Sunday, May 23, 2004

How to win the heart of an ex- waitress

In today's Oregonian columnist Margie Boule gives us the details of John Kerry's recent suprise dinner at a local restaurant following last week's rally in Pioneer Courthouse Square. You knew I was voting for him before, but now I feel less like it's an "anything but Bush" vote and more like I'm voting for a candidate I can genuinely admire.

At the end of the dinner (where he enjoyed some great Oregon wine), Kerry
"...rose and headed to the "dish pit," surprising dishwasher Cesar Juarez. "He just walked in on his own accord, said hello to Cesar, thanked him and shook his hand," John says. No one is sure if Cesar got much out of the brief conversation, "since he doesn't speak English," John explains. Nevertheless, all agree Cesar appeared to be charmed."

And perhaps more importantly, he tipped very well. Would he have thanked the Mexican dishwasher had he not been running for President? Does he do this at every restaurant he eats at? I don't know. But there weren't any cameras rolling at Higgins' that night so I don't think it was staged. But as someone who worked their way through college in the restaurant business, it really showed me that the man can identify with me and what my personal issues are in life (or were at one time). He was a good customer, didn't give the staff any grief, and showed that he appreciates those who make his priveleged lifestyle possible. I think it's genuine. I doubt the Shrub has ever thanked a dishwasher in his life.

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