A black chef who cooks for the rich and famous has been trying to hit the ghetto lottery by screaming “Discrimination!” to a court.
He claims that being asked to cook what used to be called soul food created a hostile work environment that deeply wounded him. Why the poor fellow probably can’t work anymore when you consider the trauma that evil white lady caused him.
The ex-wife of energy tycoon T. Boone Pickens told her African-American chef to whip up “black people food” — describing her ideal menu as fried chicken, BBQ ribs and corn bread — for the guests at her $2,000-a-night Nevada ranch, a lawsuit charges.
Madeleine Pickens hired Arman Appling to cook for guests at her Mustang Monument Wild Horse Eco-Resort in 2014 and allegedly described the stereotypical menu as perfect for the tourists who pay nearly $2,000 a night to stay in plush cottages, ride horses and take Wild West ATV “safaris” at her dude ranch.
“I don’t want you to cook white people food, I want you to cook black people food,” said Pickens, who is white, according to the federal complaint filed in Reno, Nev., in February.
Pickens also blasted Appling for using too much salt, which she attributed to his being black, the lawsuit said. “I know that’s hard for you since it’s in your genetics to eat salty food,” she said, according to the suit.
Another time, when Appling was plating food, Pickens threw trash at him and said, “Here, you take this out,” the lawsuit alleged.
Despite the shocking allegations, a Reno federal judge dismissed the suit on Dec. 29 after Pickens’ lawyers argued that the comments weren’t objectively racist.
“Some restaurants serve Mexican food. Others serve Vietnamese, Chinese, or Thai food. The suggestion that such categorizations are inherently offensive is nonsense,” her lawyers said.
Judge Miranda Du said Appling’s lawyers failed to prove the sort of racial hostility needed to win a civil rights claim, but gave them 10 days to refile, according to the Associated Press.
Appling said he was happily working as a sous chef at Pickens’ Del Mar Country Club north of San Diego when Pickens requested that he join her as head chef at her wild horse preserve in Wells, Nev.
He expected the Nevada stint to last five months, allowing him to return to work at the Del Mar Country Club, which Pickens also owns.
But he didn’t last long enough due to Pickens’ “discriminatory acts” against Appling and other kitchen staffers, the lawsuit said.
Pickens called one black kitchen staffer “ox” or “bull” because of the manual labor she would assign to him. Later, she fired him and a second black staffer,
saying “they don’t look like the people we have at the county club” and “they did not fit the image” of the staff she wanted, the lawsuit said.
A third staffer was fired because she was a black woman with “too much personality,” the lawsuit said.
“I had to get rid of Sylvia, she has too much personality. We already have one of you,” the lawsuit accuses Pickens of telling Appling.
Appling is seeking unspecified damages from Pickens’ nonprofit, Save America’s Mustangs.
Pickens, 69, divorced her oilman hubby in 2012. She had previously been married to Gulfstream billionaire, Allen Paulson, who died in 2000.