Meet Sam

I caught up with Sam for a few minutes before his dinner shift last week.  Let’s meet him…
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Quick Facts:
Name: Sam Horchler
Age: 26, Birthday 9/30
Position: Line Cook
Hometown: Lorton VA
Favorite WHBC  Beer: Outage IPA
Favorite WHBC Food: Non-wontons
Education: ODU-communications

WHBC: Hey there Man Sam!  I always call you Man Sam because my daughter is named Sam and I need to address you both differently.  So anyway, let’s get the usual stuff out of the way.  How long have you been working here at Wharf?
S: About 3 1/2 months.  My wife saw on Facebook they were hiring so I came in.  I ended up talking to Tami one day while I was here and she pulled my application to give to Dave.  So I guess that’s the first time drinking a beer got me a job haha!
WHBC: Why cooking?
S: I love to eat, I like to cook.  I wanted a career change.  This was my first job cooking and I started right on the line.  Trial by fire, right?
WHBC: That’s right!  What kind of career change?
S: I worked in security for three years, two years as a supervisor.  I worked at a retirement community.  My job was to just keep people safe.  We had an Alzheimers unit, so we had some runners sometimes.  But mostly it was old ladies who locked themselves out or needed help plugging in TVs. I definitely prefer my job now!
WHBC: What do you like best about it?
S: Everything and everyone.  It’s fun.  It’s almost like coming to just hang out with friends and cook while we’re here.
WHBC: Do you have a favorite person to work with?
S: Not really; everyone is really great.  Will is hilarious.  Joe and Ryan are funny too.  But really everyone!
WHBC: Awesome! So are you married?  Have kids?  Fur children?
S: I am married; I met my wife in college.  We have two cats.
WHBC: What do you do for fun?
S: I like to write – fiction and short stories.
WHBC: What’s your favorite genre to write in?
S: Horror because it’s just interesting.  When you read a lot, sometimes stories get predictable, but with horror it’s not that way.  It’s surprising.
WHBC: How long have you been writing?
S: Off and on for a long time, but I really got into at my old job.  I worked the night shift, so it was pretty boring.  I had a lot of down time.  I worked at my hometown newspaper for a while too, but journalism is a dying industry.  You can’t write well if you have to bang it out whether you care about what you’re writing about or not.  It’s work, but not in a good way.  I believe it’s good for your mind and soul to write out what’s in your head.
WHBC: I totally agree.  I dabble in writing poetry, but that’s about it.  What else do you do in your spare time?
S:  Woodworking, carving furniture.  It’s nothing great, but it’s serviceable.  I like to shoot; I shoot my guns once a week or so.  I do range shooting and hand loading, which is a hobby in itself.  Doing that though really cuts down the cost of the shooting hobby because I’m filling the bullets myself.
WHBC: So you’ve got a degree in Communications.  You’re a line cook here.  Any of this line up with your childhood dreams?  What did you want to be when you grew up?
S:  A wizard.  Just putting it out there.  I still hold out hope.
{I have to tell you at this point I am laughing hysterically because that is hands down one of the funniest and honest answers I’ve ever gotten to any question!}
WHBC: Hahaha.  And what were your goals with that?  Would you use your power for good or evil?
S: The goal?  World domination.  I’d like to think I’d use my power for good.  I’d use my power to pick up chics instead of destroying the world. haha.
WHBC: That in itself requires its own kind of superpower to accomplish!  When you had these dreams of being a wizard, what did you look like?  Full on Gandalf or…?
S: Totally unassuming.  I would blend in.
WHBC: So your new nickname is Sam the Unassuming Wizard, although that’s a bit more wordy than Man Sam.  I like it better though. Haha.
S: I actually got a call back for a job interview one time because I put down on my application that I wanted to be a wizard.  The guy hiring said he just had to talk to me!
WHBC: You seem like a pretty funny guy.  Anything super funny happen to you while here at work?
S: Not specifically.  It’s just a good, fun atmosphere here.  My last job was literally militant.  My boss ran it like a ship – very rigid and corporate.  That burns you out.  I think that’s why I like it here so much – it’s just the polar opposite.
WHBC: Your degree – any plans to use that or is this your career now?
S: This is it right now.  I would love to teach college English someday.  Regardless of what I end up doing, I think this will be a part of it. I thought about becoming a Private Investigator, but to hang my own shingle…I couldn’t make a living that way. Maybe that will be my retirement plan.
WHBC: Do you enjoy traveling or are you more of a homebody?
S: We travel to Jacksonville a lot to see my wife’s family.  We love going to Charlottesville.  You can throw a rock there and hit a craft brewery; it’s fun.  We never had a honeymoon, so if we went out of the country to travel, I think we’d go to the UK and Ireland someday.  My wife’s family, way back in the day, owned County Cork in Ireland.
WHBC: Sweet!  Ireland is on my list too!  So, Sam the Unassuming Wizard, if you were able to speak to your younger self, what would you say?
S: What the hell are you doing?!  I goofed around a lot as a teen, tested a lot of boundaries.  But I guess you have to – isn’t that the reason for adolescence?  I wouldn’t change anything though I don’t think.  Because your personality is just a collection of experiences and if you change one thing, you change your whole self.  Looking back I wouldn’t have gone to ODU, but if I didn’t, I wouldn’t have met my wife.  See what I mean?
WHBC: I get it, seriously. That’s one of the wisest things I’ve ever heard!  So lastly, words of wisdom for someone who wants to follow in your career footsteps?
S: Pay attention, ask questions, and keep your head down.  Even if you’ve been through culinary school, you still have to learn the ropes.  Take it seriously.  Get here on time and work hard.  The worst thing you can be is unreliable.
WHBC: Well said!  Thanks for a great interview, Sam!

Want to know what it’s like working with Sam?  Read on…
Girl Sam: “Man Sam works really hard and taught me all the workings of the fryer!  I love working with him because he is funny and nice to everyone.”
Nick: “If you have ever wondered what it’s like to work with Peter Parker from Spiderman, it’s like that.”
Kyle: “Sam is eager to learn and always on time.  You can tell he loves what he does.”
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