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5 things your bartender definitely notices

Written by
Kate Byrne

Multitasking is in a bartender's job description, so if you think you're slipping by unnoticed, think again. Just because we bartenders are pouring beer while answering questions, counting numbers and remembering that food order doesn't mean I didn't just see you check out my co-worker's butt. Here are five things that always catch our attention.

1. That money just lying there on the bar from a previous well-to-do tipper. We’ve seen it already. We know it’s there. We either haven’t had the time to grab it, or we’re waiting for a more opportune and polite time to take it away from under your nose. Fresh faced 21-year-olds (who are we kidding, this category includes underage kids with fakes) get that twitchy look in their eyes that says, “I can ever so slightly whisk this lovely dollar bill from the bar that helps pay the bartender a living wage and shove it in to my pocket.” Get your grubby fingers off my tip money.

2. That extra lime you stole. If your goal is to get the bartender to roll their eyes as soon as possible, ask for three limes with your vodka soda. I’m looking at you, sorority sisters. Here’s a newsflash: Squeezing three limes into your drink tastes pretty much exactly the same as squeezing one lime in to your drink. If you love lime juice so much, why haven’t you realized that there is a miracle substance called Rose’s Lime Juice? I can pretty much guarantee that any bar has this.

3. You don’t know what a Vegas Bomb is. You also don’t know what Sex on the Beach is, and you don’t know that vodka goes into a Moscow Mule. Your cool older sister ordered this for you one time at SIU three years ago and it became your go-to drink. Also, a lemon drop shot is just chilled citron vodka. Name three ingredients in the Buttery Nipple shot you’re taking with your girlfriend. Wrong. There’s only two.

4. You’re on a Tinder date. Every time it’s the same thing. You walk in first, walk all the way to the back of the bar, turn around, walk all the way to the front, sit at a table, get up from the table and move to the bar. You wait ten minutes before ordering a drink, and hesitate when asked to start a tab because you don’t know if your date will offer to pay. You smile at everyone because you can’t quite remember if your date had shoulder length hair or if it went just past the shoulder blades. You ask to see a food menu, study the food menu intensely, memorize the food menu and put food menu back because looking at the food menu together is something cute you can do with your date. You grab one of those free magazines by the window and thumb through it without actually looking at anything.

5. You’re trying to become a regular. Being a regular at a bar is a delicate process. Just because you were here four times last week and it’s your third time in this week, that doesn’t give you regular privileges. Being a regular is great—cheaper drinks, free shots when the bartender is bored, and better conversation than the weather. However, you must understand the ebb and flow of the bar before you attempt this worthy feat. Don’t force conversation—it’s a natural process. If the bartender doesn’t know your name and it’s your umpteenth time at the bar, I’d suggest moving on. Here’s a little secret that helps tenfold, though—buy the bartender a shot, but don’t be showy about it. This usually works wonders.

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