Last night was my first night working at the Fox. I was stuck making hot dogs for most of the time, but I was thrown in the mix a little bit. As it was my first night, I made no tips, but tonight that will all change. In fact, I’m probably making a mistake writing this right now because I may not make it to get some dinner in time before work starts.
After work was done right before midnight, I was in a conversation with one of my co-workers, and we agreed to go up to his favorite bar, the nearby Jocks & Jills, and it was there that we were involved in a two-and-a-half hour life conversation in which he dispensed his sage wisdom and I was the padawan. I wish I could remember it all verbatim, because he is a remarkably intelligent Englishman with a penchant for street-wise speech, but I remember the main points. Most of all, I gravitated towards his absolute love for the bartending life – “slingers” being the demonym of those who are the greatest. I still intend to return to Georgia Tech and get my degree, but what inspired me was precisely what Georgia Tech itself lacks – the passion of artisanship and a bigger place in the world that he so clearly exhibited, and demonstrated in his interactions with the Jocks & Jills bartender, whom he described as “like family.” They’re all like family, he says, and that’s the best part of it.
When I dropped him off at his place at about 2:30 AM, he looked at me and said,
“You’re 21 years old, and you’ve got a golden coin in your hand, mate. Use it wisely.“