Welcome inside the legendary Cricket Room. Prompted by his years as a top-tier restaurant employee, Pauli dishes on the challenges of serving iconic celebrities, moguls and politicians. What started as a much-needed do-over after the disbanding of a rock band, led to this coming-of-age story. Replete with name-dropping of some of Hollywood's elite actors who drink too much, walk out on checks, and in many ways express their disdain for the hired servants, Waiter to the Rich and Shameless is worthy of its own web series. Even so, this isn't a victim's account of the worst of the worst in Hollywood. Through all of the stress and drama, Pauli manages to entertain and, eventually, find his inner peace. - Author and Book Buzz
"Waiter to the Rich and Shameless" is one of those memoirs that manage to not only entertain you, but impart a few life lessons and wisdom along the way. The book centers around author Paul Hartford's life catering to the whims of the elite of society... and all of the drama, stress, frustration and entertainment to be found from it. The well-written book keeps the reader engaged from start to finish as Mr. Hartford explores his time at The Cricket Room and all of the truly shocking events that he bore witness to. Once I started this book I really couldn't put it down, it's the kind of addictive memoir that you just have to read all in one setting because it's just too good to walk away from. Paul Hartford has a sassy, engaging, fast-paced and entertaining writing style that makes this a book true treat to read. - L. Collins, Amazon
" Check please!" This satisfying serving of celebrity dish and meaty "where is my life going" angst will fill the bill for a delicious tale. Follow Pauli on his journey of discovery from rock musician with lots of boy band hair and attitude to haughty server to the rich and shamelessly obnoxious. Meet celebrities without the protective handlers and camera lens that separate them from reality. Try to figure out the real name of the restaurant/bar in Hollywood; accompany Pauli to orgies and the Italian adventure of a lifetime. Only the names are changed to protect the author from legal consequences. That's okay. You'll figure it out. Buon appetite!
This is a true story but told through the eyes of a pseudonymous main character and a disguised (due to legal consequences) setting. The rich and shameless are exposed and you'll recognize all of them, even though they will be without their publicity agents and handlers. You'll be trying to figure out the real name of the restaurant and the real identity of the waiter, like a detective solving a crime. Clues abound so pay attention. - Writing Down Pat, Amazon
Paul Hartford's Waiter to the Rich and Shameless is a page turner. Anyone who's had to hold down a day job while pursuing their passion will find this an enjoyable read. His stories of his experiences with celebrities is both anecdotal and insightful. - Johnny Eastwood, iTunes
Waiter to the Rich and Shameless" is an insider's look at what really goes on behind the scenes at a legendary Beverly Hills watering hole at the epicenter of the Los Angeles entertainment establishment. Savvy observers will be able to easily identify the venue. Hint: "The Cricket Room" is not its actual name.
"The Cricket Room" is THE place where celebrities go to see and be seen. It's where they relax far away from the watchful eyes of a prying public. It's where they make deals and prove they can spend more money for a meal and beverages than the patrons of Mortons of Chicago ever would. Some civilians pop in when they're in town for a rare in-person glimpse of their favorite A-listers.
"Paul Hartford" knows the scene well. He was part of it as a bartender, and then a waiter, for more than a decade. He gives you a picture of what goes on inside people's heads -- the famous, infamous, and those who serve them.
"It was cool during my training to learn that the Cricket Room bar uses the old-fashioned, classic 'Club Service,'" says Paulie, the book's narrator. "The whole presentation of even the simplest drink was one of elegance, class, and sophistication." This is what the patrons expect but Paulie also reveals the way the sausage of elegant service is made. He also shows us the raw commercial considerations that are hidden agenda of the establishment's corporate overlords.
As far as the patrons are concerned, Paulie describes them, essentailly, as swimming in an "infinite sea of sin." If the Hotel California had a room like this it would be something very close to "The Cricket Room."
A typical night might include a visit by Brad Pitt during the filming of Troy. After he, ironically, had torn his Achilles tendon while playing Achilles in the epic film. He was, we learn, not as difficult as many of his peers. Celebs, their friends and entourages, gossiping and holding court, often behave badly, like Russell Crowe who comes off as a misplaced, non-obese Henry the Eighth in modern dress. The bizarre becomes seems to be normal any place celebrities gather in the LA Basin. This is especially true at "The Cricket Room."
Hartford describes some of the guests as having had enough plastic surgery to actually scare people. "Imagine it up close. It's even worse. Put down the scalpel and pick up a cheeseburger for Christ's sake."
Paulie's comments often resemble the patter of a stand-up comedian on a good night. His description of an encounter with Ozzie Osbourne is particularly good for a belly laugh. He knows that when you serve ruthless people, a/k/a the rich and shameless, you have to take the good with the bad. The recently Sony hacked email scandal confirms the accuracy of His observations. You won't read it and weep but you may laugh frequently. This may be the only way to truly enjoy a book that masters the black humor style of a 60s novel while giving us a glimpse of life at the top of the show biz pile-up.
- Martin Grossman, Amazon