Wednesday, January 4, 2017

We Spoke of Was and When

Sweet Potato Chili.
A girl that used to work with me a few years ago came into the store today.  You know when people make their pilgrimage back to their prior workplace?  I'm sure this serves several purposes but usually it feels like it's basically to prove they've done better after leaving. They look great, well put together and usually have their story at the ready of how they are now kicking ass in their life.  Seems directly after the job this girl attended culinary school and is now a personal chef.  So proud of her in a girl power way.  I always liked her.  She was going through young stuff so for me her struggles were familiar but no longer mine.  I remember I felt a bit of relief that I was past this portion of life at the time but also strong that I could chime in my two cents in hopes of consoling.  In a private moment though today, I felt almost embarrassed to be found there still, not one hint of change on my form.
Interesting timing since earlier that day I was speaking to an older gentleman, enjoying the conversation.  As he was sharing some story at the register I hear Nirvana's rendition of Man Who Sold the World come on.  It's amazing how music can immediately change the mood of a room. Suddenly I felt perfectly fine. I was still at work but I was helping someone, I knew what I was talking about and I was being kind. And it came to me that I could actually enjoy this job if I could just change two things. Better music and a different top.  We have to wear these horrible mustard yellow uniforms.  They took the time and money to make striped polos, long sleeve V neck sweaters and also button down cotton striped dress shirts.  But then they also took time to make these bullshit rules about what you can wear together and underneath which is basically a white turtle neck.  What kind of nerd ass is gonna want to wear that combo??!
A color by the way that looks good on No one except the very dark skinned Jamaican gals. Give me a navy blue sweater, solid, no stripes and I guarantee you that if I am not abhorred at my reflection when I look in the staff bathroom mirror I will perform a thousand times better.  And if I didn't have to stand there and talk to Nikki while Black Eyed Peas "I Got A Feeling' was blaring for the ten thousandth time and grinding my chill gears down I wouldn't feel so darn mortified.
I'm not a personal chef, but had once thought that could be a good gig but if it were for someone amazing, like a reclusive scientist or something.  But I have learned to cook and can read a recipe and then do my own thang with the idea.  Like I did last night with this sweet potato chili.
I cooked my Beyond Beef, onions, carrots, garlic and red bell pepper, chili powder and cumin, garlic and onion powder.   I baked my sweet potatoes and then mashed them in a teaspoon of butter before adding them to the broth made with beef stock.  A can of black beans swirled in, chopped fresh tomatoes 5 minutes before serving to give a tart balance and it was chili.  So hearty and thick with that slight sweet hint.  I'm better too but my improvements are masked.

1 comment:

  1. As a fellow lifer in music retail this made me realize how much I take good music for granted. Even when we play stuff I don't like in the store, it's never Red Hot Chili Peppers or Smooth Jazz. I worked for one year at a mortgage company that had piped in music on their phone system. To this day, Seal's "Kiss from a Rose" takes me back to that monotonous existence. I feel your pain my friend!


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