I've written before about how much I love when the sources tell the story so I absolutely loved the latest issue's "The Classifieds: A Workplace Confidential." Had no idea this was in the works. Some heartbreaking, funny, unusual, others disturbing, all honest. All worth reading. Excerpts from some of my favorites:
"You could ask, "Did Michael Jackson need a rhinoplasty?" Probably not. But he wanted one. If you look at his first rhinoplasty, it was very nice, restrained. But your client is Michael Jackson, and he keeps coming back to your office, so you keep going and all of a sudden it looks like a disaster.
So when you ask, Is it Heidi Montag's fault or Michael Jackson's fault--or is it the surgeon's fault for not telling them?--you're in a gray area. My personal opinion is, it's always on you. You did it.
As for my own views on physical beauty? You know, breast augmentation can be done well, and it can look very good, and it can feel good. And I guess the knowledge of that has changed me a little. Once you do it all the time, you get desensitized to it. When I walk down the street now, I look at people and think, "I can do this, I can do that." That's a curse. You become hypercritical. My wife--when I'm just standing there looking at her, if I'm not saying anything for a while, she'll be like, "What? What? You're trying to...!" I'll say, "No, I'm not!" But that does sort of happen."
"And of course there's the drug culture. It filters down in the most interesting ways. The kids sell Pop-Tarts in school like they're drug dealers. This one kid would go to Costco and buy in bulk and then sell Pop-Tarts in the morning. He actually made enough money selling Pop-Tarts to buy a car. So one day he got busted by security with a huge bag full of Pop-Tarts, and they asked him, "What is this?" He said: "They're my snack." And they were like, "No, they aren't." So he sat down and ate them all. He graduated and went back to Africa."
"We can tell a lot. We can tell if someone's a shopaholic or when they drink too much. The always order liquor--like daily. Drug deals, the dealers come in, they say "Um, I'm here to see...," and they say the wrong name. They go in and get out quickly. We can tell if a couple's divorcing. Usually, they're screaming and hollering in the lobby, like we're not even here. The husband or wife will apologize later, but still. Sometimes one of them will try to get us to take their side, but we can't really do or say anything. Cheating, we see plenty. But we never tell. This one woman, she had regulars every time her husband was away. Different guys. I felt bad for him, but it's none of my business. Sometimes I see things I shouldn't see on the cameras, like couples getting intimate in the laundry room. We like to watch."
"It's really sad to see what the Mets have become: A great franchise, on the biggest stage in sports, is now a laughingstock. Ownership is trying to turn the Mets, a big-market franchise, into a small-market franchise. That's not just sad, it's disgusting. You know what I think when I read about the Mets nowadays? We've become the Oakland A's. We're the Pittsburgh Pirates. Our fans deserve better than that."
"Reyes and David Wright were the heart of that team. Those were the guy the Mets had to build around. But now that Reyes is in Miami, Wright will be traded by the All-Star break. If they're going to run this like a small-market team, that's the way it's going to fold. If I'm David Wright, I'd want to be gone."
"What makes it worse is being in the same market as the Yankees. Obviously they have more money, but there used to be a time when the Mets and Yankees were equals. Today, it's totally lopsided. But that's not to say I have a problem with the Yankees--I don't. I'm not jealous of them. They've given New York a product their fans can be proud of, like it's supposed to be. I like Derek Jeter, I think he's a class act. I read some of the good and the bad things that were said when he was renegotiating, but he ended up having a pretty decent year. Is he overpaid now? Sure, but he earned it when he was younger. The Yankees took care of him, the way you're supposed to. I'm waiting for the day when the Mets get back to doing things the right way. In the meantime, it's a disaster."
"Thank God for peepholes. You can see craziness at the door. That's one reason I decided to train in martial arts heavily. I train in Krav Maga, do or die, so that way I'm prepared for any situation."
"I've had guys last 30 seconds. I've had other clients who get really nervous and can't get it up. That happens a lot. It can be a little bit overwhelming at times for them, which I understand. Sometimes there's a client who has to inject his penis with something to get it up. There are some who are in wheelchairs. Money is money; sometimes you gotta grin and bear it, but it's not really the most enjoyable experience. It takes a lot out of you, actually, to make believe you are having a good time."
"Some people say they could never go into pediatrics because they couldn't stand the parents. But that's one of the best parts of my job for me. If you're taking care of an elderly patient, you walk into the room and it's just the two of you. With pediatrics, oftentimes, there's not only the mom and dad, sisters and brothers, but sometimes there's grandparents--it's like an audience. And I enjoy that the patient has other people there caring about the child ... But in pediatrics there's usually a very caring parent. Especially in Manhattan, you have the overbearing mothers--I love them. I understand them; I have one myself."
"There's nothing more fun than to wait on someone who is genuinely interested in the food. You'll get a couple that comes in, and this is their one time a year, and they're just so happy to be at the restaurant. There was this kid blogger, he was like 16 or 17, and he had blogged about how he was saving up his allowance to come to Per Se. And he did. He came by himself and had lunch."
"Most of the VIP guests get to be VIPs because they spend money and tip well. The wait staff fight over the VIPs because of the way the system works. Basically, there's a service charge, so everyone gets an hourly rate, which is fantastic because that means the kitchen all get more money, paid vacation--all these other benefits come from that. Then, if people leave any money on top of that, which they normally do, the head server keeps half of it and the other half goes in the tip pool. So the captains will fight over the people that are ballers and spend a lot of money. The more senior captains can make anywhere from $6,000 to $10,000 a night. That's very rare, like once every two years. But there was a private party where these people left like $8,000 as a tip, so the captain walked with $4,000."
"There's a hierarchy based on position, so there's servers, bussers, back servers, runners. Then there's an ethnic hierarchy. There's a huge Bengali population that works in restaurants, and they all have their own hierarchy. You'll have the Spanish-speaking--Dominicans, Mexicans, and Guatemalans. They'll kind of get along, and within each group they'll have their own hierarchy. There's usually one key person who has hired everyone else or who has gotten their friends or family members to come work there. The staff is incestuous. I think half the staff is dating the other half of the staff right now. I mean, you spend 60 hours a week with these people, so what do you think is going to happen?"