So on Friday night's episode of Kitchen Nightmares, shouty chef Gordon Ramsay went to DownCity in Providence, RI, and on the restaurant's relaunch he invited an "influential" food blogger and caused everyone to panic. And Stacey Place of Adventures in Rhode Island Dining — a "locally-renowned" blogger with "10,000 followers" — is armed with an iPhone and a Twitter application, and of course everyone in the restaurant flips the fuck out. See this exchange:
"She's not blogging now is she? What's she doing?"
"She's definitely blogging."
"She's blogging live from the table?"
Gordon Ramsay, smart man that he is, followed her on Twitter for real-time status updates. Twitter is handy in knowing what celebrity cats are up to but also useful to find out if people in your restaurant want bread. Ramsay (reasonably) got hysterical after seeing her tweet, "Waiting for our appetizers. Getting hungry! Come on!" He pulled the restaurant owner aside to show her his Blackberry. Fear the hungry blogger, people.
Normally on Hell's Kitchen they'll bring in a restaurant critic or the mayor or someone, you know, actually influential, but her blog has a pagerank of zero and, at the time of airing, she had only 190 Twitter followers (she's up to 300 now).
But Place — "Music teacher by day, Food writer by night." — explains it all on her blog in a super-handy Kitchen Nightmares FAQ: "The producers had asked me how many people had read my blog and I replied about 250 per week. Multiplying that by 52 weeks, they rounded down to 10,000." Math is hard but also conveniently malleable.
She also explained why she bizarrely used her iPhone with only one finger:
Two summers ago, I sliced through the tendon on my index finger while cutting potatoes for French Fries on a mandoline slicer. I have no feeling at all in the tip of my index finger which makes using the Iphone touch screen a bit of a challenge. For speed, I have to use my middle finger. And apparently being on Hell's Kitchen and meeting Gordon Ramsay isn't enough. She has higher aspirations. After the episode aired, she tweeted: "Meeting Gordon Ramsay on Kitchen Nightmares was awesome, but my ultimate dream is meeting @tom_colicchio and being on @BravoTopChef."
Video: A Blogger's Reign of Terror Descends Upon Hells Kitchen, Part 1
Video: A Blogger's Reign of Terror Descends Upon Hells Kitchen, Part 2
· Adventures in Rhode Island Dining [Official Site]
· All Hell's Kitchen Coverage on Eater [-E-]
· All Gordon Ramsay Coverage on Eater [-E-]