In 1998, when Amazon.com went to temp agencies to recruit people, they gave them a simple directive: send us your freaks. Thus began Mike Daisey's love affair with this quintessential dot-com. His ascent from lowly temp to customer service representative to business development hustler is the stuff of dreams - and nightmares. Daisey takes us from Amazon's high point, when the stock traded at $361, to well into its rollercoaster plunge to today's humble two-digit price, all the while reflecting on the very nature of the new economy and the darkly humorous compromises made every day to survive in corporate America. At strategic intervals, the narrative is punctuated by hysterical (in every sense of the word) letters to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos - missives that seem ripped from the collective unconscious of dot-com disciples the world over. No wonder Newsweek has dubbed Daisey the "oracle of the bust."
With a hugely popular Web site and a hit one-man show that has received phenomenal coverage (with stories in Wired, Newsweek, Salon, and elsewhere), Daisey has become the bard of the dot-com boom-and-bust - a smart, imaginative, and acutely perceptive chronicler of our times.
The Free Press, a division of Simon & Schuster, is the original publisher of 21 Dog Years in hardcover.
Executive Producer: Laura Wilson
Original Jacket Design: High Design
Original Jacket Art: Joyn Tynes
©2002 Mike Daisey
(P)2002 Random House, Inc.
"A modern Dickensian fable of pointless toil inside an industrial madhouse. Too funny not to be accurate, too heartbreaking not to be true. If you are wondering where all the time and money went, this book has the answers." (Walter Kirn, author of Up in the Air)
All I can say is that I learned a little bit about the life of customer support person. It really was a waste of my time. I think the author was just trying to justify his pathic life!
I have existed since the beginning of time at the morning of the world and I shall exist until the last star falls from the heavens!!!
I would say it ranks in the top 10 books I have read
Mike was the main character
The training portion
Great book a must read!!!
This guy has a very dry sardonic sense of humor. But as you get into the book you begin to get more and more of his humor. I had several bust-a-gut reactions to this book.
I was part of the 'dot-com' era, and I just did not find anything interesting about this book. I did not laugh once. Also, I could not stand how the author spoke.
This book is incredibly funny and extremely well narrated by mdaisey. I wasn't ready for this one to end. You don't have to have participated in the dot com boom to appreciate 21 Dog Years.
Mike Daisey offers a glimpse into the work environment of this much discussed internet company. His observations are often hysterically funny about how ludicrous and unbusinesslike Amazon could be, and at the same time, how swept up and driven the employees were when they calculated the value of their own stock options.
He tells his story wonderfully, and perhaps you will hear a dead on description of yourself in the many customer service horrors on which he elaborates. You may never ask to speak to a customer service supervisor again!
Mike Daisey adapted 21 Dog Years from his play, and it shows in his easy reading style and flair for comic timing. There's a segment I particularly like after a long day--other listeners will certainly remember the "I understand, I empathize" spiel from a customer service rep.
While the focus is indeed his job(s) at amazon.com, much of the story is purely about the life and times of Mike Daisey; fortunately, it's almost all funny.
Delicate ears should be warned that there is occasional profanity.
I worked at Alibris.com during the same period of time that MDAISY worked at Amazon. It was really interesting to see another perspective on the world of selling books over the internet during the e-boom times. What a ride.
...you will love this book. It talks about the office politics and structure of today's businesses. The best thing about this is that it does not take it serious. It paralleled my business life to perfection.
I recommended this to book to my coworkers and they loved it. One said she had to pull over in the car she was laughing too much to drive with it on. It is a definite read.
I thought this would be an entertaining book, but I found it to be incredibly annoying. After listening to the second CD, I threw the rest away not wanting to subject myself to any more of it.
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