The VIP Drank Fireball

Squawk, squawk!

Good night. Got to work with Rebecca (Becky). She’s a tough, smart hipster with bartending chops and cool tattoos. I’ve worked with Rebecca for two and a half years and been friends with her for over 24 months. She worked service while I ran blocker for the rest of the bar. Probably the best set-up for driving a money train and swinging a wrecking ball.

My VIP section was purchased by a conglomeration of douche bags and over-prepped women. My perfect grouping. I poured Fireball whiskey (can it really be called whiskey when it taste like candy? Whiskey is suppose to make your toes curl and fortify your evening where Fireball makes you want to dance to dueling piano music.) and Bud Lights for four hours. Not the perfect scenario to make a living but I have been doing okay for the last decade.

I am a bartender not a mixologist. I am certainly capable of making unique and original drinks with the various liquors behind me but my strength at pouring drinks is that I can do it with loud music pumping through the club and customers that are less than ideal. Mixologists are akin to master chefs–talented but usually pretentious and boring. Bartenders speak freely, entertain widely and treat every customer on a meritocracy. Spend money and tip well, you are the king of the castle. Act like a tool bag, you get the high hat with me probably crushing my fedora over your frosted tips.

The show was …. well, there was a dueling piano show. Not the best one I’ve seen but there were some highlights. Those highlights tended to be when they focused on popular songs that didn’t need a lot of explanation. For the most part, it was a turd.

Nonetheless, it didn’t stop them from drinking shots and playing the fool. After a couple of shifts that wanted me to hang up my cocktail spoon and learn to coach 4th grade PE, I needed a shift that reminded me why bartending is the pinnacle of blue collar labor. Well, tonight, I got that opportunity. I upsold drink, pushed shots, teased money out of people’s hands and even called my biggest tab “ugly” and still got a 30% gratuity.

Not bad for a guy who hasn’t slept more than 8 hours in three days.


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