A Bartenders Rant (Post the Holiday Season)

in #life3 months ago (edited)

Everyone has things which annoy them at work and several ways to deal with the irritations they face. Working with the general public can be both an extremely rewarding and frustrating way to earn a living but working in an establishment where people have access to alcohol really changes the dynamics. So in no particular order here is my list (read random rantings to exorcise all my pent up anger from over the Christmas period) on what people do at bars which annoy the hell out of barstaff also take it as a loose guide on what 'not to do' when you're next out for a post work drinks.

  • Do not wave your money over the bar at us, whistling, clicking, tapping coins and banging glasses will not get you served faster. As one young lady I know put it loudly and to the alpha male dickhead being rather loud and waving his fifty pound note ‘It’ll take more than two fingers to make me come darling’ (said man left the bar and went out side to have a cigarette obviously sulking )

  • Tipping, now I can only write from a UK perspective here but no tipping is not obligatory to a bartender in most places. If you are in a normal ‘boozer’ offering them a drink for themselves is common enough. I have heard that further up north ‘one for yourself’ simply means rounding up the change or taking 50p or so, which I have not encountered but does add up over time. At a restaurant where you are receiving table service a tip is normal but if you’ve already been given a ‘service charge’ it’s up to you. Basically tipping is at your discretion, it is a good perk to the job but you won’t be ignored if you do not tip. In fact I’d say a bigger impact upon the service you receive is how polite you are, I may be fixing you a drink but I am still a real person.
  • This brings me on to not being rude. Yes I know you just had a really hard week at your ‘real’ job and that you’re here to unwind. But please don’t scream and shout nor make snide comments. Yes you may have been waiting a few minutes but exaggerating to ‘I’ve been here 20 minutes’ when I’ve clearly just seen you elbow your way to the bar does you no favours.

  • So here’s the truth, I will flirt and be friendly with anyone while I’m working as it is part of my job. I am no different to the guy playing Donald Duck at Disneyland except I wear a black shirt and carry a corkscrew not a 7 foot duck costume. This does not mean that we are friends outside of work, nor do I want to add you on my social media. I will be polite but please give me some privacy. Also when I’m out with my mother or sisters that is not an invitation for every woman from 18 upwards to come over pushing their Prams, hair pulled back and fag in hand to say hello. My family will make assumptions and none of them good.
  • Guys and girls just stop trying to sleep with the barmaids as you are either being laughed at, played for a mug or simply regarded as creepy. I hear the guys chatting after work and most of you would not go out in public again if you realised how much of a dick people truly consider you. Also the crude innuendos when ordering a drink are so played out that you just come across as slimy. Also if your server is young enough to be your child, then do not make a pass at them it is that simple. Now I’m not saying barstaff won’t go home with a customer, it’s just a more difficult prospect for you. My advice would be to be friendly with and get to know your server and they’ll happily act as your wingman or woman.
  • So this one is probably location specific but I am now used to receiving threats of all kinds from customers from burning my house down, stabbing me to raping me on my walk home. In the course of my work I have been assaulted several times and sadly this is an occupational hazard for anyone who works with the general public. So when I refuse you another round or ask you to leave for writing your name in ketchup. I am not overreacting, it is just over time I have learnt not to give second chances. If you give a person with a drop of alcohol in their bloodstream a second chance the majority act like undisciplined five year olds for the rest of the night.

  • Twat Tax - this is real yes. So if you do decide to act like a moron you will possibly get twat taxed, which can take several forms. Extra drinks will be added onto your round for the staff after work, you may be charged a higher price than other customers for example if you order a double Jack and coke I won’t key it through as a double but will charge you for two singles. Also your doubles may actually only be half measures, your pints made up from the drip tray and the amount of alcohol in your drink will be far less than you’re paying for. Now I’m not condoning this ‘tax’ but some times getting even is the only thing that keeps you sane.
  • As I had it explained to me once, there is an accepted etiquette and good form to all social interactions in the world. People who go to certain establishments know the rules and follow them, wether that be at church, a coffee shop or a supermarket. When people go into pubs or bars though something checks out and many take as a point of reference the last episode they watched of Peaky Blinders crossed with Merry and Pippen’s favourite the Green Dragon as a point of reference on how to act, which leads to no end of problems.

  • Using the same glass. Quiet simply, No I can’t. Your glass touches my taps which then touches the glass of my next customer and so on. It would be a damn fast way to transfer germs and yes I know it was acceptable in 1978 but so were a lot of other things now frowned upon.
  • Stop telling me to smile, A) it’s bloody annoying and B) it’s a lazy way to start off a conversation or an interaction.
  • Delusions of Grandeur are just that Delusions. When your beer buzz starts by all means dance and mingle but remember it is a drug in your system helping you feel this way, you have not become Brad Pitt and after the next couple you have not become Tyler Durden either.

  • Ok so this is a delicate point but unless truly unstable we know our own bodies, what looks flattering and what does not. Certain items of ‘going out’ clothing look horrendous on certain people. Fashion is temporary and will not suit everyone. I worry I’ll be opening a Pandora’s box on body positivity here but I feel the safest metric is if you’d be embarrassed to go out in the daytime with your grandmother in your choice of clothes then maybe tone it down?
  • DO NOT TOUCH ME - this one is pretty self explanatory. Sexual or otherwise do no touch your server or bartender at all. From what you consider a harmless pat on the rear, to hands on hips, leaning over the bar to stroke their hair it is all extremely invasive and at the very least bloody annoying. Now I’m a hand shake kind of guy and this has a place, hell I’ve even fist bumped some people in the past. Other people are more open to hugs but please let the member of staff initiate a hug as we have people pawing at us all day. In fact this rule applies to any job I think, just take a step back and assess the situation and unless you are 100% sure do not initiate over the top contact.

  • If we run out of a product or something goes wrong, please do not take it as a personal affront. I did not predict you’d be in tonight when doing my order last week and deliberately order one less bottle one Hendrick’s and be damned I threw out all the cucumbers the moment it hit 10PM and my dog has been put in charge of doing our monthly audit and stock check.
  • If being asked to leave or stop doing something using the example of ‘everyone else in the bar’ or ‘other people’ is not a valid defence. It didn’t work as an excuse with your parents and teachers, nor will it work with me as It is you I’m talking to or caught not ‘everybody else’.
  • No I will not give you a free shot because it is your birthday/hen party/bar mitzvah/Christmas or you caught a rare pokemon. My job and stock is worth more than you getting a free drink and smiling at me. Hell you should buy me a drink for putting up with your bull shit mate.

  • ‘Keep the change’ can be a wonderful phrase to hear but it can also piss you off royally as it is can be used as a passive aggressive action to make the person feel superior to the person serving them. What will I do with 3p, put another wing in the mansion cocksucker? I normally manage to let this one slide and just put the change in the charity box but it is an unnecessary action and just rather dickish.
  • Stop telling me that you ‘couldn’t’ work nights and asking me why I am working Christmas Eve. It has been said before but I’m only here and not with my family because people such as you are out drinking Jane.

Well that was pretty cathartic and I feel so much better. I know this has no real form or structure and as a conclusion this is terrible but it summed up the main things that have driven me to distraction these past few weeks and getting them onto paper has worked as a release. Any questions though, I’ll be happy to explain or defend myself. Oh yea ‘Happy New Year’, roll on Burns Night, Valentines and St Patrick’s Day......

Image credits

Mo- https://comicvine.gamespot.com/moe-szyslak/4005-8865/

UC_ti9tGyEpEJNo9I51LbPXw

Tip - https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/news/to-tip-or-not-to-tip-where-in-britain-is-the-most-generous-for-leaving-restaurant-gratuities-10246879.html

Customer is an - https://www.pinterest.co.uk/pin/11822017744988919/

Drunk Donald - tumview.com

Coordinate dog - barkpost.com

Hobbit pint - https://giphy.com/gifs/friends-the-lord-of-rings-quote-bzFtsbvHDuGJi

Tyler Durden - https://www.studiobinder.com/blog/character-archetypes/

Free shot - https://quotabulary.com/humorous-alcohol-quotes

End gif - http://monkeybuddha.blogspot.com/2016_05_01_archive.html?m=1

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Haha! The Twat tax huh? How many times do you reckon you've applied that tax in the last 12 months?

I know I'm in the UK but I' going to have to take the Fifth on that one sir. It happens a fair bit though across the service sector. In truth though I'll just refuse service if I'm getting annoyed. English licensing laws are an interesting beast, as you do not have to give a reason to refuse service. So as long as I don't go against the Equality Act of 2010, I could refuse you service if I did not like the way you looked at me. Then if you refuse to leave after being asked three times you're breaking the law and the police will come and remove you.

That's fair enough, I probably wouldn't have answered it either. I'm not much of a drinker, don't really hang out in pubs and certainly don't think the twat tax would apply to me anyway but was just curious.

Now if candid with you, it would all depend on circumstance and the time of day. If you came in late over Christmas in big group , you could be the nicest people on earth and you'd probably still be taxed in one form or another. The truth is that unless you're in a high end establishment, a niche craft ale or cocktail bar or a 'Ma & Pa' family run operation most people are just doing this job to make ends meet. And I think as you move more towards late night bars and clubs the people serving you are a lot more cynical and jaded due to the 'Party Scene' environment and things which are in a grey area of ' acceptable' become the norm.

Yes, I agree with you here...All reasons why I don't go to places like this much.

I can hardly blame you mate, . On my time off I don't spend it anywhere which remotely resembles my work but try to experience new things and meet new people (or I read junk food fiction sci-fi books). Also I feel that if a person does want to enjoy a glass or two it is so much cheaper and the company is better in the comfort of your own home and to reference some of our previous conversations its a lot safer to relax at home if imbibing these days.

Yes, exactly! I prefer the outdoors and selective company, both of which I can't generally get in a pub situation. There's so much more in life to be discovered and learned and I don't see the inside of a pub helping with that. :)

'I prefer the outdoors and selective company' I whole heartedly agree with that statement sir. And yes a pub can be a good way to spend a few hours and unwind but more and more I feel that alcohol is a key part in the modern version of 'Bread & Circuses' but instead today people have their 'Beer & Baccy'.

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