I started a new job this week at a hip new restaurant in Scottsdale. I like the people I work with, But like any other kitchen, there's a lot of sex talk that goes on. I mean A LOT. Normally, that wouldn't bother me. I'm as crewd as the next gal and will happily join in with saucy comments of my own. But when my crew members start in on the gay jokes, I tend to focus in on my work and shut the fuck up. Am I a closet case?
For those who have never worked in a professional kitchen, cooks play fast an loose with what you might call sexual harassment guidelines. This is a male-dominated industry and jock talk is just a part of the territory. I am pretty much a dude when it comes to telling raunchy jokes and appreciating fart humor, so I think I've finally found my calling in life. And typically, if a guy calls me "sweetheart," I'll kick him in the nuts as soon as look at him. But at my job, I'm in the closet about my feminism, too.
Sometimes there's a time to fight and sometimes you just need to shut the fuck up. I'm still the "new girl" at work and chicks in the kitchen already have to contend with the assumption that we don't belong there. To top it off, I work the pastry station, which is the lowest of the low as far as male cooks are concerned. People are always stealing my shit, and yet they're quick to volunteer to eat the orders I fuck up. If I started calling guys out for every sexist comment they make, my work life would be miserable because my crew members wouldn't want me to work with them. And honestly, hearing sex jokes really doesn't bother me.
The "Brokeback" jokes do, however. And since I'm pretty new at this job, I don't know when it's the right time to speak up. I would appreciate any suggestions from people who have had similar experiences. In the mean time, I guess I'll keep on being a closet case and focusing on my pastries when the "Brokeback" comments start.