Contrary to popular belief, bartending is far from a glamorous episode out of the movie Cocktail. Tom Cruise wouldnt fucking last a minute. It’s a tough job, both physically and mentally. We stand on our feet for hours on end, hump ice, change kegs, wash glasses, mop floors, scrub drains, etc. Every night, we have to constantly switch roles on a dime, from mixologist, psychologist, meteorological expert, therapist, matchmaker, comedian, photographer, concierge, baby sitter…so on and so forth. Every bartender has a uniquely personal way of stimulating themselves to get through this crazy occupation. Some will immediately start sneaking alcoholic beverages on the side and carefully pace themselves. Others will drink outrageous amounts of coffee. The more prestigious bartenders will get right to heart of the matter and snort coke in the bathroom. I like to mix small amounts of Red Bull with cranberry juice and nurse on that throughout the evening. It helps me to keep an even buzz going. Jake has this incredible procedure he habitually goes through every time we work together. He pours four shots of espresso, chills them for about twenty minutes, adds liquid vanilla ice cream and chocolate syrup, and finally blends it all with ice until he achieves just the perfect texture. It literally takes him half an hour to arrive at his drink destination. Tonight, as I watched him go through this painstaking ritual, I decided to add a secret ingredient to his concoction. The second he set his finished frappuccino down and wasnt looking, I slyly slid over to his part of the bar and poured in a healthy shot of Bacardi Limon. Spiking it with lemon infused rum should do the trick. I retreated back to my side and carefully kept my eye on him to see what the outcome of my antics would be. Giggling to myself, I smiled over at Jake and watched him take the first sip. The look in his eyes went from puzzlement to astonishment as he quickly figured out what I had done. I thought for sure he would toss it out and I would have the cruel pleasure of laughing at him as he trudged through the long process of making another one. Jake got the last laugh. He ended up finishing it down to the last drop and was a little happier than usual. Not quite the reaction I was hoping for.
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