Getting Fancy With an Eatalian Gala (2/5/2020)

Damn back on my bullshit, writing two blog posts in one night; the main difference is last night I was honestly too fucked to write a post, so that’s where we are at the moment. Also I should’ve written this immediately around 12:30AM, but it’s already 4:06 and I’m just starting; great. Okay, now to actually get into the day, today was the fine dining event at Eataly- the Eataly Gala or whatever- with Massimo Bottura cooking for all of the guests tonight. Now other than the training that we had, there really was no other information, until the day before, so going into the day, I truly had no idea what was going down. I had talked with Natalie, my scene partner, yesterday about meeting up around 12:30 or 1PM, but with her having a doctor’s appointment, I figured I could waste a bit of time… I could not. I text her around 12:30, as I was still in bed, basically seeing how things were going, only to receive the text “I’m done”, and her asking when I’d be to Simple Studios to meet up. FUCK me. I told her that I was still getting ready and could get there a bit later, and so she booked the space from 1:30-2:30 or something; I feel really bad, because I took so damn long to get there. I should’ve just gotten up and started moving, but of course that didn’t happen, and I needed to make sure I looked nice and clean for the Gala tonight. Finally catching the 4, I made my way to Manhattan, transferring to the Q as I headed over, since that would get me a bit closer to Simple Studios. I was just wearing a simple white undershirt, black jeans, and my black sneakers, which thankfully is all I needed to be wearing for the gala tonight- Eataly would be providing the shirts and possibly the aprons.

Finally arriving at Simple Studios, I met up with Natalie who had just arrived at the building herself and the two of us headed up to the space, which happened to be 301 I believe. We ran through the scene a couple of times, not really putting it on its feet because we weren’t completely memorized yet, but that was okay. I really wanted to stay longer and run the scene more and more, but unfortunately I HAD to head to work- it was already 2:10 and I had to get there at 2:30. Natalie did scold me a bit for showing up late, and said if we agree to meet at a specific time, we will do just that; we agreed to meet up tomorrow for two hours, and I headed out. I rode the 1 all the way downtown until I got to the World Trade Center, where I rushed through the mall, the time creeping closer and closer to 2:30, before finally making it up the escalators and clocking in right on time. Heading onto the floor, I made my way over to Stag’s area, where everyone working the event was together, with Ele giving an overall meeting of what would be going down. We were to take a break at 3:30, so for that hour I was on “glass polishing duty”. Greaaat. Honestly it was such a pain because some of the glasses just really didn’t want to be cleaned, but we worked at it for the hour we had, before heading on break. Now I was curious if any different food would be served tonight for anyone working, but of course not; one of the most famous chefs in the world is here, and we get the same old shit- 10/10. With that in mind, I just made my way over to Pret, grabbing my usual meal before grabbing a seat and relaxing for a little while.

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**Fancy white shirt, ironed apron, hair looking good- I think we’re ready for a Gala!

At 4PM I made my way back to Eataly, quickly using the bathroom before we got to it again. Everyone ended up helping with glasses, just because there were so many of them, and I ended up helping finish up setting up the dining area, before we were given our shirts and aprons that we’d be wearing for the event. I’m not sure what was more amusing to me, the fact that I ended up wearing a women’s medium t-shirt, or the fact that it actually fit quite well. With our outfits on, we had another meeting, explaining what was expected, and what was going on tonight- reiterating all the details. Massimo actually came up and talked to us about how everyone always asks about the chef, but the experience is only 50% the chef, and 50% how we as servers are to the guests. He then proceeded to grab one of the runners faces, as to show excitement about who knows what, and then headed off. “Don’t touch the guests faces”. (We were told that immediately following his speech) Now the event started at 6:30PM, and before we knew it guests were sitting down and the whole thing started. Frankly, coming into the day of course I was stressed, I’ve never done this before, but the entire event was a piece of cake. Like, my table didn’t have any allergies, I didn’t spill any wine, no broken glasses, all in all a very easy evening.

What I did want to mention was the dinner that was actually served to the guests tonight- the first course was a burger, the second was a fresh tortellini pasta with a parmigiano reggiano and water sauce, and the third dish was a risotto. Now I only tried the risotto, and it was pretty tasty; the portion size was WAY too small, but it was fine. They used burnt orange zest to season the dish, which was interesting, and apparently there was rabbit in there, but I couldn’t taste it at least. The burger, which came out first, apparently was not good- the meat was insanely gamey, and the sauce they served with it was just odd; like it was trying to be different for the sake of being different. What I couldn’t get over was the fact the burgers were served in a box on a plate; the boxes literally looked like McDonald’s boxes you’d get a goddamn Big Mac in, but whatever. Now the main dish that I was curious about was the tortellini pasta; apparently this is Massimo’s signature dish. They bring out the pasta, which is a very small portion on a giant UFO looking plate, and as I just look at it and get a whiff, all I can think is “That’s Mac ‘n’ cheese”. Like, you can call it whatever the fuck you want, but your “signature dish” is LITERALLY mac ‘n’ cheese- Pasta, cheese, and water. All in all, I can’t imagine spending whatever money people spent to be here, just to have gotten that very average food.

As for the rest of the event, it was pretty tame. People finally got the fuck out of there close to 9:30, so we actually all managed to clean up the dining area and get out just before 10:30. Now normally I’d just go home, but a couple people were looking to go to a bar, so I tagged along, in the mood for a drink and especially food. I ended up ordering a burger- but like, I normal good burger, instead of that gamey thing- and got two rum and cokes. I only walked over with two other servers, but a good eight people ended up joining us, which was fun. I finally made my way home around 11:30, walking to the train with another server, who lives closeby. Now I headed into the bathroom before we left, and I chose to eat an edible that someone I work with gave me. It’s safe, and he gave me some stuff before, so I figured why not. Now before, he only gave me 25mg, and nothing happened. This time he gave me 50mg, so I was curious how I’d feel. We finally catch the train and head all the way to Utica, parting ways as I made my way home. Andrew and Julian were still up, so I chatted with them for a bit, but as I leaned on the frame of the door to Julian’s room, talking about my night, all of a sudden the edible hits me, and I am pretty gone. I mean I ended up watching My Hero with Andrew for a little while, but by 2:30 I was done; I mean I crashed in my bed and passed out like a rock I was so tired. I haven’t been high like that in a long time, but it was definitely a good time to say the least; thank god I didn’t take the edible sooner though, because I would’ve been a goner.

Until next time,

-Michael

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