Thursday, December 31, 2009

New Year's Eve

No matter how much I like you in real life, chances are I'm going to hate you tonight, at least a little bit.

It's not your fault. It's just how it is on Amateur Night.

New Year's Eve, St. Patrick's Day, Cinco de Mayo, and a handful of other nationally recognized American Drinking Holidays are a part of our yearly celebratory landscape, nights that we, as a society, grant ourselves as individuals permission to go forth and party like it's 1999. To really cut loose, get wasted, and dance with the proverbial lampshade on our heads, until the party's over and it's time to pass out, get laid, have breakfast, or, if you're very lucky, some combination thereof. For those of us behind the bar, well, it's the job in a nutshell; the night you dread having to work, right up until it's over, when the door is locked and the sidework's done and you're counting the money and, because it's over, it suddenly really wasn't so bad after all.

But it was. And it's going to be.

For those of you with square jobs, or who are, at least, not scheduled tonight, my advice to you is to stay in. Or, better yet, find a house party. Surround yourself with friends and loved ones in a safe and happy environment, and ring in the new year from there. Leave the bars and the clubs to the amateurs, because they'll be out in force tonight and they'll feel even less responsible for their words and actions than they usually do. Which is no good for anybody.

For those who are going out tonight, please try and observe those few simple rules that help make everything go smoothly. Know what you want. Have your money ready. Pay cash, or open a tab. Make eye contact. Have a little patience. Tip. If you want good service, go somewhere where the bartender knows you. If you don't know the bartender, tip well early. We'll remember.

Don't wave money at me. Everybody else has money, too. Don't try and order if it's not your turn. If you're ordering for a group, know what everybody wants before your turn comes up. If you must pay with a card, open a tab and settle at the end of the night. There's nothing more frustrating than having to spend time running someone's card a second or third time when there're fifty people clamoring for drinks. Don't order complicated drinks when the bar is backed up. It's rude to everybody. Don't drive home drunk. Don't be a dick.

And if you, like me, are going to be in the trenches tonight, then I salute you. Rock that shit hard. Because tonight is the crucible, that separates the pros from the wannabes. Be a pro. Keep your cool. Prove your mettle. Show that sea of thirsty mouths how this shit gets done. And don't take any shit, from anybody. Remember, this is your house. Own it.

Like I always say: have fun, get rich, and don't let the fuckers get you down.

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