I am an author, travel blogger and writer. First, however, I am a father and fiance and then I am a cook at a small family owned bar in a tiny west Michigan town. The kitchen in this bar sits right behind half the bartop so I am privy to at least half of the conversation that happens between our customers. Sometimes it’s younger guys talking about the Detroit Tigers or trucks and sometimes it’s old men or even both. I hear men bitching about their wives and girlfriends, women bitching about their husbands or boyfriends all of which are under the assumption that their conversations go no further than each other.
In the back, in my hole, I am largely ignored unless I make a brief appearance out front to chat with a bartender or the few customers I have taken the time to get to know. I, of course, smile politely when I walk in front of the doorway and eye contact happens. OK, sometimes I smile. I take solace in knowing this will not be what I am doing for the rest of my life and makes me even hungrier for those 26 or so credits I need for graduation from GVSU and for books sales to skyrocket.
Sometimes, though, I hear things I don’t think I was meant to hear. Or, at the very least things men were not meant to. On Friday and Saturday, there is a group of three older women, in their late 60’s who come in and sit at the bar on a weekly basis. Their bar run usually lasts around 4 hours maybe five. They sit and talk about every aspect of their lives. Kids, spouse, weight, hygiene issues and habits, vacations, sex lives, grocery shopping…pretty much anything and everything. I don’t think they know how loud they get as the afternoon goes on and the drinks keep coming. Those Amstel lights must be pretty strong.
I think they forget I am there because I know ENTIRELY more than I should. I am the fly on their wall.
I know about the guy who was 40 that one took home the other night and how she now ignores him at the bar where they met.
I know how far up one lady stops shaving unless “She’s getting lucky”.
I know one is functioning alcoholic.
I know one is there because her husband is golfing and flirting with “Floozies.”
I know one had gastro bypass and is also going through menopause and it makes her, “a real bitch to be around”.
Another one’s kid just got of jail for selling meth but she is ok with it because “She doesn’t mind meth. It not like its heroin!” She says.
I know all three are voting for Trump
I know one hasn’t shaved her armpits in 5 years
One wishes her son would grow up and go back to college
One just found a lump.
One is losing her hair
One hates my cooking and the other two like my cooking but wonders why I look, “pissed off” all the time.
One lady eats way too much fried food over the course of 4 hours.
None of them can dance
None of them can sing.
One of them farts “all damn day” if she drinks Starbucks coffee.
This is the shit I hear, just a very small sampling in fact. I dated a near senior citizen once so I know these things happen. It doesn’t mean I want to hear about it at work but given my current job I have little to no choice. My suggestion to move the kitchen went largely ignored by my boss which, I understand.
Somedays all I can do is laugh while I toss another batch of fries, wings, or chicken fingers in the fryer and some days….well some days I cringe. Yesterday was more cringe worthy since everything mentioned was just in one day. And yes, guys are almost as bad….almost. They usually just turn into records that repeat themselves over and over again when they drink more instead of coming up with something fresh and new. The ladies, though, they are always reliable for new breakthroughs in TMI.
Now, before someone overreacts like the super sensitive babies they are I am not, I repeat NOT saying people shouldn’t be allowed to talk in bars or even talk about this kind of stuff. Where and when they talk about these things or anything, is entirely up to them. All I’m saying is they might just wanna keep their voices down so someone doesn’t overhear their very personal stories.
Someone like me.
Who will blog about it
To millions of people
All over the world