This is just a quick post to explain where my thoughts are. I've started with a new restaurant, very heavy hours and very heavy work, really pushing me to the wall, but with great opportunities and in a great atmosphere. The main drawback is that I'm starting six days a week and I foresee that coming home I'm not going to be much for anything for awhile.
The principal goal right now is just to stay with it, not think, not question what's happening and to just put my head down. Really not thinking about D&D (I've suspended all my games indefinitely, which my players understand although of course they're disappointed) and putting my small amount of creative drive into working on the second draft of the new book.
The Edmonton Expo is in 16 days. I'm sitting at my computer watching the sun come up, counting minutes before I have to leave for my day shift, wondering how the world works. Here I thought I would never, ever find myself in a kitchen again . . . and now not only am I here, I'm working at one of the busiest and most popular places in the city. And I mean busy. This would have challenged my 30-year-old body twenty years ago. I don't mind saying - the physical requirement here has me, well, scared.
But it really is just D&D, in both a mental and physical sense. A lot of planning, preparation and mental compartmentalization, situational awareness like I wrote about in How to Run and paying close attention to the needs of other people in the midst of extreme stress. A bit more stress than at a gaming table, admittedly.
I wrote last week about shouting and driving away people with a poor attitude - that translates to kitchens as well. All dangerous jobs, in truth. There's no room for a poor attitude in these spaces. I watched a fellow yesterday give himself a second-degree burn on his arm and shrug it off. I'm sure it hurt him terribly (I've had a few of those myself), but he never dropped his genial, it-doesn't-make-a-difference attitude.
Here's a kid at 19, burning himself in a kitchen and no big deal - where all over the net there is this rather silly, petulant hurt resulting from a misunderstood phrase or a criticism.
Really puts things in perspective.