A Very Troubling Night

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I've been bartending for about five years.

There have been good nights. Bad nights. Crazy parade days. Bad customers. Good customers. Wonderful tips. Slow shifts. Various tomfoolery.

Last Saturday was only what I could deem as a "Very troubling night."

It started off very normal. We had customers at the bar, but it was slow. Time crept by, and I was beginning to worry that our normally busy Halloween Spooktacular was going to be a bust.

Boy, was I wrong.

It was like someone turned on a light switch. It got busy all at the same time, around 10pm. Hordes of people started to come in. We had a DJ who was outstanding, but it was very, very loud. I had "regulars" who showed up at the bar, took one look at the enormous crowd, the loud music, and left. I don't blame them.

I was extremely busy. The same kind of busy that we have on St. Patrick's Day. Non-stop making drinks, lots of people drinking and even the manager & owner are behind the bar serving people. We had 5 people behind the bar at one point and were making drinks as fast as we could.

Here's a few choice moments of the night (read: annoying), with the best for last:

1. The place is jammed. Girl comes up asking for a "Watermelon Martini". I tell her we don't have that. She then starts to "think" a bit, rolling her eyes to the ceiling and says "ummmmm". I wait. I wait. I wait. The owner is right next to me, so I have to be nice. When the bar is going crazy, I just want to keep moving as fast as I can, and I can't say to her, "Bye!" with the owner there. I'm waiting for her and thinking how I want to reach across the bar and throttle her. For the record 99% of customers out there are considerate and good people. It's the 1% that really fire me up.

2. The customer who said, "There's not enough sugar on my lemon" when doing a lemon drop shot. Are you serious?

3. The comely girl who came in with a group of guys. She orders five shots of soco/lime, which were $2 each. She says, "Hey, this tasted a bit weak. How about two free shots for our group?" Are you fucking kidding me? Now, granted, she was fairly pretty (and i'm sure she knew it). Beauty gets you far in the world and five years ago when I was wet-behind-the-ears bartender I would have enjoyed her attention and poured her a extra shot. But now, i'm older, wiser, and have a cranky stomach. I smiled sweetly at her, and said, "You're cute. But you're not that cute." and served the next customer.

4. Ever hear the expression "When you gotta go, you gotta go?" I'd personally like to thank Court Street for their very clean and quiet bathrooms. :)

And for #5, boy is this a doozy. Since our bar is at 6th and Washington, we get many Stevens students and alumni at our bar. Most are good customers, but the bad apples ruin it for the rest of them. A group of bad apple young alumni come into the bar,102907a.jpg and the "leader" is about 6'6, 240, and looking for trouble. He's dressed like a pirate. That's fitting.

All is well until about 1am, and I hear a shout and the sound of shoving. I see a swarm of people, easily 15 people, locked in a melee. Fists flying, lots of shoving and people falling over each other, with the melee moving away from the back, towards the door.

Now, dear friend, there are many things that bartenders always look forward to - which is jumping over the bar. It was my moment.

I was up and over that bar in two moves, and into the impromptu rugby match. I mean, really, it was like a scrum, and I didn't know who was on my team, but I did see managemtn in the middle of it, trying to pull people away from each other and out of the door, which is what I was trying to do also. People got knocked over, glasses broke and our poor service station was nearly destroyed by one of the fighters getting knocked over it in the confusion. We finally get it semi-stable, with everyone holding each other back, and Mr. Pirate in the doorway yelling at one of the customers in the melee, "Fuck you! You call me a pussy? Step outside, and I'll show you who's the pussy!"

It turns out that one of our good bartenders, a customer at the time, let's call him "Rocky" was at the center of the fight!

I didn't find out until later, after we were closing up, that Rocky and his girlfriend were at the bar, having a good time. Mr. Pirate taps the girlfriend on the shoulder and says to her, "You know, you can do much better than him."

Nice, huh?

Rocky hears this and turns...

Before I finish this, a quick note about Rocky. He's about 5'11. Probably weighs like 175. He's a lover, not a fighter, and everyone likes Rocky. He's handsome, charming and kind. But he also is a man who protects the honor of someone he cares for.

...and says, "If you have something to say about me, you should say it to me, not her."

Now, Mr. Pirate had six buddies with him, they all surround Rocky, and he says, "I'm not going to fight you and your six buddies."

I'm fuzzy on what exactly happened next, but words were said to Rocky, and he did the right thing - he got the bouncer to get these assholes out of our bar. The bouncer had his hands full. People were streaming into the bar, and he was alone. So getting Mr. Pirate out was the spark that caused the whole shoving & fists of fury.

It was 1:15am by that time, and even with the fight people just went back to drinking and dancing. But 15 minutes later we called last call. Normally we wouldn't have closed that early, but we just had to close up. By 2am, everyone was out of our bar.

A few thoughts for next year...

1. Plastic cups.
2. Extra bouncer.
3. Less people.
4. No more Yager Bomb specials.
5. Pepto-Bismol.

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This page contains a single entry by Furey published on October 29, 2007 12:59 AM.

Mikie Squared "Spooktacular" This Saturday! was the previous entry in this blog.

Halloween At Mikie's is the next entry in this blog.

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