MANHATTAN, NY — Chef Branthony Gourdain has been performing his personal rendition of Stomp with the pots, pans, cutting boards and expo station for around 45 minutes. No one working is sure why Chef Gourdain is treating them to this production of sights, sounds, and pure rage right now, but they sure as hell aren’t going to pay any attention to it.

“He’s not always like this, you know,” Jeff Barges, Mr. Gourdain’s sous chef and frequent victim of his emotional, physical, and somehow oddly sexual verbal abuse, said. “He can be a really sweet guy when everything’s going right for us in the kitchen. I think the last time that happened was November of 2008. God, that was a great morning. I just try and focus on the positives when Chef is like this. He is really good at projecting his voice. The whole restaurant can hear him yelling from the kitchen sometimes. And we always have brand new equipment here because he’s so good at destroying things.”

The best thing they can do at this moment is to keep their heads down, avoid any flying objects and keep on working through the rush. A few months ago, one of the dishers had made the worst decision of his career by asking Branthony what was wrong. The torrential downpour of profanity, half-sentences, and the occasional reference to Machiavelli was like trying to drink water from a firehose for the poor dishwasher. He walked out of the restaurant in tears, never to be seen again.

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