Sunday, February 24, 2013

You tell me: Was I being selfish?

I don't know how to start this so I guess for you to understand tonight I have to tell you about what happened like four months ago.

One night four months ago some coworkers talked me into going to a sports bar/ karaoke bar because one of those coworkers, we'll call him Voices because he's the man of a million voices, was hosting karaoke there that particular night. It was a Friday and it was also the night of the Presidential Election, so Padawan elected to stay home to watch the election (though it was playing at the bar on all of the TVs except one, which was showing a basketball game I think. Some kind of game.)

We aren't particularly sure what happened to set this all off, but long story short: one very large, very drunk Mexican dude took a strong dislike to my friend Dee's boyfriend, Dayd. Now, I'm not entirely positive, but judging by this man's repeated use of the "N" word and the fact that Dayd had been in the bar for all of three minutes and hadn't spoken a word to anyone other than us when this whole thing started, I'm going to assume it was some sort of racially motivated hatred. Though how a Mexican man can be racist against an African  American boy (I did not choose these terms lightly: the aggressor was clearly in his thirties and Dayd was 19 years old) in a city with lots of redneck white supremacists hanging around, I do not understand.  

Threats were made, a knife came out (in self defense), threats of guns in cars...Jazz called the police because this man was threatening to kill Dayd.

Now, this was the first time I had agreed to go out to a social gathering that didn't take place in somebody's personal home in quite some time. I'm guessing it's been about a year since I agreed to have drinks and relax at a bar or restaurant with any friends. Because I am a socially awkward individual who is afraid of crowds, strange men, and casual human contact. 

It's not that I hadn't been to that bar before. I'd been in there several times: lunch with a friend, drinks with coworkers, a couple of times with my sisters. I knew the bar. I'd never once felt unsafe in that bar.

But when this large, aggressive man came to our table after he'd tried to beat the hell out of Dayd in the parking lot and started screaming in mine and Jazz's face about keeping our little "n word" friend away or he would wind up dead, I was determined to get the hell out of there.

But that wasn't anything personal against the establishment: that was fear motivated by the fact that I am a hundred and fifteen pounds and this two hundred and fifty pound drunk guy was hulking around and threatening to kill our friend. 

My personal problem with the bar came because the owner lied to the police when they arrived and said that the man (apparently a regular and a personal friend) hadn't had a drop to drink, was stone sober, and that we had been bothering him for several hours. Now, at that point Jazz and I had been there for a little over an hour, drunky had been there for several at least and he'd already been complained about by our friend hosting the karaoke before we even got there, and Dayd and Dee had been there for all of twenty minutes total by the time the police arrived. And our interaction had started about fifteen minuets beforehand. 

And then, the real kicker, the part that really and truly pissed me off, was when the owner declared that Dayd was banned for life and that the police couldn't trust any of our testimony because we were all drunk and clearly on drugs.


On drugs.

And his supposedly sober friend who hadn't had a drink all night? He was handcuffed on the sidewalk and STILL trying to get loose so he could attack Dayd. They had to put Dayd in a car to protect him from this drunk psycho.

So I gave my testimony, and I emphasized the part where I did NOT appreciate being threatened and intimidated by someone who clearly had no idea how to behave in public.

Ever since that night, I have refused to return to the establishment. Not just me, of course. None of my coworkers have been back, or their friends or spouses.

My sisters are the only people who, after hearing what happened, insist on patronizing the bar. They repeatedly invited me out with them to this bar after the fact, and each time I patiently explained my reasons for not going. My sister's husband Peacock even apologized profusely on behalf of the owner, who is a personal friend of his, and said that he would set things right with the owner if I would just go with them. I have always refused.

And then, tonight Lydia and Mo Mo decide they want to celebrate their fifth anniversary by going to this bar to watch the first women's UFC fight. 

Of all the mother effing sports bars in this city of over 750,000 people, they choose to go to the ONE FREAKING BAR I have adamantly boycotted. 

Never mind the fact that this is an imaginary anniversary because they haven't even been married three years yet (you guys remember: I posted a rant about their elopement and changed her pseudonym from Wheat to Lydia because she reminds me of the character from Pride and Prejudice.), but they all come out and say I'm being selfish for not going to celebrate with them.


It's a fake fucking anniversary for one, and I have a very fucking good reason for not going, for two! 

And yet they call me selfish. 

So I pulled on my shoes, put on a jacket, and I went. I walked through that door with a look on my face that clearly showed my disdain for the entire operation: location, company, and reason. It was crowded. It was noisy.

And Lydia and Relly were plastered by the time we got there.

And then Relly has the audacity to tell me she thinks I'm stuck up.

I am reserved.

But I am not stuck up.

And excuse me for saying so, but I think it's really selfish to  HARASS me into going out to a place that scares the crap out of me, and then after I agree to go it's fucking RUDE to insult me once I get there.

And then she had the nerve to tip the waitress ten percent.


The food was right, the drinks were prompt, she came by every few minutes to clear things off and clean things up. 

What did she do wrong?

"She didn't ask us how we were doing." Relly's opinion.

"Yeah, she doesn't deserve a tip at all. I was a cocktail waitress. I know." Wheat's opinion. Who, I would like to point out, was a cocktail waitress for two days on afternoon shifts at a gentleman's club. 

I was conflicted. On the one hand, it really pisses me off that my sisters, who were raised to be better than this, were such rude, ungracious customers. On the other hand, I vowed after that whole fiasco on election night that I would never contribute any money to that establishment in the form of buying drinks or tipping employees. 

If I hadn't seen the owner standing ten feet away while I was having this argument with my sister, I would have left her ten dollars of my own money for a tip.

So now I am annoyed with the entire situation, and I have told them point blank that next time they can find a different bar, or don't bother inviting me because I won't do it again.

I just won't. 


  1. (A) list

    1. Evidently they know nothing about marriage, for had they an idea they would certainly not mock a celebration as real married couples celebrate it. The reason for this- it is truly a miracle married people get there year in and year out.
    2. You should never feel pressured by anyone, especially family, in going to a place you are not comfortable being at. Shame on sisters for not understanding.
    3. Shame on the 5.0 for not knowing if the party involved are or are not on drugs. This is supposed to be standard police work. And, even if they are bad at their job, there are test to determine this.
    4. What is the point of going to a bar, if you are already hammered when you get there?
    5. Doug's blog is totally about cheese.

    1. 1. Yes, I agree.
      2. Thank you. It's the last time I let them manipulate me. I swear.
      3. I volunteered for a drug and sobriety test. They declined.
      4. I wasn't hammered. They were. And they had been there since seven thirty. I got there at almost ten.
      5. And Jim Carrey in a swimsuit.

  2. Ugh! They should NOT have pressed you into going, especially when you felt so strongly about it. THAT was selfish.

    I don't blame you at all for not wanting to go back to that place. I know I wouldn't. I'm a homebody anyway, so after a scary experience like that, I definitely would avoid that place. Especially since the owner clearly has no desire to protect his customers. His violent, racist, drunk friend is more important. So he can just keep his alcoholic friend and lose you and your coworkers as customers. I think that's perfectly fair.

    I'm sorry that this all happened. I'm just glad you and your friends weren't seriously hurt during the encounter.

    1. I'm glad none of us were hurt. I actually did call Padawan to come down because I was afraid to try to leave. The guy's friends were watching us and pointing at us after we told the police our side of the story and I was afraid they'd follow us into the parking lot if we tried to drive away.

      I'm sorry mostly for Dee. She was so scared for Dayd and there was nothing we could do to calm her down. She was only nineteen, too, and that was her first time going to karaoke. It wasn't a good experience for her at all.

  3. "Though how a Mexican man can be racist against an African American boy..."

    A lot of the black people and Mexicans around here hate each other. I'm not entirely sure why.

    And I can't stand when bars stick up for their "regulars." Uggghhhh... My wife and I were hanging out on a Saturday night years ago at this one bar that she used to work at, and this fat fuck tried groping my wife from his seat. I pulled her back and, naturally, got a little pissed off. Then this jerk had the NERVE to go, "Why'd you take her away?" Like she was a piece of meat or something! I was like, "That's my wife, asshole!" And you know, the owners, my wife's bosses, they totally stuck up for the guy because he was one of their "regulars." They didn't get mad at us or throw us out or anything, but they made a bunch of excuses for this asshole. Bars will always turn a blind eye to anything their regulars do, no matter how awful or repugnant. Yet another reason I can't stand bars anymore.

    Other than than that, yeah, I pretty much agree with Scott's list.

    1. I don't think people understand that if you let "regulars" do what they want, then you get a bunch of "regulars" that make the place a dump and you can't get any "regular" decent people because we will take our money else where.

  4. UGH. Just...UGH.

    I guess my UGH has to deal with...humans? Interacting with humans? Both in the fact that a.) you went through that horrible ordeal at the bar and b.) people are going to accuse you of being "selfish" for not going out to a bar. No. I don't care if you had no prior history with the bar, not wanting to go out to a bar is not being selfish. They will have just as good of a time without you (probably more so, since you wouldn't have wanted to be there). The night will not be ruined if you are not there. In fact, I think (again, your past history with the bar notwithstanding), if you honestly didn't want to go, you would be doing the right thing by not going. You could go and lie, or you could remove yourself from the situation. I think it's pretty obvious what most people would prefer.

    Now all that said, the fact that you had SERIOUS misgivings AND a prior (awful) history with this bar? NO. No, no, no. This entire situation is bonafide bullshit. You are not personally responsible for anyone's happiness. You are not in charge of celebrating (a made-up anniversary or no) anyone else's personal achievement. And you are NOT selfish for not wanting to violate your own personal boundaries, especially when they've been put up for very good reasons.

    So fuck everyone else. Seriously. Fuck 'em.

    1. I have decided to take your advice. I have refused all other attempts at coercing me to go to that particular bar.


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