The Bug

Y’all —

I tied for 2nd place in the gumbo cook off!!

Well, at least in the people’s choice category. I’m all about letting the people speak.

I was confident in my gumbo, but everybody’s a fan of their own stuff. Needless to say, I was beside myself. I’m sure all the other dudes could have cared less whether or not their gumbos made an impact, but I don’t have my own restaurant. I’m not a chef, nor am I a seasoned line cook.

It felt good. Damn good.

It gave me a lot of confidence and affirmation — that maybe I can do this kind of stuff. Not gumbo competitions, but to cook and to have people respond.
I’m often discouraged by the amount of work it will take to have my own place someday. I go back and forth on whether or not it’s worth it, or if I should get out while I still can.

The thing is, I have this bug.

And I guess I don’t know whether or not I should be trying to get rid of it. Lord knows restaurant folk struggle to make it some years. But also, being your own boss is great. That seems to be the way things go in the industry. If you want it bad enough and put in your time working your way up the rings, you might just get your chance. Because at some point, you will get tired of working so much for so little.

Little is a loose term. Most folks don’t really do it for the money. If they do, they’re gonna get burnt out quick.

It’s best to stick with something you feel good about. Something you feel proud doing. You may not like doing it day in and day out, but it fits you.

No, I don’t think just because I made a decent gumbo I know what it’s like.

But I love doing it. Some part of me loves the grind and the hustle.

And who knows what will come from all of those nights scraping crud from underneath the sink.

We all start somewhere, right?

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