This place matters

This place matters

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Hot behind

So if you've ever worked in a restaurant, your understanding of the term hot behind is different from the average person - in restaurant lingo, this means "I'm walking behind you with something hot." In fact, the most important words in a busy kitchen are probably hot, behind, and corner. As in, I'm holding something hot, I'm right behind you, or I'm coming around a blind corner. This shorthand is so incredibly useful, I don't understand why it's limited to the food service industry. This would be especially great where I work - software types tend to be introverted, and we get a lot of collisions caused by both parties being very busy staring at their shoes.
Another term used in restaurants is 86. There are many stories as to the origin, all equally improbable. One of the most popular is that the term comes from Chumley's, a historic Manhattan pub at 86 Bedford street. During prohibition, it's said, the bar was so frequently raided that they developed a code - 86 meant that the cops were coming in the side door, so the patrons should run out the front door. This answer, however, only raises more questions. Why didn't the cops cover both doors? Why not just shout "front door"? And do the Pawn Stars people actually think we believe that Chumley's idiot antics aren't scripted? Seems most likely to me that one or more restaurants used a numeric shorthand for commonly used expressions and 86 stuck. 
I used to work at a filthy hell hole of a burger stand where the code for the fried bologna sandwich was B Butt+. Because when making a fried bologna sandwich, you never want to forget the extra butt.
If you work in a restaurant, no matter how much of a grammar snob you are, customers aren't seated they're sat. All day means altogether - so if you want to know how many burgers should be on grill total - as opposed to for just one order - you'd ask how many all day? Kill it or cremate it means extra well done. 
Cambro is a company that makes containers for the food industry, like food pans and pitchers. But since Cambro makes so many products, different businesses use it to mean different things. At a coffee shop where I worked, a Cambro was a giant beverage pitcher, where, at aforementioned filthy hell hole of a burger stand, it was the plastic canister we kept soups in. 
Well now I'm hungry. I think it's time for a trip to the old filthy hell hole. As horrible a place as it is, horrible as the owners are, it has the best damn burgers in the city. The secret ingredient is extra grease. 



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