Where are you from?
Istanbul, Turkey but now New York City
So, tell me a little bit about you.
So about me. I went to a boarding school when I was 9 years old and spent 10 years there. So when I became 19, I started university in the physical engineering field, which I didn’t like. Then I dropped it after that. I changed my degrees to do metallurgical science engineering.
And after that, I didn’t like that either but I needed to get a diploma. It felt like a waste of time. So I got that diploma after four and a half years, something like that.
I got into a field of energy and became a sales engineer and after that became an operations engineer. And I met with my wife for four or four and a half years ago.
And three years ago, she was just admitted to NYU and we decided to come over here and get married. That’s the story of how we came to America.
How did you end up here, at The Cupping Room?
So, when I was studying I worked as a waiter/server/barista/bartender. I mean, in the coffee/restaurant business. I worked every position, in this business. So, actually, I love it. I love working in this business.
But in Istanbul, this is not the career choice that you can make if you have a choice to study and being an engineer because there is no money at all. You cannot survive with this money in Istanbul, Turkey. But here it is totally different.
So, yeah, I knew what I was doing. So that’s how I ended up with The Cupping Room Cafe. And I just got my work permit just walking around the Soho area and, you know, the Cupping Room was the best option because it’s a historic place.
This place has been here since 77, 1977. So 40 years and this is one of the places left from history. I mean, it’s in Soho. Maybe four or five places are left from those times. Most importantly, the owner of this place kept operating this cafe. It’s amazing. It’s giving. Everybody knows you. Everybody recognizes you.
You become a family with this around. This is one of the wonderful things. That’s why I can not just get out from the company and go find another job even if I earn more money. I like to be here.
So what’s important to you in your life?
Family. Family is the most important thing. So I … yeah, I lost my dad when I was one and a half years old. So I grew up with my mother and a sister. She is one year older than me and a, yeah, I always have a thought when I was growing up, something like I need to take care of them, you know.
But that’s why the goal of my life, it became money, so I never thought about myself, what I enjoy about my life, and what should I do and that kind of thing. The family is the most important thing This is family as well.
So what does that look like for you your day to day life.
In reality and day to day life. Time management. In New York it’s time management, I mean create some quality time.
I mean, get what you can as soon, as fast, as best as possible. Be patient, of course, but I mean do not waste your time with things like what should you watch on the TV or something like that. I mean, this is New York and you need to act very quickly. You need to educate yourself every time.
Yeah, that’s it. Quality time is the most important thing right now. I have two dogs and I really care about rescuing some dogs. I mean, we are working with some rescuing organizations that my wife, that’s the thing that my wife added. That’s the skills that my wife added to me, actually.
So we heard of some organizations in New York and in Turkey, we wrote some organizations too to rescue dogs in Turkey. In Turkey the stray dogs, I mean, they’re everywhere. Yeah. they’re everywhere, stray cats, stray dogs, everywhere.
Shelters are full. The government doesn’t care. They’re saying that they don’t have money.
I mean, they don’t have money for dogs? How can it be so hard?
Is that really what shaped you?
Absolutely. That’s how I shape myself, to be honest. But the thing is, I haven’t done anything so far where we are effective, just, you know, just a small amount of help.
Has anyone ever asked you this question before? What’s important to you in your life?
Yeah, of course. Yeah. Yeah. My wife! She does every time. Every day, she’s just trying to, she tries to find out that thing, what’s important in my life coming up. She pushes me a lot. That’s the thing. Yeah. That’s how I open my eyes actually.
So I think that she is the only one that I can say that does. Yeah.
Your wife sounds amazing.
She is amazing. Yeah. Yeah. She’s very fine with everything, I mean, she’s very educated. She surprises me about that. I mean, on everything she’s very good. Yes. I love it to be honest, although sometimes I get annoyed because she beats me and nothing beats me, of course [editor’s note: as in does better]. But she’s so smart. And yes, she is very balanced.
And she knows what she wants and she knows how she wants how to achieve it. And she helps me a lot to figure it out about my life, to be honest.
So who in your life, do you think could benefit from being asked what’s important to.
My sister. definitely. But. I mean, I know the answer to be honest. It’s the money again. Yeah, yeah. I would like to ask my sister. I would like to ask a couple of my friends, definitely.