About two weeks after I was hired at the 2 street bar, I came in to start my shift and was met with my first real potential situation. As I was counting the drawer, Robbie, the manager, came over to me with some special instructions.
“Some shit went down today. If One Eye comes in tonight, DO NOT APPROACH HER, just hit her with the bat.”
He was deadpan and matter of fact in the delivery of this directive and left me open mouth staring at the back of his head as he walked away.
Obviously, after the shock wore off, I chased him down. I had a couple of questions. At this very moment, I know you do too.
First, “wait, what happened today?” Or maybe the variant, “why should I hit this woman with the bat?”
One Eye had been flagged from the bar for rushing drinks several months earlier. Before you ask, I’ll tell you- “rushing drinks” is when a rummy grabs your cocktail and tries to gulp down as much as possible before you know what’s going on. I’ve never heard the term used anywhere else.
When she walked in that day, the day bartender told One Eye that she wasn’t welcome, even before she sat down. This didn’t sit well with One Eye and she grabbed the nearest rocks glass and bounced it off his head.
Robbie laughed as he told the story,
“So Jon calls me and he says, uh, my head is pouring blood and she’s ran into the kitchen. She’s wrapped herself around the drainage pipe under the sink and I can’t get her out. What should I do?”
Another good question. Truly a learning moment. I mean, I’ve never had to dislodge a drunk woman out from under a sink drain before.
Robbie said he instructed Jon to pry her out with the broomstick. Which I guess he did, albeit with one hand, since he needed the other to apply pressure to the gaping wound on his head.
Robbie seemed a little shocked that she had returned. He said when she was flagged the first time, she had jumped over the bar and began smashing all the bottles of liquor against the floor. He and another bartender, Dorothy, had wrestled her to the ground, drug her out the door, each holding an arm and a leg, and heave hoed her into the side of a parked UPS truck.
That’s enough for most people to get the message.
Either way, I was new, untested, and the day bartender had four stitches from this little run in. It was better if I didn’t take any chances.
He said, “Just hit her with the bat.”