REAL STORIES FROM REAL BARTENDERS >>>
I've been a bartender for a long time. I have met countless freaks, jerks, pervs, sweethearts, rockstars and crazies. Even though it's a physically and mentally exhausting job, these are the colorful people that make it all worthwhile. Well, that and the tips.
I'd like to share with you some of my personal experiences behind the bar, along with the stories from some of my fellow bartenders. Each week - under the clever heading of "Behind Bars" - I will dig into my memory bank - and the incident log books that all bars keep - to bring you some of my favorite stories.
Names of bars, bartenders and patrons have been changed or withheld to protect the innocent.
And the not so innocent.
THIS WEEK: Bartending abroad
I am on vacation this week. It's no secret the only mixing I'm doing is in my resort room. But, duty still calls, and Behind Bars will still entertain its few followers.
Considering I'm on my honeymoon, I'll let other bartenders take hold of this one.
First stop - Portland airport - and our first bartender takes the reigns. Her name is actually and truly Ms. Martini. And her stories are those of celebrities and other travelers that actually visit bars at 4:30 a.m. (when her shift starts).
I notice a green and yellow waxed bottle of Maker's Mark and I question why it's decorated this way -- as opposed to the regular red drip. She explains that this is for the Oregon Ducks that frequent this particular Rogue bar. Ms. Martini speaks in a seasoned, gravelly voice of the team members that come to see her. She easily transitions to the fact that many people from all walks of life and all corners of the world visit her in her convenient airport setting. She speaks particularly fondly of a judge on the seventh season of America's Next Top Model that got so wasted he missed his flight and decided to simply continue his drink fest in the airport.
This is the extent of Ms. Martini's stories, though, so I will switch to our next bartender.
On the most fabulous of islands in the archipelago of Hawaii, my husband and I visit a basic Happy Hour on Maui - at your typical sports bar. Our bartender, whose name eludes me amongst the shots of Hornitos, has no hesitation when I ask her what kind of crazy story she has to tell me so I can get my assignment done.
"We had a girl in here who was trapped in her bathroom stall," she reminisces fondly, with a familiar gravelly voice I assume I will have in about five years. "She locked herself in, and then passed out reverse-cowboy style on the toilet."
She then alludes to Canadians, mentioning something along the lines of, "We have fun with them because they're so cheap."
I didn't have the chance to ask her to elaborate, as the bar filled up and my husband challenged me to a game of pool. But nonetheless, it's a good note to end this segment on. As I contemplate what she meant, I encourage you to do the same.
And in the meantime, visit your favorite bar and ask your bartender for a good story.
"BEHIND BARS" LINK HUB
LINK: Oh puck!
LINK: More Aural Adventures
LINK: Big & Rich
LINK: The Tip Jar
LINK: Aural Adventures
LINK: Smooth Transitions
LINK: The Pooper