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Todd Bauer the pastry cook is so fine they had to put him on the SOMA Bare Chest Calendar 2000

By Mark Ewert

What do you do?

Pastry cook.

How did you get started?

Baking was always my hobby--something I enjoyed. I quit my old job--as a producer in broadcast news--and moved to San Francisco. I went to the California Culinary Academy, and studied baking and pastry.

How long have you been doing this?

One and a half years.

Who or what was your inspiration to enter this career?

Honestly, it was some inspirational friends who encouraged me to do what I enjoy. They pushed me along; they saw how stuck I was in the grind of my old job.

Do you have any pet peeves about this career?

In the restaurant industry the pay's really low for us--whereas the servers make a lot of money. It's frustrating because you're trying to create something and get it as good as you can, yet you get paid poorly. Also: close proximity to other people can be a drag. It's not like you have your own office--you're constantly climbing over people.

What are the perks to this job?

The compensation for the low pay is you get to do something you really like doing, so it balances out. One perk was also one of my pet peeves: you get to work with other people, to learn to work with them and create something with them. And you get to make people happy, the people you're cooking for. [Pause.] And all the ice cream.

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From the February 21, 2000 issue of the Metropolitan.

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