Merlino & Gonzalez August 2017





My Most Memorable Summer Job PAELLA ON THE PATIO

Unless you’re a child actor or you join a boy band, odds are you’ll work a few different jobs on the way to your long-term career. That was certainly my experience, and a lot of the work I did while growing up and going through law school took place at restaurants. I put in time at a few places, but there was one restaurant that had a bigger

wasn’t looking for work. Nevertheless, I got a call a few days later asking me to come in. Little did I know how important that phone call would be. My first role at Carmen’s was as a busboy, but over the years, I filled just about every role there. I did food prep, made sangria, washed dishes, and waited tables, among many other tasks. Being a waiter at Carmen’s was fast-paced work, especially if you happened to have a patio shift. The restaurant was right on the water, which meant the outdoor tables were the first to fill up. The atmosphere was great, and so was the paella, which brought people out in droves. I still use the skills I learned as a waiter in my work as an attorney. When you wait tables, you deal with all sorts of different people. You are there to give them a great experience, without being the star of the show. Basically, you are a guide taking them through the meal, doing your best to make sure they have the best time possible. That’s exactly the type of relationship I want to have with my clients today. And the same way you return to your favorite restaurants because of the staff, I hope that my clients see me as a friendly face whenever they call or stop by the office. Sadly, Carmen’s was a casualty of Hurricane Sandy in 2012. For those of us that worked there, though, the place lives on in our hearts. I’m still friends with the people I worked alongside, and my kids essentially think of them as family members. I’ll never forget all the hours I spent there and how crucial it was in getting me where I am today. If you have to have a job on your way to finding a career, you can do no better than the one I was lucky enough to have.

impact on me than any other: Carmen’s of Staten Island. I worked there for 14 years, and the skills I learned there are still with me today. I can still remember how I ended up with a job at Carmen’s. One of my friends worked there, and I stopped by one summer afternoon to pick up a book I needed for summer reading. I happened to run into a manager there, and he said to me, “Don’t expect to leave here with a job.” I explained to him that I was simply there to grab a book from my friend and



Made with FlippingBook - Online Brochure Maker