So I’m going to take a little break here for the weekend. I’d like to thank all of you for following the blog. Pass it on to your friends and have them pass it on to their friends.
Have a great Labor Day weekend.
Bill Wynn and more next week.
The snow had not melted but total accumulation was less than two inches and so it would not in any way discourage customers from coming out. The lunch had been good. Dinner would probably be good. Over by the convection oven, Bill started pulling out the hot potatoes.
Then the steam table was all set. Everything had been checked and double-checked and all that was left for Bill to do was to cart up the meat. He dragged his weary ass down the stairs and popped in on Henry Lee in the meat room.
Henry Lee had spent a good deal of time cleaning up the meat room. He had gone twice into the deep freeze to make sure that the meat he wanted frozen was in there and the meat he was going to use but had not yet cut was in the walk-in. He had cleaned and put the scale away and even had time to talk with Marie. But he had not fooled around with Marie, not because he didn’t want to, but because Marie was busy complaining about her husband. Henry Lee, for his part, did not want to hear about it. It turned him off so he listened with a deaf ear as he went about his business.
Bill and Henry Lee took a moment to get high in the deep freeze. They talked over what Marie had said. Bill asked if she’d said anything about him and her from the night before. Henry Lee said no. Bill asked if Henry Lee wanted to hear about it. Henry Lee said no. Henry Lee said he didn’t care, that if Bill and Marie were getting it on that was better for him. Alfreda, he said, was giving him a hard time and he was getting tired of the whole situation. But then, as the weed kicked in and both their eyes glazed over, even there in the deep freeze blowing out the steam-smoke that came from their hot breath in the cold air, he kind of smiled at Bill and made a remark as to what a fine piece of ass she was.
So there they were in the meat room. Henry Lee immediately went back to cutting meat. Bill immediately went to carting meat trays, two at a time, up on his shoulder and on up the stairs. He would lay the trays on top of his meat reach-in, stack the old steaks already upstairs either in front of the new ones or on top of them, as the case was given the space on the tray. Then he would slide the tray into its slot in the reach-in, always the same slot, always in the same place and same order, never a change.
That was one of the first and most important rules of being efficient as a line cook, really as any cook, in a professional kitchen. When it got busy, and it always did, there was no time to look for anything. Everything had to be where you knew it was so that you could reach for it without having to think about it. Part of that same rule was that if you finished something, anything, you replenished it immediately. This meant that if something like the film, Saran wrap, ran out, you got a new box, opened it, set it for immediate use without having to do anything first.
Done. Another day’s prep work, another lunch, another meat delivery, another set-up for dinner. Mary’s work was finished. Bea’s work was finished. Bill’s work, until the dinner started, was finished. Marie was working at her station. She and Bea had set everything in place, Marie moving things around so they were exactly the way she wanted them. Bill took a moment to go back into the office and call home, the second call. His fiancé was there, answered the phone and they spoke. The call ended with her telling Bill that she was spending the night at Tim’s. Tim, she said, was horribly depressed.
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Bill hadn’t called home all day. Something in the back of his head was kicking at him. It had to do with Jack, with the notion that he was not gay, but bi, and if he were bi, maybe he was…
Tim was in the closet until he wasn’t in the closet anymore. It was kind of easy to gauge Tim’s persuasion by his appearance and affects, but Bill understood one never really knew until one knew. Bill would come to understand that he never knew anything until he knew it, and even then looks could be deceiving. Matters could get complicated. So even when you knew something, maybe you didn’t really know it at all.
Some things you did know, however. A recipe was a recipe. A fact was a fact. The fact was he had a record. That fact didn’t change. In fact, it wouldn’t change even after he’d had that record expunged some twenty years later. The interpretations of facts were what caused issues, but there was nothing anyone could do about that.
Jack wasn’t bi. Bill knew it. Bill knew he was gay, a hundred percent. Like many of the gays at the time, he surrounded himself with girls, usually very pretty girls too. That was to hide who he really was. It was also because the girls of the time liked hanging around with gay guys because they could get boy perspectives without any sexual entanglements. And if a girl really wanted to know what a guy was thinking, who was the best one to ask? A gay guy, of course, because then she could get the male perspective without any repercussions. It was an easy way for girls to find out if a guy liked them. That’s what most of the questions were about anyway, that and about what guys liked for their birthdays or for other assorted types of things. Then there was always the sex talk where the girls could check out if guys liked this or that, or liked it this way or that.
So if something in the back of Bill’s mind gnawed at him, even though he knew it didn’t mean anything much, it was still there and it wasn’t Jack. It was still there even as he played with Mary and Bea and Mary and Bea together. It was still there as he flirted with Lexi, and he would discover it would still be there later this evening when Lorraine was closing girl.
After the meat delivery, after making sure the line was completely set up and Mary’s work was all done, that’s when he went into the office to call home. Luckily, or not, his fiancé wasn’t in so he didn’t have to say anything, discuss anything, do anything. He went back to the kitchen where the devil was working inside him.
“How many pounds of meat came in?” Mary asked.
“Little over fourteen hundred,” Bill said.
“You got it all stowed away?”
“Henry Lee finishing up?”
“He’s working,” said Bill. “But I think he’s got a lot of work he wants to get done, especially since the Buckeyes are home this weekend and we’re probably going to be busy. I think he’s trying to get a good head start.”
“Well,” said Mary, “we better do all the breading tomorrow. And don’t you be taking none of that that stupid stuff. Although, I have to admit, you’re kind of cute when you get messed up.”
Bill smiled. He knew it was about time to take out the baked potatoes. He knew it was about time to cart over the prime rib and set it up for carving by the steam table. He knew it was about time to double check all the frozen items to make sure they had enough to get through the night. He knew it was about time to start carting up the meat from downstairs.
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Mary was busy at her stoves when they came back into the kitchen. She was checking the rib that was in the oven and stirring the things that were on top of the stoves. Most everything for the rest of the day was working and pretty soon she would be ready to chill.
Bea was cleaning up her station, changing the pots that the salad dressings were stored in, getting ready to replenish everything that Marie would need for the dinner. If the dinner meal was like the lunch, they were going to be busy. For waitresses, being busy was great. For the owner, being busy was great. Kitchen help made the same money slow or busy. Overall good business for the cooks was good because the size of their year-end bonus was based upon gross sales.
Marie came in at four. She was wearing a dress, something she rarely did, and she was wearing dark glasses. To Bill, who saw her first when she stopped in to say hello, she looked like a ragamuffin, so skinny that the dress hung straight down on her as if she had no shape. Another time, other circumstances, she could have passed for a crackhead.
Bill wondered what was with the dark glasses. He wondered if her husband had hit her, but she dispelled that notion quickly when she took them off.
“No, he didn’t hit me,” she said before he could say anything. “He didn’t come home till this afternoon, just before I had to leave for here. He didn’t even say hello to the kids. He just went straight off to bed. I’d be pissed if I wasn’t glad. That’s messed up, huh?”
Bill thought of his own circumstance at home last night and said, “Nah.”
Marie passed on down the line and went over to her station where Bea was working. “I need anything from downstairs?” she asked.
“Nah,” said Bea. “I got everything done. You’re all set except you could make a tray of setups for the hamburgers.”
“Pies and everything taken care of?”
“Yeah, all the salads and all the desserts. You can go hang out with your boy downstairs,” Bea said, almost as if she were instigating.
“Well, I’ll be up in a few then.” Marie did an about face and walked back through the line. She stopped mid-way where she could see to the back and called hello to Mary. When she heard Mary return the hello, she headed on past Bill, out the kitchen door and down the stairs.
Just a moment after she was gone, the meat delivery arrived. Bill heard the horn, then the driver appeared in the doorway to the kitchen. Bill said hello and told him he’d be right with him.
Mary had heard the horn too. She saw the driver hanging at the doorway. She walked around to the line to see what Bill was up to, which was really nothing more than setting up the steam table for which he’d already brought over the inserts. She told him go on down and let Henry Lee know, that she would put on the baked potatoes and finish setting up the steam table. Bill acknowledged her with a nod and went on down.
On his way to the meat room, Bill opened the door to the staff ladies’ bathroom. Marie was in her bra and slip, just starting to put on her kitchen dress.
“You okay?” he asked.
“Fine,” Marie said. She smiled at Bill. “We can talk later when it’s quiet.”
In the meat room, Bill told Henry Lee the delivery was there. Henry Lee was getting ready to cut short loins. They didn’t always serve T-Bones and club steaks, but they ran them as specials most of the time. Henry Lee was cutting them for the next day and they were running them on the weekend too. He carted the two loins he had out on his table back into the walk-in and set up the scale to weigh the meat.
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“About when hell freezes over,” said Bill.
“Right,” said Alfreda. “You mean like when we get a chance?”
Bill did not answer. He began plating the burgers. Seeing this, Alfreda went back down the line to the fryer and picked up the now golden-brown fries. Like an experienced line cook, she shook the basket so the grease fell from the French fries. Then, without any hesitation, she took the basket and shook fries onto each plate.
“See? See what a good team we make?” She smiled at Bill. In her own mind she was thinking that the next chance would come soon. In his mind, Bill was thinking that Henry Lee was her husband and that no matter how he sliced it, it was wrong, not to mention something that would put the attention, already apparent from the interactions with the crew, into the stratosphere.
He tapped the bell when the plates were up under the plate warmer. A moment later Lexi came into the kitchen. She put metal rims on top of the plates and stacked them on a tray. “Thanks,” she said.
“You working through?” Bill asked.
“Yep, and then I’m out of here. Too bad you’re working late.”
“Yeah, too bad he is,” said Alfreda. She half smiled, half leered at Lexi. Lexi did a polite smile, hoisted the tray and walked out of the kitchen.
“You got no qualms about doing her,” said Alfreda. “So what’s the problem?”
“How many times?” said Bill. “How many times we got to go through this?”
“I know you doing Marie too. My wonderful husband’s doing her. So what’s wrong if we do each other? It’s all good, and what’s good to you is good for you.”
“Jesus Christ,” said Bill. “Just plain Jesus Christ.”
So when they were in the van, just him and her, after Henry Lee had shelved the trays he’d carried and headed back downstairs, she cornered Bill and kissed him, making sure to force her tongue into his mouth. While she kissed him she reached down to fondle him, took herself a long, copious feel. “I’ve got good hands,” she said, “and you already know all my other parts are good.”
“Sometimes,” Bill said, “it’s just easier to yield than it is to shield. So I’m not going to fight you anymore. Let’s just be careful because we don’t need the grief.”
“About goddamn time.” Quickly, making sure so as not to get caught, she took Bill’s hand and slid it up her kitchen dress for him to cop a feel of her. She guided his fingers exactly the way she wanted them to go but did not keep them there long. “We’ll set the time,” she said, “or we’ll just know when we’ve come to a time.”
All the meat loaded, Alfreda stood with Henry Lee outside the closed van and hugged and kissed him. She did this right in front of Bill and made it sensual, caring and loving. “I love you sweetie,” she said to her husband. “Don’t be too late so we can get some.” She cutely shook her bootie.
“Love you too, baby,” said Henry Lee. “Don’t promise nothing, but I’ll be home soon as I can.”
“You got a joint?”
Henry Lee looked to Bill. Bill shook his head yes and headed back into the restaurant so he could go downstairs and get a joint from his locker. When he returned he discreetly slipped it into her hand. As their hands met, Alfreda squeezed Bill’s hand and said thank you. Then she kissed her husband again, walked to the driver’s side of the van, got in and drove off.
“Women,” Henry Lee said. “Next up, I got to deal with Marie. What a witch she is.”
“I wouldn’t know,” said Bill.
“Yeah you would,” said Henry Lee.
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In light of the Special Prosecutor and in consideration for those who are pleading guilty, here’s the anatomy of a guilty plea when you’re coerced into making one. I’m re-posting this now given the Manafort trial and Michael Cohen deal.
Regardless of your political bent, how can anyone believe anything? How can the crazed political agenda of the left and left-leaning media be allowed to usurp a presidency, to present a host of lies and innuendo without themselves being held to the same scrutiny the right and Republican President are being held to? Allowing this, allowing crazed mob mentality to run amok among our leaders is the real threat to America. The saying is: when you point a finger at someone, three fingers are pointing back at you.
Ohio State University, 1970. More than six hundred would be arrested. Most of them would have their cases dismissed because of entrapment. I was the first person arrested.
The demonstrators were sitting on the gates to the campus. The gates were open and while demonstrators were hindering traffic, the road was not blocked other than by people. From inside the campus, in plain clothes, what would turn out to be undercover FBI agents entered into the crowd. They pulled one demonstrator from the gates and started beating him. They made no attempt to arrest him or identify themselves. They simply beat him.
I was standing there with one of my professors. We had met for lunch and he wanted to see what was happening. I pleaded with the crowd to help the kid being beaten but no one did. Finally I threw down my books and grabbed the guy nearest me who was beating the demonstrator. I was immediately knocked out from behind. I came to in the paddy wagon where an undercover cop started and led a conversation that showed up verbatim at my trial.
I was in a holding cell for about eight hours. I had no one to help me and no money for bail. Finally another professor of mine, a friend, bailed me out. He took me to the hospital where I was treated for a concussion and patched up. If not for this friend, I would not have had a lawyer. I had no money, no resources. I was hurt and in trouble.
I’ve told this many times in many contexts and written about it too.
A legal defense fund was started and my friend made some calls to find out if they would take my case. When I say I had no money, this means none, nada. I was on a work study program that paid my tuition and I received a meager SSI benefit for my deceased mother which paid my rent. This was my entire income.
The arraignment came. The judge told the prosecutor it was a ridiculous case, so outrageous that he should dismiss it outright. He then turned to me and said he wanted to dismiss the case but knew that if he did they would re-arrest me the moment I walked out the door. He said they would then file felony charges against me, my bail would skyrocket, and worse, they’d put me in the penitentiary for a year. So in my best interests, he said, he was holding the case against me over for trial.
Then came the wheeling-dealing, all of which was handled by my lawyer. We met in his office and he laid it all out. I was charged with three misdemeanors, assault and battery on a police officer, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. If I didn’t cop a plea, they would file a felony against me, Rioting One. The penalty for that was prison time in the penitentiary. As well, I had to face a disciplinary hearing in the university’s ombudsman’s office. If I didn’t cop a plea, they would try me immediately and if were found guilty, which I surely would be, not only would I go to prison for a year, but I’d also be expelled from the university and never be allowed to graduate. I was a senior in my last quarter.
So what choice was there for me? In the end, what I did or didn’t do didn’t matter. Truth didn’t matter. Getting their conviction was all that mattered and they were willing to ruin my life for that.
This is the anatomy of a coerced guilty plea. Imagine what they did to General Petraeus, Michael Flynn and so many others.
For years now our government has been running a Kabuki Theater on us. Every day we see the same crap over and over. We’re told one thing, but the government’s interests go somewhere else. We’re told the government cares and “will get to the bottom of what’s going on,” but it never does. Congressional approval hovers around 18%. About 50% of Congressmen are millionaires and more than 60% of Senators are millionaires. Their median net worth is more than one million dollars and thus one lawmaker’s net worth is more than eighteen regular American households. No wonder Nancy Pelosi referred to the tax cuts as crumbs.
We’ve come to insanity, of course. The informal definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. In this regard we fought the war on poverty for more than 50 years without actually putting a dent in poverty in America or changing the demographics of the poor. In this regard, we’ve spent more and more and more money per capita on education and yet we rank approximately fifteenth in the world in education. And that’s being kind of kind.
It gets worse, not better. The Democrats, who have been mostly in charge of our inner cities, have managed to create and sustain urban centers where poverty abounds, murder rates soar, crime is rampant, education is sub-par and the homeless litter the streets defecating wherever they choose while the police are instructed not to bother them.
Of course when asked about this the Democrats will continually blame other people and other things and insist they have no culpability as they make sanctuary cities which allow more poor, more ignorant, more culturally dissociated people to roam freely and use the limited resources that are dwindling. Then they insist they are looking after the best interests of the American citizens.
It’s a con, a shell game, a façade.