ASHEVILLE- An artist rarely gets the recognition he or she deserves.
So when Subway sandwich artist J.D. Long found out Asheville residents voted local Subways the second best sandwich shop in the 2013 Mountain Xpress Best of WNC poll, Long for the first time in his artistic career felt like a real artist.
“It’s a grind being an artist,” said Long.
“I have a hard time really working within the confines of Subway’s rules and my customers’ demands. But I really feel like every time I’m done sculpting a sandwich, I’m looking at the next statue of David. I’m glad my customers are really starting to recognize my artistic talents.”
Amidst the processed meats, shredded lettuce, and mayo Long works to showcase his life through foot longs.
“I dropped out of college to pursue my dreams of being an artist,” said Long.
“I have had some rough times living in my mom’s basement and not being able to afford basic needs like going to Bonnaroo and I think the sandwiches speak to my pain. When you receive a sub from me that has tomatoes lined up slightly off kilter, those tomatoes represent the time my ex girlfriend dumped me because she was tired of having our dates at Subway because the food was free.”
Long hopes the recognition may gain him early acceptance to Subway University and finally get his mom off his back about law school.
“Ever since I was a little kid I used to tell my mom I wanted to be a lawyer, so when I dropped out to become a sandwich artist she was really taken aback,” said Long.
“I hope this award is validation for my mom to truly accept my new career path. I also hope this recent award will land me an early acceptance to Subway University. That’s the dream you know. Graduate from Subway University and then train other aspiring sandwich artists to create the next iconic piece of American artwork out of sandwiches.”
Subway lost out to other local chain favorite Jersey Mike’s for best overall sandwich shop. But Long hopes with one more year of practice under his belt, local Subways can over take Jersey Mike’s.
“I’m glad Asheville is finally embracing the chain mentality,” said Long.
“Maybe there is hope for a Cheesecake Factory downtown after all. Subway University today, putting my twist on frozen peanut butter cheesecakes tomorrow. My future is bright and so is Subway’s.”