Observations of a Honky Tonk Doorwoman

In Honky Tonk on 11/24/2009 at 3:54 pm

I work the door at a honky tonk in my spare time.  It’s a great side job and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.  And man, have I seen some things.  Here is a listing of Honky Tonk Rules to Live By.  The list is ever expanding.

  1. Every performer has a different crowd dynamic.
  2. If you’re six foot seven, dressed head to toe in black, including a ten gallon hat and you’ve been kicked out for being drunk, we’re going to notice when you try to walk through the front gate again.
  3. In a room filled with 65 years worth of accumulated stuff, I’m not exactly sure where your father’s 20 years ago donation is, especially when it’s the size of a note card.
  4. Do some research before you pay $20 to see someone you’ve never heard of and didn’t know was playing.
  5. Throwing a tantrum about guest list discrepancies is bratty, whether you are 14 or 64.
  6. The nicer you are to me, the more likely I am to bend the rules for you.
  7. Don’t stand in line for 15 minutes, then figure out you don’t have your wallet.
  8. Not apologizing for doing my job does not make me mean.  This is called Doing My Job.
  9. Asking me the same question 18 times in 20 minutes will not change the answer but it will change my tone.
  10. I won’t remember you from ten minutes ago unless you specifically asked me to.
  11. If you find banners next to the stage distracting, you should come to a more interesting show.
  12. Items older than my father will not be familiar enough for me to tell you the year of their production.
  13. If you pay the entire ticket price in quarters, don’t be annoyed when I actually count them.
  14. I’m not sure which boots are John Wayne’s.
  15. Everyone has something to complain about.
  16. No.  You can not have the autographed picture of Willie Nelson, Dwight Yoakum or Lyle Lovett.
  17. The tip line on the receipt is automatically there.  I didn’t write it in, I don’t expect you to put something there, so don’t ask me why I expect a tip since I didn’t “do anything”.
  18. I may be white but I know how to spell Garcia, Rodriguez and Fernandez.
  19. If I ask how to spell your name, it’s because you’re mumbling.
  20. Leaning over the counter and directly pointing to your name on the Will Call/ Guest list does not help your case.
  21. Nobody asked you to line up at the gate before dawn.  The doors will still open at 7 pm.
  22. Letting elderly and handicapped persons inside five minutes earlier than the rest of the crowd is not a reason to begin a riot.  Typically oxygen tanks and wheelchairs will not block your ability to be pressed up against the stage barricades.
  23. The best tipping crowds are those who are young enough to remember being in the service industry and old enough to have tipping money, or parents of people who are currently in the service industry.
  24. People over the age of seventy usually have a lot to say about what they don’t like.
  25. When you’re coming into a bar, being a minor means under 21.  I don’t care that you can buy lottery tickets and cigarettes.
  26. Minors do not have to show ID.  You don’t have to prove you are too young to drink.
  27. If you send your child out to a show, give them some money.  You never know when they need a taxi, water or to pay a minor charge at the gate.
  28. Don’t make assumptions about me because I work the door at a honky tonk.
  29. Minors either have a suspicious amount of money in their wallet or none at all.
  30. If you turn down the A/C because someone complains of the cold, within 15 minutes someone will complain it is too hot.
  31. If we sell out of tickets, you are Shit Outta Luck.  I don’t care how far you drove because you could have bought them on the internet two months ago.
    1. And no, there is nothing I can do.  I work the door; I don’t make fire code regulations.
  32. Things change.  If you were here ten years ago and you could bring in your own liquor, the same may not be true today.
  33. If I ask you if you are a minor and you are not, this is not a personal question.  Listening carefully will reveal everyone being asked the same question since minors are charged extra at the door.
  34. Be polite to the police.  They decide how your evening will go.
  35. People who arrive in a limo are drunk already.
  36. Limo drivers should be paid A LOT more money.
  37. Just because I am sitting at the door does not mean I am the person available for idle chatting.  For example; your allergy to wheat beer, your child’s inability to handle loud noise and how much you liked the pool table we had 15 years ago.
  38. Wet money is gross.
  39. I can spot minors from a mile away.  This is nearly always true:
    1. Minors travel in herds.  Three or more, chance of being a minor increases tenfold.
    2. Minors never wear enough clothes.  Boobs and legs everywhere.
    3. Minors will stand just outside the gate for hours until the rest of the group arrives.
    4. Minors are usually hanging on each other.  Gender does not matter.

Weird fact: Kidsbeer is a Japanese soft drink bottled and formulated to look like beer.

  1. Need an adddition! 39-5. Minors always dress alike. Girls-short denim skirt, plaid pearl snap and cowboy boots/flip flops. Boys-Ragged old blue jeans, Hollister t-shirt, almost trucker cap worn sideways.

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