian chef. I honestly don't know the history too well. I'm not obsessed with my place of work. I know the berries are often sourced from Aboriginal communities and that the artwork on the wall benefits the Aboriginal artists. I told her this. She said, "I find that really funny, hey."

I was sort of annoyed. I knew what she was getting at. However, I felt like she was implying that I support something, which I don't, something like the White takeover of Aboriginal ideas or way of life, or something. I thought, I just work there... and then later I began to think some more about it.

I never got to tell her that a "Native Australian" apprentice chef worked here for some time, and she was a really nice person, but the pace of the kitchen didn't suit her level of training, and I honestly don't know whether she was really that interested.

Also, it's not like we sell Witchetty grubs or anything like that. It's basically steak with vegetables, it's poultry with vegetables, it's some pasta, vegetable dishes, berries, bread, except it's not basic. It's just done by chefs who present "fine dining" quality food. So, it looks good, the flavours are different, and tasty. It's a little expensive, but when the service is working, it's not a bad night out on the town.

I didn't get to say any of this. I wondered what anyone else I know might think of my job. Maybe that's why my friends haven't gone there. Do they think this man, this pretty darn kind man who hires me, is sort of robbing the original owners of the land and putting big prices on it, and just sitting back and raking in the cash? He's so passionate about Australian foods and flavours. He's catered Aboriginal events. I've seen the smiles and interactions. It all seems cool within the community.

If there was an Aboriginal or Torres Straight or any "Original Australian" who was a fine dining chef or wanted to be one and had a similar passion for the food, I believe he'd be in business easily with my head chef. I don't think anyone is being held back from rising to any rank they want to be when it comes to just the inner workings of the restaurant I work at.

So, yeah, little pissed at that stranger and a little annoyed that I couldn't stand up for myself. In the end it's simply about knowing what this land grows, and how you can use it, and anyone can investigate that.

The worst part is that the longer I find myself working here, the more I seem to care about doing a good job, strictly for personal integrity's sake. However, doing a better job, means knowing more about the company, and sometimes I just want to remain an ignorant waiter just getting by for the cash.

Ugh, that girl, man. Shit.

Sunday, 16 December 2012

From the heart at the end of another day of death

Politicians have got to stop referring to mass murders as an Evil that has visited a place.

Imagine that you are mentally ill or mentally ill but don't realize it. Imagine that you are having thoughts about harming others because you have justified it for innumerable reasons. Imagine then the fuel it gives a person, to hear themselves be branded as Evil.

Don't for a second think that there isn't another young adult that meets the intelligent, quiet descriptions that we hear of these shooters time after time, and isn't suffering, either in a personally (immediate) destructive way or in a way that could harm others (in the future), after hearing that they too would be considered evil.

I just wanted to say, to those people who are angry, hurt or simply believe that they need to hurt others, that you aren't evil. What you are thinking is not going to achieve what you want it to achieve, and you should know that, and you should know that you should talk to somebody about it. You might not be treated right at first (unfortunately, one can't promise that the person you reach out to finds the right safe path for you), it might not go well, but eventually there may be a chance to talk to an understanding professional who you can talk to. You need to try to have faith in this.

I also just want to say, to those people out there hurting, and thinking, "if they did it, I can do it too", but find themselves hesitating. Thank you. Thank you for thinking of others just for a moment, and please, please know that many, many people want to understand you, and maybe even try to help you see their side of things. So, when you next pause, maybe think of making your next move a telephone call to a helpline or to a trusted person or medical professional.

In the meantime, President Obama, please let one of the many stamps you leave on your time as President be making guns harder to buy, and mental health easier to talk about. Not just for the unwanted future victims, but for the people suffering quietly now, too. Please.

Sent from my R2D2

Sunday, 2 December 2012

The End is Nigh

The funny thing about this prediction of the world ending, is that many people seem to have different dates for when this (apparently very accurate) prediction is to occur. A chef I work with said it was happening on the 15th, whereas I always thought the predicted date was the 21st, and yet, a school friend posted on Facebook about it being just next week.

I have the right date. You know why? Because I accepted the Facebook invitation to the End of the World party. No Internet funny-man would dare create a mass event with the wrong date for fear of being trolled by the anal masses of the Internet. Plus I just fact-checked it on Wikipedia ;)

The thing about this whole End of the World business is that the world ends for many, many people every day. Whole worlds are shattered to dust for many, many people every day. Yet, this globe keeps turning.

There will always be disasters, and I do not doubt that I one day may be unlucky enough for one to touch me. I've been lucky enough so far to escape the twists of the Earth, and any friends I know who have faced such moments are safe.

I do not think the world will end for us all on the 21st of December. The Mayan people simply calculated a new cycle. A new world. With the Kyoto Protocol due for another commitment, we can only hope for an improved world.

We can only ever hope that our own personal worlds do not end, we can only ever hope for the good fortune to make new worlds each day, month, year.

The 21st will come and pass and some will sigh with relief, others will feel a little disappointed. I do not think I am tempting fate by saying this. That strange disappointment some may feel is an invitation to start a new cycle, a new world, one that makes you feel what you long to feel: alive.

Sent from my R2D2