A cosa stai pensando?

Posted: April 21, 2011 in getting personal, NYC

I am no longer unemployed in this economic recession! As my “day job” I work at the best gelateria there is (and I’m not lying). It’s called Grom and was started in Torino, Italy. The first US location opened in 2007 at the UWS location where I work. There is an art to scooping gelato, and it takes a lot of strength. Who knew? My forearms were incredibly sore for a few days. In production, air is not incorporated like industrial ice cream, so we (the Conistas) have to make it malleable by basically whipping it like eggs against the side of the carapina (the metal cylinder that keeps the gelato) thus making it the perfect consistency for tasting. Today, I learned how to put it on a cone. It really does take some skill, but I caught on quickly and was building them about a foot high just for fun. My italian maestro, who is from Torino kept telling me “grande!” At first, I was thinking in Spanish, and thought he was saying they were too big, but after more thought, I figured out he was saying “great!” Gelato has been on my mind so much it’s been giving me a brain freeze. I’m the type of person who visualizes perfection. This probably started when I was really young. According to a story my mom frequents, I was a late walker, and I hardly crawled before hand, but the moment I started walking, I just did it. I didn’t fall down. I just walked across the room; my mom was in amazement. Chances are, if I could talk to my 2 year old self, I’d probably tell my 24 year old self that my automatic success was due to my visualizing how to walk and that crawling was just subpar. Another instance of visualizing perfection is when I had my St. Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra audition the 2nd season I was in it–9th grade. I wanted to be Principal, and I knew that the first phrase of my Vanhal Concerto in C was not sounding clean enough. Up to the moments before my audition, I visualized my fingers precisely hitting C G E D C B C C with the fingering 1 0–4–4–2 1 2 2 (If you don’t understand the numbers, that’s okay). When I got to my concerto, I played the beginning as perfectly as I had imagined and won the principal position. Same case with the gelato. I was making myself a peanut butter, honey and banana sandwich for lunch today and visualized the peanut butter as the gelato and the container as the carapina. As I slid my knife in, I visualized how I would make it into a scoop. Then, riding the subway to work, I saw a girl with a pony tail. She had the bottom of her hair colored an creamy yellow and the top was a mousy brown. I immediately turned her hair into 2 scoops of gelato layered delicately on top of each other–perhaps Crema de Grom and Bacio (compared to the darker Cioccolato fondente, which is more my hair color). When it came time to put scoops onto the cone, after a few tries, it was coming out marvelously.
While working at a gelateria isn’t my dream job, I might as well make the most of it. More italians are coming from Italy to work with us, and my mission is to learn quite a bit of Italian this summer.
Buona serata e baci a tutti!

bacio and nocciola juxtaposed

  1. norman kulkin says:

    I like your writing…I enjoy the way you keep it sweet

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