Room 23

A gathering place for those who love the ABC TV show Lost. This blog was started by a group of Fans who kept the Season 3 finale talkback at Ain't It going all the way until the première of the 4th season as a way to share images, news, spoilers, artwork, fan fiction and much more. Please come back often and become part of our community.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Lost: The Remains - chapter eleven - "Don't Call Him Chef Ray"

Napoleon Park
Chapter Eleven
“Don’t Call Him Chef Ray”

Chef Alden Raezynski was the middle child from a brood of seven kids. His father was a Chicago cop who died heroically when he was ten. His mom, rather less heroically, turned to alcohol for solace and comfort, leaving seven kids to fend for themselves in a tough town. Three got jobs, two turned to crimes, his big sister kept the place clean and he did most of the cooking for a family that, without him, would have lived on hot dogs, canned beans and TV dinners.

Eventually he learned that not only was there a culinary science to preparing food, there was a science to keeping people alive with food, called "nutrition". He studied both in whatever spare time he could find. He continued his studies as an adult, got a scholarship, attended cooking school, worked as an apprentice chef in a three star restaurant and eventually opened up his own little diner. There was a restaurant supply trade show in Sydney and he had some vacation time coming, so he went. He booked flight 815 back and planned to stay in LA for a few days before heading back to Chicago.

Cooking for and feeding six brothers and sisters and running a diner during rush hour was good training for trying to keep a plane load of plane crash survivors from starving or poisoning themselves. People found mushrooms or berries or roots, they brought them to him and he usually knew if they were edible and safe. Keeping his siblings fed also trained him not to take any guff.

"Hey, Ray Croc, the Doc's organizing another one of his little hikes. You thing you can scare us up a couple burgers to go?"

"Do I look like a fast food joint to you? I make breakfast, lunch and dinner for about three-dozen people every day. I don't do special orders. Take a hike down to the local McDonalds down up the beach."

"Hey, there ain't no..."

"What part of 'take a hike' was too subtle for you?"

"Look, Emeril, no need to get all Soup Nazi. I was just askin'."

"Oh, the famous witty redneck nicknames I've heard so much about. And a two-fer. Way to go, Davy Crockett."

"Davy Crockett?"

"You know, 'born in the countryside of Tennessee, killed him a b'ar when he was only three.' You're the hillbilly that capped the polar bear with a Glock, right?"

"You heard about that, huh? 'Cept it was a Beretta."

"Major Boothroyd made Bond switch to a Walther PPK because he said a Beretta was a ladies gun."

"So, you've read Fleming, huh. I killed a bear, didn't I?"

"Yeah, and then did you and your friends think to hack it up and bring it back for dinner? Nope."

"Do you have any idea how much a polar bear weighs?"

" 'Enough to break the ice.' Not really. And I don't know how one tastes or even if I could cook one. But now I guess I'll never know thanks to you using this island as a private sport-hunting reserve and leaving a few hundred pounds of meat out in a field somewhere to rot."

"That thing was charging straight at us!"

"Well, it was here first. You were in its field. On it's turf. Now you're in my kitchen. See where I'm goin' with this?"

"Okay, okay. C'mon, you had a roast boar at the barbecue the other night, you must have some leftovers or something."

"Do you hear the coconut refrigerator Professor Arzt built running? No? I guess ole' Hurligan must have tripped on the cord and unplugged it. Really, there's nothing I'd love more than whip you up some boar BBQ sandwiches with several day old room temperature pork - especially when room temperature's been running in the mid-80s. But I'm fresh out, really. You want some bananas?"

"I've had bananas."

"Not the way I cook them, you haven't."

"Maybe later."

"Sure, if you make it back for the dinner rush. There's no late night drive-through."

"I'll keep that in mind."

"Look, next time you play great white hunter, bring back what you kill - I'll cook it for you."

"Yeah, I'll keep that in mind too. See ya, Chef Ray."

"It's Raezynski."

I was in the back room peeling jicama and I couldn't help but overhear that conversation. I hate to admit it but I never really warmed up to that Sawyer guy. They call him the redneck. He wasn't all that bad, not like Wallice.

People are the same everywhere, they love gossip and celebrity watching, and even with a population of 48 there always the ones who become the personalities other people talk about. Sawyer was good looking and rugged and scruffy. Everyone knew he was flirting with the Doc Jack's girlfriend. When he wasn't sitting on the beach with his granny glasses reading his sci-fi novels. The sensitive bad boy. A real romance novel cover come to life. Do I sound jealous? Sorry.

But that first day, I was lying there on the beach mangled, in pain, wishing I had a drink. And there were dazed people wandering around, screaming, crying, smoke and fire. Real Hell on Earth scenario. I was looking at it all and suffering and there was Sawyer, planning ahead, figuring out what he could take to barter with later on. Scavenging. Looting. It wasn't just luggage, you know. He was going through the pockets of mangled corpses while the bodies were still warm. I don't know if I can ever get around that.

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