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8 Reasons Why It Rocks to Own a Bar

By Elena Kalieva


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Who the hell likes being a lawyer? And while we’re at it, who has any love working as a plumber, accountant, hit squad leader, arms dealer or proctologist? But wouldn’t everyone love owning a beer garden, tavern or gin joint?

What’s not to like about owning a fully stocked bar, a Skee-ball machine, a constant supply of peanuts and an internet jukebox? And what other workplace in the world turns a blind eye to a besotted proprietor? Below are eight very powerful reasons why it rocks to own a bar.

8. You Own A Deep Fryer

Usually the soberness of a home kitchen forces you to act sensibly. You peruse food labels for high fructose corn syrup and other dietary poisons. Heart-healthy impulses force you to even trim the fat off steaks before grilling. But at the restaurant, you boldly oversalt and put bacon in everything, even the brownies.

You accept being addicted to deep frying food: Oreos, Snickers, corn dogs, (even!) grilled chicken, Quarter Pounders with Cheese, because nearly everything tastes better cooked in a deep vat of hot fat. Better yet, humongous tubs of ranch dressing and hot sauce are always at hand for serious dunking and guzzling.

7. Fully Sanctioned Liquor, Wine and Beer Tastings

Successfully launching a new liquor-based product happens to be one of the most difficult business feats in the world. So to create buzz about their new beer, wine or hazelnut tequila, brewers, vintners and liquor distillers look for prime placement on bar shelves and tap handles. As the gate keeper of your establishment’s wares you must intimately acquaint yourself with every spirit, brew and vino before offering them to the general public.

Booze never goes bad so you snatch up as many liquid bribes as you can haul away. You always need plenty of firewater on hand since nothing soothes an enemy, girlfriend or wife like a bottle of hooch. Best of all, when you’re in the biz, no one looks at you askance when you start drinking at 8 a.m.

6. A Handy Cash Drawer at Your Disposal

No barman needs an ATM. Two words: Petty cash. Even in the age of plastic, every beer garden contains a cash register, yes, full of cash. After all, the employees are smart enough not to trust you to wait for credit cards tips until the next day, wisely taking their night’s earnings ASAP. When you own a bar, forgetting your wallet turns out not to be such a big deal.

Cash on hand means immediately repaying yourself for buying a bag of burritos for the kitchen crew. If you want to impress a special customer, you just dramatically hit “No Sale”, catch the cash drawer, rip a $50 from the bin and yell, “Buy yourself something nice, baby! On me!”

5. You Are The Boss

Serving a bar menu of gloppy cheese pizza, cholesterol-laden spinach dip and buffalo wings dripping in sauce that reminds the palette of battery acid shouldn’t necessarily make one a taste maker. But if it’s your place, you not only get to make the rules but set the tone in all atmospheric matters. Does the “Bon Jovi” adoring ex-girlfriend who left town make you depressed? Exercise the power and banish those Jersey Boy’s tunes for all time. And why stop at being the arbiter of food and music?

Penalize people for the way they dress, talk, their political beliefs or for being left handed. The pub, which I hope you named for yourself, serves as your petty dictatorship. Mental instability might result in a quick exit from the business, but you can out-crazy the soup Nazi while the going is good.

4. Bouncers Are Suddenly Your Friends

At many establishments “security” comes by their name honestly. The loveable lugs with the bulging biceps and Secret Service-style ear pieces are the last line of defense; ensuring females are barely legal and the rambunctious male clientele won’t trash the place like a hotel room on Led Zeppelin’s “The Song Remains The Same” tour.

For your entire life, muscle-bound bouncers have thrown you out onto your quester for maxed out credit cards and pissing on the floor. But, as the booze boss, you now have friends in high and wide places. Your bouncers are the type of guys who once refused to admit you, but now must greet you with a friendly bear hug or lose their jobs. Enjoy your revenge.

3. You Eat For Free Around Town

Being a kindred industry soul who has survived the hours, the aching feet and the general public is like being a fellow veteran of a foreign war. Civilians just don’t understand you like the other “vets”. That’s why bar people always take care of their own. Once a tortured soul withstands a few years of the food and drink business, they take great pity on their own ilk.

Drop knowledge on the maître d’ or manager or head bartender that you too are “in the game” and the world is your freshly shucked oyster, the entire raw bar, the all you can eat buffet and a bottomless mimosa to boot. Of course you tip 100% because you’re in the biz. Then that impressed new friend visits your spot and you treat him just as well. It’s a vicious circle of drunkenness and gluttony. You can’t get enough of the life.

2. You Are Considered An Expert in Good Living

People love to consult experts in any field. Once folks know you operate a gin and burger joint, they have nothing but respect. You are repeatedly cornered at parties by deluded would-be bar owners looking to pick your pickled brain. BBQ hosts somehow think you are the most qualified to flip burgers and dogs at the grill.

Friends allow you to control the ordering at Chinese restaurants. Dining partners let you decide on the wine and varietal. Men constantly ask for your recommendation on a romantic spot to get them out of the doghouse. I guess it would be a bad idea to let the cat out of the bag and admit your place still hasn’t made money after five years in business. Hey, but why ruin your aura?

1. No One To Answer To

Dean Wormer from Animal House couldn’t have been more wrong when he uttered, “Drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son.” Actually, bar owning makes a fabulous vocation in which to stumble through your days. Other grownups have to get dressed and make it to work before lunch.

But you get to wear hockey jerseys every day and surprise everybody if you waltz in before 10 p.m. You don’t have to ever shave if you don’t feel like it. You have your own bartender and he knows just how you like your drink. Best of all, you never pay to get shit-faced.

About Elena Kalieva

Elena has spent years helping people simplify their lives and focus on self-growth. She loves writing about life hacks, building better relationships, and personal development and her expertise lies in guiding others to create fulfilling lives filled with extraordinary achievements. Learn more about TheScrib's Editorial Process.

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