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Super Kala Frag Hubristic Gary Helps The Homeless

7th Jun 2019

The not so publicity shy crowd-funding king and Kala patron chef, Gary Usher, has uncharacteristically shuned all press attention after he tweeted about a homeless guy with whom he got talking to, when leaving the restaurant following his shift on Saturday night. "He asked me for cash & I didn’t have any & there wasn’t a cash point anywhere". [For future reference Gary, if it was on King Street, there's one at Santander Cross Street, just one minutes walk away, and another on the street behind the restaurant, 2 minutes walk away, opposite Slaters]. 


The Tweet, which has already gained 37,000 likes, went on to say, "as I walked off he shouted Mate got any jobs!? I walked backed to him & said FUCKING RIGHT I DO. He said he’d do anything. I replied mate you don’t need to do anything I have a kitchen porter position available & you could do some food prep too. He was fucking made up & so was I.


"He asked me when I was next in? I said I’m there every day. He said tomorrow? Yes I said. 10 minutes ago a clean shaven smart looking, very nervous man just walked in to Kala... He starts Wednesday. He was fucking buzzing. I’m buzzing. I’ve been offering jobs to people on the streets for 10 years. Derick is the first person in that time to turn up."



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Usher then went on to ask for advice on how to employ somebody without an address and details, to which many people recommended the excellent Booth Centre charity - which helps homeless people find accommodation and overcome the practical difficulties they are facing.


The Tweets didn't just stop there though, as the outspoken chef went on to add "OH FUCK!!!!! his daughter from Scotland has just made contact because he called her before he came & she encouraged him to come! She found me on here after speaking to him. I’ve just called her & seriously I don’t think I’ll have a better day in 2019."


Despite all the additional tweets about "Derek", copying in the homeless man's daughter's Twitter handle, which also gathered hundreds of retweets from many famous celebrities, Usher made it clear "Thanks but no thanks to the journalists requests for info. It’s going to be enough pressure starting a new job whilst having no address to then be told by one of your colleagues you’re in the paper too. Let’s just chill & be happy with the nice vibes on here. Ta X. Like I’ve said to all the papers, the tv & the radio no. Thank you but no. I posted it because I was chuffed & the vibe was lovely. Now let’s give the man a chance to start a job as normally as he possibly can with my absolute 100% support & time." 


Pointing out that "about 6 thousand people have followed this account in the last 24 hours", Usher kept on Tweeting about Derek and the fact he had "got him a hotel for his first week, starting this evening". Despite his earlier requests that he be allowed to start his new job without all the attention, he went on to explain that he had just found "out his last job up in Scotland was as a chef in a hotel."  



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For those people unfamiliar with the potty-mouthed chef's inability to have thoughts without the need to broadcast them on Social Media - he is so active on Twitter you'd be forgiven for thinking he has no time left in the day for cooking - the response was a mixture of support, unfair criticism and deep cynicism - presumably not helped coming pretty quickly after the Hawksmoor wrong wine story.


In a city where austerity has hit harder than most, with homeless people on the streets almost outnumbering the empty tables in the many struggling restaurants, such a good news story deserves not only to be taken at face value, but also to be repeated by other local businesses - albeit without broadcasting it so blatantly.


Unlike others, we can't blame Usher for using his huge Twitter following to gather advice on what procedures to follow - afterall, not everybody is aware of which charities out there can help - and we can only trust that Kala will continue to keep us updated on Derek's progress, whatever the outcome.


Hopefully Gary will help broadcast to his ever-increasing Twitter following, the story of Peacemeal, the new artisan bakery, restaurant, and late-night music venue in Ancoats, which only recruits staff who have experienced homelessness themselves.



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