Wednesday, May 06, 2009


I'm not sure why, but a few days ago I began reminescing about my days working the door at the first bar I worked at, and I remembered a guy who I couldn't help but laugh about to myself as I thought about his rise to the top as our favorite regular, to his demise as one of the many people who were banned from the bar.

This kid - we'll call him John - first started coming around the bar around 2004 or 2005. I can't really remember. It was a long time ago. John would come in and hang out with his friends and be your typical downtown bar-goer. After awhile, we knew his name, knew what he drank, and knew he would be there 3 or 4 nights a week. He became one of the regulars. He spent more money there than he should as a college student, but he tipped well and everything was nice and pretty in his world and ours.

After awhile, as most things go, we began to see the bad side in him. He'd get a little too drunk. When we'd call him on his bad behavior, and he'd get a little bit of an attitude. Of course, the next night he would apologize and promise to never get to that point again, and we'd let it slide, of course, because he was a regular who spent money there.

Towards the end of my stint at that bar, John had got to a point where he was claiming to be staring in the next MTV reality show and he wanted to do his series finale at the bar I worked at. He promised MTV was footing the bill and we would all be paid very nicely if he could be allowed to rent the bar out for the night. Of course we agreed to it, but as most drunken regulars are concerned, he was totally full of shit. We weren't surprised.

On night he had one of his famous "get too drunk and get an attitude" nights, and he was asked to leave. He were basically sick of his shit and he walked down the sidewalk. A few moments later, I noticed a commotion a ways down the street and saw him in the center of it. Surrounding him were two police officers and he was in handcuffs. I walked down to check it out. He spotted me and pleaded to convince the officers to let him go. I ignored him, not wanting to get in the middle of anything. I recognized the police officer, so I casually asked what had happened.

"He hit this girl right here," the cop said, motioning to a girl crying to a few of her friends a few feet away. She had a big red spot on her face where he had slapped the shit out of her.

"Ok, thanks. See ya!" I said, and walked away. Not my problem, I figured. Plus, if you hit a girl and the worst that happens to you is you go to jail, consider yourself lucky.

As I walked away, I caught part of their conversation. " you even know who I am?" he spat at the police officer. "I'm the next MTV reality show star! You can't arrest me!..."

I swear. I can't make this shit up. It was in the Athens Banner-Herald police blotter the next day. I tried searching for it before I wrote this but I couldn't find it. Search for it and maybe you can find it. This happened around late 2006, I think.

Soon after, taking into consideration his lying about renting the bar, his constant drunken behavior, and his tendancy to hit girls, we banned him from the bar. He was getting worse and worse and we had other ridiculous shit to deal with than some kid who thought rules didn't apply to him. Of course, every drunk regular thinks the rules don't apply to him, and therein lies the problem with regulars. Another story for another day, though.

I quit that bar shortly after that. I began working in a nearby bar and heard they started letting him back in. One night I saw a situation at the door of my old bar.

Apparently, he was ridiculously drunk - yet again - and challenged the door guy to a fight when he wasn't allowed inside. He took a drunken swing and that was that. I witnessed John flying out of the bar, going headfirst into the engine block of a Harley parked out front knocking him out cold. It was a sickening sound.

He laid there for a few minutes and then got up and staggered away. That was the last time I saw the kid anywhere around my side of downtown.

So, I thought about that a few days ago, and I just found the entire story to be really funny. I'm still not really sure why.


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