Deep Thoughts

12 Tips on Proper Bar Etiquette

November 29, 2013

Multiple Pages
12 Tips on Proper Bar Etiquette

In America, people do air travel like they’re going to a sleepover, bring kids to R-rated movies, and let their offspring run around restaurants like we’re all in the same living room. It’s hard to know where to begin when imposing some decorum on Western culture, but I’m an alcoholic so I’m going to start with bars.

1. BRING CASH
As John Carney pointed out on Business Insider, stop pulling out your credit card for one drink. You’re not only wasting the bartender’s time and delaying his tip by at least a week, you’re slowing shit down for the rest of us. Go to an ATM and pay the fee they charge you to not waste everyone else’s money.

2. STOP ORDERING WATER
You know what booze is? It’s water with a tiny bit of booze in it. No more ordering a drink with a water chaser. Try the drink first and see if that quenches your thirst. It’s a fucking DRINK, for crying out loud. The only exception to this rule is a megabender where you’re risking alcohol poisoning by not having a glass of water for every seven pints of beer. It’s rational to do it then, but I still think it’s faggy.

“You don’t go to a drug den and order strawberry heroin, so stop asking questions about some stupid pumpkin ale.”

3. KNOW YOUR DRINK
Can we stop asking the female bartender what IPA she recommends? She drinks Pinot Grigio and she doesn’t even like it. Order a Budweiser or a Guinness or a Maker’s on the rocks. The drinks they’re serving are really just rotten vegetables and we’re drinking them because they give us a buzz. As you sit there poring over the menu like any of this matters, we are fantasizing about ripping your head off. You don’t go to a drug den and order strawberry heroin, so stop asking questions about some stupid pumpkin ale.

4. CAREFUL, LADIES
We know women should be legally allowed in bars, but they belong there about as much as I belong in a feminist workshop about rape. Ladies, you are in a man zone, so please try to dial it back a bit and keep it to a dull roar. Your laugh after three wines sounds like a hyena trying to howl over a fire extinguisher.

5. NO MORE BLACKBERRY MARGARITAS
I can’t believe this is a genderless rule but yes, even grown men order these elaborate drinks. If I am at an airport bar and I’m trying to get a bourbon buzz before a six-hour flight, please do not cut my drinking time by ordering something that takes 10 minutes to make. I have criticized men for doing this in the past and they were so oblivious their reaction was, “I know! ‘Not normal,’ right?”

6. BOOTH SEATS ARE NOT SET IN STONE
When someone leaves the booth to go to the loo, they don’t need their exact seat when they get back. When he returns, everyone shuffles down one and he’s now in the aisle seat. Besides, it’s healthy for the conversation to have a musical-chairs scenario, so everyone needs to stop getting up and allowing dude to slide into his spot next to the guy who won’t stop talking about the price of his daughter’s gymnastics lessons.

7. NO THREE IN A ROW
If three guys are going for a drink, two may sit and the other must stand between them, creating a triangle of conversation. When three guys sit in a row at the bar, one is forced to crane his neck to hear what’s going on and another often has his back to a dude. You’ve been sitting at a computer all day. You can stand for a couple hours. 

8. TIP BIG ON FREE DRINKS
Freedom isn’t free and neither are free drinks. The custom is a dollar a drink on free drinks and that includes buybacks. If you know the bartender and she starts throwing out free drinks like a drunken maniac, you should tip $2 to $3 a drink. If a male bartender gives you change where it’s awkward to tip well, fuck him. If a female bartender gives you a $10 and a $1, you should ask to have the $10 broken to give her a better tip.

9. MEN SHOULD NOT ORDER WINE
Today I saw a dude drinking a wine and a water. He might as well have been raping a baby and holding a Klan rally. Wine is for dinner parties and women and fancy restaurants. Pubs are places where Robin Hood’s merry men get wasted and fight. You can’t do that while holding a glass stem in your hand like it’s a goddamned rose.

10. STOP SHOWING THE BARTENDER PICTURES OF YOUR KIDS
Every time I go on a business trip, the hotel bar is crammed with dads showing the spinster bartender a picture of their kids. She doesn’t give a shit, dude. In fact, you’re depressing her because her roadie boyfriend is never going to be a dad. If you’re so drunk that you think everything you find interesting is also interesting to us, you need to go up to your room and sleep it off.

11. SLURRING IS A SERIOUS ACCUSATION
If your buddy says you’re slurring, you are. The only way to tell when someone is wasted beyond a shadow of a doubt is when they adamantly deny it. The second someone mocks your slurred speech, try to take it down a notch. Also, here’s a bonus tip: If you’re about to meet your wife or a business associate and you’ve had too much, stretch your cheeks by inflating air in them. I don’t know why this works, but it does.

12. DON’T ASK IF YOU CAN CHARGE YOUR PHONE
Asking a bartender to charge your phone is like asking him to change your diapers. If you’re in a situation where your battery keeps cutting out, get a Morphie. If not, let your phone die. Bars lived without cell phones for thousands of years and they should continue to do so for thousands more.

 

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