Sometimes I feel a little like I should have a “real” career and do something with my life. I am a smart woman, I have a college degree in a biological science, I should be typically successful. I think a life like that would make me completely miserable. I worked in an office. I hated it. The politics, the high school nature of the interactions, the never ever being able to trust anyone at anytime wore me down. I remember the first days of working at a typical job. I had complete culture shock. I called the person who owned the consulting company I worked for repeatedly that first week because I was unsure how to navigate in the waters of working in an office. Seven years later in a real job I had less of a clue.
I regularly say the day I walked into the bar after those seven years in an office was exactly what I had been longing for. My job has no pretense. It is a fairly simple transaction. I pour the beer, shot, or make the drink. The customer pays. If I am quick and make you laugh you may leave me a great tip. If not you may stiff me. My pay is directly related to how hard I work. I am responsible for my own work destiny.
Now the crazy shenanigans are at times unbelievable. Drunk people do ridiculous things. Sometimes they fight, sometimes they choose to just fall down, and other times they choose to have sex with inappropriate people in a nasty bathroom. My job is to make sure they have fun and not do the above. They try with all their might to get away with things but part of my job is to be the voice of reason. Sometimes I win, sometimes they win, but what I say goes and if they act up they will be out on their ass. Period. Simple transaction. My boss has expectations that are very easy to follow: don’t steal, don’t drink, be somewhat nice.
The differences in my bar job from the rest of the world is staggering. At times I feel like I should follow some expected route but really I am lucky. My job is super flexible, decent pay, short in duration, and it leaves me space to fight for my kids, and pursue other dreams. I look forward to seeing my customers on Thursday night. I get in the car, drive off alone, I get to be a little bawdy, listen to loud music, and be a person, not a mother, or wife, or special needs parent, or any of the other hats I wear. I get to be me. It feels so good.
Now I am off to sleep because the unwholesome chaos leaves me needing to sleep in the day. How decadent.