Book Review & Caribou


 Just chillin’ here at the Caribou in Willmar, MN.  I haven’t been in here for ages.  Mostly because I can’t afford it.  Today, I had an uncomfortable check-up at the doctor, and decided I’d treat myself.  Yummy decision!

On to the main purpose of this blog

WAITER RANTS

I bought this book with a Barnes and Noble Gift Card.  I wasn’t really looking for it.  There were a couple of ‘Bargain Bin’ links, and they brought me to this little gem.  Now I was a waitress way back in the day, but only for 8 months or so.  Still, I thought I could really get into this book, so I bought it.

First thing I fell in love with: this book is Non-Fiction! YES!  I’m addicted to that stuff.  And coffee. *sips large coffee and continues*  This waiter by the name of Steve originally started his creations in a blog called Waiter Rant.  Eventually it gets picked up by a literary agent, but I’ll get to that.

This starts off with him working right away as a waiter, even though his life story begins elsewhere.  I won’t get into incredible detail, but I’ll give the jist: he graduates high school, goes on to seminary but flunks out, works in the medical field but was laid off, and then started working as a waiter.  The first restaurant mentioned was a nasty little place that tried to come off as high-class, complete with snooty customers and expensive bottles of wine that disappear when they slip onto the floor.  To be honest, I waitressed at a small town restaurant/B&B.  I rarely ran into these occasions.  FInally, I quit looking for ways to relate and enjoyed the story.

Eventually, he moves on from that place and ends up at The Bistro.  This place seemed slighty better than his previous arrangement.  The owner was an ‘asshole’ (a commonly used adjective in this book regarding people) but the conditions were better.  As in, the health inspector could actually give his stamp of approval on this place.

There are some points in the book where it will give you the willies.  Occasionally, he would mention situations where he worked at a place with unclean mouse traps and sticky fly traps hovering over where food is being prepared.  At this point, you almost wish this book wasn’t Non-Fiction.

As I neared the end of this book, I found myself finding more similarities regarding this waiters interactions with his customers and my interactions with customers at the call center.  First of all, the sales &  food services industries are very similar (as he explains at one point).   Much like he ran into people looking for special treatment because they are stuffy regulars, I often took phone calls from pompous musicians who felt they deserved the highest discount I could give them (even if they only spent $50 on cables in the past).

Another great feature is that this is written from the point of view of a writer… Maybe I can try to explain this better:

This man struggled for so long on what he wanted to be when he grew up.  I feel like any tale involving writers, Fiction or Non-Fiction, revolves around these theme.  It reminds me of the movie Stand By Me.  Gordie, the main character, was badgered a little bit because he didn’t have the same skills and talents as others.  However, he could write.  He never considered it for a career until Chris Chambers told him he had a flair.  The same thing happened to this waiter.  A fellow co-worker read his blog and told him he had a great talent.  I really hope he still treasures that moment.  For me, it was my 10th grade English teacher.  She was brand new to teaching, and had all these odd teaching methods to experiment with on us.  Eventually she noticed my creative story telling, and pestered me a bit to be in the creative writing class.  She even told me something like ‘you will disgrace the world if you do not write.’  And I thank her for it.

Overall, I recommend this book to anyone still discovering themselves, working in the sales/food industry, or both.  It seemed like this book was pretty popular when it first came out, but I had never heard of it honestly.  I’m not sure how many people read this blog, but I hope I have persuaded you to check it out.

And now, I will finish my large mocha. *twitch*

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1 Comment

Filed under Articles Written by Me, The Tales of a Weary Writer

One response to “Book Review & Caribou

  1. gwen

    Thanks for sharing the report. I will look in my favorite library and see if they have it. haveing been a waitress at various times of my life, it may need to be read by me.

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