Conversations with a Doha pastry chef

Jeff's cake Pastry chef: Would you like something written on the cake?
Natasha: Yes, please. "Happy Birthday Jeff"
Pastry chef: Jess!
Natasha: No no, Jeff: J. E. F. F.
Pastry chef: J E S S ?
Natasha: No, no — J E F F. It is F okay?
Pastry chef: Okay.
Natasha: It is F ā€¦ okay? Please make sure that it is J. E. F. F.
Pastry chef: Okay.
Natasha: Thanks. I’ll pick up the cake around 7:00pm tomorrow.

By Natasha Tynes

Iā€™m a Jordanian-American journalist, writer, and media development professional based in Washington, DC.


  1. I guess you should give Jeff an Arabic name while staying in Qatar just like all foreigners who give themselves Arabic names and all Arabs who give themselves English names while in non-Arab countries lol. so how about Ja3far looool

  2. So typical of Doha Natasha! Great story šŸ˜€
    Sort of like when one of my students wrote a paper describing how the Kaaba had been destroyed by one of the Prophet’s (SAW) “enemas” šŸ˜‰

  3. Ammar,
    Last time I checked, I didn’t have one;-) But you never know, I might have developed one here;-)
    Welcome to Mental Mayhem. It is great to have a fellow Qatari resident commenting on my blog;-)
    Did you notice that the cake was from Batteel? Isn’t it supposed to be one of the best pastry shops in Doha? Well, they still can’t spell!!
    That is a good suggestion except that the chef was not Arab;-)

  4. Hey,
    Maybe the chef did it on purpose. Notice how he has the name in quotes? What’s up with that?

  5. No, no, no…once again stupid people should walk, smart people should ride cars.
    Not sure how that sheds light on the cake fiasco, but…there you go!

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