1) Describe the bar/pub/club you worked in?
I worked in a small bar/restaurant that held around 100 people at max capacity
2) What was your best experience there?
We had live music acts In every weekend and spontaneously one of our older drinkers grabbed one of the younger and started ballroom dancing with her. Too funny!
3) And the worst?
Having a very angry drunk group of young guys trying to start a fight with another… About 6/7 in each group. Not fun to try and split up.
4) Did you have any regular customers? Describe them.
I had a few regular customers, one stuck with me. He was an old guy around his late 70s early 80s. Born and raised in leith and came in every day and ordered the same drink but always had a fresh story about his time in the war. Unbelievably cool guy.
5) Did you ever overhear people’s conversations? tell me one which stuck with you?
As a bartender you overhear loads of conversations but one that stuck with me was when one of our semi regular customers came in after recently splitting up with her partner (who I had met). She met up with her dad and just spilled her heart out about how he left with all her money and stole all her stuff. Genuinely heartbreaking!
6) Do you think there are different types of customers, can you describe them? What do they drink?
There are so many types of customer but in this bar it was broken down into a few categories:
The old timers: drank Guinness, Best… Pints really. Would sit and read their paper and complain about the state of the world.
The hipster wanks: order the most obscure thing on our cocktail list. Or not on our cocktail list as the case was. They would usually think they were better than you. Dicks.
The crazy mid life crisis women: loud, obnoxious, flirty, single. Deadly combination.
The hospitality workers: they understand what we have to do. The shit you have to put up with. And the horrible hours you have to work. They bring glasses back to the bar. Wait patiently to be served and ALWAYS tip.
7) Waht’s your most memorable conversation/experince?
Having a guy come in and talk about when his daughter died… Not cool but definitely memorable!
8) Does alcohol really losen the tongue?
Yes. Always. People get way more forward and more opinionated too.
9) What does love/sorrow/joy or any other emotion you care to mention look like in a bar?
Joy can look like anything in a bar but mostly it’s in conversations… People meet up after years for a drink and seeing that comfortability with someone after so long is heartwarming to see
Anger is not so good to see. Fights, aggression and being in a position where you have to get in the middle of it is one of the many downsides to being s bartender
10) Do we all make the same mistakes?
By drinking too much? At some point. definitely.
11) Lessons learnt from working there?
Always establish a position of dominance when dealing with a difficult customer. But sympathise with them too.
12) Tell me a secret?
Always tip your bartender on the first drink. You will see a massive difference in service.
13) A stranger walks into a bar…what does he order and why?
The stranger orders a bottle of mid range wine because he is on a blind date from tinder or something.