Oxtail on My Mind
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My culinary repertoire is limited. Numerous attempts at disputing this fact, have led me irrevocably to the same conclusion- I cannot cook! Like any male faced with this sort of predicament, it is easy to find someone else to blame. Similar to being born with a non- life threatening deficiency, my theory insists, that my failure to feed myself is a matter of genetics. My mother was a horrible cook, and hated the kitchen passionately. Somehow in the transition from womb to birth, she was able to pass some remnant of this kitchen hating gene on to me. For her, the kitchen was a mythical hydra that strove with great ferocity to protect its lair, by scorching béchamel sauce, overcooking pasta, and roasting her Thanksgiving turkey to a crisp cinder.

The Dance
THE LINE

The Dance It’s called the line, and each night we dance: Bend, twist, lift, swing – A ghostly symphony that waits and plays by ear.    An orchestra: Pots, pans, oil sputters, the Garland burner roars, Refrigerators hum, a freezer’s occasional chime.   Pivot right, turn left, the MICROS begins to sing, The rhythm crests, pulses. Entrees hot and salads cold.   We dance our dance, a performance never seen Receives the standing ovation it deserves.   We know our parts, and wait expectantly. The MICROS sings, the rush begins: Focus, push – the line moves as one.   Cooks, shoulder-to-shoulder: Adrenaline rush, purpose, Entrees hot and salads cold.   We dance our dance, a performance never seen Receives the standing ovation it deserves.   Foxtrot lively, brisk, quick, Nicoise, Waldorf, Cobb, Caesar, Salsa picante, moves meringue – sweat, pivot, timing.   Seared halibut, glazed spring vegetables, Well-done rib eye, tempura onion rings, peppercorn, Sweet symphony, graceful, finesse.   Tiramisu, sorbet, cobbler, Macaroon, red velvet, Entrees hot and salads cold.     We dance our dance, a performance never seen Receives the standing ovation it deserves   We special few cook with hand, heart, and mind, Converting more than recipes from books, A mirepoix of memories and tradition.     The bounty of the earth: So, night after night we gather – Hot kitchen, cold kitchen.     Begin the dance. The chorus sings: Entrees hot and salads cold!   We dance our dance, a performance never seen Receives the standing ovation […]