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Cooking as an Act of Love | Samin Nosrat [Best Of]

2020-04-07 | 🔗

For Samin Nosrat, cooking is love. A way to gather, delight and savor time with those you love. Maybe, at this time that finds more of us home and cooking, it can become the same for you.

Samin's New York Times bestselling book, Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat, received the James Beard award and her Netflix series of the same name is a stunning exploration of food, culture, travel, and life. Called “the next Julia Child” by NPR’s All Things Considered, Samin has been cooking professionally since 2000, when she first stumbled into the kitchen at the legendary Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley, California.

In this Best of episode, we explore Samin's journey, growing up the child of first-generation immigrant parents in southern California and feeling like the outsider. We dive into her lifelong love of writing and books, her experience with anxiety and depression and work to be present and joyful in her life. And, we track her "strange left turn" into the world of food and, now, with the massive success of her book and Netflix series, how she's navigating the pace, exposure and opportunities coming her way.

You can find Samin Nosrat at: Website | Instagram


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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
The my guest on this best of episode is. I mean no threat who's, studying english at berkeley when she took this crazy detour into the kitchen at the iconic shape a nice restaurant in berkeley, California, that would, change the course of her life. She fell in love with food with the business of food with the art and craft of cooking and the kitchen, the community and how blended with her lover taken care of people that she loved, eventually see what her way up becoming a cook and took me, take less notes. at the process discover that cooking came down to four things: salt, fat, acid and heat and you could master these things. You good cook anything for anyone any time without even using recipes, she began to teach and then penned this gorgeous
illustrated cookbook called you guessed it salt, fat, acid heat became this massive phenomenon and then launched a tv series by the same name along the way. She has also weaken to become very open about, living with her own mental stresses and depression and anxiety and how she has navigated this, especially as her career. her end. Her life have made her much more of a public person and persona. We explore. All of this in today's really rich and wonderful best of conversation so, to share it with you on Jonathan fields, and this is good life project
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I am not fully privy to her. I have sort of done my best to peace, things together, but I still don't know all of the information still, but my dad's family is a religion called behind the am I his family is muslim and behind these were persecuted for many years and in iran, and so I think, people of we're not muslim in iran sensed oppression, sort of slowly coming so even though they weren't you not so at a premonition that the resolution was gonna happen. They knew they knew something was happening, so everyone in my dad's family sort of split into like spread all over the world people We went to australia on europe and on all different places, and my grandparents came to san diego, I'm sorry, I don't know exactly why and then make and followed, and he brought him up there
it's amazed. It didn't change your dad's behind. We had Andy grammer on a little while back, who is also behind since the first time. I'd ever actually heard of that faith. It's interesting also that that was highly sort of persecuted, because it seems like this approach. Which is so embracing. A welcoming of our faith is like a draws from every year. I think it from My understanding is that it's a really open, open, hearted religion, but I think, since the main sort of problem As I understand it was that one of the main five of islam is not much Mohammed is the final profit, and so like the fact that in a hundred two years ago, the profit of the high faith. He stood up and was like no, no one more. That was offensive to many muslims, so it began This really complicated there, sir you brought up with, I mean since then, part of the reason that your folks actually came to the. U s was driven,
where he brought up in a treasure faith and already now. Neither I think, basically, my dad, wasn't very religious. My mom was very religious and order to satisfy their families. They might add sort of like a thing. Even sound, like a notaries document saying that he was agnostic and so There was a feeling, I think of sense of god. But the thing in our family was much more about being iranian than being any one. Religion and I've never considered myself. Religious to tell me more about that also because to your family lands and in the late seventies in san diego, it was there much of an iranian community. At that point, I e we were. I was much more aware of the iranian community and allay, which is only two hours away, so it's not that yen and and for It isn't stuff, we would drive Talley do grocery shopping cosette where the really good persian groceries were, but there are jobs.
Lay persian groceries in santiago to end. At my high school there was quite a large iranian population, but they were kind of a different kind of immigrant kids that I was so I didn't fully fit in with them, but before high school it was rare for me to bump into other iranian kids now mechanically, very real Where can I tell you I have had so many innocent people in the podcast who have answered essentially the exact same thing to a similar question, and then like a zoo, fairer, thirty. Forty fifty years their living, the most stunning lies and contributing in the most incredible creative ways I mean I think, o one about the idea that what I say seems to have been a car in my life is that I have always felt like I don't fit in and till I started going to therapy for about ten years ago. I really felt like it was my job.
To show up in a room and figure out sort of reader room or read. A person who I was interacting with figure which version of me, would make them like me the most Make me be the most blend in the most or created. The most are like the most and b. That version of me, which has made me really good at certain things, I'm a chameleon. You know some people call it coach switching, I am very low, but to many people. I also that what I did was a sacrifice like any knowing who I was yeah. It's like you're perpetually, hiding yeah totally, so I'm trying to do a lot of sort of like work of quieting down on the sign in trying to figure out what makes you know. Who am I, what do I like to do? Sometimes my therapist or say like would bring you joy in a war or like, what's play
I feel like I'm, like I dunno. What's the joy like you know, can you find a job out of the five bullets? Yeah and so I think I'm doing a better job of that and and also its skill, that spent a life honing and I'm really good. At that thing, I'm really good at making people feel comfortable and that's not a bad thing and the fact that something that turned into part of my work, and I'm really proud that I can do that. I just know now not to do it at the cost of my own sanity and like self awareness yeah, do you ever actually it's almost like catch yourself going into that is like your default mode and be like whoa wait. A minute is especially helpful or is that harmful? At this point I don't know that I'm good enough to catch myself in the moment, but I have at least reached a point where I I can recognize which situations make me? internet mode, and so I'm a little. I can sort of prepare myself a little bit to be like
be today out I'll, do that a little bit less obey equally, the higher stakes, the situation, the more readily all slip into that mode. If at some me somebody I really admire- or you know like yesterday on the today show you know what I heard and so I'll, just catch myself. Believe. Ok, don't need to do that. I dont need to like be the version that they that I think that I can just be myself. There sit so now I am curious because if you look at you know from the outside, looking in you look at you on and on screens on this and that you would appear like you present like a raging extrovert. But I'm sensing, that's not entirely true. I've always been Ian F p on the myers. eggs like no matter how many as I take it, and I do in the beginning. I thought it was a bit like very obviously that I wasn't extrovert very raging lay. So now I think I might be like
early and extrovert. Ah, I very much over the area yeah, but I very much need alone time. I need quiet time and The thing I've learned is, even though I can perform in very social situations really well, it's a lot of energy, so I have to make sure that I can give my the time and the opportunity to restore because otherwise, then I'm just like running on fumes. You know that are so similar, I love being on the stage of art, one thousand people, but as soon as I'm off like I want to be alone for the rest of the day, and I often actually even in a big party or something I often have last time, just talking to one percent. No, here too Just driving is very much like the internet is like but you have ebay turn it on and be social, but also interesting that you have let you ve developed, Lou, really strong social skills almost as a way to serve to protect yourself for sure yeah
but I think a lot of people do yeah yeah, it's it's been as such interesting journey to will back the layers of myself, yeah, I'm just so curious about whose under their so what what makes you want to go, because if this had been a about your whole life the trigger the actually make. You say you therapy, sounds interesting. I did, I sir gather be oh, I am so glad I did I was in so maybe turn it may not have been quite ten years ago might have been a little bit less, but I have Allen been pretty anxious and It was a time when I had left the kitchen. I left sort of my long term study source of income, and I had made the commitment to myself that I was going to try to write and switch to making
more money from writing, which is not an easy thing to do so. I had some money saved up. And I was ready to sort of commit myself to this end. was just a lot harder than I thought, and then I got. I was riding my bike and I got doors you know in a totally adore yeah yeah. I didn't have to go all the way. I didn't go all the way over the handlebars, but I my right knee from the and then I had already injured. My left me so I was and my Ni required surgery, and so there was just sort of this like mounting pile of things. To be me life really hard and sad. and also in retrospect I was depressed, and so my best friend was like you are like you have to go to therapy and I was like what are you talking about? We gotta go I my way I don't need to go to therapy and he's been like it's not the same thing so
his boyfriend actually got the phone out and called his therapist and left a message and said or made me leave a message saying you know need needed to do, and the therapist called me back. And he said you know my schedule pretty pact, I'm not sure I have room for you, but tell me what's going on and I'll try to find you somebody so we the chat for me be thirty minutes and he was like you know. What I do think we could be a good fit and so maybe you should come, and so I went in and it's been a grave at that. My I was really lucky. I found the person on the first try and its eyes, You know. I think some of it has been my growth. I think some of it was things that I wasn't may be ready for at the beginning, but certainly the way that we do our work together has changed and evolved so much over this time. I think also he Is learning and evolving what he wants to do in his work, and so there is a lot
Often they go in there and I'm like just tell me what to do, and you won't tell me anything. You make me feel like a tooth were telliers intervals of such ideas, but I am so grateful for that and in it also over time it took us here's to get to the point where I was ready to admit that I was depressed men. Anxious and put words these feelings that I felt my whole life and take medicine? at which has been life. Changing it's been a jury, and I'm so I don't. I honestly don't know that I could function. I probably would have imploded at some point. If I didn't have this practice longer, if you did know- and I'm curious too- I mean took years to admit that you are depressed and I get like it's it's a really difficult thing for me inside looking out, especially do you have a sensor reflecting that that was related to sort of culture.
Perceptions of depression from I found from your family, I'm sure yes, definitely a big part of it, and you know four years I didn't admit to my parents that I will go to their be or that I was on anti depressants cause. I was afraid of and my mom sort of suspected out on herself and she's. Pretty judgmental about it actually so she wasn't excited that. I was doing it but, like I I by the time she realized tat. I was taking any presence and wasn't therapy. I knew that they were so good for me that you know I couldn't I wasn't. The change that for my mom. So that's a big part of it Maybe you know whatever my parents, ideas about. It were, but also my own ideas about it, which I'm sure were heavily influenced. By not only my parents but also culture, and so part of my resistance to taking anti depressants was. I won't be my self anymore. This pain is actually what fuels my creativity and makes me a son
if the person yeah that from the artists totally and I was like, but I won't be able to do the thing and relate to people and that's not true at all also. I had said I was like what, if it dulls everything you know, it'll do the pain but it'll doll, everything else and that's not what it was at all. You know. I had a big one, which was the real I feel this way as cause I'm not doing it right and I'm not working hard and if I just figure out what to do and do it better and work harder than this go away, and what was so remarkable was that a I the very lowest possible dose of this antidepressant. It didn't take very much to make me feel better and be was like overnight. Almost, I think with three days. I felt like this ball of just sadness. I you know could remember. I had this basically rock in the pit of my stomach, and that was
on and I went into their beer within the first week of taking the most and those like, I feel different he said yeah. You know like. I suspect that you ve probably been too. Since your or nineteen- and I was like ireland, you have for years you didn't say me the height, but I wouldn't have been able to take it. I wouldn't have been able to hear like I had to get there on my own and he very much new that anyone who some you know it's not like, I feel it going to be medicated but like anyone whose I see has that same idea of be me or I just need to work harder I try to share that with them, because those aren't reasons to not do this thing, that's better for that's good for you and also a lot of people can go on it and then go off of it like sometimes it's just a temporary thing but yeah, clear now that it's just like some chemical thing in my body, you know, I mean it's amazing. I e in one of the reasons for you was this idea that it's like wrapped up you have to say you almost have to have a certain amount of suffering
to have the raw material to create on a level let lightning like as bad as that's really good and different at the highest level at us. What's a com theme, an assumption among anyway, there's across like every creative domain, like I've, heard that sometimes I'm sure you have also and it's not like you, ve got the prototypical, you somber healy, deep, dark, yellow writers, writers, especially but what's centrally, if you look at the research even in a one of the things that have gone along with depression is inaction, like you can so it's ok, so you got up. suffering like to write about, but you can't pick up and are pencil or like like on the keyboard, actually do anything because your mobilise your paralyzed within the state so yeah. I mean that, but again like when you're in it. It's not a rational thought. Processes are not at all. You know no end. What's interesting. Is I've recognized? I am just a person
who will never feel like I'm doing the work. Unless I suffer ina, unless I'm doing something, unless it's a really hard, I make everything more difficult for myself. I don't feel like I've earned it till it's really hard, and I ve done it over ninety times. I have two friends and think of for both really successful writers who just who it see, was too just flow out of, and I know that that meant from outside cause. I'm sure I know everyone's process is different and nothing. No, writing is easy, but they're much quicker than I am there much faster writers who don't seem to belabour everything, and we, What about it and unlike an and their likewise Why do you make it so hard? And I was like I just don't you know so for a while? I was trying to be more like them and I'm not them and I realize I'm just not going to be that person and I Kind of like, the revising I kind of like the hard part, a kind of, but that's not the same,
as feeling like, I have to put myself through the most awful. a thing in order to be a human yeah, so the work process and the human process are two different things and once I God knows a lot about myself and then I actually really, like George saunders, wrote this beautiful beautiful piece. I think it came last year and it was in the guardian, and it was about it was one of the best ways. I've ever seen the process of writing described simulated sort of mess it up and he described how the like was like imagine a purse. whose setting up like a miniature train, train, set and crew the whole scene with that train set, and so like that, the train going by and there's a woman in a building in there's a man across the street and if you know put the woman at just ngos, so she's. Looking at that man, you might think that their you might be able to make story about them in the back of your mind about how maybe
It is sad that he's wherever there he's left her and their way but if you turn her fifteen degrees, they have no relationship actually and she's just staring out into the you know into the wild or whatever, and so What a writer has to do. Every every part of writing is imagining every possible scenario between those two people. trying them out and then sort of using a little bit like, I value, gauge and thinking Every time is. Does this changing you push me a little bit more towards good or toward that's bad and every single decision and rating is trying all of those different scenarios and then just every single time, taking stepped back and being like. Is this better ursus? What is this better or worse? And that's the thing that I my experience of this work has been is that there's no linear linen linear. When we were in a store- and so you just have to try everything. Also,
my favorite courts by writing is from flaubert file. Barefoot mare, who said prose is like hair, it shines with combing like you just have to go over it. over and over and over again yes, Andrew and you know from me cooking- was that I was trained at the beginning- very much in the idea that practice and just doing some over and over again is what makes you good at it and this before you know of ten thousand hours like Malcolm Gladwell story, peace had come out and they were all he's telling me you won't know anything about cooking until you ve been cooked. For ten years- and so I am a student of practice, and when it comes to writing and storytelling practising just means doing it over and over again, every possible way until you figure out the best possible combination and that's really overwhelming, if you think about it, because a lot of my anxiety in writing often comes from not wanting to do that. Work
there or just entering a process and knowing how many different times I'm going after we do. This and being really like having so much dread about it, but I also like that suffering. I, like that pain. I like that work, and it's just too I am, but I dont, that I need to have that in my like emotional life. You know, and also I mean when you do that in the context of I mean, if you're just walking through life and making everything difficult and that causes suffering I think that's one thing, but if you look, get a process where you're like it's it's an expression. We identify that. You like, I, am a rider right annually. a process and want to go through and at the end of their like I'm working too need something that I hope will be extraordinary and be of service to others right, I think they're, when look at the work and the repetition, the adoration and yes, I'm a writer. Also it's their suffering, and there is no doubt, but when
you can assign meaning, because your were equally it in the name of something itching. it's the way you experience and, to a certain extent you feel that I'm absolutely I don't like it that I don't mean to rationalize like creating suffering in the name of suffering, but when you know there's just part of the This is gonna, be unease, but it's in the name of something agreed. Unlike for me now I just know that it too I'm slow and it takes me a long time to make something and that sort of all of that doubt is part of the process instead of feeling, instead of beating up myself for feeling that out and pain, I just understand that down pain as part of the way to get there. It's funny cause wendy, MC the amazing illustrator, who illustrated my book she just did you call em at the new york times for the business section and I in category, I deserve it and maybe even three or four weeks, it's really becomes on sundays and so
for her the pace of her columns, pretty bananas once a week and she'd. Not only has to go report, the story in right it, but she also illustrates and asked to do the lay out. It's a lot of work. I think at the very overwhelming thing, and I have to call him that I rate in the times magazine but minds just once a month and already I couldn't there were people urban people in the past. You ve done that calm once a week or what twice a month, and I can't and cause for me get the writing down and test the recipe. And then you known to my fact checking my report in all these different steps, it takes usually two and a half for three weeks for just one. So to be juggling multiples of those would be to me impossible to, and we talk a lot about the process of the work and it just is heart lay and it's been really. Gratifying for me to have a friend now who's in it with me and so that we she understands. We understand together what it is and there's so much
anxiety about it and and also sometimes what happens is a friend will ask me like oh, I have a cookbook coming out. Would you consider writing about my cookbook and in the column? I don't know anymore, but I did at once and also because I really liked my friends could book and I found some say about it or I took a story, a feature story for the magazine, because I, offered one and I was like we should have that. I should write a feature story and both those pieces caused me so much more grief anyone that I've ever had where I come up with the idea and same This happened to Wendy, where she has some ideas for columns that are assigned to her by her editors and other ones that she comes up with and she has a lot of time struggling with the ones that she doesn't I'm up here, and in fact this week I think we had was she. We talked for a long time because she was really hurrying and she was trying to figure out and I I dont know if this will translate to what you do, but I have to sort out. The thing I do that is take like
I've learned over practicing was column. You are now a year and a half is ice. have to write around something. Until I get to a point where, like I feel like figured out what I'm writing toward. What is the point of this? What am I trying to teach with people or share with people? I only have eight hundred words to do it. It's not like this, you know, but I need to figure out what's the point and how I m in a canoe, with my reader and one figure that out usually all the rest falls into place. But often it takes me again they are two days or sometimes a week or two weeks to figure what that is, and that's the painful part so an end when things are assigned to me or I do for reasons other than I want to tell a story or share this. It's a lot for me to get to that point, and sometimes I can't even find what it is, because I'm not moved from the inside to share this thing worldwide. It's like he didn't come from and and an innate curiosity then just kind of popped up within you. So it's almost like you have to. It sounds like what you're doing is
Riding around it and he can find like what sure, in my leg, wit where's, your on ran for your own personal curiosity, exactly even though it might not have been so late that the bigger thing that was originally idea exactly and so yeah it also. You know- and I also have other things I need to accomplish in that call em like when they gave it to me since fifteen said I don't care what you write about your rest opinions to be killer and it needs to be something that everyone wants to make sure that a whole technical yeah. I like that ugly and it needs to make a beautiful photo So there are a lot of like elements that have to juggle into each column. Just like wendy. Does so in a weird way. We, this analogous project that we're doing you know these products and it feel really nice to have a friend who's in it with me, because I'm not irregular writer who just riding up at each week. You know I'm not reply, stories because like their newsworthy- and I need to do that, there's another reason and it has to come from inside me and I just get used to that.
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It may sound like their lot of parallels between you is your personal writing process and cooking for you. For sure I mean there are I I understand things through cooking because it was the first profession that I love and it was the first thing I ever sort of. I mean I don't want it clean mastery, but You know I reach some level of like proficiency at and because I'm a guy yes person, because I consider myself to be like a student of things. I have never forgotten what it feels like to No, I just like pushing you know I've, I've known other shaft and cooks who, even before age of thirty will tell me stuff, like oh I'm done, learning like I don't need to go to
whatever country and work with whatever person like I can't even fathom that can be like. Oh, I wouldn't want like it. I wish that for me- and so I am like how boring inside and like you're full of yourself is that so to me, like I could go anywhere and learn any something new from anyone, certainly cooking and- and I think cooking and understanding that good cooking is all about practice in a lot of ways, informed my understanding of how to write, which I really am there's something I've done my whole life, but it came to professionally only ten years, you know and which was ten, and to make a concrete or some there. So we can it days. The authorities for budgets that are less able to get a bit of a jump, die and feeling some of the big gaps here. So could we have mentioned that you have caught but you didn't bring
weren't brought up in a household where you know like you are you had a deep interest in cooking or in in the culinary world in any way, shape or form when you're, younger and fatty were sent yeah? It's almost come full circle. You were interested in writing. Young underlining went to college. You were up in berkeley studying dat, but then everything changed yet my I dont have any older siblings. When I was little my aunt when my ants lived with us and she was a student in some college in san diego and she was a librarian it with her work, study, which at the? U don't now I understand she hated the job, but like a to me, I looked up to her so much and I was like she's a librarian. I wouldn't be librarian around about books. I have always loved books, it's you know, and I it's all I have ever to me to have a book the highest thing lingua could possibly ever achieve, and so- and I also
it didn't even occur to me that it wasn't everyone else's life goal like I was like this is so amazing. Why wouldn't everyone want to write a book fan? I saw I dunno if it's valentine's. I saw a study recently. That said something like ninety five percent of people all feel like the a book and then that they want to. I love that because I believe that I think the guy I'll I think, there's things so universal about personal stories, and so that you can connect almost any one and if you cant, connect to them like because you have something in common than me, You can understand them. Though No, I I would I love, I love that So I always wanted to write my mom. You know my parents are from your own, like a child of immigrants. There are three acceptable job paths, Sunrise actors, why doktor lawyer and engineer apparently the other day I was talking to a friend whose she's from africa and for her what was also acceptable, was some sort of tech job. So
worth one the like an attack engines. The computers, and so I of those ones chose doctor. I would like an answer. I was like I'm gonna be a doctor when I grow up and then, when I was in tenth grade or eleventh great, I had this incredible english teacher, who really, sir, saw that I could write, and then I had this interest in words and books and fostered that, and he gave me my first encryption to the new yorker. We read poetry and we wrote poetry and he We really encouraged that part of me and So by the time I was ready to go to college. I knew I won t be an english major and I I was gonna graduate and be a poet and gotta poetry school, which ninety thousand dockers promises to never make mainly those knowledge, the yeah it was that was a confusing sort of possible life path, that was what I What did you do? I always had a sense of my heart that I would perish
in a traditional office. Job so, even when there are job hairs on campus like What am I going to do in that area and as a kid we ate well because my mom cooked beautiful persian food every day she spent amount of her time shopping for it and cooking for us, but he wasn't really pulling us into the kitchen, I think she wanted us to do our homework, and so dont- remember really ever being in the kitchen very much other than like setting the day acquiring the tape whole year. Worryingly, Europe does not going on average asia idea here, but I didn't you. I wasn't like always at my mom's sort of knees, begging to help. And then, when I was in college, I moved to berkeley. where beneath restaurant alice waters restaurant had been opened in nineteen, seventy one
and I remember which, for those who don't know by the way, is this the legendary a legendary place, as is Allah sir, so yeah, it's an american institution. I mean she is a visionary who has changed the way this country has accessed fresh ingredients and he's changed the way that chefs think and work and sword. Made it standard for sort of baseline for people to have seasonal local organic ingredients on their menus, and so. It was revolutionary at the time and now a kind of its kind of a thing where the great chefs they start there and go from there, and so it's and it's amazing. It's amazing and she is amazing and this was mainly seven. I moved a college and to berkeley ninety seven. So it was you the beginning of the internet. I think I got my first email address and ninety five or something and so There was not really celebrity chef culture. In the same way, there was not
food blogging, rude internet network and meat was merely a couple years. We're like this. There was not one of those national with admiral euro, but it was it was not at all what it later became and I had again like a very mild interest in watching that kind of food stuff. I and I love to cooking, shows as a kid, but I more than I loved other shows. You know so my first You know they give your college orientation and somebody was like. Oh there's, this famous, restaurant in town and to me I was like, what's a famous restaurant like and oh that's were white people's parents like take them, you know when they come visit, but my parents were gonna. Take me there, like that, my parents were not gonna, spend a hundred dollars and dinner we're going to take me to some version or mexican food, or you know our family friends house too. and we just didn't eat in fancy. Restaurants, I didn't even understand what was the point of events the restaurant, and so I sort of like
when in one year and of the other and then the next year I fell in love and my boyfriend, was from San francisco and we spend so much of our time, eating together and learning about food together, because I've- we loved to eat. That's never been a question and he showed me you know his favorite mexican places favour ice cream places. Favorite pizza place and he had always wanted to eat, japanese, and so became this idea for us to save our money in a shoe box. And go there once we had saved up like two hundred and twenty dollars, so took seven months and we made a reservation we went there in the restaurant is divided into upstairs is is more informal cafe where you can order all a cart and downstairs, as is like a more formal, dining room with. extra money, so we were like ok for only going once we're gonna go downstairs, sir we went downstairs, and it really was
I dont even know that I fully understood my body fully understood what I was entering. You know when I walked in, but it's a temple to this this is the place, is so beautiful, but in the moon, understated way, and it feels very warm and the time I had no way of knowing you know all of the hand made newness of the place, but it's oh handmade, in the most thought for an entire. No way and the on the walls and the flower arrangement and displays of fruit and vegetables and everything It is so extraordinary, but again, really really really subtle and understated, and so I think it from we hit me on some level, but I had idea. You know I was the child of immigrants. That acts were not a priority for my family, you know getting us in and out of school get ass fat. Getting us like you know to be released did by our community. Those were the things that mattered, and so I just maybe
your birthday on some like cellular level, and I was so inspired by meal where I felt so taken care of by the staff I wrote a letter and I asked for a job. I always worked throughout college and so they hired me pretty much on the spot. I think in retrospect that they are probably pretty awesome like as a person. Who's now run a lot of restaurants like I think she was desperate and she needed someone cause she was like. Can you start tomorrow, and I did which essentially takers when you wrote that letter read. Did you even know? it'll, be wanted, or he just knew by then by then. I understood that some college students were bussing tables there, okay, and so I was like. Oh maybe I can do that and even in the letter I said, I've never worked in a restaurant. I don't have any food experience, but I can learn anything and yet we saved up for this dinner and it was so extraordinary magical. Please give me that opportunity, but in your mind, like what's is this? Just like? an interesting job at a cool place in, but your story
the being like a writer and pursuing when I was little school. I was stones, I wasn't gonna note. I was too indoctrinated as an immigrant kid to like ever like each other issues. It is, it is a job these they get to earn some money on this I in a cool place, yet totally beautiful food with me. I'm like I just want a good stuff, so yeah edit never occurred to me that I was like my future. No, not at all I mean I oughta work, study job before that, where I basically filed paper, off an so to me, this was a step up from that cause. I got to be in a beautiful social environment and so with good, and so I started and all must immediately you know my very job my very first day. My first task was: they walked me through the kitchen, just so beautiful and warm and quiet and running at such a sort of like slow, perfect hum or maybe fast, perfect hum. Karbala like everybody knows how to move in the kitchen and
walls are actually like. A lot of them are lined with copper. So the way that the light reflects the wall on the walls is this before warm light, and You know the shafts rural wearing these, like gleaming white chef, coats and there's again be the full produce displease everywhere and it just it seemed movie sat or something you know, and I walked through the cat, into the dining room and they had me vacuum the floor. Even the vacuum was magical. It was like a central vacuum which I had never seen before. Just as like forty foot hose you plug in the ground, and it starts sucking- and I was like even vacuum here is amazing and I was an eye by then I sort of had some concept of what this place meant in the world and how I just can't believe they're letting me vacuum floors. It felt really like an honour and I held onto that feeling the whole time. I worked there because I saw a lot of other people grow jaded over time and you start to take it granted because it becomes your normal and I start
hold myself that I would leave before that happened to me. I wouldn't let the day I didn't feel privileged to up that ramp and come to work at this place. I didn't want to work there and he saw me what what was it that was happening internally with you, that to stay there like work, really really really really hard, sometimes the most basic entry level jobs where for a period of months or years, other people the burnt out or get jaded and leave. But for you it's like now, I'm a man I mean. I also was only there total, I think, three three years half years. So there thought jaded news comes to a lot of people around twenty earmarked, so that's part of it and also like that the world is really hard and there are arch cooks there. Who anywhere else would be considered like award winning chefs in their own right. Certainly, at that point in time there were majority of the cooks who I learned from had been there over, twenty years, which is jordan airily long time to be a cook and its
in less than we ought to be a cook place unlike says a lot, about alice and create conditions that she creates for cooks and for people. That says, about the fact that that restaurant exists for its cooks in many ways and that its freak to work there, and you know at the whole time europe because imagine if your farmer you have you know, there's, for example, there was for now I think they're, a few more people who grow mulberrytrees, but at the time that I will, there. There was basically one mulberry tree. There was one tree in northern california and it was in cinema and so on where's the woman who grew those of mulberrytrees, that one she would want to bring them to the shape unease. you know she has had by that point a third year relationship with them and if she wants fruit to be, like you know, treated with a more. ultimate respect on a menu where fruit is everything she's gonna bring it to this place and so on You know you're, never, gonna get to see those mulberry anywhere else you
so, no that any farmer, even if they're the same farmers selling stuff with the farmers market, They are saving their most perfect tomatoes for shaping ease, and so it's a luxury. It really is a luxury kitchen in so many ways. And you don't lose that, is it cook. You know, you know what you have. It's an amazing honour to get to work with that stuff, and it's really it's so special it so so so special. So I mean you're there, working in this environment still going to school and a surly diving in working your way up and taking tons of notes from what I understand like constantly constantly making a lot of mistakes but staying, and there are many mistakes and at what do you start to realize? Okay, so I'm getting my degree apparently I want to pass to be a writer, but this, The thing is is happening and it's getting bigger and I'm getting drawn into a more more adjusted.
Was there a moment or was? It is certainly a gradual process where you're like this is becoming my thing I think, by time. I'd worked there for about a year. I really was so I admiring the cooks that I wanted to be like them, because it's so drilled into me that the only things matter are things a person can get degrees. For you know definitely immigrant mentality, like I wasn't gonna go of my education and I wasn't gonna, let go of idea of even like a higher degree, but I also wanted this, and I was so inspired by this and I really wished for it, and every time I was told, no, there was always a, but there was no. But if you do this thing, if you- and they would give me sort of increasingly large set of hurdles like lead, these books cook from this thing work for free for this months do this and I think all of those were meant to discourage me from doing it. But I never got discouraged kept coming back and at some point,
I was you know the chef who really became my mentor chris Lee. He told me he said Turkey's ideas like listen, you have to want this. You have to want to be a cook more than anything else, then, you ve ever wanted anything else because there's no glory in it. There is no money in it. There is not really any respect like like there's, not you're not going to get anything. So the only thing that's going to keep you going long term is that you care very deeply about this, and you want it so badly. being the very earnest young student that I was and am continue to be. I went home I thought about that for a long time and I wasn't ever sure that I did want it more than anything else, because I really want to be a writer but came to him and I said you know- and I said that I said I'd- want this really badly. I won't you Nothing I have, but I no that I want it more than anything else and I think that's true. I still true. I never wanted to be a chef with my own restaurant. I never will to have my name unlike a line of olive oils or whatever those we're, not the,
things that I wanted. I just wanted to learn how to do this thing and be able to stand amongst these people and be one of them. You know which back to my whole, like thing that mode It's me my life as I just want to be part of the thing everyone else's. Apart of or that, I think everyone else's apart of- and so I think because I spent such careful time really feeling about getting my feet. clear about what I wanted they were, able to like people like ok, fine, like I'll, let you in and and yet people never really discouraged me from writing or or from following that other stuff, and I still tell this to anyone who is a young person who comes to me and aspires to be a cook. I say I'm You care about something else. Do not that go away, invest in that to go to college to an beer. You know, learn ceramics to and be a cook because cooking choose you up and spits you out.
I watched, and that was what he was trying to tell me. You know he was like you're too smart to beer cook. Don't quit school for this and it. Time it seemed like them was glorious, glamorous thing, but a lot of those cooks. they're for twenty years. We're still making twenty two bucks an hour and in a cook in that it's june, twenty two bucks an hour is amazing, but in the or in the world anyone else who is very masterful at what they ve done and does it for twenty years. And agree office- also works like ten fifteen hours a day, seven days a week and not to say that everything's about money, but the barrier is a really expensive place to live, and so it's a really complicated thing, and for me I think so much about like or social issues. I understand the. Why of this has to do with our health care system and our government in subsidies and the way that perkins culturally, don't want to pay for their food you know, pay more money in many of many americans can't pay more for their food. So it's just
such a complicated thing, but I've watched it sort of play itself out in so many people's lives were really care about, and I feel really angry about that. I'm really bad about that had someone who, from the beginning, warned me- and I never forgot about that warning so I did want to still be a writer, and I think the moment for me came a couple years until like when I was cooking part like this time and then working for one of my professors after I graduated I was his like assistant and then also had a third job on campus, where I am even graduated. I was still editing one of the school newspapers like the art section and so I sort of it had all these juggling things and I had applied to get an emma fate in poetry and except the Sarah lawrence, which was the squire really one to go to and I'd never visited new york before and so it was the prospective students weekend. So I came to new york and on that same weekend
Lee and his family were in italy on their family vacation and I that he was going there, and I had asked him to ask about the death of ITALY, the chef who had come and done a couple, the chinese who I had met and really respected. if she would take me on as an apprentice in her kitchen and so came to visit Sarah lawrence, and it was amazing and very intimidating, and I felt if everyone was so worldly and the of all these big city people who knew how to take a train- and I didn't know how to do any of that- and I was like how we're going to do this. How am I going to pay this ninety thousand dollars and moved to new york and figure this out? Chris emailed me and he said Benedetta said she would take you. You can come So I ended up deferring the mass his degree and go to italy. Instead, I saved up like for six months to have enough money to go to ITALY and then I never ended up like going back
the poetry, their cars, and then you are in italy for three years. I was in italy for about two years, but I was there for six months and then I was applying for Fulbright grant because I was operating from this very student. Driven like intellectual academic driven place, which was the only way that I could understand like story in the world. You know or like getting. Degree of the outside respect, which also still honestly, like even my aunts and uncles, still are like. When are you going to go your phd? I'm like I have a friggin tv show like I'm doing, okay, yeah and so, and so I was applying for this. fulbright and I wanted to study traditional food making techniques in italy we're disappearing because the european, the commission and the EU had changed all these laws in the late nineties to try standardize, food production techniques across the EU, which meant that traditions that, where it like up to three thousand years old in ITALY, where now elite,
well things like story there's a kind of cured, beat Collado d call or not that which is key. Third, in more, these marble boxes and colonna does close till it correira where correira mark marble comes from, and so there these beautiful marble boxes that are stored, essentially in these very cold rooms, and this meat is cured in salt and them we'll turns out is antiseptic and for three thousand years this. This thing has been made this way and people are not dead. all of a sudden. This became illegal because it wasn't in the stainless steel kitchen with refrigeration, but the flavor comes from the air in the mountains and this whole process you know, and so actually the people Colorado like protested and ended up winning. So I thought this kind of stuff was really interesting. People sort of coming up to protect their traditions and the italians, of course, are so protective of their food traditions and to work on that, so I researched and I wrote an application for that, and I like met Miraculously got became a finalist, but in order to not
disqualify myself. I believe ITALY, and so I came back the states for a little while I return to shape unease and then I found out, I didn't get it and I was heartbroken but the doctor said, come back you, help me write a book which was the best possible thing was cooking, so I went back and we were, a book. In the end, we shall never published that, but again I got to live there for another year and a half so which was right. formative and really really difficult in a lot of ways and really amazing, and also I became and an italian by the end- and you know this ring colored, how I understood how to be a good cook for sure. from workout playlists to your social media, feed personnel's the way to go, and
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it's interesting too if he serves zoomed the lens out underneath it all? It's like. You know that you have this. You've always had this fierce desire to write, and you know an emerging desire over a period of years to cook and and you've. Well at this extraordinary career her path and the things you ve accomplished. Her mind bluntly and yet It really doesn't seem like your as as fierce as you are as hard working as you are as it's down and just like I will do whatever it takes to exceed at this. The bigger Jeffrey is not one. You plodded, oh, no as an intentional. No, no you you just work brutally, hardly were open to just beginners when the whole time and it seems, that lay the foundation for surrounded
The tab- and I think it turned up. It- is a huge part of it, and there is that steve jobs like commencement speech about looking backwards, writing at the darkening, the dots backwards, and I that rang so true for me, even though I heard it, you know not that deeply and not. I was a deep into my career when I first listen to that speech, but I understood you can't plot these things. You know and the kind of life that I have in the kind of career that I have. I can't like plan that it's gonna take five out this, this impasse in medical, school and residency and internship to get to being a doctor. You know don't have that. There's no roadmap for me and all I know is. I can do something that I care about and work really hard. And of course I have really ambitious. I have had really ambitious ideas about what the best is. You know and what's the thing so, for example, when I started cooking I started reading all about food and the
Most amazing column, the most like to me, the highest column in the land about food was the new times magazine food column- and I read every single one for the past twenty years and then a few years ago, I found out that of the columnists was leaving. So I just blind eye. Wind, found the address the email address of The person who now is my editor clare and sam, and I wrote them- this crazy email like the three main email being like: hey guys, like You don't know who I am. But I am your next calmness. I wonder, for so long and they never responded- and I was kind of embarrassed like should. I send naturally not well. What do I have to lose? So I press send and they never wrote back two years after that SAM was like hey. Do you want to do this thing? So I was like I don't love The way you know, maybe that plane to decide who knows I've asked them both their like. We have no idea what you're talking about we dont remember so, but to me it's like, I put it out
there I'm really good at asking for things, and I am also really gotta being told. No likest people told me no, I'm like ok, that's not happen this way I'll go figure. This thing out, I don't really get discouraged by that. We because I've been told no so many times, so am I always encourage people to like try to develop a thicker skin. Because actions, not bad failure is not bad at all. So I mean like one of the things that you saw in your time. Misshapenness was that every time somebody was I throwing up another now. Here's another heard illegal readability and bush go. Do there's like go find ass, I mean, like it seems like your experience of that was, but if I do it later, the time you start to realize it's not a no. It's just like. Are you willing to go there? Are you willing to do what it takes to get where you want to go? That was definitely what they were doing was trying to weed out people cause. I think a lot of people at that time certainly came through and were like in by it
on a diet, but they had no business being in there because they had zero skills and that's not to say that don't take on not people who know nothing. It's just that you have to be willing to be quick study. If three willing work hard. They don't want someone who's going to come in there and complain about having to perhaps the dirty mat and there's a lot of delusion. There's a lot of like and it's funny week, but my wife is in the restaurant industry for about ten years in the arc and like we were I learned, really quick. It's brutally hard, it's crazy hours and every like never said like everybody wants write about, many people have this fantasy of saying. Like you, I want to own a restaurant and, and the the illusion is, I'm just going to own this place and I'm going to walk in, and everyone will be at tables having a wander and I'm just going to wander around. How is your meal- and this is my place and as I wander in, they don't wander out and it'll largely run itself and with the the day to day life is pretty brutal, there's, always a distressing fanatic. Nobody shows up rates, as you have tat, sir snap, somebody out of that that so you're you're
or doubling down you're committing everything. Every time there seems to be a no like your brain start to be able to translate it as okay. So was this really mean, and how do I? How do I like move through it and time you started an extraordinary chef, I'm saying that I know you might have not necessarily say that and develop or absorb this theory of cooking which is not here's a recipe, follow it. Here's the recipe, follow it but really understand the elements like these, these four powerful elements, and once you do, that is everything becomes possible. Yeah I mean for me a big part of that was the fact that shape unease really cross trains, its cooks and so, people who I was learning from an watching. I was in Such are that I would come in and they were. Thrown everyday. What seem to be car boss, like the and you were written and they changed every single day and they had to do with the chefs whims and the seasons and what was available
there was no like obvious method to the magic, certainly not somebody who didn't understand anything and so We know one day we would make I dunno french onion soup the next day we would make you know, was on the next day we were making coos goose the next. They were making clams from Barcelona or whatever like it, was just I was like how do they know how to make everything? It's not like. They read one cookbook and memorize the recipes. It's not even like they read thirty cookbooks and memorize the recipes can do anything would sit in these meetings that were more poetry and lyricism than they were like instruction and they chef might say like them, then I just wanted to feel a little bit like this or be a little bit like. This are look a little bit like this and then cooks. Would you get up and go? Do it and do not and buy it? I mean make dinner for people in three hours perfectly you know we were to have the menu, meaning was done to thirty and started at five thirty, so they literally at three hours to you
make lasagna from scratch like, but entire animals and get them on a spit and get them cooking, brace stuff like make stocks- and that is a remarkable, all achievement. It really is. You have to be calm, but you have to be fast. And they. I couldn't believe that there were never any doubt, or there never appeared to be any doubt about what to do and, and so the I just didn't understand. It took me a long time to understand that burgundy on and brain, chicken- and you know, pork shoulder that gets turn into port port. Pulled pork or all the same recipe This change a little bit of the liquid and the cut of me, but what in the hot is doing the same thing, and so time. I notice that we are always sort of coming back to these four things: to salt that acid and heat that we always salted or meet the day in advance fer. You know. For us
lafer braised or roasted dishes to give the salt time to penetrate the me and season it from within and on any occasion that people forgot to do that. You could taste it there were it wasn't like. There was some someone creed long ago, do it this way. It was that there was a reason which was taste taste dictated all choices, milly and we would have come together to taste every dish and often the thing was o, this needs a little bit more salt and this it's a little bit more acid, a little bit of lemon or you know before dot starting to saute onions, people would ask you want me to cook that in butter or an oil- and I was like oh that's like the shaft just being like Why would they have an opinion about that? And then later you learn well, if you're making coming from southern italy. They dont use butter there. So if used with butter. Your dish will never taste truly southern italian and, if you making no indian food dont use olive oil that on olive trees there. So you figure out o the fat matters. You know and the
picture of the fat matters cause the pastry cook for obsessed with cold butter. Add on. Savory side. We always wanted like weird soft warm butter. Young acid was always this like tweak, often at the end like or the fact that We as brazen as needed wine- and I was like- why does there have to be wine in it, and I came from a family that didn't drink wine. So I felt weird like one and make something home adding wines holes like well. Maybe if I do it alone, tomato that acidity hopes, and if I didn't do wine, I could taste that tasted totally different than the word one at work and heat for me was kind of the biggest light bulb and a lot of ways, because there so many ways. I didn't understand how the cooks knew, how to drink the stove or how to create the oven and things just came out and so the whereas I was like well does it be issued to be three twenty five or three fifty. Should it be eighteen minutes or twenty two minutes
and over time I realize well for one thing in a restaurant people are always opening and closing ovens to get stuff in and out. So the temperature is never what it says it is anyway. Things like. I remember there was one day where I had to make tomato soup and there was no more stove space. The stove was too crowded, so they told me to build a fire in the fireplace and cook over the fireplace- and I was too I didn't understand how that could possibly be that you know in overtime the relays of fire- is just the same as a gas burner. You just can't turn up unknown, what you do is you move your pot to the hotspot or the cool spot, and so you change them location of the bought, rather than the flame itself from those things. over time gave me this understanding and I went to Chris and I said: oh, I see this thing, salt, fat, acid heat and he was like like. We all know that, and I said it not in any of the huge stack of books. You ve told me to repeat it's not in any of these recipes, No one's ever told me. This I've been here a year and a half or two years
Why didn't anyone tell me if you all know you know- and I understood that if no one had told me the noble, was telling anybody who was reading these books and at that time I was like I'm gonna write a book about this one day and I started taking notes and then I didn't know anything so just became the system into which filed away everything that I learned and it became the language that I developed to teach other young cooks. You know by the time I met Michael pollen. I've been doing that for ten years so when he asked me teach him how to cook it was now sure it is naturally the language that I used and he picked up on that, and he really encouraged me to turn it into a book tat and Michael says: this is the book totally. You listen because I had to buy that. I'm bringing I've been bringing him like really bad idea, really bad ones, and he was like these are bad ideas to me, and so I was hesitant in a lot of ways, even though I knew I wanted to write that book for so long, because I knew it would be hard, I've, never seen a book like that before bright and has no typical structure for the elevator I mean in august.
these four things, but that, like there wasn't a cookbook sauntering too so I mean the shorter you end up Writing this extraordinary book and short of it very, very short. It like a figure it out, but you start working on this and I guess maybe we should go into now. I don't mean to me a lot of yours to the ground and right, but but also gives the process of youth and shifting back to being like okay. So I mean author mode now, I'm in writer mouth. I guess I've got this increase. a decade plus of experimentation of input of seagoing. This hang and I've got the structure like a habit. The man a frame of what I wanna write. But then, when sit down and assist could you have such reverence for with writing and for the craft of cooking lake. When you sit down man, I know like ok, I need to honour I need to honour everything like both of these worlds on a level enjoy your standard, for what you want to do is so high. Thank you for noticing com
I mean mindset wise and it was so are it was so hard and so crippling and I had so many waves and I honestly continued- I have so many waves of impostor syndrome. I actually it is amazing, writing resin, see. There was in point raised in west moran and it's like a two week: residency there's an amazing bookstore they're, just like a short walk from the house, and I got him in a right this book proposal here in this house, so I would walk down the bookstore and look at all the cookbooks will all these books exist. What do I have to say like what I'm saying is actually belong? Is part of these books, you know this amazing friend, whom our adler is an extraordinary writer and her book lasting meal had just come out and it said, a lot of the same things that I believed- and I was just like- will harbour guarded at it like I don't mean to do it, and so that was really discouraging and then I m
student of Michael's in many ways, and I was a student of his words while before I met him- and I had a lot of appreciation and admiration for the way that he can. A very complicated subject that he's cute. About and take you as the reader on this learning journey, where you're doing it together, because I mean- is this an age old thing of an experiential journalism of like I'm, going to learn this thing, I'm going to take you along with me, but he has a of doing it where you never feel condescended to and also he's kind of a dope and like you get to like you kind of love. but he's a dope, unlike him being a dope, makes you feel like while, if he's no but I'm a dope like, I can trust him and an end yet he's extraordinarily talented writer, so he can tell these beautiful, beautiful stories, and there was just this incredible balance that he had that. I really I look, up to so much- and I decided I was gonna- do that in my book, so I set out to do. But I realized that I could it because I needed.
have some measure of authority to tell you what to do because I was I was your teacher here, and so I take you on the learning journey, where I made a million mistakes, but what could do, was remember back to them and tell the stories of all those mistakes, because that I did a lot of the time, my cooking classes and I taught people. Be like oh, I know this seems impossible scary and let me tell you about them: I made when the seemed impossible and scary policy mistake. You are making and this why you fix it and how you fix it and how you go on from there, and so I had seen that work for people. In my so. I just had to figure out how to do it. On the page So in the beginning, my first draft I was trying to be Michael pollen, and I couldn't be my second draft. I tried to be tomorrow, adler and I could b and eventually I realized. I just had to be myself, but it took me a long time at least two more drafts of the book. For my editor to come to me we can say you need to step into the authority and stopping wishy washy like you, have to openness and
was really hard, but because I also here idea that I'm being bossy to somebody or something even I can be very wisely, but so I realized, but I figured how to do it with humor. and we re already yeah analyze, others working. I ve got a lotta humility, earnest and as much as it is like your clearly interval of authority. When you write and adam showing you cook can teach us well you're, you're, very much. Also your humanity leads, you know you, openness and your beginners mine continues to leave, and I think that's what makes it ok for everybody to step in. because the book you wrote a year is not a typical cutback in any way, shape or form. Oh yes, there rested it's like. There are other things to do you really you are going on a journey. It's not me poland style journey, but it's a journey totally. My goal was, you know my goal, as a teacher may go at all times in all the things that I do is to give people the tools so that
ultimately, don't need me. You know Want you to be self reliant anne and it's funny. I want to do for you what my therapist is trying to do for about three hours after governor connally little bit of money in ten year. He will be a lot more delicious, so it's, but I do think I think the word sort of conspires and certainly like the modern capitalistic world with instagram. Certainly concern. Here's to send us messages at all times that don't have or we don't know what we need, especially about cooking that you need this fancy tool that you need this fancy ingredient that you to go. Take this like class or whatever, but the thing is as humans like a lot of stuff, is just built into our dna and are you know we evolved to taste for certain reasons and for certain things, and we evolved to like certain things, because we need salt in our bodies because we know
yeah. We need to consume certain thoughts that our bodies can't produce You already know that, even if you think you don't, you might just not have the vocabulary for it. So if I can give you the vocabulary for it and hope you understand how to make the decisions, Maybe you won't need me or you won't need other recipes or other cookbooks or if you feel like it you use them. You can feel. Little bit more empowered to substitute something or two I have to go out to the store, if you're spinach news charge you know and under why a recipe calls for something, so you can make better decisions and be a better with a lot less pain. now I make so much sense. An arm. And what you created was really beautiful and then, when it really stout into the world. I'm really curious about this actually say you you ve written is gorgeous book. It's a big book too,
working with wendy to illustrate this dynamic, not in his like a beautiful incredible elsewhere, the day before this Is it that a move out into the world like this thing that you ve never been working, I have written multiple manuscripts of you ve had success in the role of cooking, but now, like you, wanted to be a writer from the time you're a little kid, and this is like first really. Big atlas is like I want but this is this- is the first link the night before How are you feeling Wendy and I were in new york for a book like release at her book tour and we were in a hotel. Together, we had rooms next to each other and Wendy made me Wendy. I have a friend of my life were really good at making me a priest the milestones because I such autopilot achievement mode that all but my head, will it got ok like this books coming when I have to do to promote it like I would I noticed, and so
I wouldn't have taken the time to like sit down and how that feeling so in week leading up to it. I remember I went to therapy and I am actually the months leading up to it. I had gone to therapy and been really worried about. What I knew? I would probably do if I wasn't careful, which was let my self worth. Ride on the wave of, the criticism or in a positive or negative criticism, and I, want to have to do that roller coaster. So I asked me there: what do I do? How do I prevent this? Because I've always you know lived and died by outside by outside acceptance, need to change that cause. This is gonna, be so much more high stakes for me than anything ever. Has that I can't let happen so told me. The way was that we would have to come up with a definition that I felt comfortable for come with about success like what success meant to wet meant to me.
so I over the course of many ex realise that what I realize that could control was what I had done and I knew that I had given everything I could give that I'd done every draft. I could do that. Called in every favouring can call it that I had made wendy redo things. Nine four times in our designer and asked for every possible thing. I had ever compromised and Knowing that to me was the success and if that land with the world than that landed with the world, and if the world didn't see it, then they didn't want this thing that I had made but like I could at least be happy with the thing that I had made, because I knew that I had done every I could do to make it as good as possible. So by then I felt good. That I knew that I had given everything. I've given, but the night before, when it was like we have to go, have a glass of champagne at midnight, so we went downstairs in the hotel bar and we had like none champagne and she was like it's your moment. You know and for her this was her ninth book or something she knew, how big a deal it was for me and I'm so great
all that she really made me take that time and Agent is also really wonderful and very much a friend who also makes me stop and appreciate, and right now I mean it's gotten so much bigger these is these things are so much bigger and so much more most of them dont absorb they sorry just roll off me, it's too much and I just have till I feel good about any no part of it that I can let myself feel tat cause. I mean, as we sit here, recording the studio. You know the book comes it makes a huge splash, huge success that leads to other ensuring opportunities you created for part net. Serious business off at acid heat, which by the way, anyone who will throw lincoln that show notes. I sat I why literally watch it with my daughter and and she wanted to watch binge wash the whole thing, and I say it's like it. This is so beautiful and so good and and
and the story telling ended the scimitar graffiti and the food as a good taste it through the screen and just like the beautiful humanity that came through hours. let's see where this one, that little likely forced us to watch it won at one part. Now at a time on different days So when you launch into that world, you know where also from being in a fairly solitary process. To this I mean massive collaboration trailing around the world. The pace of was compounds exponentially, the expectations go up the budgets that go into it, argolic, ridiculous and theirs said: there's so much more in the lives of your operating on a whole different level and your forward facing it. like an who, on a whole different level. These two words he popped into my mind as your speaking during the conversation. One word is asked and the other work to savour any kind of spoke about your leg, It's almost like it feels like part of your work is too
learn to rest. Until I see Ass yeah, absolutely it's fun. Because in certain ways- totally safe, railways, humming, taste, sir, I'm not, good luck, things like really penetrate my heart and feel mostly good things. You know feel bad things really well as well, and it's funny at one point recently. The shows component has been so successful. In point recently, I have me- he'll did throughout the process. Making the show and somewhat it's come out, and I do of personal shielding, where I don't go that much. the internet anymore. I don't really go on twitter. I don't really go. I don't read most of the press that comes out. I don't legal and instagram there's just too much coming out me and it's almost like universally positive, but I had and actually where I was like. What is this happening? Why can't? I read all the comments and just take in all of this positivity and I went
onto twitter, which is known for being a not positive place and I noticed what I was doing when I was reading the messages that people were. Writing me was, I was awaiting for the bad one, you know, so I would read two or three and then I would get increasingly nervous because they were all so positive and I was like well if these are also good, there's going to be a bad one, and I want to be vulnerable, like I felt very afraid, being vulnerable for that bad one, because I am the send who might get a million positive ones, one weird criticism and then only remember the criticism and so I have some loosening up in my heart to do. I have some vulnerable making to do to be able to know that that criticism is coming and that it won't kill me and to be the future- and I think when I can open up to them, the possibility that something until to letting whatever comes come in then we'll be able to feel in a really got that savouring. But it's almost like I dont let the saving
I have been because I'm afraid to let whatever bad thing happen and was tie together in your mind. In my mind, yeah like it's like yeah, yeah yeah, it's like when's, the other shoe going to drop. You know and that's part of it. I am not proud of it, but at least they realized what it was. So I can like sort of circle around it and figure out how to deal with it and rested other thing, and I have a few friends who are just constantly like texted me, like a rat. both better than early yeah yeah totally. But if you think I mean think about it in the context of food right, it's like so many things like okay, so you do the cooking, but somewhere in that process, very often towards the end if you don't let her ass their larger it is that is the secret ingredient, is only do nothing totally totally or I think, a lot about agriculture and follow tied in nature and stuff and like that's what winters for or you're leaving a field follow, and so I,
I understand that, at least in, like a groaned understand that I also target heavily here, I can't go, go go, and so I've done I'm like better at taking pre emptive measures so for exam. Before all the started I planned for my of that I would have a month off in january, and I read it a cabin in the desert and it's not even so much that its complete vacation link I'll still have work to do. But it's just kind of a break from the pace of all of this, and it's it's a built in things like the publicists. No, they can't plan something and I need to figure out, what's gonna come after? If I do want to resume this or if I you want to move to making the next creative thing I do intuitively understand. I need to have quiet time with. Out a whole bunch of like external input, so there I can figure out like what's happening inside and what is gonna, what's going to be the next thing there. So one thing that happened since the shows come out and like so many opportunities are just constantly coming at me and
things that seem probably before this would have seemed like incredible, and I should say yes all of them. I think I've I really I just am not in a place to say yes or no to anything, so I'm just putting a hold on like any decision making until I have quiet time to figure out what makes sense to do, because otherwise I, do you know I'm human and I'm like definitely like at much child inside. So am I. Oh that sparkly opportunity that, like all this, I would get in to be close to this person who look at that paycheck or something and, as I said, but like. I know that if I dont decide do something because I care about it in my heart like I will be miserable, so it's better. If I just don't see us right now, nah that makes a lot of sense, and so is it appears to me full circle and our conversation in this container, the good life project. If I offer the phrase to live a good life, what comes up to be with people that I love around a table?
all too, stories and listen. The stories to get to appreciate the natural world, to take care of each other and feel taking care of me to be very, cosy unaware sheepskins too, go swimming in the ocean here. Get the garden to be in a garden alcocer, that's like to me, but ultimately, life there.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. So much for listening and thanks also to our fantastic sponsors who help make this show possible. You can check them out in the links we have included in today's show notes and while you're at it, if you've ever asked yourself. What should I do with my life, we have created a really cool online assessment that will help you discover the source code for the work that you're here to do. You can find it at spark: a type dot com, that's s, p, a r K, e t, Y p e dot com or just click, the link in the show notes, and, of course, if you haven't already done so be sure to click on the subscribe button in your listening app. So you never miss an episode and then share share the love. If there's something that you've heard in this episode, that you would love to turn into a conversation, share it with people and have that conversation, because when ideas become conversations that lead to action, that's when real change takes hold, see you next time,
the So your people are always kind of asking me what other parts Do I listen to what really good out there and one of the shows as one of my go. Tears is actually hosted by an Friend of mine, Jordan, harbinger the jordan hubbard, your show and I got Jordan to come on and talk about, one particular episode: hey Jordan, hey thanks for having me and yeah my pleasure, so you originally did this fascinating episode, where it was just you and it was called how to ask for advice. Tell me a little bit more about that. Well I started getting asked a lot for advice years and years ago, but most people who ask for advice- they're, not really asking for advice, didn't eat way too long to realize this. A lot of people were asking for permission to do the thing they wanted to do or they were asking for validation of there? idea they might say. Should I started clothing line? Do you have any tips and
I give him a real answer, such as. Oh, you should work and supply chain fer, a company that does clothing manufacturing like Victoria's secret work there for four years and you'll learn the failure points in the business and people get angry with me for giving them that advice. Then I realized, ah they don't really. what advice they want encouragement. They want validation, some people do want advice and those people we're getting lost in the shuffle, so I did a whole special on how to ask for advice and Www mentor me type step, but very specific, intentional explicit actionable advice and formulae, questions and get responses from people that might not nor they respond, and I found this to be very helpful. My audience because, if you do really want advice, you should be able to ask for it, but I think there's
If the folks that need to realize that they're not really interested in advice- and they don't need encouragement, so they should just go out and start. I think this is a good way to separate those. Two ideas, love it and you can hear more about how to ask for advice and other episodes by checking out jordan's podcast at jordan, harbinger dot or find him, as the jordan harbours show on any pakistan. Thank you very much.
Transcript generated on 2023-06-24.