Posts Tagged ‘bartender’

Review Evolution

May 17, 2016

There is a four letter website out there that stands for everything that is wrong with social media. This website allows any asshole with a cell phone to spew hate filled reviews attacking people in the service industry because they are upset that there is no Amber Ale on tap. They seem to have no control over what slanderous rhetoric its users post. Anyone who has ever waited or bussed a table, tended bar, been a floor or general manager or worked the door as a security guard will tell you that 90% of what you read on this website is bullshit usually made up by a user under the influence of alcohol. I understand that speech is free in this country but personally attacking an employee of an establishment you patronize, while drunk and recently ejected, does not equate to freedom of speech in my mind.

I have so many negative reviews about me that it is impossible to count. I have been called both racist and sexist on this site. I have been accused of being a pathetic little man drunk with the power of running a restaurant on this site. I have been referred to as a shameless prick who inexcusably backs his staff on this site. One time some schmuck actually posted a picture of a dog taking a shit and had the nerve to compare me to the pile of dung on this site.

Mind you these nasty things have been written about me because I was just trying to do my job. When was the last time something that happened at your job got blasted out on the internet with the express purpose of making you look like a jackass? Think hard. For me it’s much easier to recall because it happens every several months. If you want to pull me aside and say these awful things to my face that’s fine. It most likely won’t end well but one way or another it will end. Don’t be a coward and run to your laptop or tablet and blatantly make shit up that threatens my livelihood. Once it goes up on this site it is there for the public to read and now not just one person thinks I am all these awful things but the entire world is encouraged to make the same rash judgement.

So, you say to me, “It’s just a silly little website. Nobody cares that much about what is written there. Readers are smart enough to decipher the legitimate reviews versus the bullshit ones.”  First of all, the people who use this site are not that smart. Trust me I deal with them on a daily basis. If they were in a spelling bee versus a stack of bricks I’m taking the bricks, big time. Second of all people do care. I have seen people cry after reading a nasty review that was written about them. I’ve met people in this industry who have lost their job because they got too many bad reviews most of which were bullshit. If people didn’t care what was written on this shitbag site then certain restaurants wouldn’t discount customers who write five star reviews about them.

I have been in or around the restaurant business for 20 plus years and have been in the craft beer industry the last ten and what I have found is that people in this industry care about what they do, a lot. This is a career not some summer job motherfucker and every day I go to work I try to be better than I was the day before. When things don’t go well I lose sleep or drink to excess usually both. When my teammates have a bad day I feel it, because I care about them too. We work long hours on our feet trying extremely hard to provide our patrons with stellar product and service.

To do all that and then have some punk ass permanently stoned college hipster or some Quaalude popping soccer mom who have never waited a table in their life tell the internet that I suck at my job is something I am no longer able to just sit here and take. In fact, a very good friend of mine and I are going to open a restaurant for all these expert reviewers of a business they have never been employed in and it’s going to be called “Go Fuck Yourself” (patent pending). That way when they don’t like how things go down in our house they can reference the sign on the front door.

Service industry people unite. They want to write about us then let’s write about them. There is a website called GULPU.com™ coming to you soon. It’s our site to talk about how awful they are. For now, get stress off your chest with us at https://www.facebook.com/GULPU/

That way the next time some redneck with dip spit dribbling down his chin tries to fight you because you wouldn’t serve his pregnant girlfriend alcohol the real story will be heard too. Oh yeah, I almost forgot “Fuck Yelp”.

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Holiday Winter Storm

January 16, 2014

Every year a certain local restaurant has their annual holiday party, and every year they end up at the pub, and every year they treat our staff, our customers and the pub itself with zero respect. It is like feeding time at the raptor cage from the moment they stumble up until the moment they get thrown out. This restaurant shall remain nameless due to the fact that I have the utmost respect for seventy-five percent of their staff who are all important members of the craft beer community. It was that fact that made me hesitate even writing this but the level of douchebaggery the other twenty-five percent displayed this year was far too egregious for me to stay silent.

It’s 4 pm on a Monday afternoon. Our happy hour regulars are settling in to their stools discussing the day’s events over a nice frosty pint of ale. The door opens and in walks a guy with a hat representing the restaurant he works at. He walks to the far side of the bar and sits down. The bartender approaches him to offer him a beer. He mentions where he works and says that he is meeting a party in upwards of 50 people here to celebrate their holiday party.

I know what you are thinking, 50 people on a quiet Monday afternoon that will be a great boon for business, and you’re right. However, most people who are part of a party of 50 have enough brain power to call ahead days in advance and I would be happy with even an hour’s heads up. Then you think about this particular group and realize that they work at a restaurant, allegedly. Here’s an idea, pull your fancy diamond bedazzled smart phone out of your ass and apply it to your ear so whatever restaurant you plan on destroying has a chance to make sure the level of ass kicking is a manageable one.

If I’d known that a bunch of drunk restaurant employees were approaching my bar I would have had a dark corner prepared to herd them into so my regular customers wouldn’t have to be bothered with their idiocy. I would have gladly set up a cage on the far side of our patio where they could yell and punch each other in the balls all to their hearts’ desire. When you add in that these people have been at their work drinking free high in alcohol beers all afternoon you understand how potentially damaging this group could be. Who ends a holiday party at 4 in the afternoon on a Monday and releases their shit faced employees like a roving Jager-stinking fifty person zombie apocalypse upon the local community? That doesn’t sound like responsible serving to me.

The regulars were shocked by the sudden influx of younger people. They were intrigued for less than a minute and all motioned to close their tabs out immediately. I would have done the same as I wouldn’t want to get bumped by drunken 22 year olds who are fighting each other to get a drink faster. We went four deep at the bar which is fun but getting string ordered by people who work in the bar industry is frustrating and annoying.

Once the initial rush mellowed we were able to start letting this screaming band of bar amateurs know that they needed to chill the fuck out and start treating this place with a sense of respect. They would listen for a few minutes and then start freaking out uncontrollably again. Things really started going downhill when I found a bottle of spiced Jager sitting over by the pool table. First of all if you are going to sneak liquor into a bar make it some real shit not some water downed bitchafied version of Jager.

Second of all, now people are going to start getting kicked out. I found the first one lying on the ground in front of the pub. This was at about 630. I kicked him in his ribs and he shook to life. He claimed he was waiting on a ride. I told him to leave the property. When he argued I asked him if people were allowed to lie on the ground in front of his restaurant. He shook his head no and stumbled his way down towards Denny’s. An hour and a half later a girl showed up with a baby looking for him.

The second one was already on watch for puffing on her e-cigarette inside even after being warned twice not to do so. As she took a seat at the bar she saw a plate of food. After blurting out that while she didn’t know whose food it was she was going to eat it anyway, she  proceeded to eat it anyway. When I pulled her out she was in tears saying how embarrassed she was and rightly so. I asked her to leave and when she argued I asked her if at her restaurant they allowed customers to randomly eat off other customers’ plates. She looked at me and stuttered out a tear and snot soaked yes.

The third one was most likely the oldest member of the staff left and seemed to be in some sort of management role with the restaurant. When I had first discovered the Jager bottle he had assumed the responsibility of gaining control of the crowd and helping us make sure his people didn’t do anything else stupid. That plan was a bust due to the fact that he might have been one of the more intoxicated people there more so than most of the kids who were ten years younger than him.

He had mentioned something about getting everyone to move to the bowling alley since my staff and I made it clear that is was in everyone’s best interest that they move along. An hour later he said they were going to go bowling. When I looked around and saw that was not the case I referenced about how lucky the bowling alley staff would be to get to serve him and his staff. He then told me to “not be an asshole” and that was the end of his evening and any evenings he ever thought he would be welcome back because he is most certainly not welcome.

At the end of this month it will be our Holiday party and the entire staff including myself will be letting loose and having a hot God damn good time. There will be crying, vomiting and spousal abandonment.  Our debauchery will be behind closed doors where the only people getting offended will be ourselves. One word of advice to any bar or restaurant who is planning a holiday party sometime in the near to distant future and that is open bar at your place and make sure there is no way to get out so that any staff- wide insanity does nothing to bother the rest of humanity.

BUY MY BOOK LOVE LIFE BY CLICKING ON THE LOVE LIFE LINK UP AND TO THE RIGHT FROM HERE!

The Bad Bartender Chronicles V

May 31, 2013

I recently had one of the worst experiences at a bar that I’ve had over my entire drinking career which has been lengthy and highly decorated. It was my first time in San Francisco and as a lover of craft beer everyone I spoke to before embarking on my trip up north told me there was absolutely one bar I had to go to if I was going to be in the city. So, I did and shall forever regret stepping foot there. As a respectful member of the bar community coupled with my blinding hatred for a certain four letter website I am legally not allowed to name, the bar at which I had this terrible experience shall remain nameless.

Another reason the bar shall remain nameless is because it wasn’t the bar that ruined my time there it was the pathetic excuse for a bartender who was clearly twelve years past being past her prime. Even a historically cool bar can be ruined by terrible service and based on the regulars’ acceptance of this common street walker’s behavior I figured her shitty treatment of customers wasn’t an exception but the norm.

It was late when we arrived with a nice buzz from a day long hair of the dog session beating off a circus-sized hangover. My first impression of this allegedly awesome craft beer bar was that it reeked like vomit. Not freshly puked vomit but years of people puking all over the place like the scent of vomit was stained into every surface of the bar.

We found four seats at the bar and waited to order. The bartender was at the other end of the bar leaning on the bar top with her back to us as she talked to other customers. The guys she was talking too had full beers so they clearly were not performing a business transaction. I looked around and saw four other patrons in addition to my three buddies and me anxiously awaiting a frosty beverage. After five minutes of watching the bartender shoot the shit she looked down the bar and made eye contact with me briefly before returning to her conversation for another five minutes.

Finally she slowly sauntered down the bar and helped the four other patrons who needed refills. Five minutes after that she greeted my buddies and I with a disinterested look as she tossed four soggy coasters at us. She wore a small tank top and leaned on the bar to show off her tits which were probably the only two good features this venomous skankbag possessed both physically and mentally.

Her hair was put back in pigtails and her face wore the weathered look of years spent turning tricks behind a puke stained bar. Her shorts were short enough that she needed two different hairdos and my first thought was how proud her father must be that his forty year old daughter still dressed like a whore.

She half listened to our order while twirling one of her pig tails around her finger. She poured our beers and asked us where we were from. When we told her San Diego she laughed at us and walked away. With frosty pints in front of us we thought nothing of it and all tipped the venomous skankbag a couple of bucks as we are all seasoned bar folk.

Less than halfway through our beers two of my buddies and I stepped out front for a quick smoke. We returned five minutes later and upon sitting down saw that our almost full beers were no longer where we left them. Now I know your first instinct would be to ask your non-smoker friend what the hell happened, but that is another blog for another day and honestly our freshly bought beers being taken was probably the last thing on his mind since at any other bar in the world that wouldn’t be a concern.

It took us ten minutes to get the venomous skankbag back down to our end of the bar because she was at a table sitting on some guys lap as she sipped out of their pitcher. When she finally returned to us we asked her what had happened to our beers.

“What beers?” she responded with a dip of her shoulder to expose more of her breasts and a flirtatious smile.

We all laughed uncomfortably thinking she was fucking with us and that our beers would reappear shortly. When they didn’t we asked her again what had happened to our beers.

“What beers?” she responded in a much more serious tone.

“The fucking beers we just bought from you and tipped you for!” said one of my buddies.

“I don’t know what beers you are talking about,” she said.

“Seriously we just ordered those beers ten minutes ago,” I said.

“Listen, do you really want to debate me on this or do you want to tell me what the fuck you want to order?” she yelled at me.

At that point I walked out with plans never to return because at this point I had been purposely ignored, stolen from and laughed at. After smoking a cigarette with no sign of my buddies, I reentered the bar only to find out that one of them had paid for another round of beers from the venomous skankbag and also tipped her fat in the process. I know you are thinking why the hell any sane person would be foolish enough to give more money to such a thieving bitch but once again that is another blog for another day.

Sipping the frosty pint in front of me calmed me for the moment. This calm lasted briefly as I noticed that amongst the dirty glassware the venomous skankbag was too lazy to wash were my buddies and my three near full beers. When we pointed this fact out to the venomous skankbag she ignored us at first.

“Those aren’t your fucking beers so just stop fucking crying like a bunch of pussies and drink what the fuck is in front of you,” she said after further questioning.

I have never finished a pint faster in my life. I was done with being disrespected and out the door in less than two minutes. Someone that bad at their job should be not just be fired but marched in front of a firing squad. At the very least she should be forced to seek an occupation more suited to her skill set like returning to the corner she was hatched at to commonly walk the street.  

I’m No Thief

December 16, 2012

A man in his late thirties approaches my bar in the midst of a busy Friday Happy Hour. He is wearing a skin tight white tee shirt that matches his sparkly white belt that matches his 42 inch wide white watch which matches his white I Phone. Every bone in my body went on immediate douche bag alert, but being the patient man I am I fought the urge to ignore this schmuck while ridiculing him to my regulars sitting close by, and actually decided to serve him.

He orders a dirty vodka martini. After crafting a delicious cocktail for this cockbag I inform him that during Happy Hour his drink costs just four dollars and fifty cents. He gives me a five and I give him his two quarters back which he proceeds to leave on the bar for my tip. While not the desired tip of a dollar it was a tip none the less so my douche bag threat level lowered from a red to an orange (for clarification of color levels for douche bag threat levels please see George W. Bush).

Some time passes before he comes back up to the bar. He orders a dirty vodka martini again which I gladly make. I knew it had to be getting close to seven which is what time Happy Hour is over so I punched his drink into the computer and it rang up as six dollars signifying that it was actually past seven and that any Happy Hour discounts were no longer available.

I returned to captain cock knocker and placed his dirty vodka martini in front of him. He tossed five dollars on the bar. I collected his money and counted it before informing him that Happy Hour was now over and that his dirty vodka martini was actually six dollars. He gasped and gave me a disgusted look.

“Well now I have to use my credit card.”

“That’s fine sir we have no minimum on credit cards,” I replied as I placed his money back on the bar in front of him.

He let his money sit on the bar without pulling out his wallet. I looked around the bar and saw at least three customers ready to order drinks who were waiting on me to finish with this fucktard.

“What time is Happy Hour over?” he asked still not pulling out his wallet.

“7 pm sir,” I replied.

He looked at his giant white watch that was bigger than my flat screen at home.

“That’s bullshit man. Its 7:02 and I ordered at 7.”

“Happy Hour is over at 7 pm sir.”

My douche bag threat level flared back up to a red.

“Really dude?” he said.

“Really what?”

“I ordered at 7 bro.”

“As I have stated before Happy Hour is over at 7 sir.”

“Really dude?”

I scanned the bar. There were now six people waiting to order as I interacted with this asshole.

“Really what sir?”

“You’re going to do this over a dollar dude?”

Astonished at the irony of that statement I could do nothing other than just stare at him. He got the point, eventually and in between a “whatever bro” and not leaving a tip he signed his tab and carried his dirty martini away.

This sort of interaction happens all the time. It’s as if because I serve alcohol which at times makes people do shady things people just naturally assume that my intentions are always shady. Like the girl who had just turned twenty-one a couple of days earlier who wanted to complain about her two dollar and fifty cent vodka cranberry not being strong enough.

She sent her boyfriend up first who sheepishly said that his girlfriend thought her drink was weak. He was quick to say that his whiskey coke was perfect. It was clear that all he wanted was to get laid which with a grumpy and sober girlfriend wasn’t going to happen. I offered to make him a double for five dollars. He quickly accepted.

Twenty minutes passed before he returned this time with his girl on his shoulder. I finished helping another customer before approaching them.

“What can I get for you folks?”

“Uh yeah, I would like a vodka cranberry except this time could you put some vodka in it,” she said.

I was shocked; she didn’t want more vodka she truly believed that I was pouring her straight cranberry juice.

“Excuse me?” I asked.

“Well my first couple of drinks didn’t have any vodka in them. Last time my boyfriend came up and someone else poured him a drink that was perfect.”

I looked around. I was the only bartender there.

“Actually that was me and it was a double,” I said

“Oh, then like that.”

“You want a double then?”

“No I want a single with vodka in it like the last one you poured.”

“So you want me to pour you a double but charge you for a single.”

The boyfriend leaned in at this point.

“If you hook us up we’ll hook you up bro (shady),” he said.

“A single it is,” I said.

I walked to my well. Normally I pour about a shot and a half per mixed drink but this girl had lost that privilege. I pulled out a shot glass measured the vodka to the line and filled the glass with cranberry. I slid it to her charged her two dollars and fifty cents and she walked away without leaving a tip all because she believed that I wasn’t just short pouring her but that I wasn’t pouring any vodka in her glass at all.

Believe me when I say I have not made a living off charging people for drinks that don’t have any alcohol in them. Not putting any liquor in your drink doesn’t benefit me. Doing so would be shady and would be the equivalent of being a thief.

A thief walks into a bar hovers amongst the crowd and then snatches someone else’s property right off the bar top. Then when said thief is caught red handed and confronted about the theft they look you dead in the eye and lie saying they have never stolen anything in their life. I am not a thief, I am a bartender and a guy who thinks I’m out to rip him off for a dollar or a girl who thinks I am shady enough not to pour a product I am charging for, well, they are just morons.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS AND BUY MY BOOK LOVE LIFE FOR CHRISTMAS BY CLICKING ON THE LOVE LIFE LINK UP AND TO THE RIGHT FROM HERE!

Every Night Amateur

July 14, 2012

The term amateur night is usually used to describe New Year’s Eve. It is the one night a year where everybody who never goes to the bar decides that New Year’s is the night to do so. Any veteran drinker knows to stay away from even their most regular of establishments on such a night to avoid being surrounded by virginal bar goers spewing curdled car bombs all over the bar as they blow furiously on squeaky noise makers.

I’m here to say that it’s not just on New Year’s Eve that you, the general drunken public, should be wary of amateurs. On a nightly and on some nights an hourly basis I witness people doing some really stupid shit that makes you wonder whether or not they are mentally challenged in some way. Unfortunately they usually aren’t. It is much more likely that they are every night amateurs.

Every night amateurs behave in a manner that suggests that they have never been to a bar before in their entire life. This is not true. These people have been to bars before and some of them on a semi-regular basis. Despite this they still don’t realize that there is a certain way you are supposed to act in a public setting where alcohol is being served.

For example don’t bang on the bar, ever. Never reach into my fruit caddy or you will feel the wrath of my iron clad bottle opener, also known as Excalibur, which has bruised the shit out of many a fruit stealing fingers. When you approach a bar always have your id and money ready so that a transaction that should only take thirty seconds doesn’t turn into a five minute ordeal. If you don’t want to be labeled an every night amateur then use common sense and realize that if a bartender overhears you telling the total stranger sitting next you that he is over tipping, you most likely will never get served at that bar again.

The latest every night amateur trend seems to be ordering a drink and then walking away. That way when I return with their drink they are nowhere to be found. Nothing is more frustrating to a bartender who is busy then to have to seek a customer out to serve them. I’m not sure of the logic behind walking away after placing an order. It’s not like it’s going to take me fifteen minutes to fill a glass with some ice and some vodka cranberry. I didn’t give you a number and tell you we would call you over the loudspeaker when your order was up so why in the hell would you ever walk away right after asking me to make you something that takes fifteen seconds?

Every night amateurs come in couples some times. You can spot them because they will be the unattractive pair sloppily making out while sitting at the bar with no regard for anyone who happens to be around them. Drunken public displays of affection are the worst kind. Not only are they sloppy but they are noisy so that every smack of lips, lick of tongues or gnashing of teeth can be heard by anyone within five stools of the nasty couple. Visible tongue twisting and neck slurping can cause many a stomachs to turn. The worst is when this already disgusting display of every night amateur foreplay leads to an under the jacket hand job. When this occurs it must be stopped immediately or else spilled beer and melted water won’t be the only substances staining your bar.

The older an every night amateur is the more difficult they are to deal with. They have been acting like jackasses in public for so long that they actually believe that their behavior is acceptable. This makes every action of an older every night amateur much more extreme. What that means is they will be louder, dumber and more offensive than possibly any person you have ever come across. That also means that when they start making out with whatever other ancient fossil they come across who happens to be just as horny as them that their drunken public display of affection will always end with either an 86ing or a bar sprayed down with elderly semen.

We as bar employees deserve some blame for the high number of older every night amateurs that are out there. If they have been acting in such a moronic way for so long that means somebody somewhere should have said something like, “Hey asshole how about you stop whistling and calling me sweet cheeks or else I’m going to rip your tongue out of your mouth and smack the shit out of you with it.” Any bar owner who doesn’t allow his or her staff to properly police and educate the animal-like behavior that goes on at every bar in the world is doing you, the general drunken public, a disservice. If you don’t call an every night amateur out they will act like a dickbag for the rest of their lives and most likely raise a family of half-wit dickbags that will terrorize innocent bar employees and regulars until the end of time.

The worst offense an every night amateur can perform is the defamation of a check book or credit card receipt. If you don’t want to tip that’s fine, there is a special restaurant in hell you will be waiting tables at when you die, but being cheap is your right. However, vulgarities of any kind found on company property are unacceptable. That means that slipping a condom in a checkbook, drawing a penis or making obscene comments or simply writing fuck you on a credit card receipt will be met with swift action. Disrespectful behavior such as that is an abomination wrapped in an abomination marinated in hot sauce topped with melted Gouda served on a cheese cracker and should result in public humiliation, aggressive 86ing and, possibly, leg breaking.

P.S. BUY MY BOOK LOVE LIFE BY CLICKING THE LOVE LIFE LINK TO THE RIGHT

You’re 86ed!

June 17, 2012

It takes a special kind of dirt bag to get 86ed from a bar. It is the highest level of bar discipline there is. First you get cut off, then you get kicked out, but to be 86ed means you went below and beyond the worst of human behavior. Getting 86ed requires more than simply falling out of a stool or vomiting in a plant. You have to reach an extreme level of douchebaggery to receive a lifetime ban. With 81 unassisted 86ing’s on my stat sheet I would like to share my expertise on the subject so that you can avoid ever being banned from a bar for life.

First of all never swing first. What that means is if you don’t instigate a fight a fight usually won’t find you. I have found that people who get into bar fights go out looking for them. There are guys out there who believe that fighting is a way to solve simple bar disagreements. They suck down countless vodka red bulls and then have two options; have a heart attack or start a fight. I prefer they choose the first option but they never seem to.

Fights are bad for business and are a serious buzzkill. People get hurt; girls start screaming and most of the time the cops show up. Pain, female screaming and the police aren’t exactly my idea of a party. If they are yours you won’t last long at my bar. Starting a fight is an automatic 86ing and if you happen to hit my door guy he is likely to break your fucking legs so that you have to crawl to whatever bar you plan on starting shit at next.

In some cases where fights are involved the instigator isn’t the only one to be 86ed. If you get in the way or ignore our attempts at breaking up a fight you will be 86ed. If you escalate the fight to a higher level of violence, like say cracking a pool cue over a guy’s head, not only will you be 86ed, you will also be billed for a new pool cue.

In order to be welcomed back to a bar you must respect that bar and its policies. The most important policy a bar must uphold is to not sell alcohol to minors. If a bar or one of its employees get caught doing so they can be fined, lose their liquor license or can even be arrested.  That’s why if you come into my bar with a minor and try to sneak them drinks you will be 86ed.

I work with an elite staff that take their jobs very seriously and are damn good at them. No matter how sneaky you think you are being we will always catch you. We are smart enough to know that those two shots you claimed are “both for me bro” aren’t, and as soon as you walk away you are on immediate watch. At that point it is only a matter of time before we bounce both you and the sixteen year-old girl you passed that second shot off to. If you want to get a minor wasted do it at home like a normal parent or older brother or statutory rapist.

In addition to respecting bar policies it is important to treat the bar staff with that same level of respect. We are here to help you have a good time so don’t fuck with us. Bar employees have to put up with a lot of shit but crossing certain lines will absolutely get you 86ed. The second you throw a shot glass or a handful of fruit at me you will be 86ed. If you decide to talk shit about me or one of my fellow bar employees or even the bar at which I work you will be 86ed. If you threaten to break a bar stool over my head because I cut you off you will be 86ed.

Sexually harassing bar employees is the easiest way to get yourself banned from a bar for life. Whether it’s a hungry pack of Human Female Hyenas molesting a defenseless bar back or a group of frat boys hounding an innocent hostess any unwanted and aggressive come on that crosses the line will get you 86ed. That means no touching us, ever. This rule mainly applies to female employees. The second your hand grabs the ass or breast of a female employee you will be lucky to leave with that limb still attached to your body.

There doesn’t necessarily need to be a specific reason for 86ing someone. Over time the accumulation of minor infractions can add up to getting a repeat offender of bar policy 86ed for no reason at all. If you are repeatedly rude, disrespectful, don’t tip, and are hated by regulars and employees then you will be banned from every decent bar you ever frequent. It eventually gets to the point where it is so evident what a dickbag a certain individual is that I may 86 them simply for saying hello.

People who get 86ed always seem to try to come back. Not just once, but multiple times. No matter how many times you try to explain to someone they are 86ed they never seem to grasp that it is for life. There is no getting un-86ed once the final verdict has been handed down. All appeals will fall on deaf ears. Making excuses or apologizing or begging is not going to undo what ever asinine act got you 86ed in the first place. My advice to anyone I’ve ever 86ed is to save your time and your breath and find some other bar to act like an asshole at.

The Bad Bartender Chronicles III

May 12, 2012

With modern technology cell phones have come a long way. Devices that used to be dedicated to just phone conversations have evolved into mini computers that allow people to avoid human contact with other people for weeks at a time. These hi-tech phones also allow people to ignore each other in a blatant manner under the guise of being busy on one’s phone. This has especially become rampant in the bar business where it seems bartenders feel like they need to constantly have their cell phone within arm’s reach.

I understand there are special circumstances. People have kids and sick loved ones and gambling problems and in the event of an emergency may need to leave the bar to take a call. However, nowadays people normally want their phone around in case they think of something witty to post on twitter or want to leave a comment on facebook every time they think of a new way to pour a cactus cooler or because they are engrossed in a new app they just downloaded that tells them what kind of panties a girl is wearing as she walks by.

There is nothing more frustrating than walking into a bar with a strong thirst for a pint and upon sitting down seeing a bartender with his back to the bar. Upon further inspection, you see that he is standing in front of the register and briefly you forgive him for breaking this golden rule of bartending. After almost a minute it becomes evident that there is no transaction being processed through the register. You peer down the bar and see that there are five people waiting all with empty glasses. The music is loud but even over it you can hear the bartender give out a chuckle. You move down a few stools for a better view and see that the bartender is too busy on his phone texting to even know that you want a drink. If you ever witness this leave whatever establishment you are at immediately.

The internet in the palm of one’s hand can be very distracting. Some people feel as if armed with this power of information they are able to answer any question or issue thrown their way. Bars have long been a place of great debate. The key to winning most debates are facts and what used to be found in dictionaries, sports almanacs and classic issues of playboy can now be found in modern day cell phones.

Of course there is always the guy who believes his fancy phone can find any piece of information no matter how obscure or asinine the fact faster than anyone else, anywhere. He wears his phone on his hip ready for any software duel. As always there is a regular game for the challenge. They draw their phones and race to find out what 1980’s movie featured the Paul Simon song that just finished playing on the jukebox.  I watch from my side of the bar as the bartender leans both elbows on the bar top as he furiously types his way through countless pages of 1980’s movie trivia. Once my glass of whiskey goes without for five minutes or more my patience wears out and I leave, never return to such a place.

A cell phone’s original purpose, once again, was to be a mobile device people could have phone conversations on. Even that most simple function of a cell phone shouldn’t be used when one is working behind the bar. Only two results can come from this, either people are going to be rudely ignored or receive shitty and absent-minded service.

For example take the girl who will continue to serve people while chatting away on the phone. You’ve seen her before. She prances around the bar mis-pouring drinks because she is only half listening to orders while the other half of her half a brain is listening to whoever is on the other side of her cell phone. It’s even worse when after fucking up she apologizes, covers the mouthpiece of the phone and mouths the words “my boss” to you. For some reason she thinks this makes it okay. If this statement is actually true then it makes me wonder why the fuck am I spending money at a bar owned by someone dumb enough to condone such behavior in their business.

The other girl will just stare at you while she talks on her phone. It is apparent whatever conversation she is holding is far more important than getting me drunk, making herself and the bar money or most simply doing her fucking job. Whether she is laughing or feigning sadness to whoever is rambling in her ear, her lack of common sense is never lost on me. Then, when I try to engage her in a last ditch effort to get my drink on, she sticks a bony smoke stained finger with a hot pink painted nail in my face signaling for me to hold on. You are supposed to put phones on hold, not people. As soon as that finger finds its way somewhere near my face I fight the urge to snap it and simply just leave.

To all the bartenders out there who are going to read this and say, “Hey bro, what’s the big deal?” I say you are in a business where making a lot of money is directly related to the happiness of the people you are serving. Talking to your boss because he or she believes they are more important than their customers means the bar they own won’t be in business much longer. Texting your friend that you can’t wait to get off work so you can get drunk is not going to put money in your tip bucket. Twittering every five minutes to keep your four followers informed on exactly what you are doing at all times is only going to leave you with an empty bar. Most importantly, to all be warned that the next time I see a bartender using their cell phone behind the bar I am going to snatch it and stuff it in a very dark place. I encourage you, the general drunken public, to do the same.

 

 

Tony D., East Vista, CA. GULPU

April 28, 2012

A husband and wife walk into the bar. He is a fifty year old wearing a Hawaiian shirt half buttoned and she is homely and half his age. She is pushing a stroller with their child inside it. Most bars aren’t kid friendly, but since our establishment is both a restaurant and a pub we encourage families to be comfortable there. In fact a lot of our regulars bring in their sweet, well-mannered and well-behaved children all the time and not only do we as employees embrace them but other customers do as well.

This is why when this man strolled up with his kid and his darts no one really thought much of it. He approaches the bar. After waiting less than a minute he grows impatient and begins waving his cash in the air. I walk over to him.

“Jack and Coke. And whatever she wants,” he says.

He points over his shoulder at the woman he walked in with who is frantically trying to find a safer place than a crowded dart room in a busy pub for her to store her child. As she does she dodges darts until she finally finds a safe corner for her kid and her to sit. She begins to order, but does so in what sounded like German. She spoke as if she expected me to understand her. I stopped her finally and began to respond in English. She held up her finger and waved it in my face before turning and calling for the man in the Hawaiian shirt. He was playing darts so it took a minute to get his attention. She waved him over. He leaned on the bar, annoyed.

“I said a Jack and Coke.”

“Right, what is she having?” I asked pointing at his wife.

He nodded.

“Vodka Tonic. Make it the cheap stuff.”

I made their drinks and by the time I returned he was back to playing darts. I placed the drinks in front of the foreigner and told her it was nine dollars. She stared blankly at me. I motioned money with my fingers and she finally got it pulling out a twenty. I gave her some change which she pocketed.

Then the crying began. It started out quietly and brief, but slowly transformed into the sound of a constant scream. It was the kid. I scanned the bar and received annoyed looks from my happy hour regulars. The screaming stopped but continued to ring in my ears for several seconds longer. The guy returns with an empty glass.

“I don’t think there was any whiskey in that drink so make this one a double,” he says as he waves his money in my face.

I pull out a glass and a shot glass. I measure the drink to exactly two ounces and top it off with coke. He pays without tipping.

“Do you guys have any snacks? She’s hungry,” he says as he nods to his mail order bride.

I slide him a menu. He slides it back.

“No, no, I meant like peanuts or crackers or something.”

“No we do not, sir.”

“What kind of restaurant is this?”

He goes back to playing darts. I serve some other people when out of the corner of my eye I see him standing halfway in the doorway to the kitchen. I rush over and find him harassing the kitchen staff for soup crackers which unfortunately they give to him. I inform the man he is not to be bothering the kitchen and he walks away without acknowledging me.

I return to the bar and see that his wife is dousing the soup crackers in Tabasco sauce and shoving them down her throat. The screaming begins again shortly after that. The mother tries to console the child but to no avail. The father keeps playing darts not even looking over at her or the child. He returns to the bar and orders another double. I inform him that it would be appreciated if he could get the kid to stop screaming. He shrugs me off and returns to the dart board again without leaving a tip.

The screaming stops and everyone sitting at the bar and those sitting in the section of tables to the left of the dartboard release a collective sigh of relief to be free from the piercing sound of an angry child. He orders another double without tipping. Five minutes later the screaming starts right back up. The mother has since given up and stares blankly off into space while the father never acknowledges either one of them.

This happened every Friday for a month straight. It was to the point that customers were complaining about the noise. Both parents had been warned every week, but finally it became too much to bare. I was forced to walk out from behind the bar, pull the man to the side and inform him that his five year old child was 86ed from the establishment. He looked shocked. He glanced over at his screaming child briefly before turning back to me.

“If they wait out front can I stay?”

After fighting off the urge to call Child Protective Services I sent the whole fucked up family packing and thankfully have not seen them since.

I’m a Bartender

April 21, 2012

A guy approaches the bar. I finish helping my current customer and then move on to him.

“How are you doing? What can I get for you?” I ask.

“Yeah good. I just got off work. I’m a bartender down at …”

He continues to talk but as soon as I hear “I’m a bartender” not only do I stop listening but my internal douchebag alert sounds off at a frequency too loud to ignore. This may seem like an innocent statement to you but I know better. He didn’t name drop his occupation because he wanted to talk shop and discuss different ways to pour a vodka cranberry. This dick toast is trying to get the hook up, but I am not going to fall for it.

It is clear this guy is new to the business. Young bartenders always feel really cool when they first start out and for some reason assume that bartending is some secret order that allows them to drink for free wherever they go. Some of my best customers are bartenders who I hook up on occasion but this is due to them being cool or having proved over time to be a good tipper not because of what they do.

Then there is the guy who within five minutes of meeting you starts promising free shit at his bar.

“Hey bro, I bartend down at D Street. You should come check it out. If I’m working I’ll hook you up fat.”

Obviously this guy believes he will in turn get hooked up at my bar. This is not the case. Just the opposite because anyone willing to give away the bar to a complete stranger isn’t going to have a job for very long. I learned a long time ago that giving away free booze is a great way to get fired.

A lot of times people who have a complaint will claim to be a bartender. That is their attempt at establishing what they call in the crack business “street cred.” How could they be wrong if they do this for a living, allegedly, and why shouldn’t they be showered with free booze as a result?

Like the girl who slams her half drank glass on my bar interrupting my interaction with another customer. I ignore her and try to focus on the transaction at hand.

“Excuse me,” she says.

I ignore her.

“Excuse me,” she says, this time louder.

I finish helping my customer and upon seeing no one else at the bar I approach the girl with the half drank drink.

“What can I do for you?” I ask.

“Um, yeah, my margarita doesn’t have any orange juice in it.”

“I’m sorry I thought you wanted it plain.”

“I did that’s why I was expecting it to have orange juice.”

We stare at each and I quickly realize I am dealing with an inferior species of human.

“There’s no orange juice in a plain margarita but I can…”

“Uh actually I’m a bartender and I have never heard of a margarita that didn’t have orange juice in it,” she says.

I find myself at a crossroads. I can either enter into a debate with an idiot or I can just pour some orange juice in her glass and save my brain cells for more important purposes.

“How about I just pour some orange juice in that drink for you miss?”

“Well I was thinking for my inconvenience my girlfriends and I should get a round of shots on the house. It’s pretty standard to take care of your customers. Every bar I’ve ever worked at would do the same without being asked to.”

This girl is a fraud and so are people like her. Not only was she wrong about what went in her drink but since she is freshly twenty-one I doubt how extensive her experience in the bar business could be.

Former bartenders might be the worst. They can’t wait to tell you how to do your job which according to them they are qualified to do based on the fact that they bartended at the busiest bar in bumfuck Minnesota over a fifteen year span that covered the eighties and early nineties. Believe me that wealth of ancient experience is not going to make statements like, “Why did you do that?” or “I’ve never seen that before,” or  “You want to know how I used to do that?” are not going to get your drink filled faster.

Bartenders beware any person who claims to be in the business within the first five minutes of you talking to them should be double charged for everything they order. If you come across an issue with a so-called “bartender” making unintelligible complaints just pour orange juice in whatever glass they have in front of them. More importantly, if you come across a mouthy veteran of the bar game report them to the Home For Lost Barekeeps so that they may find someone who cares about what a mean mint julep they used to pour.

The Whistle Won’t Work

April 14, 2012

There is a special place in hell for anyone disrespectful enough to whistle at a bartender in an attempt to get their attention. In fact I believe that in this unique corner of hell those culprits who have been caught whistling rudely in their past are forced to watch repeat episodes of American Idol on full blast with hourly intervals of random Stained songs that get pumped through a musical catheter of sorts injecting depressing, repetitive, shitty music into their bodies via their private parts.

When I walk my dog I usually let him off the leash so that he may shit and piss freely. If he runs off or is hidden behind a bush I will on occasion whistle in an attempt to get him to come back to me. It works great on a dog because they are simple creatures who can’t necessarily comprehend words, so loud noises are one of the few ways to communicate with them.

Bartenders are not dogs. Therefore just because your Bud Light bottle is empty doesn’t give you the right to treat them like one. Believe me “bro” you waiting an extra twenty seconds to get a fresh bottle of domestic piss won’t kill you but whistling at a bartender might. We are a prideful bunch who put up with a lot of shit on a nightly basis and if you whistle at the wrong grumpy English bartender on a day that his favorite football team has lost to a girl’s high school soccer team it may prove to be the last thing you do on this earth.

The sound of a whistling drunk can make your skin crawl and when it is directed at you the urge to kill can be overwhelming. You must fight this urge with every bone in your body. Murder is the easy way out for both of you. Anyone ignorant enough to whistle at a bartender must be scolded and punished in a loud enough manner to embarrass them in front of everyone else sitting at the bar. It is important to let them know that you are not a dog. You then must explain to them that if they ever whistle at a bartender again they will be 86ed from drinking alcohol anywhere including in their own basement. Then, based on their response you decide whether or not you have the large man standing on the door break both their legs.

At the very least, whistling at the bartender is a great way to go thirsty for the rest of the evening. Not only will you be skipped, but you will be ignored in such a blatant manner that no matter how dumb you are you will get the fact that you fucked up. If you whistle at me I will help everyone else in the entire bar even if I have to start offering table service before I will even consider serving you again. I will tell my barback to go on break so I can run glassware in lieu of pouring you anything. I will enter every credit card slip into my computer as slowly as possible so that you may crave your drink for just a little longer. And then once I have no viable way to possibly ignore you anymore I will smoke a cigarette.

I bet you are wondering if you can’t call a bartender bro or sugar nipples or big dog or baby or snap your fingers or scream or whistle, how are you ever going to get a drink around here? The answer to that is only found when one truly understands that using these words or whistling is actually not going to get you served faster. It will give you just the opposite. Bartenders have a great memory and hold a grudge all the way to their grave. Once you are labeled a whistler you are a whistler for life. In fact other bartenders who you haven’t ever whistled at will be able to recognize you for what you are and the drinks will continually be coming out slower and slower until one day when they finally stop.

You the general drunken public should be offended as well. The last thing you want as you’re peacefully sipping a frosty pint is for some bag of dick to stroll up to the bar and whistle as loud as he can. I recommend the next time this happens you stop what you are doing and stare at the culprit in disgust. Feel free to point and I highly encourage you alert others that there has been a serious bar infraction. Let’s make it clear to this disrespectful douchebag and those like him that we as a people will not stand for that sort of behavior any longer .


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