Before, the bar was my second job, and it's very strange to think that this is now my primary source of income. Sometimes I wonder how my parents would feel about it but I'm too afraid to ask them. Surely they did not drop $100,000 on my college education to see their only daughter get hit on by men twice her age while wearing an outfit half her size. I had gone to college to become a journalist a word that symbolizes international expeditions, Pulitzer Prizes, and bylines in important magazines; a word that still gives me goose bumps, despite the fact that things haven't worked out so well on that front.
For all my initial complaints about bartending (the long hours, the obnoxious customers, counting soggy dollar bills at the end of the night), I have developed friendships with the cast of characters who make regular Tuesday-night appearances. There's Jade, the 40-something single mother trying to re-enter the working world, having spent the past five years as a full-time mom and the past two in a bitter custody battle with her ex. Then there's Mark, the civil court judge who loves ginger ale and comes to the bar with the sole intention of singing Buddy Holly. He confides in me about his wife's multiple sclerosis, which, according to his most recent update, is getting worse. The bar and Buddy Holly provide a brief escape from his fears, and I like being the person he lets his guard down with.