Jean-Louis Lefort (French; 1875–1954)
Matinée au concert des Ambassadeurs = Matinee Concert at Les Ambassadeurs
Oil on canvas, before 1910
Musée des Beaux-Arts, Bordeaux, France
© Musée des Beaux-Arts–Mairie de Bordeaux. Photo: L. Gauthier, F. Deval

Most writers and other artists have waited tables at some point in their lives. But I think that if you survive it, you don’t want to think about it ever again. You want to just forget that dirty, shitty job you had to do to pay the rent. You don’t want to dive back into it and relive it. That’s my theory, anyway. But really, it’s a gold mine. It’s a perfect representation of the American caste system. You have people who are thought of as worthless—people who are undocumented, working for very little money, barely surviving in this country—and, just around the corner, millionaires eating off the plate those other guys just washed. There’s so much meat there.