Mow your lawn regularly. That house behind it is where your family lives, be proud of it.

Understand what’s important and understand what isn’t. Then give attention accordingly.

Be good to your kids. Your daily actions have a singular ability to help them become bright, confident leaders or people with unfillable voids inside them. Take that shit seriously.

Work hard and then come home and work harder.

Know where your food comes from and make sure your kids know where their food comes from. It should be the same food.

Listen to the masters out there when you find them. I mean really listen to them.

Spend the extra time.

If you do have to wear business clothes, make sure they fit right. You’re an adult, not some high schooler fresh from pecker camp.

If anger is what you need, do your best to keep it productive. Because it can burn shit down.

Do everything understanding that anything worth doing is worth doing the hard way.

Mean business.

Be willing to call bullshit when calling bullshit is needed. Understanding the second part of that is what’s important.

Drink expensive scotch and drink less of it. Hammering down the cheap stuff is for hobos and drunks.

Always be willing to turn the damn car around. No matter the situation.

Being kind and understanding of someone who’s clearly struggling is underrated. Do it as often as possible.

Don’t be an asshole to the people you love.

If you’re going to drink, be willing to drink in front of your kids. But not to excess. And never, ever wine coolers.

Be good to your wife, it’s not entirely her fault that you turned out to be the man you are instead of the man she hoped you’d become.

Be good to your job, but never forget that they’ll leave you in a dumpster if it behooves the bottom line.

Understand that while the word “loyalty” is bandied about constantly, the real thing is incredibly important and extremely hard to find.

At the end of the day, when everyone else is asleep, all you really have is the standards you hold yourself to. Never forget that.

Keep all that shit in your head. And then, every now and then, earn yourself a veal chop.

Veal Chop with Sauteed rainbow chard, crispy coppa and gorgonzola fettunta


I love veal chops. I also hate the price tag associated with them. But like a few other things, they’re worth the extra scratch every now and then. If you’ve done a good deed, or even just haven’t fucked anything up in a good long while, treat yourself to one and imagine yourself high-fiving a baby cow with each delicious bite.

1 1lb veal rib chop, about 2 inches thick
Kosher salt and black pepper
2 cloves roasted garlic
Chopped parsley
Spanish smoked paprika
Extremely high quality olive oil
Rendered bacon fat or lard
Sea salt

About 3 hours before you’re going to cook, place the veal chop at room temp and salt and pepper thoroughly. Start a wood fire in your grill. Mix the parsley, garlic, paprika and olive oil and set aside. Get the grill extremely hot and rub the chop in the rendered fat. Grill the chop over high heat, turning frequently until the inside is just under medium rare and the outside has a nice crust. Remove to a plate to rest for 10-15 minutes, pour the oil mixture over the top and sprinkle with extra sea salt.

Sauteed Rainbow chard with crispy coppa

1 bunch rainbow chard
Several slices spicy coppa, julienned
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

Bring some salted water to a boil and prepare an ice bath. Trim the thick ribs from the leafy parts of the chard. Cut the ribs into 1 inch lenths and boil in the water until tender, then transfer to the ice bath. In a sauté pan, heat a little olive oil and then throw in the coppa to crisp, once it’s nearly there, add the garlic and brown. Then add the chard and stems, salt and pepper. Toss until chard is wilted and just cooked through.

Gorgonzola fettunta

Several slices good quality bread, about an inch thick
Good olive oil
Sea Salt
1 garlic clove
A few ounces of Gorgonzola

Toast one side of the bread on a wood grill. Rub the toasted side with a garlic clove, like a crayon, and then place the untoasted side toward the coals. Crumble the gorgonzola over the bread and close the lid. When the underside is toasted and the cheese is soft, remove from the grill, sprinkle with sea salt and olive oil.

4 responses to “THE GIVE AND THE TAKE”

  1. Paul Teeter says:

    good one jake.

  2. Richard says:

    I remember the first time we met watching football on a Sunday in October, 2000. You said I was different. I asked what you meant. You said “You have expectations.” You were correct. I am proud to call you friend and hope you feel the same. I’m partial to Lagavulin. Stay well.

    • Jake says:

      I remember that conversation– funny how little changes between the all you can eat pizza and beer buffet and the veal chop. Lagavulin is my favorite as well, Talisker or Ardbeg if I’m feeling cheeky. Hope you’re well and that they sell delicious baby cow flesh in whatever part of the world you’re currently in.