My empathy for the Chef who spiked a Vegan

As a former Chef myself, I always find it funny reading stories about Chefs who “exact revenge” on someone.

Especially when that someone is an annoying, self-entitled pain in the arse.

This story came from the RT website which you can view by clicking here.

It tells the tale of Laura Goodman; Chef at the Carlini Restaurant in Shropshire, and how she “spiked” a Vegan with a non-vegan product, and then bragged about it in a series of Facebook posts, one of which was:

“pious, judgemental Vegan has gone to bed still believing she is a Vegan”

According to Goodman, she had spent hours coming up with a Vegan menu with the alleged victim of the “spiking”, after which the same person then ordered a non-vegan meal for herself.

Extremely unnecessary if true isn’t it?

She was simply looking after the other people in her party who were obviously all hard-core Vegans, and who:

“MUST be given only the finest Vegan delicacies, and there CANNOT POSSIBLY be any non-vegan items anywhere near the food at all! I must make you aware of the fact that we are VEGAN and we are saving the World one meal at a time! We MUST be accommodated more than the average customer for the same price that everyone else pays because: WE ARE VEGANS!!!!!!”

“Oh, and I’ll have cheese on mine.”

“But cheese isn’t Vegan?”

“That’s ok, a little bit is fine.”

I know, I know. That was quite a bit of conjecture on my part, but I guarantee that’s pretty much how it would have went.

The amount of times I’ve sat down with clients who have “Dietary issues” who, instead of politely asking for their needs to be accommodated, suddenly grow a huge chip on their shoulder and start DEMANDING things that aren’t even on the Dietary menu that I have provided for them.

“But I don’t WANT that, I want THIS instead! I’m allergic to Gluten and can’t possibly have THIS menu!”

“But those are the Gluten Free options Sir/Madam” I respond (generally through gritted teeth)

To which the client will suddenly remember that they are also allergic to most of the other items on the menu, so I will absolutely HAVE to make the dish they have specified and that is NOT on the menu.

And which normally always contains an item that they earlier claimed to be “allergic” to. (For more insight into my detestation of “allergen” sufferers, see my Post: Gluten free – my arse!)

So, back to Chef Goodman. What did she actually do wrong?

According to another of her Facebook posts she claims to have “spiked a Vegan tonight…”

Her partner and Co-owner has claimed that Goodman simply “mis-spoke” and “had used a poor choice of words”.

Personally I think she was completely annoyed at the customers for messing her about and decided to vent her fury by claiming to have “spiked” them with non-vegan or vegetarian products. I think she was just trying to wind-up some Vegans on Facebook in order to “get back” at the ones who had caused her the stress at work.

Did she really spike them?

Probably not. Chefs are angry, cantankerous and easily offended, however 99% of us wouldn’t actually spike a Vegan.

We’d think about it for sure, but not actually do it.

It remains to be seen if Chef Goodman is part of the 1% however.

I think the moral of this story should be this:

Don’t make claims about “spiking” people, particularly Vegans, when you’re a Chef and own a business. It’s bad for your reputation and that of Chefs everywhere.

Also, don’t annoy a Chef. We understand you have certain dietary needs and we’ll try our best to aid in your pursuit to “save the World one plate at a time”, but stop acting like you’re the most important person ever to grace the globe with your presence.

Nobody cares about your “needs” as much as you do.

 

Well, I’m off now to eat a big, juicy cheeseburger in front of the window of the local Vegan Bistro. I know it’s childish but it’s just too hard to stop myself winding up people who don’t have the energy to chase after me…

 

RANT OVER

 

 

 

 

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Meryl Streep and the Hollywood Hypocrisy – #Sheknew

The Hollywood sex scandal certainly isn’t going away anytime soon.

And neither should it.

It has however, been injected with another talking point: #Sheknew

Aimed at Oscar-winning actress Meryl Streep, the #Sheknew campaign is a series of posters spread around Hollywood depicting Meryl Streep and Harvey Weinstein with the Phrase “She knew” plastered over Meryl’s face.

Personally, I don’t think she should be on that poster.

I’ll explain why.

For those of you who don’t already know; Meryl Streep is a long-time friend to Harvey Weinstein and denies ever knowing ANYTHING about his years of abusing women. A fact that many, including actress Rose McGowan (who claims that Weinstein raped her), simply do not believe.

Normally, I would be the first person to say innocent until proven guilty (read my post The problem with Linda Sarsour and Lena Dunham). However, if you look closely at this case, it becomes more and more clear that it would be pretty much impossible for Streep NOT to know about Weinstein’s behaviour.

Harvey_Weinstein_Césars_2014_(cropped)

Harvey Weinstein’s behaviour was undoubtedly the worst kept secret in Hollywood. Practically EVERYBODY in Hollywood knew a story about him or at the least, knew somebody who did. The very fact that Streep was friends and colleagues with Weinstein for a number of years is, some would say, evidence enough that she must have at least suspected something. Arguably the greatest Actress in the last 30 or so years, she will no doubt have contacts ranging from all aspects of the movie and political worlds in which Weinstein was well-known and feared. Somebody must have said something to her at some point. A little whisper here. A little word in the ear there.

Hollywood is full of people who can’t keep secrets, and knowing something as explosive as the Weinstein scandal is too much not to at least tell a fellow Hollywood alumni if not the press.

However, speculation can only get you so far. I’d be a hypocrite if I didn’t say that Meryl Streep doesn’t at least deserve the right of due-process to be able to “clear her name” in all of this. The evidence against her knowing about Weinstein’s behaviour is pretty substantial, yet I think the whole truth of the matter will never see the light of day. It’s easy to say “Of course she knew! She must have!” simply because she was friends with the guy. But throw in the fact that she is without a doubt the most famous and well-connected actress in Hollywood, and you really do have to ask: “How could she not know?”

Finally, to single out Meryl Streep alone is perhaps a tad unfair.

I understand why some people have; some see her as the ultimate hypocrite: the rich, privileged global superstar who portrays herself to be the moral conscience of “the people”, the epitome of all that is good and fair and just; all the while telling us, the lowly proles that we are how we should live our lives better. How to give more. Who to vote for. Who we should revere and condemn.

All while buddying up to people like Harvey Weinstein.

Like I say though: she needs due process. There’s no proof, just conjecture that she had any idea how much of a monster Harvey Weinstein really is.

And then I remember someone else she’s spoken up for.

Someone else she has applauded and lavished praise and admiration on.

Somebody who, she does know is guilty of being a monster. A rapist. Even a paedophile. We know that she knows he’s guilty.

Of drugging and raping a 13-year-old girl.

Roman Polanski.

The crimes of this man are beyond abhorrent. And we all know they are true.

Meryl Streep knows they are true, yet still applauds and congratulates the man for his accomplishments in Hollywood.

THAT is the true reason I believe most people believe she knew the truth about Harvey all along. It’s not the first time she has done it.

I’m going to end this piece by saying this:

I still don’t think it should be Meryl Streep on that poster.

It should be all of them.

The whole damn lot of them.

From the make-up artists, to the grips, the camera operators to the actors, the directors to the producers. Brad Pitt. Hilary Clinton. Donald Trump. Barack Obama.

They all knew. Every single last one of them knew and yet; they did nothing.

Nothing.

Nobody was willing to stand up and risk their way of life, their position amongst the elite. They all had too much to lose by way of association.

That was proven the moment Rose McGowan finally broke her silence and was then cast aside like a traitor.

They all knew. And trust me, that’s not all they know. But until someone puts them all in a position where they HAVE to condemn someone, you’ll be the last ones to know.

#Sheknew?

How about #Theyknew?

RANT OVER

 

 

 

No Kids allowed

I came across an interesting article the other day (which you can check out for yourselves here) about a Café owner in Brixham, Devon. The man in question owns a ship and ocean-liner themed Café called The Chart Room, which is lined from wall to wall with cruise-ship memorabilia and lots of other “boat stuff”. Being an avid cruise-ship and boat enthusiast, Bob Higginson (or Sir Bob as I will henceforth refer to him as) decided to open a business that reflects his interests and passions, which is of course, his prerogative to. And, since he can do pretty much whatever he likes with his OWN business (within the eyes of the law anyway) he has made an interesting decision regarding his OWN business.

He has banned under 12’s from the premises.

High-five

Obviously the outrage was going to come. Residents and parents alike began to pour scorn on Sir Bob’s decision to ban the little darlings from HIS business, citing such reasons as “marginalising children” and “discrimination”.

Give me a break.

For one thing, Sir Bob is well within his rights not to let children in. Children are not included in legislation regarding their permittance to a premises.

His place, his rules.

Dislike the decision all you want, but the fact remains that Sir Bob doesn’t have to let children in if he doesn’t want to. Yes, that might affect his sales and alienate people but you know what? That’s HIS problem.

There are countless places across the world that don’t cater for kids, and the reason is quite a simple one:

Not everybody likes or wants to be around kids.

In my last post; No, your kids are not that special, I talked about how people can think the world of their own children, but don’t necessarily give a damn about other peoples’. And that’s fine. Sir Bob has opened a business that he wants to aim at the older generation; the generation that has already had Kids and now that they’ve flown the nest, want to enjoy having a sense of freedom to live their lives without constraints. Or noise. Or cheesy Wotsit-covered fingers.

The people complaining about Children being “marginalised” don’t really think this at all. What they really feel is that as Parents they are the ones being treated unfairly, not their Kids. To say it’s the Kids is another example of people using their Children as a weapon to bash people over the head with to create sympathy; sympathy for the fact that having Kids can constrict your life and supress your ability to keep up with your Hipster friends.

My advice?

Stop taking your Kids to places that YOU want to go to. No Kid under 12 really wants to go to a Cruise-ship themed Café, just like no Kid wants to go to a Michelin Star restaurant  or the local pub to sit and watch you get p*ssed up with your mates.

Remember, it’s about the Kids, it’s not about you.

Now, leave the oldies to their peace and quiet, and off you go with the little-ones to McDonalds; there’s a Kids’ play area in a lot of them now. Not a lot of staff at the moment though; they’re off on strike asking to be paid more for not understanding what “No pickles” means.

RANT OVER

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No, your Kids are not that special

Hey Parents, guess what?

To other people, your kids aren’t as important as you think they are.

“But Rantsen” I hear you wail, “you’re a Parent yourself! How could you say such a thing?”

Because I’m a realist, that’s why.

Like most Parents (not all, nothing is all remember) I love my kids, I really do, but there comes a time when you need to realise that people just don’t give as much of a sh*t about them as you do.

When my kids were born I used to absolutely bombard my Facebook page with pictures of them in their new outfits and, what was literally hourly updates of “amazing” things they had just done.

Like smiling.

Like laughing.

Like having the worst smelling nappy in the history of the entire Universe.

And, at the beginning, I would get lots of likes and comments about how beautiful and cute my kids were, and how people were “sooooo jealous…” of me for having such amazing kids. These comments ranged from my male, “Alpha-Male” friends, to my family, to my older-generational friends who don’t really know how to use “a Facebook”, but could still , manage to string together an “aw, they’re lovely” or a “you must be so proud”. (I have a wide variety of Friends who all belong to some sort of stereo-typical group or another.)

But, however, after a while the comments would become less and less. The Alpha-Male bro’s would maybe give a Like once in a while in-between Gym sessions, as would the childless Guys and Gals who were still popping pills in Nightclubs and who hadn’t “settled down” yet. The only real Kid-fans I had left were the “Oldies” and my Family, and even those were starting to tail off and leave only the occasional polite Comment or Like.

I was devastated to say the least.

“But I think my kids are amazing!” I said to myself. “Why aren’t people interested anymore?”

Here’s why.

Having Kids can cloud your judgement; you can go from being the most rational person to the most irrational in the time it takes a cervix to dilate. The moment you have them, you place them on the highest pedestal and build up barriers to prevent them being knocked off it. You believe that everyone else should feel the way you do about your children and that anyone who doesn’t particularly like, or want kids is at best deluded, or at worst, a monster.

People with kids think this because of one thing – You forget how you yourself felt about kids before you had your own.

Again, not all. Some people are pre-disposed to liking kids, others don’t realise they would like them until they’ve had them. Before I had kids I used to be completely in-different of them (I didn’t know my Nephew had a middle name until he was 14)

I realised this, thankfully, before it was too late and I let myself become swept up in the notion that “people can be so cruel” not to worship my kids the way I do.

One of my friends had posted on Facebook that it was her daughters’ birthday and I noticed the almost robotic responses she was getting from people. There must have been six different people all replying with the old classic “Wow, where has all of the time gone? Happy Birthday Anais (not her real name but I’m surprised it’s not as her mother is the worlds biggest Hipster).

It was then I realised –  I’d wrote exactly the same thing. To the word.

I once didn’t pay my electric bill on time so I could buy my new-born son an extra present to go along with the hundreds of pounds I’d already spent, for a Christmas that he would have no idea or recollection about. Yet, I couldn’t even come up with an original birthday wish for my friends’ daughter? What a heartless monster I was.

Except, I didn’t feel like a monster. I felt that, as lovely as “Anais” is, I didn’t have the need to go over the top about her in the same way I would with my own because I experience my kids way different to someone else’s.

And I suppose the same can be said about a lot of things in life.

Nobody will ever love your kids as much as you do, therefore it’s so important to know that, and to not forget it.

No, your kids aren’t that special. To everyone but you.

So go ahead and adore your children; love them like there is no tomorrow.

Just don’t be upset that not everyone else feels as much love for them as you do.

RANT OVER

 

 

 

 

Returning the Wave – Driving basics

Driving really is one of the most stressful things you can do on a daily basis, so it absolutely baffles me why people make it harder than it already is.

I’m not talking about the big things like talking on your mobile or tail-gating, (both of which I’ve been guilty of in the past)

No, I’m talking about the following –

Returning the wave

There are too many people who don’t return the wave.

You know who you are.

And you sicken me.

This is how it should work – you stop to give right of way at one of those traffic calming measures, the car with right of way goes first and gives a wave of thanks to you, and then you MUST, MUST return that wave. The return wave is even more important than the original wave of thanks as it is acknowledging the thanks given by the other driver.

“But I’m the one who stopped and Gave Way; why should I wave thanks?” I hear you say.

The reason you return the wave is really quite simple. We live in a shitty, self-absorbed world. Manners and pleasant behaviour to one another really is on the decline. By waving back to someone who says thanks to you is really like saying “No problem” or “fuggedabowdid” (that’s a Mickey Blue Eyes reference for those who don’t get it…).

It’s nice to acknowledge someone’s manners as it shows that both people involved care about manners. Too often do I see people act very non-chalantly where politeness is concerned; it’s like the hipster-norm to ignore somebody saying thank you and continuing to read your book about 18th century blanket stitching techniques, rather than just saying “you’re welcome”.
It really is just about the little things.

So next time somebody thanks you for doing something, just acknowledge it. It’s nice to be nice.

If, on the other hand, someone doesn’t reply to you, then you are well within your rights to give them the finger, scream obscenities and jump out of your car and knock off their wing mirrors.

Remember: be nice.

Rant over

Check me out on twitter at @rantsen_things

 

 

 

Gluten free – my arse

Without sounding too much like somebody’s Great Uncle….

When I was a lad, practically nobody had food allergens.

Sure, you’d have the one diabetic kid at school who was allowed jelly and ice cream every single day (“god, it’s so unfair”….) but apart from that, nobody had any issues.

Fast forward 30 years and all of a sudden everyone is on the verge of anaphylactic shock if they so much as look at a slice of bread.

What the hell happened?!

It seems that everyone and their bloody dog is “allergic” to something these days. You’ll notice I used quotation marks on the word allergic, and for good reason.

I don’t believe about 95% of the people who claim to be allergic to gluten.

There, I’ve said it.

 

I used to be a Chef. During this period of my life I witnessed first-hand the gradual rise in fake allergens. What used to be a simple act of a Server bringing a check into the Kitchen and hurrying out in case they got shouted at for simply doing their job, (“more checks?! I’m not here to cook you know!”) turned into the Server nervously hanging around the Pass to explain that the Customer has an allergy of sorts. This rose from once a night-ish to approximately 10 times and upwards a night in what seemed like a dramatically short period of time.

What really got my attention to the fact that it’s mostly fake is this exchange that would happen between myself and the Server, probably nine times out ten-

Server- “Chef this Customer says they are allergic to Gluten.”

Me- “But they’ve ordered Tagliatelle! Do they know it contains Gluten?”

Server- “I’ll go and check.”

2 minutes later….

Server- “They said it’s fine as long as they don’t have too much”

To which I would respond by refusing to cook the order at all until they a) chose something else without gluten, or b) admitted that they weren’t allergic to it in the first place and apologised for being an annoying, fad-following, hipster-wannabe, special little cupcake who demands attention by trying to be quirky, different and needy.

(Oh what a joy I was to work with!)

People with Coeliac disease can’t eat Gluten.

People with Gluten allergies can’t eat Gluten.

People who can eat “a little bit” or “not too much” are neither of these things. They CHOOSE not to eat Gluten.

They are people who, for one reason or another, just want to be different or difficult and who insist on being given special treatment like the entitled little brats that they are. If you don’t want to eat Gluten then please say so; don’t lie and say you’re Gluten intolerant or allergic to Gluten.

Image result for entitlement funny pics

 

I blame the ridiculous amount of fad-ish diets that were all the rage in the late nineties and early 2000’s, and, the self-centred, entitled generation that are the children of the followers of such idiotic trends as the Atkins diet.

So, in summing up.

Tell the truth.

Nobody cares if you don’t want to eat Gluten, but they do care if you lie about the reason.

Being Coeliac must be a nightmare, and people claiming to have issues are watering down the reality of sufferers.

You’re not allergic to Gluten.

You’re not special.

You’re just an entitled, self important knobhead.

You’re just like the other 95% of the population.

Get over it.

RANT OVER

 

 

Let the ranting begin!

I like to complain about stuff.

Quite a lot actually.

It’s not that I’m trying to be a negative person or a pain in the arse, ( I am both of those things but it’s involuntary) it’s just that I tend to get wound up by a lot of things happening in today’s society. So much so that I need to vent and let it all out to the first person I see; whether that person is my wife, my neighbour or a crowded bus.

I need a release.

But instead of just ranting and moving on, I also want to try and solve, or at least lessen these issues, or maybe even find out if they are issues at all! It might just be me who has the particular problem I’m complaining about! (Wouldn’t be the first time…)

Hopefully, this blog is the place to do it, as I’m sure my wife is preparing to leave me, my neighbour won’t come out of the house any more, and I’m barred from travelling on the number 55 bus now (which is ridiculous; at least half of the bus agreed with me that the guy sitting at the back did look stupid with a tattoo on his face…)

So who am I?

I’m a nearly 40 year old man with a wife and two kids, a shit job and a mortgage. As  of this writing I have no allergens that I am aware of.

So, if you want to read what the most average man in the world has to say about random shit, then follow this blog, and hopefully I’ll get it off my chest for you.

Let’s put the world to rights, one whinge at a time.