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Secrets of the Stick: Bartender lovin'

Public displays of bartender lovin’? Our woman on the inside has her own way of dealing with such things


While writing this, I have a smile on my face, a throbbing in my feet, a ringing in my ears, a massive banging in my head, and a new ‘friend’ to the side of me. That’s 100% the sign of a good night.

I suppose I should know better. I should maybe have reached that age… I already have this t-shirt.

You see, what I don’t get is why it’s always another bartender – why it is we feel the need to keep it in the family, so to speak. Seriously, we’re not attempting to create the Ultimate Bartender,
or a drink-slinging version of the Aryan race here.

Alarmingly though, I’ve recently noticed that this style of interaction is not simply left to the after-hours of the bar. The tango of bartender lovin’ is now flaunted in the face of all – right at the bar. Now we all know this to be a cardinal sin in our industry: a sin that used to sentence the sinner to a soda-gun soaking for a cool-down moment.

I can’t claim to be innocent of this crime – I’ve been unwillingly thrust under the spotlight mid-service while Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get it On plays. I’ve bruised my bottom on a sink, and been given that look as I walk back into a bar, hair dishevelled and lips a-rouged – but I now know better. I’m no longer green, fresh-faced and naïve. Trust me, it’s not cool.

This kind of public amorous behaviour seems to have been deemed acceptable of late, though – to the point that people no longer feel the need to go home. The rapturous squeaks and deep, breathless kissing noises come from darkened corners of bars, toilets and even right in front of me at the bar. Damn you!

I’m not some sort of green-eyed monster – although I am a little envious of the energy oh-so-clearly exuded at times – and nor am I a prude. But the last thing I expect when walking into my bar’s (pretty grotty) toilets is to see two pairs of bartender feet peeking from a cubicle, and to hear a shrieking noise, a giggle and then another (deeper) giggle.

On one occasion I decided to give the pair of reprobates sufficient time alone together – I’m nice like that – only to return later to an escalated combination of murmured oohs and ahhs.

It surely can’t have been that good. With no soda gun at hand, I had no alternative but to give the pair a cold shower – with an ice bucket-full of frosty water.

This is not something I would condone or recommend. The scream that came from the cubicle was bone-chilling, to say the least. Apparently the cold water made the girl’s teeth chatter a little too much… ouch. So, let this be a lesson to all of you: don’t piss me off and make out at my stick!

My theory, after much research, is this: the nocturnal nature of my beloved profession creates an obstacle for any relations with day-walkers, and our heady drunken antics make us unsuitable companions for even the strongest-willed. So bring it on – but keep it out of the toilets please.

Editorial feature from Imbibe Magazine – November/December 2011

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