If your bosses try and pull this shit, walk out on them.
New York on my mind.

Forget about teaching: those who can't, read.

I'm not overly fond of working jobs. It's weird, then, that a lot of the memoirs I really enjoy are "working life" memoirs: Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential, Debra Ginsberg's Waiting: The True Confessions of a Waitress, Steve Martin's Born Standing Up, etc. Yet another interesting entry in this pantheon is Melissa Plaut's Hack: How I Stopped Worrying about What To Do with My Life and Started Driving a Yellow Cab (it's newly out in paperback, but I prefer the hardcover cover).

I really enjoyed this one. Truly casting about for something to "do" with her life, Plaut decides to get her taxi license.  There's nothing fancy here; it's just a "year in the life" of a New York City cab driver, complete with pictures of other drivers giving her the finger, as well as some nice shots of the city itself.

So, yes, my whole life is about avoiding work. But that doesn't mean I don't like to hear about other peoples' jobs, mainly because they wow me. I mean, really. Can you imagine driving a cab in New York City? I can barely get downtown in my Midwestern "city" without whimpering. (Okay, there's really very little I can do without whimpering, but still.) Color me impressed:

"That first day, it took me two hours to get my first fare. She was a middle-aged Spanish waitress just coming off work from a diner on 14th Street and Avenue B in the East Village.

I was so nervous, mainly about going the wrong way, but she soothed me. 'How long have you been doing this?'

I didn't want her to know how green I really was, so I lied. 'About a month.'

'Do you like it?'

'Um, yeah. It's okay so far.'

She said, 'I've actually been thinking about getting into it. Was it hard to get your license?'

I explained the process and encouraged her to try it, said we needed more women drivers on the streets to balance things out a little bit. I tried to act like I knew what I was talking about.

At the end of the trip, she said, 'Here, I'm giving you everything I made in tips tonight,' and handed me a total of $14 for a $10 fare.* I couldn't thank her enough." (p. 40.)

If there's a heaven, I hope it's filled with waitresses and cab drivers. Have a good weekend, all.