Saturday, May 19, 2012

what we do


i've started this post at least a dozen times during the past couple of weeks.

each time, it didn't feel right. it wasn't conveying what i wanted. it is a challenge for me because what i want to convey isn't logical, linear, nor does it follow any particular timeline of events. it is this moment. it is a melody of moments. blended.

also, admittedly, the more something means to me, the more difficult it is for me to find the right words.

you see, hapa recently turned two years old.

here is my set of year two pics on flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/foodiehunter/sets/72157627392099309/

while i may semi-consciously understand how my involvement with hapa has changed over the past couple of years. it is a bit different when comparing year 1 pictures to year 2 pictures. all at once. seeing the marked difference in the types of pictures i have taken right in front of me.

my pics went from the perspective of being a client taking pictures of the food during the first year to personal pics of holidays, birthdays, hanging out, prepping for service, during service, being at the kitchen during off hours, and of moments that will only make sense to hapa. i also didn't include quite a few pictures....there are many times i've hung out with sus and sky for example... that were completely not hapa-related that i did not include. yet, looking through all of the pics made me realize that i went from being able to count on one hand when i've helped out....to having no idea how many times.

i stopped counting a while ago.



seeing the transition in the pictures also prompted me to look back at some of the postings i had written over the past year. i see the transition there as well...hell, everyone can see when and how the transition happened. the times that i have gotten shit for writing about my experiences with hapa really just sparked the punk ass kid lurking just beneath my semi-polished professional surface.

my response is usually something like...."fuck off. my life, my experiences, my blog, my pictures. when and where did i ever claim to be a journalist? that's right, i never have. this is my teeny tiny space to do whatever i want. you have no right to me....and i choose to represent who i care about and believe in."

or i just roll my eyes and ignore them.

i spend an inordinately large amount of time with "my day job" enabling success for people and things that i don't care about.  while i enjoy my job and really enjoy the work itself...quite a bit actually....i have zero emotional attachment to the outcome.

this is not the case with hapa. i'm obviously not objective and nor do i seek to be. i am also exceedingly emotionally attached to the outcome. i believe in richie's vision for the food and the intentions behind it. i also believe in the talent of hapa. i want hapa to be successful and i want to help enable that success. i am also very keen to support them as individual people and not only as "hapa", the business.



these days my experiences with hapa are just woven into my life. these experiences are not unusual....to me. recently, after working from 6-3pm for the day job, i showed up at the hapa kitchen to spend about 4 hours...figuring out how to de-bone the riverdog pig legs, breaking down the meat, putting aside cuts for rendered lard, potential sausage, prepping the skin, etc. my understanding of how all parts of the pig are used at hapa helped out quite a bit as i was processing the legs. as this was my first time, i think i was pretty slow. richie is in japan right now so some of butchering and breaking down of the weekly whole riverdog pig delivery is being shared.

as i took some pictures at the kitchen that evening, i joked with sus that i was starting my "year three" set.



dealing with the pig legs was the first time that i'd done this with hapa and when i arrived home around 10, i just dropped all of my stuff, knives, the porky clothes and left them in the hall for the rest of the evening. then i had my dinner...which after taking an anti-inflammatory....was eating a bowl of cereal while sitting in a hot bath.



this week, i checked in with sus and she mentioned that the pig was covered and i didn't need to help out this week. yet, it is indicative of what i do with hapa. sometimes i know....and sometimes i have no idea what it is. i just do whatever needs to be done.

last night, as i was finishing up some "day job" work, i saw that richie was posting some pics from his japan trip. it is one of the things i love about social media...being able to see what a homie is up to even if there is a double digit time zone difference. it was good to be able to catch up a bit with him via text...and our conversation is where the heading of this post comes from.

now, on this beautiful saturday afternoon....as i am finally able to write this post....i'm thinking about....as i have already indicated via twitter and such....how hapa has really just only started.

if i had to sum up the second year of hapa and looking forward into the third year.... in one sentence ...it would simply be....

i have faith in what we do.

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