Breaking Up with Productivity Advice
Don't Put the Tool Before the Craft
I am deeply envious of chefs with great knife skills.
The precision, the speed, the consistency. The twinge of fear in your fingertips as their blade glides in front of their nails. The satisfaction of a neat pile of green onions at the end of the cutting board. It’s delicious.
I asked Myles Snider if he could teach me or knew where I could learn. But I was shocked when he said “Honestly man, don’t bother.”
Don’t BOTHER? How could a chef tell me not to bother learning advanced knife skills? Surprised, and a little miffed, I asked him to explain.
“Chefs have to learn these crazy knife skills while they’re staging because they might spend hours cutting vegetables every day. You spend, what, ten to twenty minutes a week cutting things? Basic knife skills are gonna be fine for you.”
Hm, fair point. I could spend weeks practicing knife skills and it would only save me a few minutes every week. There were other benefits of course, like showing off at dinner parties, but it wouldn’t help me with what I really wanted: to get better at cooking.
Myles helped me avoid an easy error:
Putting the tool before the craft.
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