Pieces Of Flair

Really Cocktail, starring Tom Cruise and Elisabeth Shue, is one of the worst movies ever made. I mean it’s not Battlefield Earth caliber bad, but it’s shallow, the plot is implausible and all over the place one minute then tied up in a neat little bow the next, the characters are annoying, and it’s overall just stupid. I know that opening sounds like a high school newspaper version of Siskel & Ebert, but it’s totally true.

First of all, flair bartending? Flair bartending is ridiculous. Who becomes a sensation in Manhattan because of their superior skills at flair bartending? If someone took four minutes to juggle vodka bottles and sky hook ice cubes into a glass, most people would be all, “Dude, cut the hot-dogging and pour me my goddamn drink already.”

It’s just juggling. “I couldn’t make it in the circus, so I became a flair bartender.”

The funny thing is, until a few years ago, I had never even heard of the term “flair bartending.” My friends Jan, Sue and I escaped the office and went out to lunch one afternoon. The restaurant was completely dead, even though it was only 1:00. It was one of those places that never seemed to find its niche. It’s been Caribbean, it’s been an upscale steakhouse, now I think it’s a Greek place. We sat in the bar area, and our waiter/bartender, tried to dazzle us with his flair bartending skillz.

It had been one of those days. To unwind, one of our favorite things to do was give each other “would you rather” scenarios with some of the creepier people in our office. He kept interrupting what was becoming a rather raucous game to tell us about the flair bartending competitions he had won or was planning to enter. All the while he talked to us about it, I thought he meant FLARE bartending, and I kept waiting for him to do something with huge flames of fire. Because that would have been cool. But all he was doing was flipping bottles around.

Not until I got back to the office and checked out the website on the business card he gave each of us, did I learn about the fabulous world of flair bartending. Meh. Whatever. Call me when you start lighting shit on fire.

© Jennifer Alys Windholz, 2011


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