Tag Archives: restaurant

The Best Way to Predict Your Future is To Create It

Oh yeah, forgot to add this yesterday…..if you can share the page, that would be FABULOUS of you…..if you can help even more with a donation, I’d be forever grateful, and there’s even rewards!

I also have a draft business plan written, as well as a sample menu & business card.
Here’s a preview:


An excerpt from the business plan:

My business idea for Bistro / Bakery ‘Grunt, Shuffle & Sigh’ is simply good food, at affordable prices, in an atmosphere that feels like home & makes you want to come back again and again.

I’ve been inspired by cooking my whole life…from watching & helping my Grandmother bake and cook for our family, to my very first job with a German chef, to my long career in kitchens, working with some of the best names in Canada, and being taught new ways to experience food, flavor, and cooking as an art form rather than just another job.
I am passionate, dedicated to my work, creative and able to take on a wide array of challenges with ease.

In a restaurant or food establishment, these are important factors, as you never know what’s going to happen…
One day can be perfectly normal, then the next day, your supplier is late, you have a rush of customers you’re unprepared for, the sound system isn’t working and someone doesn’t show up for work! For me, that kind of challenge is fun, and I live to solve difficult problems! I have also been working in the restaurant industry for more than 11 years, so I have seen my fair share, and have learned how to deal with most major problems.

The concept for our restaurant came after trying to find a simple, comfortable space to eat, while also retaining a feeling of ‘eating local’…a lot of new restaurants around Negros Oriental are very modern, and try to cater to foreign guests. This isn’t a problem, but we would like to have a place that serves high-quality Filipino food that is affordable to local citizens as well as foreigners, and an atmosphere that is comfortable for everyone.

Also, we have seen our menu items in other restaurants before, but with my 11+ years of experience in kitchens, I can confidently say we will offer a sensory experience like no other in all of Negros.

We are simple people, so our ambitions for the business remain simple as well.
Eventually, becoming involved in charity work will be a consideration, as it is highly important to give back to our community. If we do decide to expand, our choice locations are in Cebu, near Lapu-Lapu, as well as Bais, and Zamboanguita. This is due to family ties in each of these places, as well as an eye for future numbers as far as customer potential is concerned.

Please, please, please, please share!
I would love to finally be in charge of my own business, and it would be a breath of relief to be anchored to something….after 28 years of being a drifting pile of skin and bones, it’d be nice to finally own a teensy island in this raging sea of life.

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Posted by on September 12, 2014 in Uncategorized


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To Become Presence, Means Accepting the Risk of Absence

Sorry folks, for the absence, been busy and flooded with more than enough stuff…..couldn’t find the time to write, though I know I should.

The resort stuff is going well, though there have been a few bumps and now, of course it’s a bit rickety….when is my life not bumpy? But God knows I love a wild ride in this life, and that smooth sailing never a true sailor made.
Basically just stupid issues, the Bossman & Bosslady are quite fond of micromanaging the resort…….that’s perfectly fine…it’s their business, do what you want.

But if you bring me on to the team to do all the office stuff and bring your customer counts up and make the resort the success I know it can be…..let me do my job, and trust that I know what I’m doing, please!!!
Signing off on every single decision is frustrating, and slows everything down to a crawl.
Although, again, I have to say I understand that it’s the Philippines and nothing gets done until its basically too late…….but if that’s the case, don’t ream me out for something I tried to get done last week.

Ugh. anyway, enough bitching for now haha
Doming took me to Bais for a tiny taste of fiesta on the 9th! Met a trillion new people (it’s hard to believe everyone is truly related to each other!!) drank some Red Horse, and chatted to a few of the folks, including a 74 year old guy who was making the LEchon spits….he was talking about everything from being a freediving scuba guy (showed me his giant harpoon gun ahaha) to his buddies, who went to the mideast for work and got killed in the shelling (lord knows when) to jim beam, paul malls and marlboro, and the good ol days when you could buy three beers for a peso.

He was absolutely fantastic to speak to, and he had this strange old-world british-ish accent that you see from old movies where the bearded professor is sipping a brandy and smoking his pipe, ranting about philosophy and his war days.

Then, after everything settled, me, Doming and his cousin all killed a pig….that was pretty insane, but Doming cut quick and accurately and there wasn’t much suffering at all.
Then we shaved it, gutted it, and the next day we ate it! We took some back home and I had ribs and lumpia for lunch….yuuhhmmm… much better than just having noodles for lunch.

Don’t know if I mentioned, it’s been a while, but my meals are no longer included because someone complained about it. 
Now that I don’t have access to the kitchen, or a fridge, I’m spending about p2000 per month on food for myself.
THAT’S INSANITY…..since before, in Valencia, I was spending about p2000 per MONTH for three people’s worth of food.

But oh well.
I’m looking into opening a bistro/bakery here…’ll be expensive for the initial costs….but I’m asking for donations from my mom to help me instead of a Christmas & Birthday present….won’t be much, but it’ll be enough to put away until I do have enough.

I have the sample menu and a sample business card printed, and I’m writing the business plan today!
So that’s what’s been going on. 
I didn’t have a camera in Bais, so no pictures of that, but here are some recent shots of the resort and stuff:



Tree that was hit by lightning.

Tree that was hit by lightning.

Cow got hit my lightning and exploded into pooh!

Cow got hit by lightning and exploded into pooh!

DSC_0192 DSC_0207 DSC_0222 DSC_0224 DSC_0233 DSC_0243 DSC_0262

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Posted by on September 11, 2014 in Uncategorized


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I Peed on The Floor to Get Hired – Now I’m The Janitor

Aah, I really have nothing exciting to report. 
Damon got a new typewriter the other day, so he’s been plinking away at that….he wrote a story fit for a Film Noir script, ‘For Fun’ he said, about a Miss Xiao Men, her husband, Mr. Hinge, his boss, Mr. Phil Phillips, and the man in the blue suit and red cap she seeks out, Mr. Will Dour.

It was a GREAT little paragraph, I wish I could steal it away and write it out, maybe in the future…

I will be getting a mannequin tomorrow, so sayeth Donna, though once again, I don’t know how sure it is… Her cancer hasn’t spread, according to the doctors, and she’s been debating on doing either a mastectomy or some other thingy to just remove something else…I can’t remember what its called. 

In my opinion, if they took out the tumor to biopsy it, shouldn’t she technically be cancer-free currently? 
If it was me, I wouldn’t give a hoot about it and I certainly wouldn’t cut off my boobs for something unconfirmed.
I don’t know much about cancer, admittedly, and I’m certainly not a doctor. 

I told her about Rick Simpson Oil, and told her to look into it as a treatment instead of chemo or radiation, which would make her much sicker than necessary, but no one listens to me about it.

Anyway, I thought it would be an interesting excercise to share with you the jobs that I’ve had over the years, since that’s all I’ve been doing lately with my time… Filling out LinkedIn profiles, applying for jobs on PeoplePerHour and Craigslist, writing articles for people who say they’ll pay then not hearing another word from them, etc.
It’s been super tiring.

So, a break! 
Here is a partial list of all the jobs I’ve held since starting work at age 16, and a description of the stuff I did, and how I liked it.

1. Colby alehouse – My first job in a kitchen. I got the job through someone I knew, who turned out to be an insano. 
I was a dishwasher, and a prep cook, and the place served shoddy German food. 
I still remember my boss, Klaus… He was a good guy, but drank a lot. 
Cleaning the metal inserts was the worst part of the job, I would put them through the dishwasher eight or nine times each, scrubbing them down each time they came out. I learned to hate jagersauce.
I loved cutting potatoes into fries with the big industrial cutter, and I was amazed at the giant can opener.
I grew much less scrawny there, but had to quit because both head chefs (( One of which was Mr. Insano )) started to sexually harass me, and the kitchen manager refused to do anything about it.

2. Wharf Wraps – Another kitchen job, I was again a dishwasher, but this place didn’t have the industrial washer, and everything was done by hand. really tasty food, I enjoyed the job and the people, but it was too much for me to handle at the time and I walked out one day and didn’t return.

3. H&H Fisheries – This was a fun job to a degree. 
I woke up at four am, took a bus to the factory for a five thirty am start, get my hairnet, rubber boots, and smocky thingy on, and we’d all head down to a room with two ‘conveyor’-type rollerthings on either side of the walls. We’d all stand on mats, and wait for lobster-parts to come through the hole in the wall, and we’d shuck lobster meat from claws and feet for fourteen to sixteen hours a day. 
It was hard on the legs, but being in kitchens and standing all day wasn’t new to me. It was also fun to hear all the Ladies from Newfoundland gossip and talk. At lunch, I’d either have a tuna sandwich from the store next door, or nothing, if I couldn’t afford it that week. I ended up leaving because the lobster industry took a nosedive, and I didn’t have seniority at the plant….Thus my hours were cut really badly, and I couldn’t afford to pay my rent.

4. Ultra Electronics Marine Systems – Probably my most favorite job to date. 
I worked for a company that was supplying over 80% of the world’s defense equipment, and I was proud of it. I was being paid fourteen dollars an hour, and I was assembling sonar equipment – making and testing hydrophones for sonobuoys, from start to finish.
The place was unionized, and the workers were all middle aged women who also loved to gossip. I was young, and a very hard worker, above quota every day, but the union rep took me into the office one day and told me the rest of the workers didn’t want me around anymore. He tried to slip me twenty bucks across the desk, but I stood up, told him to shove his money, and walked home.
Once I got home, I promptly burst into tears, and wished I had taken the money to go buy some weed. In retrospect, both funny and sad, I feel bad that I lost that job, I was really proud of myself for having it… and while I was proud of not accepting their pity-pay, I really should have taken that twenty.

5. Superstore – Backshift restocking in the home accessories section. I loved my crew, the boys were all totally fun to work with, though unfortunately the really fun guys worked over in grocery, and I was stuck on the other side of the store. Facing product was my favorite part of the job, and due to my OCD, I was very freaking good at it.
Got my first pair of steel toed shoes, and I loved them to death, but unfortunately, also found out I had bunoins, and the job was way too hard on my feet. I had to leave after I was barely able to walk to the bus stop after work every morning. It was here I also found out I love night-shifts more than anything. Seeing the sun rise after a long night of hard work is astoundingly satisfying.

6. Celtic Corner – Back to the dish pit and prepwork. I liked this pace because it reminded my of my ancestry. Good food, great people, but unfortunately, fired me due to lack of hours… I disagreed with their decision, because the other dish guy was constantly late and didn’t clean dishes efficiently or fast enough.

7. Ducky’s Cafe – More prep and dishwork. LOVED the food, highly convenient location for me, but fired for unknown reasons.

8. ABC janitorial – I worked as a janitor for the mall. I didn’t mind this job, it was extremely laid back, and there really wasn’t much to it. A bonus to the job was catching on to the fact that people who bought new shoes at the shoe store would sit on the bench just outside the store, change into their brand new kicks, and leave their old, moderately-worn sneaks in a box in the trash or on the bench. 
I got a few new pairs of shoes this way, and was amazed at how many people don’t fully wear out their old shoes before buying new ones. I left this job to accept a position working in the kitchen for Hooters.

9. The Split Crow – dishwasher again, prep again. SUCH GOOD FOOD, and a really good live band night. I worked in a heritage building int he basement. It was leaky, smelly, and hot, but I loved it and felt like I was back in the 1800’s when I worked there.
Bonus was the fact that I adore crows, so I thought it was a sign of a good job. Was fired with no reason.

10. Haddon Hall Kitchen staff – Worked for Aramark catering, Dishwasher again, at the University cafeteria. 
I definitely did not ever mind this job. I was allowed to listen to cds on a cd player in the dishpit, which was it’s own separate little room away from the kitchen, and rocked Tool and RHCP all day.
At the end of the shift, though it was technically against the rules, we would wrap up all the leftover hamburgers, hot dogs, etc, and take them home. Definitely saved on groceries. Lost the job due to summer vacation at the University, and no need for us to be there anymore.

11. Il Mercado – Super tasty food, upscale place…I don’t remember too much about this place, though I do remember it was the first place I tried bruschetta, and I was hooked on it in no time flat. I forget why I lost the job, though more than likely due to the fact that I am not a very haughty-taughty type person, and probably didn’t fit in well.

12. Minstrels – A really, REALLY tasty little resto opened by the owners of the Old Triangle Pub. Got the job through one of my really good friends, who was a chef there, and I had a really good time. I made a few new friends, fixed the baseboards in the kitchen one day, cooked my own lunches, and I loved going for beers after work with the crew. 
Unfortunately, it is extremely hard to keep a restaurant going in Halifax, and we didn’t make the cut. I lost my job, we all did, and it broke my heart. I found out a few weeks later I was able to work at the Old Triangle though, and my morale improved slightly.

13. Kelsies – This was a REALLY fun job, I finally got to be a cook on line, though only salads, appies and deserts. the day would start with me and two other people, one of which was an old rough-and-tumble type dude… I forget his name, though I wish I didn’t. He was an awesome friend to me, and made me feel really confident at what I was doing. 
We would empty and refill the fryers, put on the soups for the day, and prep onions, mushrooms, steaks, all the sauces on the line, etc, fill the water table, and prep stuff needed for the week. I was convinced I would stay there for a long time, and my boss was very happy with my work, but my boyfriend at the time was starting to become physically abusive, and I had to move to another area, which was too far away to travel in every morning.

I worked the night shift at a teeny little gas outpost in Red Deer. Lots of strange people, and I loved my drunken Friday night crowd to death. Once an old guy came in, piled a bunch of stuff on the counter, and tried to pay with a chunk of crack… I had to decline with ‘I don’t think my boss would appreciate seeing that in the register tomorrow morning.’
Another night, a guy came in and asked if I smoked weed. When I said yes, he came around to the side of the counter, and put a giant five gram bud beside the display, and told me to call him if he needed any more. He didn’t leave his phone number, and didn’t ever come back in to the store.
It was very good green. 

15. Husky Gas – Worked night-shift with a Mr. Will Borzash. 
He told me he was Tom Green’s cousin, though to this day I still can’t confirm or deny it. 
I also worked with my buddy’s Uncle, who was an awesome guy, but is an ex-con, and I think currently in jail again. 
Sweetest guy you’ll ever meet, just don’t give him Valium and alcohol. 
It was a decent-sized place, with a restaurant attached to it, though that part was closed at night. 
I learned a lot about restocking gas stations, and I effing hate restocking pop and juice. 
Whoever made pop coolers the way they are hates the people who restock them.

16. Fast Fuels – This gas station was a lot less laid back, and I don’t know if it’s a Halifax thing, or not. 
The other two gas places were in Alberta, and most places in Alberta were really fun to work for… Halifax/Dartmouth is a total drag.
I can’t say I blame them in HRM though, there are a lot of gas station shootings and stabbings there.
I loved my regulars, as usual, and they all loved me back. I lost the job just before my birthday, and they told me it was because I wasn’t learning fast enough, but the people I worked with told me I did. 
Oh well.

17. Steak N Stein – Loved the old guys I worked with but there was an old woman named Fern who was downright ghastly to work with.
When I left, I forgot a big, thick Mickey Mouse mug that my mom had given me for Christmas.
I LOVED sneaking chunks of beef tips, *droooool* and the mushrooms were to-damn-die-for, even though it was only butter, salt and pepper.

18. Boston Pizza – I kinda totally forget this job. I do remember suggesting fettuccine Alfredo pizza, however and was told the food costs would be too high. A few months after I left, I noticed all the pizza shops in town started cooking Alfredo pizzas. Jerks.

19. Citadel Hotel – Housekeeping *knock, knock, knock* Housekeeping *knock, knock, knock* Housekeeping *open door slowly*
Was a decent, well-paying job. Anything guests leave behind, we keep for three months, and if no one claims it, the person who found it keeps it. I learned that its customary for Asian guests to leave a toonie or loonie on the bed or dresser in the morning, and I also learned a lot of people drink a lot of beer in hotels. Not as many condoms as I imagined however.
This job was also unionized, but I didn’t make my three months, apparently I was too slow. Boourns.

(( Holy freaking Hills this is a long list, I want to give up, but I won’t. 
Intermission, I need coffee and a cigarette…hope I’m not boring you….here’s a picture of our newest cat, Hobbes. ))


20. Tim Hortons – Boring job, misleading job. I wasn’t allowed to collect tips for three weeks after my hire date, and one whole week of shifts was spent watching videos of the company’s history and every product sold. 
No hands-on training, so when they threw me on cash the second week, I looked like a total fool-goldfish, guppying around trying to figure out what buttons to press, and no one to ask for help. I quit before the third week.

21. Faurecia – Another one of my favorite jobs, I worked at an automotive-parts-manufacturing factory. Sixth largest parts manufacturer in the world. I got this job through a temp agency, and I was elated. EXCELLENT pay, and I wanted to stay there forever.
Unfortunately, me and my boyfriend of the time were hitch hiking across Canada, and it was just a stop-in, a way to make some money in order to move on to another place. We were living out of a tent that we had pitched in a farmer’s field up the road from the plant, and we weren’t eating much except oranges and carrots. When our tent was ransacked one day, and all of our stuff was destroyed, we had to go to a shelter, and had to leave our jobs there.

22. Tarot Reader – I’ve been reading Tarot for people for about nine years, but technically, I do it for free. 
The last few years, I have accepted donations, and people have been extremely generous to me. I LOVE reading for people, especially when I’m just posted on the side of the road and people stop and chat with me. I love hearing about people’s lives, and I feel like I’ve helped a lot of people.
Once, while reading in Calgary, an old man stopped, got his cards read, donated twenty dollars, then the next day, came out specifically looking for me, and took me to breakfast at one of the oldest restaurants in town. I love that guy, and will never forget him.

23. Aperture Studios assistant – I worked as both a model and photography assistant at the studio. I set up lighting and sets, and did basically everything required by the photographer. I worked the most with Paul Vienneau, and I loved every second. I gained highly valuable experience and knowledge, and was allowed access to the studio overnight. This gave me plenty of time to explore professional equipment on my own, and order three am bruschetta and wings. 
During the winter, I’d sit in the nooks of the giant windows and watch golden-colored, lamp-illuminated snow fall onto the street below. 
It was beautiful.

24. McDonald’s – I worked here for less than a week. I gave it a try on the basis of all the advertising saying ‘Holy shit, we’re great to work for!’ I have zero idea where they get that idea, but they’re not. And their food-safety terrified me. After working in as many kitchens as I have, I was, and remain, absolutely disgusted at the standards and practices of McDonald’s. 

25. Morgan’s Pub – BEST JOB EVER. Best boss, best crew, best bands, best atmosphere, best customers. 
My boss was a rock-star. He supported everything I did. I gutted that entire kitchen and cleaned it from top to bottom. It was nasty, but I was damned proud when I was finished. I loved staying after work for beers and my tequila shot, and there were two older dudes I used to love to talk to. 
One of the guys, Terry, was from England, and would talk to me about the newspaper’s daily photo section after he found out I did photography. He’d come in at opening around four, sit, have a few pints, read the paper, do the crossword, and come back the next day and do it all again.
I had to leave the job because the boyfriend I hitch hiked to Calgary with also became physically abusive, and I went back to NS for a little while. I sure can pick ’em.

26. Roofing and Insulation Installation – A one-day temp job, but I loved the work, and I loved the crew. 
They treated me like one of the boys, and I love ’em for it.
We all had coffee and donuts up on the roof for a break snack, and I went to Arby’s with another dude for lunch. 
I really had fun, and would have loved to do it again, though holy shite the heights and ladders terrified me.

27. Cat’s Eye Vintage – I helped out Catherine, the owner by sorting and cleaning the store for a few afternoons. She is a fascinating woman, and a shaman healer. Ironically, her own health is really deteriorating, and I wish I could have stuck around Canada just so I could work for her permanently. She gave me a bit of cash for helping, but the best part was she let me pick out a few dresses. I still have them and they’re beautiful. I keep telling her to come visit me, but I don’t know if she ever will. She also let me use the washroom and her microwave in her apartment, which was a floor up from the store. 
Her son is a talented rapper/graffiti artist/shoe designer, and I wish I could have gotten to know them all better.

28. Hooters – Fun job, wicked opportunity, but the kitchen manager was an irresponsible prick, excuse my language. He served raw food to people, and used to say rude things about the girls in the back of the kitchen. I was going to have a meeting with the boss about it, but he went on vacation, and I was fired the day he did. When he got back, and I tried to explain my side, he said he couldn’t go back on a manager’s decision or he would look bad. 
The place was burned down a few months later for insurance fraud purposes, because they had no idea how to run a successful Hooters franchise. 


*lights another cigarette and puts on the kettle*

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Posted by on December 18, 2013 in Uncategorized


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