Monday, May 12, 2008

Bar Knowledge

I work at three bars. One is a sports bar in a high income, residential family, older type area. The second is a sister sports bar to the first, but it's located in a cooler, younger professional type area, and the third is a college bar/ club that's located downtown.

I described the locations for this reason...

People from all walks of life cheat on their spouses, do drugs, talk really dirty, hate their lives, drink way to much, are sex-crazed, and have serious emotional issues.

I had always heard that bartenders are privy to every facet of their customer's lives and I never believed it. Well guess what? It's completely true.

Cheating on your wife? Hate your children? Regret certain life decision? Screwed over your best friend? You want me to sleep with your wife while you watch? (I'm not making this one up either)

Some of the people who confide in me are older and they always tend to give me life advice out of their own miserable stories.... The ONE OVER-RIDING THEME that I must hear at least twice a shift (6 times tonight on rainy Monday) is this:

Don't get married. Don't wait until you're 30 like everyone says...Just don't do it. Remain free and don't "buy the cow". I have people begging me to make the right choice and not get sucked in. It's incredible how many people feel this way. I can't even tell you how many bitter male and female bar patrons tell me this, the number is astronomical. I have women tell me this while their spouse is in the bathroom. I feel bad for these people...


It really makes a man think....

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

You have to consider the enviroment you are hearing this in.

While its true that many people are miserably married, it is the couple that has made it to that 50 year anniversary, and are still obviously in love with each other as if they were newlyweds, that inspire me. They always seem happier than their single counterparts. And for some reason... wiser. ? Weird, huh.

Just as rare as that happy inspiring couple is that happy single 60 year old man, I'd have to say.

Don't wait until you are 30. Wait until you find someone that makes you believe in the concept of a soulmate.

MoJezz said...

Jack, remember the source and the circumstance. Your sample is skewed with the miserabele. The people that speak up are more likely to complain. Marriage is hard, but everyday life is harder. Take the advice with a grain of salt. I bet if you scratched the surface of your patrons you could categorize the miserably married into groups. The too young, too naive, to inexperienced, failing to plan, whatever.

The secret to a happy marriage is that there is no secret. But there are plenty of ways to screw up a relationship. I bet you can think of a few.

But now the important question about your post is this: was the wife of the man that asked you to screw his wife while he watched at least hot?

Jack Goes Forth said...

Mojezz- Yes and I'll save that tory for another time.

Another interesting factoid that I learned last night: In certain neighborhoods in Richmond when one couple asks another couple over to their house for "lasagna"...It really means,"Hey would you like to come over and fuck each other spouses?" Apparently swinging is alive and well and the cap city.


I agree that a bar is a strange enviroment but it's just staggering how many people are willing to spill their guts about their problems.

GJ said...

I do believe in the waiting till 30 at a minimum, but although marriage has many pitfalls (never been married, not getting it any time soon), remember one thing:

Most people are fucking idiots.

This means no matter what they do, be it marriage, career, or friendships, they're going to do it mediocre or wrong. And then they will moan about their bad life at a bar to a stranger instead of with a true lifelong friend who has their back.

Anonymous said...

As others have said-- put this in context buddy. Happily married people are not at a bar getting boozed up on a weeknight talking to you.

Jack Goes Forth said...

I agree with the comments, happily married people are usually not at bars on a weeknight getting trashed.

I just tend to commisurate with the ones who are at the bar because they've made some mistakes and they regret some decisions and they're honest (albeit a little drunk).

I'm a young man and I've made some mistakes and the smart money is on me making a few more before it's over, so I don't look down on any of these people and sometimes I can see a few of them as older versions of myself. It's depressing and fascinating at the same time.

The only hard and fast conclusion I can draw from all this...

I don't want to get old. 24 suits me pretty well.

Olde Brownson said...

You'll be thirty before you know it. So just how long can you go on, night after night, serving booze to lowlifes, and testing the statistical limits of the effectiveness of condoms.

Anonymous said...

Lol, its TRUE Jack, one day you are 23, the next you are 27 or 28, then the next minute you are 31.

Once you get past 22, I swear, time really does FLY.

Zosimus the Heathen said...

I'd have to say I agree with the "don't get married" philosophy myself. Interestingly enough, the first time I realized I wasn't interested in marriage was when I was only thirteen, and now, more than twenty years later, I've found that my views on the matter haven't changed one iota. Like you probably have, though, I've heard lots of people profess the opposite point of view on the value of marriage; indeed, if I hear one more person spout that vomitous old cliche about married men living longer and being happier than their unwed brethren, I'm going to do something seriously fucked up, I swear.

Funnily enough, I've had a lot of (sufficiently brain-damaged) acquaintances express the view that I'd make a "wonderful" husband (and father too, even though I fucking hate kids); then again, a devoutly Catholic (and now sadly deceased) grandfather of mine was convinced I was going to end up becoming a priest (given the tag I've adopted, you can probably guess there's not much chance of that happening either!). I also stumbled upon an article on some Christian fundy website which listed the typical attributes and life experiences of the "marrying kind" of man, all of which, freakily enough, applied to me! So why don't I want to get married myself? Probably because I'm a degenerate artistic type who gets more than enough fulfillment from his art. Also I don't have the phobia of being alone that so many people appear afflicted by; indeed, I prefer to be by myself a lot of the time. Finally, and just to be really cynical, I don't want to waste my life slaving away in some soul-crushing job just to support the lifestyle of some avaricious bitch suffering the delusion that she's some precious little "princess", rather than the leech she really is. (Increase the hate factor tenfold if she's someone who prided herself on her financial independence before marriage, but decided afterwards that it was the man's job to pay for everything.)

To conclude this rather long-winded post, I'll give a quote that echoes my views on marriage nicely. "The dread of loneliness being keener than the fear of bondage, we get married. For the one person who fears being thus tied there are four who dread being set free." (Taken from a work entitled 'The Unquiet Grave' by a guy called Palinurus)

Anonymous said...

Marriage, to me, is done for the creation of a family. Lots of people have no business doing either.

Jack Goes Forth said...

zos- While yes, you are one long-winded bastard, I couldn't agree more with what you're saying.

Anonymous said...

As a man who obviously has some experience with crappy marriages I have all the reason in the world to say never get married etc. But given this, I still think its stupid to speak in such absolute terms. I don't think anyone should say they are NEVER getting married or that they absolutely must get married. I think you take life as it comes to you, and if deals you a marriage so be it. If you find yourself 40 years old and still happy banging young strange, then thats good too. The important thing is that you understand and appreciate the benefits and downfalls of all alternatives and that you are happy with your decision based on your knowledge. Nothing should ever be absolute.

JM

Z said...

can I add you to my blogroll? would you object?

Z said...

also, marriage is a piece of paper, a contract. why complicate a great relationship with someone by marrying them? the problem isn't with marriage itself, but with the people who do it. I think it's so rare for marriages to last a lifetime happily because so many people marry each other when they shouldn't. maybe for religious reasons, legal reasons, financial reasons, and probably most of all because its socially expected. stupid. us poor women are programmed to want this, and to push men into it. why can't we be satisfied with being with another person for as long as its fun, happy, enjoyable, and then go our seperate ways when it's not?

I personally don't think people are necessarily biologically programmed to stay with one person their whole lives.