It was one of those nights you can’t plan for; you just tighten your belt, grit your teeth and plow ahead.

It started when my prep cook called in sick earlier in the day, and so I adjusted my prep schedule to get a few more things done before my afternoon break. But when my sous chef called saying he was throwing up, that left me to get the whole list finished.

So I 86’d a few menu items and simplified the options a bit, enlisted one of my assistant managers to help out in the kitchen, and when the first ticket chattered off the printer at 6:01pm, it was do or die time.

Orders kept pouring in and it took a while for my crew to get our feet underneath us, and consequently our ticket times were a little longer than I would like.

But redemption came when a server came back checking on estimated time of delivery of entrees for a couple who was in a hurry. Since we were behind the eight ball, I just gave a guestimate and went on cooking.

Later, our host came in to say that the couple in a hurry decided to change their plans, and once they got their food and their entire demeanor changed. So much for “get in, get out, get on with your life…”

Granted, I would rather the decision to slow down be yours and not based on an overtaxed kitchen, but if you do decide to take it easy and let your evening progress slowly, I think you will be glad you did.

Sold out of all our proteins, and many of the midcourses. So hard to predict a Market Day. But the preacher should listen to his own sermon, and not fret over what I can’t change.

How much longer…?