Feedback on the term "Personal Cheffing"

Joined Aug 18, 1999
I haven't posted in very long time but I thought of this group while participating in hot debate among my colleagues in the personal chef industry on our own version of these message boards.

We have been arguing with each other over the fact that the although the word "cheffing" is technically not a word it has become part of our language somehow. Anyway, some of my colleagues think the use of the term borders on a mortal sin -- others think it's no big deal.

So, would you look down on "us" if you heard us using that word in conversation or not give it a second thought. I really don't want to get into the debate of whether or not personal chefs should be called chefs in the first place -- that's a whole other subject. But, for example, I'm sure I've heard someone say "I sous cheffed (also not a word) at that restaurant for 2 years", or something similar.

Personally I think the whole subject is ridiculous but I'm curious to see what you all think.
Joined May 26, 2001
Since there is no verb "to chef" there cannot be any such gerund as "cheffing." Effing, perhaps, but not cheffing. ;) Sorry.

Is it more awkward to say, "I'm working as a personal chef" rather than "I'm personal cheffing for these folks?" On the contrary, the former is correct and the latter is, well, not English.

Edit: this is the result of my many years of training in languages, including a minor in Comparative Literature. I know that the English language is a living, changing one. But that doesn't mean I have to like some of the changes! ;)
Joined Jul 26, 2002
You say tomato, I say tomatoe.

I say as long as ya'll know what ya'll saying then so be it. I wouldn't worry about people looking down on you. I think we all have our way of saying things. We all have our slang. And though "cheffing" isn't a word......think I might start using it.*chuckles*

note the southern slang......:p
Joined Jan 8, 2002
"Email" also wasn't a word until several decades ago. It quickly became an acceptable noun and then verb. Now I bet you use it just about every day of your life.

My gal took a class for her Master's program this past summer on language development. She had to study AEA (african-american english) as part of the class and got a very quick course on the rapid fluidity of language. Parents in our school system want teachers accountable for understanding and using all sorts of speech that would have been blasphemous just 10 years ago. Just because someone tells you something "isn't a word" doesn't mean that it's true, anymore ;).

Personally, I may say it, but I wouldn't use it in writing (contract, correspondance with a client, resume/CV, etc).

Joined Feb 6, 2002
Tell me about it......I remember being in High School and tryin to keep up with the slang. Embarrassing but true story.

Some guy waltzes over to the lunch table next to mine and knocks over my book bag....he starts saying what I thought was "my bag, my bag" so I told him it wasn't his bag it was mine. Well, he was in fact saying "my bad, my bad" which meant it was all his fault that he knocked my bag over. He stared at me for a minute before a friend of mine came to my rescue and explained what he was saying. :blush: Talk about embarrassing.

As for looking down on Personal Chefs for using Personal Cheffing....not a chance. Once upon a time the word Chef meant "one of those working class peons". People would eat your food but you were in the same class as an Actress or Actor. "Not the kind of person one would associate onesself with in public. Sniff!" Thank God, times have changed. :D
Joined Mar 4, 2000
Anyway, a lot of chefs are not known for their command of the English language. After all, look at Emeril!:lol:

While many people now use the word "cheffing", it is still not true English, since chef isn't a verb. Why not leave it as a noun, and construct your sentence around that?
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