By Stewart O'Nan
Stewart O’Nan has been known as “the bard of the operating classification” and has now crafted a frank and humorous but emotionally resonant story set inside of a shiny workaday international seldom obvious in modern fiction. Perched within the a long way nook of a run-down New England mall, The pink Lobster hasn’t been making its numbers and headquarters has pulled the plug. yet supervisor Manny DeLeon nonetheless must navigate a difficult final shift. With basically 4 purchasing days left till Christmas, Manny needs to persuade his near-mutinous employees to hunker down and serve the ultimate onslaught of hungry retirees, lunatics, and vacation place of work events. all of the whereas, he’s considering find out how to deal with the waitress he’s nonetheless in love with, his pregnant female friend at domestic, and the appropriate current he nonetheless must purchase. final evening on the Lobster is a poignant but redemptive examine what a guy does while he discovers that his most sensible may not be more than enough.
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Extra info for Last Night at the Lobster
Manny waves, though it’s impossible for Mr. Kashynski to hear him through the windshield. Manny digs a finger under his cuff to read his watch (and there’s the rubber band again, like a reminder), then holds the same finger up to let Coach know there’s still one minute. Mr. K. waves back, dismissive, no rush, and breaks out his paper. Inside, Nicolette informs him that Crystal isn’t in yet, as if he hasn’t noticed. Jacquie’s sitting in the break room with Roz, refilling salt and pepper shakers.
Part of him—the responsible, smarter part of him that wants Deena to be limitlessly happy—hopes she doesn’t show up. What could he say to her anyway? Good-bye. Is that it? They tried that months ago. He used to marvel at the fact that out of the millions of people in the world they’d somehow found each other, whether it was an accident or destiny or the result of some logical, cascading chain of events. Now, looking out at the snow falling on the darkened cars, he thinks it’s an even bigger mystery, and, like the Lobster, a waste.
He counts the bills twice, then locks the envelope and the safe again and fills the cash drawer of the POS behind the bar, snapping the spring-loaded holders down like mousetraps. When he’s done he washes his hands, scrubbing between his fingers and singing “Happy Birthday” in his head like a surgeon. Ever since a salmonella outbreak in Tennessee, headquarters has been pushing food-safety awareness, and as with every corporate decree, Manny’s done his best to lead by example. He’s whitewashed graffiti and pushed the heart-healthy menu and taught his crew that every little bite counts, trying to produce a magical dining experience for his customers.