Day 2:Welcome back! In today's blog I will honor the inspiration that I've had to write about my unique experiences in bartending. Caution! This article may contain content not suitable for younger readers. Thank you for your consideration and I apologize in advance if I offend anyone. Enjoy the adventure!
Loyal for a Night
by Amanda Steinhaus
Every show I bartend at the Midland Theatre brings a different crowd. The audiences, young and old, range from buttoned-up conservatives to neon-clad ravers rolling their faces off! No matter the origin of my guests for the night, the Midland becomes a celebration vessel for all. As the doors open and we embark on the night, I revel in thoughts of who will cross my path and vow loyalty to me and my superior bar etiquette for the rest of our voyage together.
You see, bartenders possess special gifts -- spirits. Truth is, the more infectuous their spirits, the greater the chance that a total stranger will befriend one. The friendship is lively, short-lived and celebratory, and in some cases participants may feel comfortable enough to share deep, dark secrets and experiences.
Imagine, one special night, your favorite band is jamming, you've got your pals by your side and your pocket is jingling with enough dabloons to cover a couple of rounds. Then you meet me, the bartender. Smiling and ready to serve you, our eyes meet and we make that initial connection, that first impression that is oh, so important in the service industry.
I ask, "Is this your first time at the Midland?" as you gaze at the grand staircase and gigantic chandeliers abound. You answer and sip the cocktail I just made you and then, BOOM! You are hooked!
A few more of these encounters occur throughout the evening and the next thing you know, you're either inviting me to a swinger's party or telling me about how your ex just sent you a picture text of his ginormous package that you admit you miss, while your husband sits back in the theatre waiting for you to return with his Jack 'n Coke.
It's crazy, people, just crazy! As a bartender I have seen it all, which is exactly why I feel the need to document the crazy stuff I witness. Drunk people are great subjects and continuously say and do things that I cannot pass up writing about.
The most recent encounter with those of the wasted world was when the Midland hosted a Pretty Lights show: DJs, incredible light shows, loud beats, lots of glow sticks, and lots of people with dialated pupils. It is at electronic DJ events like this that the crowd arrives more socially awkward than normal. One couple in particular took a liking to me and by their second trip through my line, the female lifted her shirt, not once, but twice, to show me her amazingly perky fake breasts that according to her husband, were "bought and paid for." The male bartender next to me had no complaints.
Their next time through, they were laying on the compliments pretty thick, so I asked them blatantly, "Are you guys swingers?" They said, "Duh!" and proceeded to invite me to a swinger's afterparty. I said politely, "I don't think I am ready for that yet."
However, my curiosity kicked in. I wondered what swingers do at real swinger parties. So, upon their next visit, I asked them and the girl answered me, "We show up, have a few cocktails, I change into my special panties (she parties topless), hang out with who ever we want, and hook up with who ever we want."
Wow! A bonafide swinger's party...in Kansas City...and I got invited! However, as flattered as I may sound and as tempting as it may be to others, I just see it as it really is: a STD fest with a bunch of mentally compromised weirdos. No, thanks.
But thanks to the couple for being so loyal, offering up not one, but two viewings of the lady's tan boobies and tipping so generously -- possibly in hopes that the more money they flaunted, the more likely I would be to join them in the swinger adventure. Sorry folks, I'm deeper than that.
But it was fun anyway and makes for one helluva story! Ha!
Here is a picture of the inside of the Midland