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This is what gets me, cuts this old man down to his soul and brings the wanna-be-tough cowboy part to my knees. This young lady is a chef and loves to cook scrambled eggs. When Sophia asked for a simple autograph picture, she was quick to look up at me and let me know that, “I inspire her”. Of course, I stopped serving food stepped out of the serving line – to attend to her request. This is what it’s all about folks. I have been called a great many things in my life, but an “inspiration”, that was a first. And it was so humbling, what a wonderful sweet and tender moment of innocence. The request of a child who watches the show because it speaks to her passions. Yes, in that instance it melted my heart, yes it made me ponder weighty things, yes it made some water leak out of my eye, yes, I could feel the weight of the world on my shoulders in that moment.

I clearly knew what I did mattered to these young eyes looking up at me, and her big heart shown through, as did her obviously big dreams when she told me her story. This whole journey is one thing if nothing else - it is the preverbal pebble dropped into still waters; from which ripples and interrupts a smooth glasslike water’s surface – then pushing out toward the banks shores encompassing waters mass. The ripple effect widens as it approach’s what it eventually comes in contact with, and from such contacts an affect. Some known affects we hear of, and others we never to fully hear about. This show, this celebrity, this passion of mine to cook and create can be encompassed in a metaphorical ripple effect – and impressions made from action.

This young lady made my year and taught me that what I do, and say, and how I act is being observed. She reminded me why I got into this gig in the first place, that I have big shoes to fill as I stand on shoulders of giants that came before me in the cooking world – I make my impression and imprint on those watching and hopefully make a positive effect on those watching…

Thank you, Sophia, but let me tell you something darling, it is you that inspire me…


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