Monday, September 22, 2008

The Life of an Entrepreneur. My Dream Job!

You might be thinking that I'm talking about my job as founder of Vyoo. While that's certainly my dream job right now. There are a few other jobs in the past that have sparked my interest. One of those is the oft under-appreciated mixologist. Sure that's a fancy name for a bartender. But a real bartender takes pride in the actual mixing of the beverage - the right ingredients, right mix, right taste, etc. And for the gentlemen out there, who hasn't dreamed of tending bar? Meeting women, forcing people to respect you, I mean, what's there not to like? Even if it hasn't been a "dream" per se, it's definitely been something I've wanted to do ever since I started going to bars.

About 6 months ago I took a bartending class at the San Francisco School of Bartending. I did my research. It was supposed to be a top notch school. Much more respected than any other school around. And the job database they had was full of great jobs. I spent two weeks working behind a mock bar, in a non-descript building in downtown SF, with a rowdy cross section of society: old, young, professionals, and professional non-professionals. I was pouring water mixed with food coloring - I'm not sure how any of my drinks would actually taste. But by the end of the 2nd week, drinks would flash across the monitors and I'd be pouring them at lightning speed.

School ended and the class of newly minted recruits canvassed the town and the job database for leads. Let me say this. The job database was outdated and didn't give me any head start on the competition. So this is what I learned. Bartending school is a useful course for anyone who wants to be a bartender. But it's not going to get you a job. If you're a pretty woman. You'll get a job. Otherwise. Know somebody.

As you can imagine, I didn't find anything. But I made a few friends and learned how to make drinks. Which was cool in its own right. One of my friends had a friend who owned a bar. And he got a job. And so, I had assumed that was it. I started working at Kaplan and Vyoo got closer to completion.

Fast forward about 4 months. My friend from school was bartending at a dive bar in SF. He just started law school and asked if I could take over his shifts. Hell yes! So, with a few phone calls, and the approval of the bar manager (who said she's still looking for women to bartend and that I'll have to make room for them if she finds them), I started my first shift last night. Wow! What a fun job.

I don't remember 99% of the drinks I learned. But... at a sports bar, there's not much to make besides shots, beers, and rum and cokes.

Life is good as an entrepreneur. Not glamorous. Yet. But good.

Come on down to Overtime Sports Bar and Grill on Sunday evenings... I'll mix you up a great Jack and Coke.


Tom Collier said...

Congrats on landing the dream gig. I took mixology lessons myself right after the bust of 2000, though never scored a gig. However, I assure you there are tons of bars looking for male bartenders up in SF. From what I understand the tips there can be pretty big (no pun intended).

Lefty said...

@tom - Yo, thanks man. Ha! You're right, there are plenty of people looking for male bartenders in SF...