Catch!: A Fishmonger's Guide to Greatness

Cyndi Crother, Author, Cyndi Laurin, Author, Crew of the World Famous Pike Place Fish, With Berrett-Koehler Publishers $20.95 (216p) ISBN 978-1-57675-254-8
Popular with tourists and television cameras alike for its employees' fish-throwing antics, Seattle's World Famous Pike Place Fish Market was labeled by CNN as America's""most fun place to work"" in 2001. But it's""the philosophies behind the fun"" that have made the fishmongers (and their consultant/Svengali Jim Bergquist) the darlings of the business-motivational lecture circuit. Quality assurance and corporate training expert Crother has collected their briny New Age wisdom in this slender but still turgid and repetitive volume. There's little here about actually running a fish stall--""I try to clean the cooler out as much as I can in terms of getting rid of all the fish"" is as substantive as it gets--but there's a lot about personal growth and transformation, forging meaningful relationships with customers, and being present in the fish-selling moment. The message is one of empowerment and fulfillment, embodied in the slogan""it's all over here"" (meaning""each person is solely responsible for his or her thoughts, feelings, emotions, decisions, actions--everything"") and oft-repeated mantras about""generating greatness"" and transcending our circumstances by""choosing"" our attitudes and actions. The fish-mongers thus underscore the familiar business-motivational theme that even the most mundane service-sector occupation is an opportunity for self-actualization, a conceit generalized to such non-seafood contexts as stalled traffic (""I have learned not to resist where I am because that is where I am"") and even personal health (""I am choosing to make this a powerful event in my life,"" one worker says of his brain tumor). Ultimately, though, the fishmongers' Buddhist-inflected doctrines (""our perceptions determine our reality"") as gathered by Crother amount to little more than positive-thinking bromides. Photos.
Reviewed on: 01/12/2004
Release date: 01/01/2004
Paperback - 200 pages - 978-1-57675-323-1
Open Ebook - 200 pages - 978-1-60994-327-1
Open Ebook - 169 pages - 978-1-60509-380-2
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