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Wednesday, June 14, 2006

David and the Dancers

It's Saturday night, about eleven PM and my bar is slowly filling up when I notice my favorite customer to hate-David, sitting ever so primly at a table by the door.

First let me tell you a little about David. I first met him about a year ago when I was hanging out at my club and the bartender ran off somewhere, so naturally, I jumped behind the bar to help her out. David was one of the patron's standing there.

"Sorry for the wait, darlin', what can I get you to drink." I said, as polite as a southern girl can be.

"Give me a Bacardi and Coke in a tall glass, and you better put some damn alcohol in it."

This is one of my pet peeves. Before I even have a chance to make his drink and hand it to him for sampling, he is already telling me it's not good enough. First of all, I'm not going to give you just soda and charge you $5.00 for it, I'm not that mean (although I have done it before just to see if some drunk guy would notice--he didn't). Secondly, no please, no pleasantries, even after I have apologized for a problem that wasn't even my fault.

As I am making his drink, I delve into pleasant casual conversation, hoping that I can somehow lighten his mood with my banter...no such luck.

"What's your name, darlin'?"

"Leroy, now hurry the fuck up."

By this point I'm really angry. Some people (women and men) think that servers/waiters are personal punching bags for the night. Having worked 10 years in the industry, I have never seen it so prominant as in a gentleman's club. For some reason, where women take off their clothes for money, all sense of politeness and general hospitality fly out the window faster than the girls tops on the second song.

"Look," I say, gritting my teeth, "I'm not even supposed to be here today." As I'm saying it, flashes to Donte in Clerks are running through my head, and the phrase "you'd feel a lot better if you lit in to a few customers every once in a while" is too tempting to ignore. "Besides that," I continue, "I'm standing back here trying to make your drink, apologizing on behalf of my other bartender, trying to make sure that you have a pleasant night, and you have the audacity to talk to me in a way that is completely rude and uncalled for. I'm not even sure if you should be served this drink because I'm assuming that one would have to be quite drunk to speak to me like that."

At this point my boss is giving me the look that says "are you okay? Do we need to kick this guy out?" I love my job mainly for that reason. We don't put up with bullshit from people.

To my surprise "Leroy" apologizes, introduces himself by his real name, David, and gives me the standard "I've had a bad day, blah blah blah." I've had a quasi-relationship with him since, mainly because I'm the only person there he's nice to.

Flash foreward to Saturday night. Two unsuspecting dancers move to David's table. I can see trouble before trouble starts.

After I've taken their drink orders, I jokingly tell the dancers "make sure you don't put up with any of David's shit." And then, not-so-jokingly, I tell David to be nice. Before I have even returned with their drinks the girls are gone.

"What happened to the girls," I inquire, setting the drinks down on the now-deserted table.

"Fat bitches pissed me off. And one of them stole my fucking lighter. Cows. I'm leaving, I'm never coming back here again."

This is standard response from David. I don't think I've ever seen him leave in a good mood. I should have warned the dancers not to try and hustle him, but it would've been pointless. If you go into a strip club, expect to get hustled. Before I even get inside the dressing room to give the girls their drinks I can hear the yelling.

"That motherfucker called me an asshole! Can you fucking believe that! He called me an asshole!"

"What happened?" I ask, not beacuse I am surprised, but because it's the right thing to do.

"I asked him if he wanted a dance, and he said he would buy me a drink but that was it. So I told him he shoudn't come in if he didn't want to spend any money. Then he called me an asshole. Fucking prick."

I catch my bosses eye in the mirror and he winks. Inwardly I smile. Ahhhh David. Sometimes I appreciate the spice he brings.

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