Tuesday, April 19, 2022


My take on Grape Dumplings in the New York Times!


Monday, April 18, 2022

My Accident, Hospitalization, and Thank You

By Ramon Shiloh
These past five months have been difficult to process. I’m still recovering from injuries after getting hit by a car. This brain injury has changed everything for me and I’m doing my best to take things slow. I need to. My recovery depends on it.

Only one week into my new job in Tacoma Washington, I never imagined I would see my whole life change in an instant. I had always avoided close calls; I had never experienced a near death like this. It really reshaped my perception of time, and I was forced to accept the good, the bad, and the ugly, from the entire experience.

This accident forced me into isolation for four months. In my bed. It wasn’t pretty. I was spiraling in a void that wreaked havoc with my self-esteem. I found I needed to seek therapy to resolve some mental issues that had compounded my self-worth. Even writing this note is taking so much time. It did not take this much time before to gather my thoughts and write them down.

I truly wouldn’t wish this on anyone.

To put it all in perspective: I moved to Tacoma this past fall on November 3rd, became an employee on November 5th, and was struck by a car on November 11th.

Because of this person’s carelessness, I missed a very noble opportunity to build community partnerships, intertribal relationships, recruit local and indigenous farmers to my seasonal menus, and strengthen my connection to the remarkable kitchen staff and management at ALMA.

My endeavor was to bring awareness of food sovereignty into our Urban Native landscape. My purpose as executive chef was to echo foraging practices between Indigenous peoples of this continent and discuss the colonial footprint that gave way, separating tribal identities and dismantling shared histories, through storytelling and agricultural knowledge.

Please support ALMA if you are headed to Tacoma. Chef Kevin Michalk, who I promoted to take my place, is putting out some of the best food for the seasons to come. He kept that kitchen afloat after my absence and deserves all the success for what he’s putting into that place. Although his menus will not entirely be Native cuisine, some menu items will pay respects to First Nations of the Puget Sound and abroad.

Executive Director Lisa Fruichantie will approve future creations to come out of ALMA.

It’s going to be difficult for me to be back in the kitchen for quite some time. But even when I’m back to normalcy, my doctor has reminded me that the recovery process for everyone with a brain injury looks different and I know he is right. Even if I return to the food industry, I still risk an aneurysm, stroke, or seizure, if I push my stress levels to the limit.

With everything that has happened, I’ve decided to move back to Portland.

I would like to thank everyone who sent well wishes, gifts, prayers, financial assistance, and came to my bedside, while I was at my worst. The impact of your love still resonates, and I can’t wait to see everyone when I’m better and able to visit and join gatherings with familiar friends. I love you all. Thank you and be safe out there. I mean it!