The only thing better than wine is free wine. And former Miamian and author Lisa Mattson is offering just that at two separate events this weekend in honor of her new book, The Exes in My iPod: A Playlist of the Men Who Rocked Me to Wine Country.
The book is the story of a Miami waitress striving to improve her taste in men, wine, and work -- all told through a playlist of songs that remind her of exes. It's inspired by Mattson's own experiences, so we thought we'd talk to the author about the Miami dating scene, wine choices for breakups, and waitress horror stories.
Short Order: In one word, how would you sum up the Miami dating scene when you were in it?
Lisa Mattson: Baffling.
What's your favorite wine for drowning relationship-related sorrows?
A glass of Egly-Ouriet Brut Rose Champagne, or any fine glass of bubbly. Whenever I hear that cork pop and the bubbles fizz, my mood lightens. Back when I was single and knee-deep in dating drama, whenever I'd sip pink bubbly I couldn't help but think, "Hey. Life could be worse. I could be drinking Coors Light off the tailgate of a pick-up truck in the Ozarks with a shotgun-toting husband named Bubba."
What's the best song for letting out post-break up rage?
Alanis Morrissette's "You Oughta Know" -- my favorite angry musician of the 1990s -- but Kelly Clarkson's "Since U Been Gone" really spoke to me in 2004 during my divorce.
What song best describes the men you experienced in Miami?
Shaggy's "It Wasn't Me" or "Sabotage" by the Beastie Boys. When I wasn't getting cheated on, I think I was usually in a relationship with some guy that was testing me -- let's see how far I can take (or sabotage) this before she dumps me. Take her to Valentine's Day dinner and let her pick up the tab. Get her car towed on South Beach AND make her pay the $100 cab fare to get you both back home. Almost get her arrested for marijuana possession in the Grove. Move to Palm Beach while she's being evicted from her apartment and not offer her a couch to sleep on. Looking back, the crap I willfully endured really cracks me up.
I understand you once worked as a waitress in Miami yourself. Any horror stories (it's Halloween week after all!)?
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One afternoon, I was folding napkins in a booth on the Cheesecake Factory CocoWalk's veranda, and one of my co-workers, a former rugby player from Wisconsin, plopped down across from me and confessed that he'd had a threesome with my boyfriend the night before. The mental image was certainly horrific at the time: My svelte boyfriend bent over a couch with a burly jock gyrating behind him -- a jock who helped run desserts and waters to my tables on any given Sunday. What a blow to my ego and to my self-esteem.
Mattson will be appearing on Friday from 7 to 9 p.m. at Vinos in the Grove. It's a free wine tasting, but RSVP is requested. She'll also be appearing on Saturday from 7 to 8 p.m. at Books & Books Coral Gables for a book chat and wine tasting. That's also a free event. You can check out more about Mattson's new tome on Facebook.
Follow Hannah on Twitter @hannahalexs.