April 19th, 2018

So I’m about halfway through the FMLA extra-shift coverage I’m doing for the month.  Probably 2, mabye 3 more four-day runs to milk for all they’re worth, assuming that Cherry is back on her feet and doctor-cleared to return to barkeep duties.  No further news about Jerry the Older, either, at present.  I’ll do a little nosing around this weekend to get an idea of how the land is going to lay.

But I digress…

I had actually called myself in late as a precaution, as the day had been running rather tight on schedule at home, but managed to beat the he assigned arrival time by two minutes. Hooray for my side, right? I more or less sprinted into position and while no one commented on my being -not- late as planned, I was personally quite pleased about it.  Shift change occured, Vera – our day side bartender – packed up and departed, as well as the day side cocktail girl Laura. This left me behind the bar for the evening, with Mary and Haley on cocktail duty, Charon minding the store, so to speak, and Red (one of our night bar backs) doing his thing.  A good and competent crew all around.

Drama struck early, however, though in a somewhat low-key manner.  We had a group of native guests over at one of the far Lounge tables, taking in the basketball playoffs. (Try as I might, I just could not convince them that the Stanley Cup playoffs were a much more compelling show). A few beers are going over there, but not an inordinate quantity, and the timing is good, etc. At one point, a young lady (one of the guys’ wives) comes up to the bar and starts to regale us with the story of how her husband at the table had tried to strike her, and she’d had him arrested for it.  I’m not going to speak to the hows and whys of that, because I didn’t witness it myself, but you have two minds about such things.  On the one hand, I don’t have tolerance for something like that at all.  On the other, the guy in question (at least to my limited exposure) has always seemed like a nice enough dude, and you’d like to assume that it’s not his normal demeanor, and that he might have just been reacting to the alcohol.  Not that it’s an excuse, mind you. Please see the no toleranace point.  I’m more saying It’d be nice to think that it was just a stupid and fairly bad mistake, rather than a general indication of usual demeanor. Ah well.  I suppose it goes down to the continuing story of our regulars’ lives, for good or ill, that we as bartenders find ourselves the occasional unwitting witnesses thereof.

So that was weird and set a tone. Thankfully it was the only real note of oddity in the evening of that manner.

As the night progressed, Charon informed me that the previous rule in place about having to stamp and sign things obnoxiously has actually ramped -up- instead of backed off.  All I could do was laugh, and nod and say ‘All right.’.  She seemed to understand the ridiculousness of it.  I spent a couple of hours purposefully putting in all the required documentation, but upside-down, just to be a dick about it, but you can only do that for so long before it bcomes boring. I enterteined briefly the idea of writing the kanji for ‘stupid’ on each of the receipts, but after looking it up over the dinner break, I scrapped that idea as it’s honestly too complicated for a quick gag.  Charon was pretty sure I’d get written up for it and if I do, I do.  I’ll take that one, as I told her. Totally worth it. Besides – the ruling is that the info has to be on the paper. The orientation of said information is not spelled out anywhere, and I’ll be happy to point that out as I sign my wrist-slap, if it arrives.

Basketball was the rule of the night for our guests, as I pointed out earlier. I did throw the hockey playoffs on three of the smaller TVs though, so I felt I could claim a little moral victory on that one.

The night was fairly mundane and casual beyond that, and given how quiet it was, I made a nice boatload of tips. The only real excitement after that was a small paperwork snafu that should be fixed up now. Nothing to write home about.


Closing observations :

  • Rapport-building is a worthwhile activity, even if it takes several years to begin bearing fruit.
  • This applies both to  guest, and interactions with fellow employees.


Next up : Friday night

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