Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Brisbane suburbs

On Facebook, there is a popular quiz around at the moment called "Whereabouts in the Brisbane region do you belong?"

I got Manly. I went to school there.

Ellie completed the quiz "Whereabouts in the Brisbane region do you belong?" with the result Manly.
No one ever pays you out for living here, it's just a great place, nothing ever happens here (things like stabbings, drugs etc). People probably like you a lot, and you live close to a lot of friends.

No stabbings and no drugs? This is the suburb next to Wynnum - place of dodgy underage house parties, Bundy Rum drinkers and hoons. 

The first person I ever met who took drugs was from Manly, so there you go. The quiz is wrong.

My friend Josh from 4ZZZ got this result:
Josh completed the quiz "Whereabouts in the Brisbane region do you belong?" with the result Cleveland.
Your from Cleveland. You have a lot of money at your disposal, you've probably never got in a fight, and your just pretty much safer than anyone. Except you gotta travel a million km just to get anywhere, and people aren't exactly safe at your pub - so jokes on you fucker.

I grew up in Alex Hills, the suburb next to Cleveland, place of the infamous Alex Hills Hotel (and my old workplace!). Cleveland is indeed full of mansions and rich old bastards, but "safe" and no fights? No way. I used to work in a newsagency in Cleveland and often witnessed drunken fights and public domestics on a day-to-day basis. On a Sunday morning. In the middle of town. The train station is a hotspot for young hoods on their way to a dodgy Wynnum house party. 

So whoever made this quiz has obviously only been to the east side and doesn't know Brisbane that well at all. 

Suburbs indeed have their own personality. I grew up on the Bayside, dated boys on the westside and northside (what a slut!), worked in the inner south side, used to go to uni and taekwondo training on the southside, and now currently work inner city.

So I'm pretty sure I know Brisbane way better than whoever made that quiz.

Match up the suburbs to your personality and see how you go.

Bayside (Wynnum, Alex Hills, Cleveland)
You may either come from a filthy rich or super poor family, had a state or private school education, but it doesn't matter - you are a bogan. You enjoy driving very old, crappy cars and putting rear spoilers made out of a few bits of scrap metal on the back. Or a ute. Anyway, cars are very important because the public transport is so rubbish where you live. In your spare time, you enjoy getting as drunk as possible, and have done so since an early age. But you're an angry drunk and you fight in public a lot. Your drink of choice is Jim Beam or Bundy Rum. You wear boardshorts everywhere. But if you escape where you live, you'll probably end up being famous and successful.

Indie rock wet dream The Grates are from the Bayside. So is Karl Stefanovic, but The Grates are prettier. Sorry Karl. My mum thinks you're hot though.

East side (Carindale, Carina, Hawthorne, Norman Park)
You are a 15 year old private school girl who is constantly at a Westfield shopping centre - especially Supre - or trendily drinking a skinny latte on Oxford St. You love fashion that doesn't last - skinny jeans, fashionable mullets, those stupid tights that don't have feet, etc. You're a bit sheltered; things like people with piercings, pubs that are frequented by old men and alternative music tends to confuse and scare you.

What's the bloody point?!

South Side (Mt Gravatt, Sunnybank,  Greenslopes, Annerley)
You are a bit of a conundrum. At times you are studious, wholesome, family-oriented and avidly attend university. But other times, you're in a gang who likes beating up people other gangs and putting the footage on YouTube. You like Asian food a lot.

Inner south side (South Brisbane, West End, Woolloongabba)
You're very political or radical in some way. Basically, you're not a middle class, straight, conservative white guy. You don't have a lot of money but it doesn't stop you from making your own fun. You love music, art and getting involved in local politics. Other people try and change you to be  modern and trendy but it doesn't really suit you.

North side (Lutwyche, Kedron, Newmarket)
Overall, you're a pretty peaceful, quiet sort. But others tend to ruin your day by building busways around you, or submerging you in water.

You're a big shopping centre. Mothers are cheating on their husbands with you because you have a fine taste for fashion and you're good with kids.

Inner north (Red Hill, Kelvin Grove, Herston, Normanby)
You're the new kid from out of town, seeking your future - an education, a job, or maybe just a beer on Sunday afternoon.

West side (Toowong, Indooroopilly, St Lucia, Kenmore, Milton)
You're a university student who is doing a Bachelor of Arts... forever. Or you're a rich private school boy. Either way you will probably become a famous writer or super rich lawyer in the future.

Although the street Nick Earls's ZigZag Street is actually in Red Hill (inner north), most of the book is set in Toowong, Milton and the University of Queensland at St Lucia.

You can take the virtual tour here. Very cool!

Rebecca Sparrow's book The Girl Most Likely is also set on the west side. My favourite quote: "It's just that... we love shopping at POOwong!"

Inner city (Fortitude Valley, Spring Hill, New Farm)
You love partying a lot, having casual sex and urinating in public. On the other hand you dress well and probably have an awesome day job (graphic designer, proprietor of an independent coffee shop, radio host, nightclub DJ). You like eating expensive gourmet hamburgers.

North east side (Breakfast Creek, Hamilton, Ascot)
You are filthy rich, old, like drinking beer from a barrel and smell faintly of fish. 

As for my Brisbane suburban personality? I guess because I travel around town a lot I'm a bit of everything - a bogan-ish university student who likes partying, Asian food and local politics and was once a naive 15 year old private school girl. Oh, and I've been submerged in water for the last few days

I've obviously missed out the areas I don't know that well. I've never really been northwest around Ferny Grove and the like, and even though everybody tells me that Logan and Ipswich are full of bogans, I've never actually spent time there.

If any readers out there want to fill me in on other Brisbane suburb personalities, be my guest.

Or if you're from another city, tell me about yours.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

The Full Moon Strikes Again

The moon is a mysterious entity. It's responsible for the tides, menstrual cycles, werewolves and general insanity.

For long-time readers of this blog you may remember this post, in which I had to put up with a suspiciously increased number of drunks, fights, super-rudeness and swearing during a shift at work when the moon was nigh.

This year was no different. The following things happened:

- Two bar staff mysteriously quit on Friday night so we were understaffed on Saturday night.

- According to the drunk girl I cut off from the bar, I "ruined her night" because "she washhn't ddddjunk k?" Poor diddums. 

- Had to explain to a woman that Coopers Pale Ale was not a dark stout. And neither is Coopers Sparkling.

I believe the key word here is "pale."

- Observed an increase of people milling about aimlessly at the and had the following conversation for every 2nd person I served:

Me: "Hello. What would you like to drink?"
Customer: "...Duuuuhhhh?"

- Not sure if this one is true, but I'm very sure the Mustang Bar caught on fire. I heard a fire alarm (the back of my work is across the road from it) and saw a fire engine parked outside. More alarmingly, heard groups of patrons scream "Woooooo!" Burning to our deaths, how exciting!

- The soft drink guns stopped working so I had to tell people that they couldn't have soft drink for a while. It was fixed within 15 minutes but most people just didn't understand.

Customer: "Can I have a vodka and soda?"
Me: "Sorry, the soft drink guns aren't working."
Customer: "But I want a vodka soda."
Me: "The soft drink guns aren't working. So I can't give you soda."
Customer: "Oh okay, can I have a vodka and coke then?"

- A girl I work with cut off two drunk dudes. One started screaming, "I KNOW YOUR MOTHER AND I AM GOING TO TELL HER" (oh noes). He raised his fist and I ran to get security.

- No less than 5 minutes later, the same girl told a patron to move because a glassy needed to sweep up a broken glass. The patron swore abusively at her. I ran off to the get the security guard again. The angry patron bitch-slapped him furiously. Sigh.

- Was myself very very angry. The peak of my anger hit when a man changed his order 3 times in a very confusing way and still wouldn't tell me how many scotches he wanted altogether. 

He told me to "smile." 

I responded using words that were not very nice. Sorry Mum.

- But despite the existential rage and tiredness building inside me, I got heaps of tips. Just like last year. Weird.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

10 things I like about bartending

This is my bartending face.

Kristine Bottone of one of my favourite blogs, LA Bartender Examiner, emailed me and asked me 10 things I hate about bartenders and customers - research for her newest article.

After sending off a long, ranty e-mail, I decided to counteract all that negativity with...

10 things I like about bartending.

1. When I manage to remember what the regulars drink. Good for my terrible short term memory, and the customers really like it too.

2. Getting high fived by friendly drunks.

3. Free drinks. Knock-off drinks are great and my boss is a pretty generous lady. Not to mention the rad sort of customers that buy you one so you can drink with them!

4. Customers who make the effort to leave tips. Tipping isn't compulsory here in Australia so it's pretty exciting when it happens. I usually manage to make around $20 (about an hour's work). The most I've ever made was $60, which I promptly spent at the bar the next night. Awesome!

5. Being constantly surrounded by music. Bartending is one of the few jobs where it's not just okay to dance at work - its encouraged. I also get to see a lot of bands and meet the musicians at the bar.

The Mercy Beat - a rad band and some of the nicest bar patrons ever
(photographed at my old workplace, the Clarence Corner Hotel)

6. Flirty glances over the bar.

7. The pride of making a tasty, well-presented cocktail and watching the customer get excited.

8. Other bartenders are, on the whole, pretty cool. Most of them are friendly and a bit eccentric in some way - hospitality does that to you - which is a good thing if you're working with them. The crap ones usually don't stick around for too long anyway.

9. Watching drunk people dance when you're stone cold sober is way more entertaining than it sounds.

10. Meeting people and making new friends. Not all pub-goers are drunken idiots, you know.

Past posts