Tuesday, June 24, 2008


In response to a number of emails and comments indicating that I'm a dick or a jerk (I am), I thought I'd clarify my position on my last post, as if I need to explain myself (and I don't).

1) Guy was holding money in his hand as if he was wanting to purchase a drink. Not get a water, which is universally free everywhere. I don't charge money for or expect tips for water or coke or sprite or any other non-alcoholic beverage we serve. People are often surprised by this and I often refuse tips when informing them of this.

2) As I took his order, not as I returned with it, he put his money in his pocket that he was obviously holding in his hand on the bar in order to get my attention.

3) Yes, as in many other bars downtown, we have a "self serve" water cooler. As I've outlined before, drunk people can only see about 3 feet in any one direction at any one time, so the odds of them discovering this self serve goodie is extremely low. I could have been a dick and told him to get it on his own, but I didn't. I made him his damn water for free without expecting anything in return.

My gripe in this matter was the fact he obviously misled me without any intention of purchasing anything in order to get his free beverage more quickly.

If you've worked in the industry and can't understand why that would rub me the wrong way, then you're an idiot. At the end of the day, it's how much money you're walking out with in your pocket. That's the only thing that matters. If you're not in the industry and you can't understand why that rubs me the wrong way, then I don't give a fuck.

And there you have it.

Monday, June 23, 2008

A Fast One Gets Pulled On Me

After this happened, I felt like it was something that should have happened, or I should have noticed, a long time ago.

While bartending last weekend, we were fairly busy. I spotted a potential customer leaning against the bar, waiting patiently with money in hand. In a more than reasonable amount of time, I walked over to him and asked him what he needed.

"Just a water, man," he said as he pocketed his money.

I made him his water, saw I was getting no tip, and since water is free, I realized that I had been had. The guy lured me over to the opposite end of the bar with his cash-in-hand, and got what he wanted without paying a dime.


Thursday, June 19, 2008

Breaking News!

Drunk, underaged, incoming freshmen arrested downtown! You can find this exciting story, right here. Shockingly, he had been drinking and was overserved at Bourbon Street.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

A Situation That Could Have Been Avoided

"Can I get a blue motherfucker?" the girl asked.

"Sure," I reply. I make the drink and set it on the bar in front of her. "That'll be $3.50."

Her friend approaches the bar and places herself directly next to her friend before the girl can hand me her money. They exchange very quick small talk, so I know that they're together.

"I'll have two long islands!" the girl demands of me, without me making eye contact or asking her what she needs. This, to me, is a clear violation of the well known (or apparently, not) rules of the bar.

Before I can tell her that there are several other people that are ahead of her in the virtutal bar line, she offers to pay for the drink I just made for her friend, as well as the drinks she just ordered. Making an exception, I quickly make her order and return, setting the drinks in front of her and quoting her price.

Again, before I can get my hands on the cash, a guy walks up behind the two girls, obviously with them both.

"Lemme get two grateful deads and another one of those," he says, pointing at the blue motherfucker I had originally made, again without my asking what he needed or making eye contact. Another vioation, I think.

"No!" argues the second girl, turning to face him. "I already got Shana a drink!"

"Well she said she wanted a grateful dead, not a long island!" he argues back.

"But she told me she wanted a long island, not a grateful dead..." she begins to whine back at him.

"Hey!" I interupt, waving my hand close to their face in order to get their attention. "Look, I need you guys to pay for these drinks I've just made. I've got other people waiting," I say with probably more aggravation in my voice than I intended.

I motioned to the ever-growing number of people at my bar with money or credit cards in hand, waiting patiently for their drinks. They've got their shit together. These people don't, and I'm quickly growing irritated because of this.

"Dude, I'll pay for the whole round if you just get my order," he says to me.

Begrudgingly, I agree and make their order. He finally pays for everything, with a credit card of course, and asks me to close him out. This seemingly simple act makes things take that much longer, and now because of their 3 minute ordeal, I'm now in the weeds and have to make up lost time with other people who are growing increasingly impatient. I drop their credit card slip and pen in front of them on the bar top and go off to help other people.

Several minutes later I spot the original girl hanging over the bar with the filled out credit card slip and pen, waiting for me to take it. This isn't necessary, but often people do it instead of leaving on the bar top. I come by quickly and take it from her.

"Thanks for being patient with us," she offers to me, with obvious sarcasm in her voice.

I give her a look with a raised eyebrow and look down to the well and continue with the order I'm currently preparing.

"Or...thanks for being a dickhead!" she yells at me, and quickly disappears into the crowd.

I laugh to myself and continue on.

Monday, June 02, 2008

What I Do

Being "on top of your game" in the downtown bar business, as I am, is akin to being the smartest kid in the retarded class. It doesn't really matter how many gold stars you get, or how much praise the teacher heaps upon you, at the end of the day you're still in the retarded class, like it or not.

My customers remind me of that fact from time to time when a decision is made that doesn't benefit them. I don't matter, they'll say. I could make more money working at McDonalds, they'll scream, infuriated that I had denied them of something as valuable as an experience at a downtown bar in Athens, Georgia, arguably one of the least important nightlife scenes anywhere.

This is Athens, not Atlanta, they'll inform me. Dress codes and rules shouldn't apply here, they argue. Why, I ask? I couldn't tell you why Athens, according to some people, is outside the reality that every other bar and nightclub in the rest of the country is within. This, to them, is apparently a good reason why they should be permitted to dress like a moron, puke everywhere, fight each other, and generally do whatever the fuck they want, whenever the fuck they want to.

This is where my meaningless, thankless, low paying job comes in handy for me. For while I collect a meager paycheck and endure insults from people who are right on the money when they inform me of being a do-nothing bottom feeder, if I don't want someone coming in or I want them kicked out, I'm not going to do anything until I make sure that's accomplished.

For many people, this ruins their night, interestingly enough because of a supposed meaningless person doing a meaningless job. For me, a piece of shit doorguy to them, simply to know that makes mine.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

AthensDoorGuy turns into a Customer

After a much needed vacation and a lot of time spent in a bar scene that I'm not familiar with, I still conclude that people are still idiots when you cram them into a room, pump deafing dance music through speakers turned up extraordinarily loud and feed them alcohol and cocaine until they decide to fight and fuck each other.

I was fortunate enough to be in a place where I got to observe overly tanned, spiked hair, unbuttoned shirt, juiced up kids who, luckily for me, managed to stay out of my way most of the time.

Most of that time, that is. Not the entire time.

Leaving the bar at last call, we were ushered towards a parking lot by the bar staff and police, and encouraged to leave as quickly as possible. Being a bar employee myself, I made sure to not waste any time getting the hell out of their way so they could do what I want to do at the end of the night after work: Have a beer and go home.

And so we did. But not before one of the ladies I was with was approached by a drunken, coked up, spiked hair, unbuttoned shirt, retard in a way that I found offensive. Grabbing a random girls elbow, and telling her she should come home with him right then doesn't normally get on my good side. Especially not at 2am when the bars are emptying. I told him she was with me and he turned and walked away.

Brushing off the encounter as one that wasn't notable at all, we continued towards our car when we noticed our drunken guido following us on the phone and yelling at me loudly. Apparently, I had disrespected him and he let me know in no uncertain terms that he wasn't happy with how I handled the situation.

I turned to face him and our conversation with something like this:

"Dude, quit following us. Go away."

"What theee fu-fuu....fuck! Fuck this shit, nigga! I'll kick your ass! I didn't know she was your girl, why you gotta be dissin me like that?"

"No you won't. Go away or I just might take you up on your offer you little fucker," I said, the alcohol I had consumed fueling my rage towards him without any hope of stopping it at this point.

"I gots ten niggas on the way! You don't wanna fuck with me!" he slurred his words. "I'm in the fucking Navy!" ...as if that made him any more tough.

Having very few encounters with a type of person like this, I recall finding it weird that a white, middle class suburban shit head like this would feel it neccessary, or even appropriate, to use a word that normally would offend African American people.

Just a few seconds later I found myself in a fairly bad spot. Instead of the one guido I was squaring off with and getting ready to beat the shit out of for simply being a total and complete waste of a human life, three of his friends joined in with him.

I was surrounded. The shit talking went back and forth for a moment and I determined that none of them were prepared to fight over stupid shit. They recognized their drunk and coked up friend was acting like an idiot and instead of ending our encounter with fists thrown and a trip to the hospital and/or jail, all of them ended up apologizing to me and offering to buy me a drink. This isn't to say my physical presence or ability to talk shit to some drunken kid is so developed that I made them run off with their tails in between their legs - after all, I was outnumbered 4 to 1 - but it has everything to do with the fact that maybe not every single one of the drunken idiots I deal with on an nightly basis is a complete and total waste, unlike the original guido.

They recognized their friend was about to be in a bad spot, and recognized that he had consumed too much of whatever he was on, and his actions lead to the position he found himself in.

I was just glad that things could be settled without a fight and trip to jail given the large police presence, and I'm sure they were too.

But to be totally honest, a little part of me wishes that we had.