Like Mother, Like Son


I promise I won't grow up to be a chef.

There are certain things that can make a mother’s heart melt—especially when you think you have something to do with it. Like the fact that my 2 ½ year old son, Moss, loves to “cook.” It must be genetic, right? He spends a lot of time in front of his little wooden “stovetop” and “oven,” from which the other day he proudly pulled out his stuffed piggy which he'd been cooking—the same one that he also sleeps with (in my head I was making whole hog jokes, but I didn’t think he’d get it).

His other favorite thing to do is take tortillas out of the fridge and my spatula from the drawer (his toy one won’t do for this task) and sit by the heater floor grate and flip tortillas. When my stovetop coffeemaker gurgles from across the room, he screams, “Done! Done!” and races to help me turn off the burner. He likes to help make toast and pancakes and cookies and steak on the grill and eggs. He just gets so excited about whisking. I don't mean to brag.

So the other day, my friends gave him a chef’s hat, apron and oven mitts from Target for a Christmas present. He immediately put them on and wouldn’t take them off. (And unlike a firefighter or a policeman, I don’t even think he’s seen a chef. Especially one wearing this kind of funny, old-school hat.)

Of course, your chef friends see all this and they panic. One who’s been in the industry for years, said in horror, “Yeah, but you don’t want him to grow up to be a chef, do you?” The hours, the stress, the drugs, the booze, the women (well, that’s only if you get a show on the Food Network) … “I would never want my son to be a chef.”

We’ll have to see. He might grow out of it, but for now, I still think it’s very endearing. And think about the ramifications. If no one grows up to be a chef, there will come a day where there are no more restaurants. And that would be a sad, sad day.
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