Thursday, January 10, 2008

Getting What You Want

As with anything in the bar business, we're often offered money to allow customers to do things we either have initially decided not to let them do, have been specifically ordered by our bosses not to let them do, or that is specifically against the law.

Bars are full of shady characters on either side of the bar. The customers are shady, the employees can be shady, and the owners can especially be shady. It's tough to find a place to work where honesty is something that's more of the rule than the exception. Thankfully, I happen to work at one of those rare places.

But that doesn't stop the shady customers from trying to come in. I'm offered money on a nightly basis. I used to sometimes take it, but only if it didn't violate several rules that I considered non-negotiable. With the recent crackdown on bars and the host of new laws that have recently been passed, my money-taking days are behind me - for now - so you may have a little difficulty buying what you want when you're out, but are some things that I'll never take money to ignore, plus some other things that you may be able to buy your way past.

If you're under 21, you're not getting in. People offer me money to get their underaged friends in every single night. It never fails. We're a 21+ establishment which means if I let you in, there's nothing to stop you from drinking once you're past me. And that happens to be against the law and a serious threat to our liquor license, which happens to employ a number of people who depend on having cash in their pocket several nights a week. And you think that waving a $20 in my face will convince me to risk that? Fuck off.

Say you get your underaged girlfriend in and she then drinks herself retarded and gets arrested when she leaves. What do you think the first thing the cops are going to ask her? They'll ask where she was drinking and how she got into that particular establishment. Then I'm screwed. And then the bar's screwed. I'm definitely out of a job and the rest of my coworkers possibly may be as well. Cops do stings all the time and there is no way in hell I'm risking getting ticketed or fired for the likes of you. So forget it.

IDs. If it's fake, don't even try to offer me money to look the other way. If it ain't yours, don't try it. If it's expired, then we might have something to work with. If it expired 3 years ago, forget it. If it expired 3 months ago, then there's a possibility.

We're at capacity or the doors are closed. This is a much more workable situation for you. By law, everyone has to be out of the bar by 2:45am. So if it's before then, you may have a shot to get back inside. Talk to the guy at the door discreetly. If its important enough to you, then you'll cough up the dough. If not, then leave us the hell alone because the answer will always be no. And no, your friend can't come with you unless they pay, too. I'm trying to get you fuckers out of here so I can go home. Why would I make that process take any longer than necessary unless I got something out of it?

Dresscode. A lot more bars around here have a strict dress code these days. It all depends on management and the guys working the door and the night of the week and a million other variables, but if you're denied for not wearing the right thing then try approaching the guys at the door discreetly and politely to ask what you can do to make things right. If its fixable, then they'll help you to make it happen. If not, then quit asking. They've made their decision.

Kicked out. The odds are against you on this one, sadly. If you're escorted out, the best way, again, is to discreetly approach one of us and ask if there's a possibility you can be allowed back in. If there's a way and you offer the right amount of cash, then we'll try to make it happen. Don't be a dick, don't be loud and don't act like you can't be kicked out again if you continue to do whatever you did to be escorted out in the first place.

Illegal acts. I'm not getting arrested for you. I won't allow your underaged friends in, I won't cover up your drug dealing or usage, and I won't sell/give you alcohol after 2am. I happen to have a set of morals that dictate my actions while working regardless of how much green you wave in my face. If it's illegal, then don't even ask. It won't happen.

Minimum. If you slide me less than $20 then our deal is no longer a deal. I've been offered several hundred dollars to do things that I ended up refusing to do. I don't need your money, but I'm going out of my way for you because apparently you badly need to be in the bar for some unknown reason. So it'll cost you. Therefore, don't be cheap.

There you have it. Some general rules to making happen what you want to happen is to be polite, respectful, and discrete. If we say no, then we really mean no. And that doesn't mean to ask us again for another 10 minutes because we might change our mind. It means go the fuck away.


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