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Date Posted: 10:21:48 12/07/16 Wed
Author: Gareth Hougham
Subject: Re: The Schoales Family
In reply to: Ned Depew 's message, "The Schoales Family" on 18:07:39 08/05/05 Fri

I went to Scarborough School for 10th and half of 11th. That would be 1973-1974. I also worked for Dudley in his restaurant during both summers. First as a dishwasher/salad and soup maker and later dishwasher and assistant cook. Great learning experience. Dudley, it must be said was a very unusual person. Never particularly nice, though he did teach me a lot about cooking and asked me to crew on his racing sailboat. I declined for reasons I shan't mention here. He was a colorful character. Usually quite drunk by the time the restaurant was packed with diners. It was a pretty fancy place with an amazing ambiance. He would often wear farmer overalls and red converse high top sneakers. Pity the customer who made a complaint. Once, he stormed out of the kitchen and literally got into a shoving match. I did not see this but heard about it from my colleagues. I did see once when he went out, plopped down at the table where the complaining gent sat with his guests and argued with him. It was an issue of flavor of some kind. Dudley came into the kitchen and had us prepare a couple samples with slight differences. He took them out to the table and had the guy taste test on the spot to prove the original was better than what the guy seemed to think was proper. I don't remember if the customer conceded the point or stood firm. I enjoyed working there and worked very hard. Often until after midnight on Friday and Saturdays. I quit though on a busy Friday night when the main cook quit in a huff over something and I took over the kitchen. Briefly. I was doing both his job and mine. It was a crisis situation and we (there was another helper dude) were pulling it off. Then, I put a trout in a pan and ran down to the walk-in refrigerator (which was outside and down an alley) to get something. When I got back a couple minutes later I found that I had burned the trout. Ok, my bad. Dudley's wife, a beautiful but bossy woman who's name was Sealy was suddenly trying to orchestrate the kitchen and told me that she was going to take the burned trout out of my pay. I was incredulous! That was a last straw. I went out to the restaurant where Dudley was drunkenly holding forth at a table, told him I quit and left. Now, the only thing I am bitter about was that every payday, Dudley would calculate my pay from the hour sheet, carefully deduct a tax withholding percentage, and then pay me from the register in cash. At the end of the year when no W-2 showed up in the mail, I rode my bicycle to his house and knocked on the door. (Remember, I was 15 years old). Dudley answered and I naively asked him for my W-2 form. He said there was no W-2 form for me and to go away. So, that was that. He had simply been ripping me off every payday. I remain shocked to this day that a person could be that cold and calculating. Other than that though, I cherish the memory of those two summers, despite some mild and ultimately harmless sexual harassment in the kitchen.
I have always wondered what every happend to Sealy and their child who was a baby at that time. I think its name was Sky, or Moonbeam, or Cloud or something like that. Dudley and Sealey were both flawed but interesting people. I hope Moonbeam, or whatever, inherited the better parts of them. If anybody knows, I'd very very interested to hear. Oh, I also remember John Cheever frequenting the restaurant. That was pretty cool, even then. Oh, I also remember jazz on Thursday nights. An amazing jazz group, featuring Pete Compo would play and the place would transform to a 1930's speakeasy. I would finish my shift and the bartender would sneak me a mug of Beck's. (yea, I was 15, but those were different days and the drinking age was only 18, so it wassn't that big a stretch). I also remember the night that President Richard Nixon resigned. A black and white television was brought in and placed on the bar. The restaurant full of customers and the whole kitchen staff in their aprons standing near the kitchen door were silent and spellbound as Nixon resigned on live television. It was quite memorable. I have more stories, but that's enough for now. Please do let me know if you have any info on Dudley, Sealy and their child's life (and name) after the restaurant closed. Thanks, Gareth

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