As CEO, sometimes I get to wear my bakers whites, but seldom do they get dusted by flour.
Most days when I suit up, it's kinda in the same capacity that a baseball manager puts on his uniform. It's kinda mostly for show.
Today was different though, I got to actually bake for our Austrailian Bake sale that will be taking place tomorrow morning.
On my list was Apricot / Passiaon Fruit loaves - Vegemite / Golden Raisin / Date & Walnut batards - Dijon / Red Curry viennas and Cherry Malbec Sourdough rounds.
These are just a few of the items that will be scratching my menu.
When I walked into the plant, the morning Production Manager, a guy named Oso (which is Spanish for bear) Yells out at the top of his lungs.....
"You are a long way from home A-Mer-I-Cone. This is Brazil!"
All the other bakers joined in by yipping.
This noise was errie and echoed throughout the warehouse.
Oso was quoting one of Vin Diesel's lines from the newest FAST & FURIOUS flicks.
Oso is one of 5 brothers from the Armenta clan, and I have had a ball working with these young men over the last dozen of years.
In addition to working with the 5 boys, I've worked with their father, Uncles and a slew of cousins as well.
If anybody ever thought Klecko should be featured in a reality TV show, he'd say......
"Nay, the Armenta's are the real show."
Much like the charactors in the Fast & Furious movie series, the brothers are into vehicles.
Alfredo (the Alpha Armenta) who took over my position as Production Manager when I was made a desk jockey, he drives this pimped out, taxi yellow - H2 Hummer.
Oso has a jet black Lincoln Navigator, and his brother Izzy (the dough mixer) drives an angelic white Cadillac Escalade.
Juan Cruz is the #4 brother. Yeah, he's the one that had his middle finger ripped off by the Blumhoff bread molder, anyway...his role is to swoop in and buy any of these rides when the older brothers get an itch and start to consider upgrading.
And that leaves the baby of the group. His name is Miseal, but the brothers simply refer to him as "Black."
Between the siblings back in Mexico, and the young adults residing in the states, there are 12 children in all.
Eleven of them have skin tone of a light cocoa, but Miseal is about 9 shades darker.
The brothers have posed some interesting theories as to how this might of happened, but Miseal doesn't seem to enjoy engaging in that conversation.
Miseal has always swam against the "Armenta tide."
While his brothers collect these gas guzzling SUV's that are bigger than some of the apartments I have lived in, Miseal opts for a P.T. Cruiser.
The youngest brother doesn't have the rims, hydrolics or Mexican bumper stickers or exotic women mud flaps like other family members couldn't live w/o.
His ride is clean.
So during our bake today Oso tells me to show my finished King Kong back piece tattoo to his friend Wensesloa whose is running the ciabatta machine.
I can pick up part of the conversation which is basically being shared in Spanish. Within minutes...tattoo's become the focus of most of the crew.
All of these guys don't simply have tattoo's, they are tatted out.
That is with the exception of Miseal.
This notion crosses my mind and I asked Miseal why he didn't have any ink.
He just kept panning wild rice pan breads with a smile on his face and instructed me to pose the question to his brothers.
At once, in unison, they started whooping in unison, but this tribal screech was interupted by bursts of laughter.
The brothers dashed around the table, Miseal seemed to know what was going to take place, I didn't...that is until the brothers pinned him down and ripped off his uniform shirt.
Miseal was laughing now too.
"Pelon-Pelon (my unofficial Maxican nickname), come on over and look.
Numorous Armenta fingers were pointing and prodding at Miseals squirming shoulder. At first it appeared that they were showing me a birth mark.
Upon further observation, I realized it wasn't, but I still couldnt make out what it was.
Now Oso and Alfredo are laughing so hard tears are coming out of their eyes.
Alfredo now open hand slaps thr mark and explains.
"You see? Black does have a tattoo. It is the letter "M".He was supposed to get his whole name but he started to cry."
So now Miseal looks over and informs me that it did really hurt because Alfredo was the one who gave it to him, and he didn't know s*** about giving tattoo's.
Now even I am laughing.
So now I decided to ask the obvious question.
"If he didn't know how to tat, why did you let him do it?"
Miseal smiles bigger than ever now.
"I didn't let him, all the brothers pinned me done and forced me to get it."
"And you cried like a little chico!"
Then Miseal looks at his older brothers and shrugs his shoulders....
"I was a chico. I just turned 6 when you guys gave me that tattoo."
At first I thought this was a joke, but it wasn't. I wanted to lmao, but then I thought how the whole thing must of been traumatic.
But then I wondered, if this conversation had been aired on Oprah.....they'd of killed the older Armenta brothers, and I dont know?
Maybe they should have, but the Aremnta crew love each other like no other family I have ever met. They sacrifice for one another, they'd take bullets for each other as well.
I'm telling you right now, forget following Klecko with that reality show camera, the Armenta's are were its at.