So when I went to university I didn’t have to wait long to develop my second signature dish. Well, maybe it was my third because the simple addition of cream cheese to my nacho dip at my high school formal after party put me heads and tails above the other three who only used sour cream.
We had a ritual. Every Friday night in our dorm, eight of us would gather and watch X-files. The dim lights, cold beer and hot girls were a recipe for a great time for my buddies. The only ingredient missing was food. One Tuesday night I whipped up a batch of pierogies complete with all the fixings and a side caesar. One of my buddies stole one and said “Man, you should make those on Friday during X-files!”. I put the thought out of my head at first, but quickly realized that it was a great idea. Frozen pierogies are cheap, so why not?
Here’s my equation:
2 bags of no name frozen pierogies= $5
1 lb of bacon= $3
1 spanish onion= $1
1 head of romaine lettuce $1
1 box of croutons=$2
5 shakes of parmesan=$0.50
1/4 bottle of casear dressing= $0.50
seasoned salt and pepper
“Gourmet” university dinner for you and your buddies=Priceless
So I served my feast while Mulder and Scully ventured off on another adventure to find the truth. The feedback was incredible. I watched my creation disappear. It was like my fruit plate days all over again. I had developed another signature dish.
However, something interesting happened. Each of the group pulled reached into their pockets and pulled out a $5 for my troubles and food cost. Despite my efforts, resistance was futile. They appreciated it. They enjoyed it. It added another dimension to the X-file experience. I had to accept it. What I realized is I made $35 (I was one of the eight) by spending $13 and commiting less than 30 min of my time. By my calculations, I made $44/hr doing something I enjoyed and was appreciated for. Nobody questioned or complained. My ability to defrost no name perogies, fry bacon, tear up romaine and dress a salad resulted in a $22 profit every two weeks. Their $5 investment was better than anything they would eat on campus or make themselves. That is the cardinal rule I suppose. Make people happy and they will reward you in return. That is the mantra of every hot dog cart, caterer, trendy restaurant, lemonade stand, dinner host or fast food restaurant out there. I was just a dude hanging out with his friends.