Like all good stories mine starts in a bar, or more accurately a greasy Chinese restaurant that had a bar, where at the age of 16 I bussed tables for a bitter Chinese lady who scolded me in words I couldn’t understand while pointing out my mistakes by rat-tail snapping me in the leg with a wet twirled-up bar towel every chance she got.
This was back before corporal punishment was really frowned upon, and in management this is what we call “Enforcing the standards set by ownership”, but I encourage less lacerations in my bar.
A few useless facts you may not know about me:
Yep, that's the fam. I have a drop-dead gorgeous, infinitely patient wife who I've been with for 24 years, and two remarkably kind and talented kids, a girl and a boy.
My wife wanted more, but anyone who knows me will tell you that I am a true man-to-man defense guy, and if you have more than two kids, you have to go zone and everyone knows that zones never win championships.
So instead we got a cat who runs away every time I try to pet it.
My wife and I met at Chico State and within 3 months we had adopted a 100 pound rottweiler, moved in together and purchased a $3,000 stereo system, so needless to say, we far exceeded the required agreement necessary to stay together forever.
Some braggy stuff: My son is GATE (which I don’t really understand but they tell me it’s good), my daughter is a basketball phenom (committed full-ride to University of Idaho - go Vandals!), and there is not much my wife can’t do. She actually runs our house like a successful business and even tells me how I should run mine better.
I would be super annoyed, except she’s usually right, which is the annoying part, so I’ve simply surrendered. I just nod my head like Tim Robbins in Bull Durham after Kevin Costner makes him look stupid by telling the batter what pitch he’s throwing and so the guy blasts a home run that hits the bull in the ass. That’s me now, because I don’t want to get blasted doing something stupid.
I just nod and smile. Nod and smile
I've spent 2 1/2 decades in this industry, not because I chose it, but because offices and cubicles make me grumpy.
I have been a busser at a (previously mentioned) Chinese restaurant and later at a popular Mexican Cantina in Chico, CA where I went to college.
After moving to the Bay Area I secured a job as a server at a Claim Jumper where I had to wear a ridiculous bolo tie and a badge with my name on it like I was a character working in Frontierland at Disneyland. After three embarrassing years of wearing that getup, I moved up to the big time by landing my first bartending job at P.F. Chang’s (before it went corporate and sterile).
From there, I started bartending at multiple bars at the same time, like a prostitute with multiple Johns. I’ve spent time at fine dining places, high-volume clubs and classic mixology bars. In other words for 12 years I was IMMERSED in bartending, until I finally moved on to management.
As anyone who has been in this industry a long time knows, it's easy to get stuck because the money is good behind the bar, but it's tough to do forever. And so is managing.
In 2010 I started hiring and training bartenders and helping people with no experience become bartenders and land their first job. I did this via my first book, "How to Be a Bartender" which has since become the #1 book on becoming a bartender on Amazon.
By 2011 I was going out of my mind working late nights and weekends, and on the verge of divorce, I started my own company, Bar Patrol, and inventory management company which helps bar owners & managers run a more profitable bar.
In 2013 - 2016 I developed two online training programs: TheRealBarCourse, which is my bartending book on steroids (and crack) with videos and a 21-day action plan that helps aspiring bartenders land their first job...
...and the Bar Auditor Master Course which trains bar/restaurant industry people to do what I did, which is to abandon the late nights and long hours and start their own bar inventory auditor business where they can earn $100 – $150 per hour.