Putting It On The Table
Chef Randy Rucker admits to alcohol abuse struggles after nasty Twitter fightover wildfires benefit
If you didn't catch it Tuesday night, a bit of a tussle broke out on Twitter between Randy Rucker, James Beard-nominated former chef/owner of Bootsie's and soon-to-be purveyor of Conāt, and the organizers of Tuesday's "Pray for Rain" wildfires benefit dinner at El Real.
The guys of The Modular, Anvil, Underbelly, El Real and others banded together to raise money for victims of the Texas wildfires, and while that might not seem like fuel for a Twitter fire, it sparked something in Rucker.
We don't need to get into the nitty gritty, but Rucker took apparent offense to a Tweet of The Modular's Josh Martinez that he read as a little self-important. So he fired back, calling the organizers "douchebags" and well, it was all downhill from there.
"All my life I have pushed people away including friends, family and peers never once stopping to take a long look at myself," Rucker writes. "There has been a couple common denominators in all these situations and that is, of course, me and the other is my abuse of alcohol."
By the time Rucker had thought better of his initial reaction and Tweeted a vaguely directed "Sorry..." he was still burning from the backlash. This morning, the celebrated — if unpredictable — chef Tweeted, "Sorry for offending. Sorry for my words. No excuses...just sorry," and followed it up with a link to a very personal (and we think, seemingly sincere) blog post, where he explained a bit of his sometimes ambiguous motivations and how the whole thing went off the rail.
Rucker reveals that he's struggled with alcohol abuse, and that he's seeking help. "All my life I have pushed people away including friends, family and peers never once stopping to take a long look at myself," he writes. "There has been a couple common denominators in all these situations and that is, of course, me and the other is my abuse of alcohol."
He goes on to address the controversy surrounding Tuesday's benefit dinner and apologizes to those involved. "My latest comments surrounding the group of hospitality professionals from the Houston area that donated their time, money & efforts to those in need from the recent wild fires throughout Texas is unexplainable to me. I don’t know why I chose the words I did. I can’t explain why I felt the way I did but I do know that the things I said did no one any good. […] I am however very sorry for the things I said and truly hope that I can one day can be forgiven."