“Coming right up.”
Another usual, coconut rum with a splash of soda and a lemon on the side. On top of that, they wanted the Japanese top-shelf whiskey, six shots among three people. This should take a second.
To get their night started, I took out six brand new shot glasses from this mornings and perfectly line them up on the bar counter, two glasses on front of each person. Without even having to look up, my hand reached out at the liquor shelf behind me and grabbed at a bottle. Feeling the familiar metallic, screw on top and wide glass base, I know I’ve got the whiskey bottle in hand. To save time from having to swap hands, I flipped the bottle out of my hand, arching over my head, and landing in my other hand.
One of the men in front of me let out an excited shout and began clapping wildly, “Dude, how the fuck did you do that?! How did you know the bottle would land in your hand like that?!”
I gave him an answer as I unscrewed the top to the whiskey and poured into the shot glasses. I had to keep it a but subtle, “That was honestly my first time doing it. It was pure luck that I managed to land it on my first try.” Finishing up on the final glass, I put the top of the whiskey bottle back on and place it back in its place on the shelf, “Thank god it didn’t break. That bottle is worth over a hundred dollars out of my next pay if it did.”
Another man from the group slammed his hand on the counter and looked at me in drunken awe, “Seriously?! Bro, you got skills! You could be, like, a master bartender or somethin’!”
In order to give my hands something to do, I grabbed at the recently watched glassware under the counter and started drying them with the cloth in my apron, “I have been a bartender for quite some time, but never tried anything like that. I’m glad you all enjoyed that little display of skill.”
Oddly enough, they never caught onto the small patch of gray stubble in my chin hair and the waves of gray taking over my hairline. I even stepped aside from the wall behind the bar counter to show off a few of the trophies I’ve won for the bar at competitions. Looks like they were too far into their drinks to even realize it. It’s fine though. I find joy in watching people drink the night away and enjoy themselves.
As the group downed their drinks, I surveyed the rest of the bar to get a better idea of how the night will turn out. There’s only a couple or two actually taking advantage of the small dance floor at the back of the bar, a new ploy to help bring on new customers. The entire bar counter is full to capacity and our second hostess just came out from the back to help serve the tables. Aside from the upbeat music, there was so much chatter going on that I could barely hear myself think. It was going to be a busy night for sure.
As the night progressed, I’ve made dozens of mixed drinks and popped open even more capped beer bottles, enough caps to possibly create a mini replica of the Empire State Building. Overhearing so many conversations began to make me wonder exactly what kind of crowd this bar attracted. One person was complaining about their job, which is a normal thing to hear as a bartender. But one man was going on and on about how wearing panties made him feel more feminine. At that point, I stopped paying attention to guests’ conversations and focused on new routines to wow customers. I could probably do some juggling with beer bottles, but they’ll have to be emptied beforehand.