Wednesday, December 9, 2009

You're cutting me off?

It's never easy cutting off a drunk person. No matter how calm or rational you are, the rationality is always wasted on the drunk person you are cutting off.

A woman walked into the bar the other night and made it really obvious that she was loaded. It's one thing to get drunk at an establishment. It's another thing to come into a establishment already tanked and act like a fool. Looking back on the incident, we should have just asked her to leave from the beginning. But in fear of making a poor, customer service call, we gave her the benefit of doubt.

This chick was all over the place. Everywhere she went, she stumbled and slurred. She was loud and obnoxious. She even shattered a martini glass at her table just because it was in front of her. Her friends were so embarrassed by her public drunken stupor. They individually came up to the bar and asked the entire staff to not serve her because she was so drunk. Fortunately, all of us at the bar already had our eyes on her and had established amongst one another that none of us were going to serve her any alcohol.

At one point, the boyfriend of the drunk girl had ordered a beer for himself. Ten minutes later, drunk girl realized that her boyfriend had a drink and she didn't. She then stumbled up to the bar and demanded to know why she didn't have a drink. I watched the commotion unfold. As the bartender calmly explained to drunk girl that she wouldn't be served any alcoholic drinks, the drunk girl's voice got noticeably louder. People sitting at the bar were starting to look over to see what all of the commotion was about.

After the third time of hearing drunk girl asking the calm bartender why she wasn't getting served alcohol, I walked over to where the loud conversation had been taking place. As I stood there next to the bartender, drunk girl demanded to know who was responsible for cutting her off. I quickly piped in, "Me. I'm the one who cut you off. I'm the bar manager and I made the call." Of course she demanded to know why. I told her that she had been stumbling all over the club as soon as she had got there, reminded her of the glass she shattered at her table and told her that even her friends had told us to cut her off. Sounded like a no brainer to me, but then again I was the sober one in the situation.

Of course the answer I gave her was not the answer she wanted to hear. She started screaming a variety of curse words as she backed up from the bar, as if to prepare to lunge at me and my fellow bartender. Just as I was in the process of telling her that now was the time for her to go, security came up from behind and kindly escorted drunk girl to the door.

I think its safe to say that this chick has been permanently 86ed from our bar.

Word to wise:

Bartenders: Always keep your cool. Always remember that drunk people aren't rational. You can't take it personal when someone is blaming you for their drunken actions.

Drinking Public: If a bartender cuts you off, it's probably for the best. Accept the fact, quietly leave the bar, get in a cab and go home. Running your drunk ass mouth and making a fool of yourself in public won't get you served and is the quickest way to the front door.


BB said...

I remember when I went through our TIPS training and seeing the videos and thinking that nobody would be that obnoxious and/or stupid. But they are!! I get second hand embarassment for some of the people because they do such ignorant things.

We have an ongoing joke at my bar about the TIPS levels. Level one is soberish, two buzzed/drunk, three out of control. So whenever one of us gets drunk on a night out we say "Oh man you were a level six".. which there isn't that high of a level so I guess that's the joke. But, the point is, you'd think if someone got that drunk they or their friends would take them home.. but they don't.. they stay there and try to drink. And, as their server, it's your fault if they leave and do something stupid like get alcohol posoining or in an accident. So you have to cut them off. I hate dealing with those situations!!

tikitender said...

Because most of my customers are locals (and we all know each other), I usually cut them off with a "Time to call it a night there Joe". Sometimes I will add "Come back tomorrow, I will buy you a drink." Of course, that's a simple cut-off. At my bar, cut-off does not automatically equal time to leave.

tikitender said...

If I can just add, over here in our little beach town people will sometimes say "It's okay, we're walking" or whatever. I once said "Everyone at the bar appreciates your responsibility, but you just spilled a plate of fish and chips into the owners lap". LOL That was a funny situation!

Sometimes cut-offs have nothing to do with safety, but everything to do with me and everyone else at the bar being tired of dealing with your drunk ass!