6/6/11

Classic Coconut Buttercream Layer Cake. Vegan & G.F!

I just love experimenting. And in the last few weeks, I have been feeling freer than I have felt in ages. Oh, there are many good reasons. Building a biz ain't no easy joy ride. Struggling, no matter the circumstance, is painful. When Chow opened on Sullivan St., after moving from Hudson, the day we opened the door, the tax man cometh, claiming that the closed down Chow on Hudson was a restaurant, & therefore owed sales tax near $400,000. He was willing 2 negotiate, however, as I had just built out an entire space from scratch & customers were not finding their way to the till: I had but a nickel & a dime. Not a good starting point to negotiate from. Feeling like Sisyphus w his giant boulder being pushed down the mountain every time I was a few more feet ahead, did not lend itself 2 a laser-like focus on growing the new biz. To the contrary, I felt like I was being drowned & could barely breath; the directions 4ward, pulled from my hands, I was completely lost. I had moved the biz, placed my bets, and was left w but a couple of pennies. More or less, I was totally impoverished, financially & emotionally. Vendors, staff, Con Ed, insurance, Verizon...had to get paid; the landlord just wouldn't stop posting his 3 day notices to vacate. "How could this happen? I mournfully thought, every second of every day. "No! Please! I am pleading w u higher holy power: No more begging, borrowing, lying and stealing!" But on it continued or Chow would have died. All was definitely not going according 2 Hoyle!
But I would not let go, no matter how heavy the burden; and woe-man, it was heavy beyond measure. Most folks with any degree of self-respect, or annihilation anxiety, of which I had plenty, would have closed the doors & moved 2 the mountains; or to the top of the Empire State Building, and down she goes! The tax man never relented, but there was nothing 2 give, so I stalled & lied 4 over 4 years. I also went to multiple hearings and wrote a brief, as I am an attorney w 2 bar exams behind me. Not exactly a walk in the park.
In my inner, inner, inner, deep down, down, hidden waaaaay far back in a stored away fantasy place: Chow was a global enterprise. But I was a broken down truck on the side of the road. Despite it all, I maintained a Sisyphean stance, cheered on by my number one guy, my favorite person in the whole wide world, who believes more than anything that his daddy can push the biggest boulders up & over the top of any mountain.
Fast 4ward: Issue w the tax man, resolved! Chow, strong as Hercules! The darkness, flickers w tons of candles. Feeling safe? Hmmm? Safer!
Life unravels mysteriously b4 us, & what seems & feels like "the end" is really just a new beginning; the rivers of creation, here in life & its movement in2 the ever-flow, expands & builds the heavens endlessly. If we r fortunate enough 2 live in a democratic republic, & have an adult or 2, in our childhoods that fill us w a degree of positive imaging & love; then the lessons we need 2 learn along the way, will happen, if we listen carefully, and believe, from the core of our being, that we exist w a purpose that transcends the impossible. The impossible is not impossible! But still, our creation, our purpose, our meaning, our being... life: Ends, 2 begin again. A journey in2 the never-ending.
And what about the classic coconut buttercream layer cake, vegan & G.F.? It's delicious! Better than I ever imagined, or perhaps that is the way I imagined it. Yes, delicious, free of cruelty, safe 4 celiacs, vegans, kosher, lactose intolerant folks... Nice!
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