Once I began to talk and interact as a young lad I quickly was able to discern that the way I saw and perceived things was different than say, 99 % of the population..It made me a square peg in a society of round holes. Bottom line = I did not fit in..
I wanted to fit in, to be a part of something, to belong. But it was not to be..I felt like a freak with no way to reconcile my unalterable thought processes. I saw it back then as a curse, but much later in life it became the biggest blessing ever. Funny how powerful perception is.
I remember seeing “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer” as a young pup and immediately identified with the plight of Rudolph, the “dentist elf” and company and their journey to the land of misfit toys. I thought Wow, where’s this place ? I might fit in there..It was akin to a gambler seeing Las Vegas for the first time..
I will not fill in all the spaces of many years here, but suffice it to say that there was much animosity between my Dad & me, school officials, the law, ANY authority figure, institution, or place that tried to insist I think how they believed was acceptable and right. I still to this day blatantly resist the herd mentality, status quo or conventional “wisdom”.
After sobering up on July 5th, 1990 my future began to fall in place.(Actually I must digress and credit my Mom here for buying me my first cookbook and allowing me to cook and bake with her at the tender age of 6.) I was dating a woman at the time (1987) who had much more insight into my calling than I did. She was able to see the passion come alive when I cooked or baked and knew I had a serious profession staring me in the face.She pushed me to go see the Chefs at Hocking Technical College to pursue Culinary Arts.It was early in my school work that others would catch me in the Bakeshop, stealing away every moment I could.
The long & short of it is I began baking and 3 months later the Pastry Chef quit without notice & I was dubbed the new “Pastry Chef”. I knew hardly anything about baking in volume, but being a hard worker and someone who loves big challenges, I stepped up to the plate and I never looked back.Thank You Annie !!
I had found my niche. And for someone like me who is a visionary, passionate, discerning , stand on my own kinda guy I had found Nirvana.I had an extreme distaste of working for others & eventually opened up Heaven Scent Cheesecake and Spice Mix Company on March 16th, 2013. I Love it and it fulfills every part of my complex make up. I added cakes and tortes to the menu in January, 2015 and they have become an integral part of my company. Being that almost everything I make is from scratch, fresh and not frozen it does limit me to the local area but the Good Lord has Blessed me with a great customer base that is growing all the time.
I do it all myself; so I am the Pastry Chef, Cook, delivery driver, administrative assistant, janitor, accountant, research and marketing dept., in charge of advertising, accounts receivable, making bank deposits, customer relations, ordering all products, label maker and in charge of menu/ recipe development among other things. It is perfect for me and because I found my niche I no longer am a square peg trying to fit in a round hole.
Moral of the story ? Never give up, you never know how near you are when it seems so far. If you’re different and feel like a freak, no worries, there’s a place for you if you find your niche..Live your passion, bathe in your eccentricities, dream big, do what you Love, live your dreams, scoff at limitations and leave “friends” who are negative and are constantly trying to keep you small. They don’t want you to succeed because they are afraid they would look as unfulfilled as they feel inside.
Dream, Act, Chase, Work Hard, Figure Things Out & Most of all; Shine Brightly….Carry On..
- I intentionally left out all the places I worked in the subsequent 28 + years of Baking and Pastries to save space..