In the last week or so, I've had issues of one kind or another with my meat grinder, my french fry cutter, the ice cream freezer, the stereo, and a bunch of other little things.
It's more annoying than anything else. I had to run around a ton on my day off to chase down a replacement part for the grinder, bought two, and now am thinking I should probably just go ahead and buy a whole 'nother grinder to have on hand as a replacement.
The french fry cutter is slowly coming unanchored from the wall it's mounted to, something I knew would happen eventually, so I shored it up a bit and then went online and bought a countertop model to have on hand as a backup.
A couple weeks ago, the amplifier I use to run the music for the restaurant suddenly stopped making any sound for its entire right side (two of the four speakers), so I had to switch it out with an old amp I had at home.
Sunday, the thermal pressure pot I use to keep the milk for the milkshakes cold and easily accessible shattered with a loud pop when I poured a half-gallon of cold milk into it, sending milk cascading majestically down the table onto my shoes.
And then, today, right before we opened, I checked to see if I needed to load more ice cream into the dipping cabinet and found it warm inside, with a few inches of watery melt at the bottom waiting to be cleaned out, due to a GFCI outlet that's gone wonky.
Hoo. Effing. Ray.
My immediate reaction, with every semi-serious event like this, is to first, in my mind, panic. I run around a little bit, freak out for a moment, and then start figuring out how I can best deal with the situation. My cooks get a kick out of seeing me flustered, I think, since I generally don't get too shook up by anything. Once they're done laughing at my overreaction, they're quick to jump in and help remedy the situation.
That's what happened today. I pushed the reset button, heard the freezer turn on, and then tossed what was in there and grabbed a new tub of ice cream from the walk-in freezer while Oscar bailed the water. We threw some towels in there, cleaned it out, and in just a few minutes, I had a nice, newly-defrosted dipping chest. No biggie.
I think part of the reason I get so panicky when I first realize something's not working is that this whole restaurant thing still feels somewhat tenuous. I still don't trust the equipment, the building, really--the whole set-up and still walk in every day expecting to see fire damage or a flood or something.
It's a totally irrational fear, I realize, since there have been restaurants operating out of this spot for years now, and they've managed to soldier through. But I can't help but extrapolate small, easily repaired, breakage to the point that it feels somehow indicative of a larger catastrophe that may or may not be imminent.
All things considered, this is probably a helpful impulse, since it drives me to obsessively check to make sure all heat sources are turned off and, until recently, that the crappy GFCI reset button on the outlet that the ice cream freezer is plugged into didn't trip. Lesson learned. Can't let up.
Anyway, I'm hoping that writing this post will stop the string of breakages.