I completed the alcohol awareness certification today..that’s the thing that you have to renew every three years so you can tell when people are drunk or not.

Otherwise I spent the last 3 days intermittently building another non-profit website ( and reading Ted Haigh’s book on vintage cocktails . . . all it did was make me thirsty. Which is damned odd since I’m really a lightweight; one glass of anything is enough to put me straight to sleep.

The more I read about mixology and drink history the more I think I don’t have the required fascination with liquor to become a great bartender. . . probably not even a damn good one . . . perhaps just a middle to good one will do me okay.

I did drop my card in at a few more of the seedier places around town. I hadn’t realized so many bars were still clubs – the major difference being the smoke. I had completely forgotten that I am sensitive to second hand smoke…oh shite.

Speaking of the drinking life, it is rather interesting how nothing really changes. Many occupations at their core haven’t changed in 100 years . . . if you discount the materials being vended you could drop either a bookseller or a bartender into their element 100 years ago and we would pickup just fine without a bobble.

From “Cocktail Boothby’s American Bar-Tender“ 1891 edition

Boothby’s Ten Commandments

  • I. Always be on time to relieve the other watch. It is a good plan to make a practice of arriving a few minutes early so as to arrange your toilet and step to your station on time.
  • II. See that your finger nails are always clean and your person presents a tidy appearance.
  • III. Always appear pleasant and obliging under all circumstances.
  • IV. Avoid conversations of a religious or political nature.
  • V. When going off watch always dry and polish all the glassware and tools which you have used on your watch, and see that everything is in its proper place, so that your relief can work to advantage as soon as he arrives at his post.
  • VI. Sell all the liquor you can, but use as little as possible yourself.
  • VII. If you are troubled with sore feet, bathe them regularly. Avoid patched or ragged hosiery, and wear a comfortable shoe with a heavy sole. Light soles, low cut shoes or slippers should never be worn behind a bar.
  • VIII. Keep the floor behind the bar as dry as possible. It not only looks better, but you will find your health greatly improved by following this rule. Many bartenders contract rheumatism, neuralgia and many other serious complaints through carelessness in this report.
  • IX. After using a bottle or tool always replace it before doing anything else. Make this a rule that should never be broken; and, when you are rushed with business, you will never be compelled to hunt for this or that, but you will always know just where it is.
  • X. After a party has finished drinking, remove the glassware from the bar as soon as possible, and dry and polish the bar top immediately, never allowing a particle of moisture to remain. This is a very important rule.
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