Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Bleeping Bleep Report (Ep. 16)

The Bleeping Bleep Report
for Hell's Kitchen - Episode 16
first aired on Thursday, June 13, 2013

This was a quick episode.

Chef Gordon Ramsay:  19
Susan:  0
Zach:  4
Cyndi:  7
Jon:  9
Mary:  0
Ja'nel:  4
Unknown:  1
Total:  44
That is an average of 1.05 bleeps per minute or one bleep every 57.3 seconds based on an air time of 42 minutes.  As expected, when we get down to the last 6 or 7 contestants, the bleep count goes way down.

But that's OK, because we'll begin to focus more on the contest in the next 4 shows.

Susan and Zach were both up for elimination.  They have both had their own share of blunders this season.  However, Zach has continued to fumble while Susan has significantly improved; so Zach was eliminated from competition. 

Farewell Zach.  You are a strong (albeit not elite) chef.  You will do well.

Chef Ramsay gave Susan some encouragement saying that she will easily find an excellent job in any restaurant if she is eliminated.  This tells me what I've long suspected:  Even if you don't win in Hell's Kitchen, the exposure it provides can push your career forward.

Have a great night.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Bleeping Bleep Report (Ep. 15)

The Bleeping Bleep Report
for Hell's Kitchen - Episode 15
first aired on Thursday, June 06, 2013

We are (unofficially) picking up from last week.  This is part two of a two part episode.  But it will be scored separately.

Chef Gordon Ramsay:  24
Susan:  0
Zach:  10
Anthony:  4
Cyndi:  2
Jon:  14
Mary:  0
Ja'nel:  2
Unknown:  2
Total:  58
That is an average of 1.38 bleeps per minute or one bleep every 43.4 seconds based on an air time of 42 minutes.  Yep, Nedra's absence has been noticed.  Even Chef Ramsay's bleeps are down.

Special note:  One of the Unknown bleeps belongs to a Dining Customer.

The Blue Team (a.k.a. the Men's Team) blew it again.  I've seen the Women's Teams dominate in past seasons.  But this year's mismatch has me wondering if the Contest Sponsors and Coordinators have a preference for the fairer sex.

Anthony and Zach went up for elimination.  Zach is the better Cook/Chef, but Anthony has the better attitude.  Which one will stay?  Which one will go?

For Chef Ramsay, this is not a hard decision.  He has always stood by the better Cook.  And he did so again today.

Anthony was eliminated from competition.  Farewell young man.  This was the first episode this season where Chef Ramsay gave an encouraging word to the evicted contestant.  That is worth something.

To fill the gap in the men's team, Ja'nel was moved from the Red to the Blue Team.

Previews for next week imply that Ja'nel sabotages the two remaining men and that there is a fire in the Blue Team's kitchen.

We'll know more next week.

Until then, Bleep off.


Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Bleeping Bleep Report (Ep. 14)

The Bleeping Bleep Report
for Hell's Kitchen - Episode 14
first aired on Thursday, May 30, 2013

Right to it!!

Chef Gordon Ramsay:  1
Susan:  4
Zach:  7
Anthony:  6
Cyndi:  1
Jon:  10
Mary:  0
Ja'nel:  2
Unknown:  3
Total:  34
That's about 0.8 bleeps per minute or one bleep every 74.1 seconds given a 42 minute air time.

Amazing!  I don't remember the last time - even over all 10 seasons - that there was fewer than one bleep per minute.

The Team competition was "Name that basic food".  Contestants are blind-folded and put on ear phones (so they can't here).  Then, Chef Ramsay feeds each of them a basic food that they must identify.  Each chef tastes four foods (for a total of 16 foods total for each team).

Anthony got skunked (zero for four).  But the big surprise is Jon.  He identified 3 of four foods despite being a smoker.  Statistically speaking, smokers should have a reduced sense of taste.  But Jon knows his food.

Back to the Bleep Count.  Why was it so low?!  Well, this episode did not have a dinner service.  And it's the dinner service with accompanying debate about who should be eliminated that creates almost two-thirds of the bleeps.  Indeed, if you compensate for the dinner service using the 2/3rd's rule, then you get 102 bleeps for the day (very comparable with last week's 109 bleeps).

Speaking of dinner service, since there wasn't one, no chefs were eliminated today.  Yep, another cliffhanger.

However, we did get a quick preview showing us that someone will set the kitchen on fire next week.

Wait, there's more!  Next week, after one of the chefs is eliminated, the remaining competitors will receive a Black Jacket.

See you next week.

Until then, bleep off.


The Bleeping Bleep Report (Ep. 13)

The Bleeping Bleep Report
for Hell's Kitchen - Episode 13
first aired on Thursday, May 27, 2013

Yeah, I'm behind.  There will be two Reports today.

This was a big episode.  The Men's Team had too few chefs.  Nedra moved over to make the teams even.  Some of you will say that this was a very Monkish thing to do.  But it's not because the teams did not wind up with ten members each.

To make matters more dramatic, the bleep count was awesomely high.  Here we go.

Chef Gordon Ramsay:  31
Susan:  1
Nedra:  38
Zach:  13
Anthony:  1
Cyndi:  1
Jon:  12
Mary:  0
Ja'nel:  5
Unknown:  7
Total:  109
That's about 2.6 bleeps per minute or one bleep every 23.1 seconds given a 42 minute air time.

Yowzas!  Nedra had more bleeps than Chef Ramsay.  That's relatively rare.

In the end, Nedra was eliminated from competition.  It's just as well.  No sane person wants to work with someone who uses that much profanity.

Nevertheless, Nedra had a good run.  Good fortune to you ma'am.  You demonstrated excellent cooking skills on several occasions. 

Everyone else ... bleep off.


Monday, May 20, 2013

Revisited: Amy's Baking Co.

Kitchen Nightmares Episode 6.16
Amy's Baking Co. (a.k.a. ABC Bistro)
first aired on Friday, May 10, 2013

Please keep this in mind when you view Kitchen Nightmares or read this article:
"A great chef doesn't create great food.  A great chef created food that other people think is great."
Last week I reviewed the Kitchen Nightmares episode on ABC Bistro.  Both the owners (husband Samy B. & wife Amy B.) demonstrated psychological behaviors so toxic that they are hard to watch, harder to accept, and almost impossible to work with or treat without professional, psychological intervention.

Now, after a week has passed and my emotions have subsided, it's time to look at Amy's Baking Co. a little more closely and through a clinical lens.

If you didn't see this episode, you can view it here on  Hat tip to DemSign who provided the link.

Before we begin, you need to know that I am not in the mental healthcare industry and I have no formal training in the mental health disciplines.  Please exercise your own judgment regarding my analysis and certainly don't be afraid to do your own research.

The Problem with Amy

Indeed, the problem - all of the problems - stem from the wife, Amy B.  And her problems stem mainly from Narcissistic Defenses.  More on that at Wikipedia.  Here are the key attributes of Narcissistic defenses.
  1. They are rigid and totalistic.
  2. It is one of the earliest defense mechanisms to emerge; usually in childhood.
  3. The typical five narcissistic defenses are:  repression, denial, distortion, projection (blaming others), and codependence.

Evaluating these in order ...

Rigid and totalistic:  Amy is always right.  Anyone who disagrees with her is always wrong.  There is no in between.  There are no filters.  There is no analysis or evaluation.  She even has a negative attitude to those who want to substitute items listed on the menu.
Key phrase:  "The customer isn't always right. And I won't take (expletive deleted) from anybody"

Develops in early childhood:  two quotes that are dead give aways.  Any emphasis is mine.
"It was at a very early age that I discovered I had a real true passion and talent for anything having to do with the culinary arts."

"We're in the restaurant business.  It's not all daisies and ponies and unicorns."

"At a very early age" ... Amy believes that she has a "real true passion and talent".  And in her defense, Chef Ramsay did validate the quality of her desserts.

But the blowout phrase is, "it's not all daisies and ponies and unicorns."  These aren't just fantasy items ..., they are childhood fantasy items.

Uses one or more defensive tactics:
Amy uses two in particular:  Projection & Codependence.
Projection (or blaming others) is described beautifully and frankly by Amy:
"Approximately two years ago, these Reviewers and these Bloggers decided to make up lies and say that they ate the food and that it was disgusting.  And we lost a tremendous amount of business because of it."

If you listen carefully to the youtube posting, Amy says "these Reviewers and these Bloggers" with a slightly sarcastic disdain.

Codependence:  Although some of the employees have learned to adapt to Amy's um ... quirks, The Codependence Crown obviously goes to her husband Samy B.  What is he willing to do to support his wife?  I mean besides spending over One Million Dollars opening the Restaurant.  Here's what Samy says:
"If anyone (mumbled) my wife's food is no good, I just tell them to leave the restaurant, I don't want them and don't come back." 

And he proves it immediately.
Samy:  "Madame, is this your first time here?"
Woman:  "And my last."
Samy:  "And it's your last.  Don't come back."


Problems Beyond Amy.

The first thing you have to do is to get Amy to understand what's going on inside her mind.  I'm not getting into that.  It's too complicated.  Perhaps a Psychologist can write a book about her.

The next problem is getting her through the other defensive mechanisms that are listed here.  Scroll down to "Vaillant's Categorization of Defense Mechanisms.  Amy will likely seek out other defenses if (a big IF) she works past the narcissism.  This is the way personalities work.  She won't immediately become mature.  Small parts of Amy will continually seek any approval and react badly to any criticism; probably for many years.  And again, the codependent husband will make that process much more difficult.

Another viewpoint:  Mindset

Another way to view Amy is through Carol S. Dweck's incredible book, Mindset:  the New Psychology of Success.  According to her research, people have one of two mindsets that determine their views and actions in life:  Growth and Fixed.

As you read the book (or the Wikipedia article), it is obvious that Amy possesses a Fixed Mindset.  From this perspective, it may be easier for her to adapt to the Restaurant Biz with this system than through the challenges listed above.

On a tangent, I highly recommend Mindset.  It's easy to understand.  It gets an entire chapter in SuperFreakonomics (or Freakonomics ... can't remember which).  Read for yourself how college researchers turned Fifth Graders into a bunch of helpless liars by telling them they are smart.  Very enlightening.  By the way, they do go back and fix the kids.


It may be hard to believe, but I hope the best for Amy and Samy B.  They make a few good desserts.  They keep a really clean restaurant (I'm not being sarcastic here).  They are not career criminals or hopeless drug addicts.  They have invested their (or his) own money in the restaurant. 

And I hope the best for them because their path will be full of brutal work.  Any and all progress they make will have to begin with the phrase, "We are doing this wrong."  That's a huge pill to swallow - even for a horse.  But, the rewards will be worth it.

Good luck Amy and Samy B.


Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Bleeping Bleep Report Ep 11

The Bleeping Bleep Report
for Hell's Kitchen - Episode 11
first aired 05/13/2013 at 8:00pm EDT

Good evening:

First, we must correct an error from last week.  Cyndi was NOT ELIMINATED at the end of Episode 10.  It was Amanda who was let go on that show.  Good luck to you Amanda.

Second,  Chef Ramsay left us with a cliffhanger ending from last episode.  It concluded at the beginning of this episode with the elimination of Barrett from the competition.  Farewell Barrett.  You did make it into the last half of the season.

And now, for the Bleeping Bleep Count.

Chef Gordon Ramsay:  10
Susan:  1
Nedra:  4
Ray:  11
Zach:  17
Anthony:  3
Cyndi:  0
Jon:  10
Mary:  0
Ja'nel:  2
Michael:  2
Unknown:  3
Total:  63
for an average of 1.5 bleeps per minute or one bleep every 40 seconds based on an air time of 42 minutes.

Chef's Surprise:
Besides terminating Barrett at the beginning of the episode, there were two other surprises in this episode.
  1. Ja'nel got bleeped twice.  To this point, she had never been bleeped for anything.
  2. During the dinner service, each of the contestants were given the leadership role of their particular course.  This is an important event, since the ultimate winner will be in charge of Ramsay's newest restaurant.
Have you noticed?  That the chefs who get bleeped the most are also the worst performers.  I suggest to all you Psych Majors out there that this is an opportunity to get to the root of this correlation.  Are they bad chefs because they curse?  Or do they curse because they are bad chefs.  Are they just frustrated?  Is cursing a way to confront the issue without actually dealing with it?

At the Episode's conclusion three chefs were up for elimination:  Zach, Ray, and Nedra.  For better or worse ... for right or for wrong ... all three of these contestants have been up in front of Gordon Ramsay many times.  I'm sure he's getting tired of seeing their faces. 

In the end, Chef Gordon Ramsay eliminated Ray.  Ta ta for now Ray.  If you have been in the food biz this many years, your future looks bright.  BTW Ray:  Semper Fi!

The rest of you ... bleep off.


P.S.  My magic recording device didn't pick up the second hour of this show.  It contained Episode 12 (9 Chefs competing).  If it is re-aired, I'll create a report for it.  Until then, just assume that we'll omit it.  After all, I'm doing this for fun, not for posterity.  R.B.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Bleeping Bleep Report #10

The Bleeping Bleep Report
fort Hell's Kitchen Episode 10
first aired 05/07/2013

Well, everyone seems to be leveling off.  To a certain degree, the bleep count goes down as we approach the season finale.  However, it doesn't usually drop off this soon.  Perhaps next week will show a rebound. 

Special notes about the Daily Challenge after the bleep count.  So, here we go ...

Chef Gordon Ramsay:  32
Barrett:  9
Susan:  0
Nedra:  10
Ray:  5
Zach:  5
Anthony:  2
Amanda:  5
Cyndi:  1
Jon:  2
Mary:  0
Ja'nel:  1
Michael:  2
Unknown:  2
Total:  76
for an average of 1.81 per minute or one bleep every 33 seconds based on a 42 minute air time.

And now a special note regarding the Service Challenge at the beginning of the episode.  Each team had to prepare five dishes for three people heavily involved with a debutant's ball:  the debutant herself, the debutant's mother, and the debutant's god-mother (who was also the party planner).

The women were very clear.  The young deb did not like really spicy food.  The family wanted big food portions.  Any and all steak dishes had to be medium to well done.

THE MEN'S TEAM IMMEDIATELY DISREGARDED THESE INSTRUCTIONS!!!  Zach said, "What does a fifteen year old (meaning the deb) know about chicken?"  Anthony made a similar comment.  Michael just didn't hear or care about the steak request.

And sure enough ... THE MEN'S TEAM LOST.  Why?  (you're not going to believe this)  because Jon made a really spicy macaroni & cheese stick and then Michael created a great NY Strip steak that was MEDIUM RARE.  And so the men spent the day decorating the dining room for the debutant ball - all according to the very nit-picky instructions of the god mother.

Salt in the wound ... the Men's team could have been excluded from the elimination round if it weren't for two men.  Barrett (who got lost in the service) and Zach who could not get it through his head that hey had to double the portions according to the instructions in the morning challenge.

LESSON:  Cooking great food doesn't make you a great chef.  Cooking food that other people think is great makes you a great chef.

Four people were up for elimination:  Zach Barrett, Amanda, and Cyndi.

Cyndi was eliminated.  Farewell Cyndi.  Take solace knowing that you made it into the top half of the class.

Everyone else .... bleep off.