Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

'Waiting' Has the Ingredients of a Cult Hit

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

'Waiting' Has the Ingredients of a Cult Hit

Article excerpt

Byline: Matt Soergel

Watch Rob McKittrick's comedy, Waiting -- it will change your life. Because from here on out, you will be extremely, extremely nice to the wait staff at every single restaurant you go to, for the rest of your days.

Waiting pushes the limits of its R rating, with much profane dialogue, much of it focused on a particular part of the male anatomy. But the scene for which it will be remembered -- should it become a cult hit, which seems possible -- is one in which servers and cooks at a Shenanigan's chain restaurant take turns doing absolutely disgusting things to the food of an extremely obnoxious customer. Emptying the contents of a nostril into mashed potatoes is not the worst thing that happens.

Shenanigan's is a made-up place. But those incidents in Waiting details are real, says writer-director McKittrick -- just exaggerated for comic effect. "The scene where they're tainting the woman's food certainly goes over the top in detail, though it's rooted in fact," he says.

He knows: McKittrick wrote the script eight years ago when he was 24, waiting tables at a TGI Friday's in Orlando, after a stint at a Steak & Ale in his hometown of Bradenton.

There's no big message in the story, he said -- it's just trying to capture that feeling of being young and working in a restaurant and hanging out with friends.

"So much of the movie is based on actual things that happened -- I'm less a good writer than a good observer, a chronicler of what I observed."

So Waiting is about clueless managers, fighting boredom, dealing with waitstaff-cook tension, trying to pick up underage hostesses, partying with co-workers night after night.

And trying to decide what to do with the rest of your life.

The title has a double meaning, says McKittrick -- noting that, like one of his main characters, it took him four years to get a two-year degree from Manatee Community College

"I was waiting tables while trying to decide what the hell to do with my life, so I wrote a script about it. …

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