Monday, April 23, 2012

Bar Experience

I was tending bar when Susan was hired to be our new Supervisor. Mini-skirt, 4-inch high heels, push-up bra and press-on nails (she lost one in someone's salad once. Yuck.) Mark, the lecherous putz of a Food and Beverage Director, said she had "a lot of experience working in bars" but we all wondered on which side. Apart from flirting with the cooks and just about anything in pants, Susan liked to decorate the Happy Hour buffet table. All well and good, but she didn't ever seem to take into account just how that table was going to be used, so plates could wind up just about anyplace and items that should have been placed in near proximity could be at opposite ends of the table. Susan's deal was "making it look pretty."

One particularly memorable "pretty" buffet was for a Mexican themed variety of hors-d'ouevres. Lots and lots of crepe paper strewn all around the legs of the chafing dishes - plenty of streamers and confetti and paper mache shared the table with candles and several large cans of Sterno. In a word: Kindling. As soon as someone walked in the front door, the wind blew the streamers into the open flame, setting off a kind of fuse that soon had the entire ten foot table erupting in flames. I managed to put out the fire with a couple of nearby pitchers of water and a wad of table cloths, while Susan said  things like, "Hurry!" or "Oh, gawsh!"

From time to time, she'd come behind the bar to "help." This usually meant, I helped her get her high heels unstuck from the floor mats while she helped herself to my tips. She didn't know how to make a drink, and she couldn't use the register, so mostly she just talked to the customers, ate the cherries out of my garnish trays and got in my way. Inevitably, she mistook the relieved look on my face when she finished "helping" for gratitude, and always promised to show up again when she was needed. (I should be so lucky.)

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