The Old Days.

Joined Sep 21, 2001
The recent threads talking getting drunk at work and and how to now deal with the issue, makes me think back 20+ years ago when coming to work drunk meant you were out of dope....I can't think of how many restaurants that literally "ran" on coke. I went to a job interview in 1981 and in the chefs' office was a big poster of an alligator smoking a joint and a caption about needing to be really wasted to make decent Cajun food. Then there was this person I met who might be one of the finest saute guys around who used to run in the freezer every 10 minutes to get high. And could barely tie his shoes if he were straight. And Champagne Brunch was a how-much-can-you-drink fest for the customers, staff, managers, maintainence men, etc, and then everyone would drive home. Heres one- I worked at one place where everyone automatically had a bar tab whether you wanted it or not. And beers in the kitchen were expected. These were all successful restaurants in their time, the people who worked in them were good at what they did. And I can't even think of all the alcoholic and addicted owners and managers I have worked for who seemed to keep their businesses together. And a bunch more that didn't. And how many places I worked gave away booze during and after work to the employees, or had people buying the kitchen a round or a bottle.
I know that its a different world these days. But do you think that the newer policies make your work and workplace better, the same or worse? Or maybe safer?
Joined Mar 6, 2001
The first time I ever got really drunk was after work sitting in the bar with my co-workers. The manager was buying and I was 16. A few years later that manager died in a car accident going home from work (jeep roll-over). I can't help but wonder if he was drunk that night or not.

I don't know if it was legal in a private club, but I remember working in the bar at 16 and having no clue about serving coctails. The bartender used to get really mad at us dumb kids because we didn't know know the differences between martini's when ordering.

I don't have any problem with the group having a drink after a long night of hussling. But honestly, I'm much happier with all the new rules and policies. I didn't like covering for co-workers and bosses. I was always responsible and it felt like punishment covering for everyone elses "good times".
Joined Feb 21, 2001
I'm sure I can speak for my current co-workers when I say that they're much happier with me sober than with me slobbering drunk. I worked whacked for years and it is a drain on everyone around you. I wouldn't put up with it now from someone else. Times have definitely changed. If I saw people doing a little blow in the walkin or smoking a joint, or sneaking a drink, I'd candidly talk to the hr guy. For people with a problem, the end of the rope is an important place to recognize, and sometimes a little push might be an eye-opener.
Joined May 9, 2003
Been ther...done that. I like it better now! I remeber the whole line doing a line (chef included) at 10AM on mother's day. "Let's get ready to rock! It's SHOWTIME!" Everyone was pumped up and after 10 hrs and 900 covers my face hurt more than anything else from smiling so **** much....I have no idea what I cooked though:D
Joined Jun 10, 2003
I loved the reference to the early 80's I worked at a place in boulder Co that had a FAC party every Fri. time mag did a story on it and one fellow was quoted has having been there for 10 mins. without being offered drugs.All the staff partied in the mens changing/bathroom the chef had to have his nose cautherized every other day to stop the bleeding.
another chef in FT. Lauderdale was selling coke out the back door LOTS OF COKE
Joined Nov 29, 2001
...I can't think of how many restaurants that literally "ran" on coke....

About as many restaurants as Wall Street offices.
Joined Aug 11, 2000
man, I feel like a goody two shoes....never got into drugging or drinking while cooking< I enjoyed cooking too much> I've been on line when happy hour starts an hour before the kitchen closes.
The chef's hands were tremmering (is that a word?).....another says he drinks a cs of beer a day...I've seen kitchens shoot tequila after a big party saying it takes the edge off, that was a few months ago. Rumor mills talk of restaurants thriving with coke trade. For the life of me I can't figure out how they can afford such an exspensive habit on such a low salary.
Nope, just not into it...
Joined Apr 13, 2003
one of my chefs used to keep a bottle of sancho loco (aka rotgut) tequila under the prep table. it stayed about 120 in that kitchen constantly and we would pass that garbage up and down the line every night until it was gone. the same chef had a convulsion on the line next to me from a coke overdose,,,,, which of course he got from our drugstore of a dishwasher who they kept arround just for his dope. all of the sales girls were walking pill bottles, i remember telling one of them i had a headache- so she gave me two zanbars,,,,wow what a mellow shift that was. i shall leave the names of the innocent and not so innocent out of the story, lets just say i worked for some very important socialite and political figures in the community and they did more dope than the junkie kitchen crew. the owners pretty much offered the enviornment, cuzz by 7 oclock they were so drunk and fried they couldnt see, much less keep us from doing the same things they were up to. man i miss that place:cool:
Joined Apr 13, 2003
a zanbar is the equivilent to four zanex. it is a long pill,,, you are suposed to break off however much you need based on your pain. i would highly recomend you not take two of these,,, much less one at work. seems when your younger you can ingest pretty much any kind of intoxicant without much effect,, if i tried that again i would go into a coma,,,,,atleast i got it all out of my system when i was young,,, i still know 50 year old coke head chefs and that is not the way,, i was never the one with the powder in my nose--never did it-- i was to busy drinking and smoking grass.;)
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