What's Next For Anthony Weiner? Owning A Queens Restaurant, Believe It Or Not
You walk into a restaurant, order some food, and then, halfway through your dinner, disgraced former congressman Anthony Weiner walks up to you and ask how your meal is going. That may sound absurd, but it could soon be a reality: Anthony Weiner is helping launch a restaurant in New York. The non-profit Rockaway Restoration Kitchen will soon open in Queens, and while Weiner’s exact role is unclear, a recent job listing for the restaurant named Weiner as one of its administrators.
Alright, we like making fun of Weiner as much as anybody, but this is actually a respectable venture. The restaurant is being opened in a neighborhood devastated by Hurricane Sandy in 2012, and in addition to serving healthy and sustainable food, it will offer a 13-week job training program for beleaguered low-income residents. The program will enroll “unemployed who have had problems getting and holding jobs because of history of substance abuse, incarceration or health problems,” according to the restaurant’s website, and once they finish the course, Rockaway will help place them in kitchens around the city.
“"Large swaths of the peninsula are lacking in quality, sustainable, nutritious food. It's is also sadly true that many Rockaway residents need help developing skills to lift them out of unemployment," Weiner told the New York Daily News.“"This project is at the very earliest stages of trying to tackle these challenges."
You can hate Anthony Weiner all you want, but it’s hard to argue that this is anything other than a noble and well-intentioned project. And yes, I’m as surprised as you are to see the words “noble” and “Anthony Weiner” in the same sentence.
Weiner’s brother Jason is an accomplished chef and restauranteur who co-owns several restaurants around New York, so in a sense, Weiner is going into the family business. And on a strange way, this is something of a logical progression for former congressman.
After his disastrous campaign for New York City Mayor in 2013, he started volunteering at food banks. At the time, it seemed like an flagrant attempt at public rehabilitation, akin to John Edwards building houses after his shameful run at the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008. This time, though, Weiner appears to be going all-in, as he’s actually taken a position with the organization.
So, here’s to hoping the Rockaway Restoration Kitchen is, at the very least, more successful than Weiner’s political career.