In the High Peaks

Monday, November 1, 2010

Just Checking in, but Nothing Significant

Oh, I do hope I find a way to make the time for a decent blog post tomorrow! It is Tuesday, however, and I'll be preparing for my Wednesday classes, but still. Reading, and blogging, are important!

Tomorrow I hope to list a few of the memoirs my group of 18-year-olds are reading. I just finished listening to How Starbucks Saved My Life, a memoir by Michael Gates Gill. This is a book I listened to on my long commute to and from school. Although I dislike books that are repetitive (which this book surely was), I find this unfortunate characteristic acceptable in an audiobook. I can still drive conscientiously and not lose track of where the author is going.

Not too long ago, I applied for a job as a barista at Starbucks. My application did not go far, just as my application four years ago did not. I suspect age discrimination might have been a factor, so, for this reason, I was fascinated to read about a much older, 64-year-old former Madison Avenue advertising executive taking the plunge. His story revealed how his job changed his outlook, his personal life, and about Starbucks's whole gestalt; i.e. its modus operandi, if you will. Why it functions the way it does, from the very bottom to the top. In this memoir, the top was the manager of the store where Gill worked as well as her immediate management.

As an advertising exec who worked in a cut-throat, highly competitive and MEAN business (think AMC's television show Mad Men), it was revealing how his life as a barista was anything but that. Interesting.


  1. Judith,
    I saw a short Paul Auster interview on the BBCs Newsnight Review on Friday. I wish you could have seen it.He seems really nice. Everybody raved about his new book, Sunset Park. Can't wait. Can't thank you enough for introducing me to him.

  2. I've heard about this book somewhere else and it does sound interesting. Imagine giving up a job to work at Starbucks--then again it might be worth it to live without the stress of normal day jobs (I could use some stress free work about now, too!). Thanks for joining in on the Sarton discussion--I hope you'll want to read more books with the group. It's pretty laid back so feel free to drop in on the discussion whenever you have a chance.