“Why can’t you guys have a drink?”  They ask me.

There are lots of reasons.  When’s the last time you were allowed to drink on the job?  What makes you think mine is any different?  People make mistakes.  Drunken people make many, many more mistakes.  For me, it’s the same reason I don’t play games on the job.  I need to be paying attention to work.  There are people who claim that I need to learn to multi-task.  I know how to multi-task, but each division of my attention makes me worse at everything I’m doing.  I can be bad at ten things at once.  I digress.

“I need every edge I can get if things turn ugly,” I tell them.

“Yeah, but you have backup,” one guy points out.  He’s right.  Sort of.

I explain to him the truth.  In the first thirty seconds, I’m on my own.  I’ve never had assistance show faster than that.  The guy I was explaining this to asks if the other bar patrons ever help out.  I tell him that people help out all the time.  They help the other guy.

I’ve had only a handful of instances in which patrons helped me.  In those cases, it was just ratting out someone who had fucked up in a bad way.  Far more often, they have tried to pull me off of someone who’s being reticent about leaving.  I fear the day someone succeeds, because on that day I will be hamstrung by at least one person while another immoderately pissed individual takes his or her shot at me.

Even when they are actually on my side, they tend to cause trouble between me and whoever I’m escorting out.  Getting kicked out is bad enough without being mocked.  More than once, I’ve had to deal with both the drunk AND the shit-heel that is trying to start a fight.

I know that my co-workers will back me up.  I just don’t know how long I need to hold out before help arrives.  If anyone needs to buy me a drink that badly, I happily accept all flavors of Rockstar.

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