8 November 2011

Sleep is an eight-hour peep show of infantile erotica.

Anyone want to take bets on which day I'll fail to find a number-related quote?

So, yesterday was brilliant. Spent time resting, playing my guitar for Danger and we even found time for a jog in the afternoon.

Today was also nice, although the weather was a bit miserable. Let my bike take Danger for a ride again. I'm worried they like each other a little too much. Won't need me soon.

Anyway, onto today's subject. 'That Bar'.

Elizabeth said:

Lestrade: What was it like working in the bar? (You have to tell us what its name was! Or at least give us a list of possibilities and tell us when we've hit the right one.)

It really was called 'ManHole'. Yes, I know, not big or clever, but it was the 80s. What can I say?

I'd been in a London a while, got to know people, got to know the scene a bit, and had failed to keep any job I'd had - staying out late and playing my guitar (in order to become a rockstar) was just so much more important than turning up on time for the paid work the next morning...

Anyway, a friend mentioned this place was looking for bar staff, and I knew my way around the pumps, so I went along. It paid more than most bar jobs, afterall.

It was, I hasten to add, completely above board and legal, and Vic, the bloke who ran it, was proud of that. However, the decor and the location weren't exactly going to sell the joint, so the staff had to. We had a dress code - sort of. It was skimpy, really. Ripped jeans, tight t-shirt, if you wore one.

I assume I don't need to say all the clientele were male.

They were good to me, and Vic was a really nice bloke. Most of the guys who worked there were allowed to do what they wanted - let punters go as far as they wanted. For however much money they wanted. But not me, because I was only eighteen, and that would have been illegal.

Which didn't stop me getting my arse grabbed on a regular basis, and getting a lot of propositions. At the time, being young and slightly stupid, I found it all very flattering. I'd never really had anyone take much of an interest in me before, and suddenly all these blokes were. Some didn't take it too kindly when I turned them down, but Vic would sort them out if they gave me too much grief.

So, yeah, worked there for nearly two years. Learnt a lot. Saw a lot. Saw quite a lot I could have done without seeing, but it was an education. Left before I was 21, so I was never put in the position of thinking about going further, really. Although I can't pretend I never met up with any of the blokes outside work...

39 comments:

kholly said...

I did a job for someone over the summer where we went around asking people to talk about their first jobs. We got a lot of baristas and babysitters. I so wish you had been there.

John H. D. Watson said...

I'm worried they like each other a little too much.

You keep saying I shouldn't be learning on yours, but it does seem to suit me rather well...

Despite the arse grabbing and skimpy clothing, I can't help finding this post rather sweet. I'm glad Vic was there to look after you a bit.

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

well...you are learning on mine, for now. Usually people would learn on a slightly less powerful bike. And with a proper instructor, so you don't learn all my bad habits.

Who's going to keep me warm on the road with a hug when you're riding your own bike?

Vic was intensely proud of the fact his bar was all legal, and was just a big softy at heart.

REReader said...

I'm with John on this--it is a rather sweet story. Which, considering that you are perfectly capable of making the most innocent story sound anything but, is quite surprising, really!

John H. D. Watson said...

Even if it was called ManHole...

Well, I haven't got my own yet and might not for some time. I like riding with you.

Desert Wanderer said...

Takes one to know one, Lestrade.

I'm glad you had someone to look after you. <3

Small Hobbit said...

being young and slightly stupid okay, so tell me which 18 year old male isn't?

I agree with Danger, this is a sweet post. It's safe to come out from under the duvet - should you want to ;)

Desert Wanderer said...

Also, my money's on the 31st.

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

I'll stay under here, ta.

And hope Danger might join me.

John H. D. Watson said...

Promise not to make goat noises at me?

REReader said...

Bet he makes no promises about not nibbling! ;)

ro said...

Lol, jailbait Lestrade!

"ManHole" - god, that's classic! Sweet post. Vic sounds like a good guy. :)

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

No promises. At all.

Calliope said...

And here I thought you'd go with "8 Days a Week." And I'm with the others. I'm glad you had someone to keep an eye on you while you were getting an "education."

John H. D. Watson said...

Maybe I'll get you bed socks instead.

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

I refuse to wear socks to bed. I like having bare feet. Hate slippers or anything once I'm home.

Anyway, your pyjamas fend off the worst of the cold, don't they?

John H. D. Watson said...

Not when you stick them against my bare flesh like that, no.

I don't really mind though.

Anon Without A Name said...

I'm with everyone else on this one; no reason for us to rip the piss (OK, maybe for "ManHole"), it's actually a very sweet post. I'm glad that Vic was such a stand-up guy, and that you were never put in the position of having to make that decision. And even if some of it was less than pleasant, it also sounds like you managed to have a lot of fun along the way.

mazarin221b said...

The frst gay bar I ever saw in my life (and knew it for what it was), was the Manhole in Chicago. I was 21, and newly legal, and we were out cruising for somewhere to get smashed.

Just went to Chi-town a few months ago and ended up in Boystown - and there on the corner still is The Manhole. I still laugh.

Sometimes those experiences we have while we're somewhat independent but still under the protection/watch of a an older, wiser adult are the best ones to learn from. Sounds like you had a good 2 years pulling pints (mostly ;) )

Elizabeth said...

Thank you for answering my question, Lestrade! That isn't so bad. John is right in saying that it's a bit sweet, too. (Although I was secretly hoping that John had seen/heard of/visited the bar in his shocking youth.)

Desert Wanderer said...

Have a good night, guys. Hope your peep shows are good ones.

X said...

This was sweeter (and tamer, though I imagine there are a lot of details omitted!!) than I had expected from the question -- lovely that Vic looked out for his own. :)

Since John told us all about your first date, I'm going to be greedy/nosy and inquire into your and John's first kiss.

Or, alternately, YOUR first kiss. :D I'm feeling soppy tonight, what can I say?

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

X - a few details omitted, yes.

Mazarin - I should track Vic down, see if he went multinational.

DW said...

Morning. Not much of a low-in today?

Desert Wanderer said...

...lie in, that was supposed to say.

mazarin221b said...

Well, if the logo for the bar was a really buff man in a pair of skivvies climbing down a ladder into a mahole (the street kind, you pervs!), then he just may have!

Now I look back on it, I really was a sheltered small-town girl.

On a side note, the all-male, invitation-only, members-only strip club next to my husband's office is called The Unicorn Club.

Feels like a Cabin Pressure flight deck game. "Worst innuendo-laden names of establishments that are intended to give give clues about their leanings."

Desert Wanderer said...

Hey! That could be a legitimate unicorn establishment. Where do you think John's Roger Federicorn goes when he wants to hang out?!

mazarin221b said...

If that's the case, then I sincerely apologize to Roger and any other unicorn I may have inadvertently offended with my assumptions.

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

No lie in. Absolutely manic here.

Roger federicorn lives up to your every assumption, I think.

REReader said...

See what happens when you're gone for a couple of days?

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

It's the criminals, giving me extra work. Bastard.

REReader said...

Bad one?

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

Jury members and witnesses being intimidated on one of our cases. Think it'll be thrown out and restarted.

Small Hobbit said...

You must feel like screaming (or swearing very loudly).

REReader said...

That is bad, very, just in a different way than I had in mind. Even if it's restarted, the witnesses may stay intimidated...beyond frustrating.

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

Yeah, quite. Rapidly reaching end of my tether

REReader said...

It quite highlights the attractions of Sherlock's instant conviction approach.

Greg 'Orio' M F Lestrade said...

Ha, it does, but the system isn't so bad, most of the time.

Today has just been...I don't know. Frustrating to the extreme.

REReader said...

Yeah, I taught criminal justice one year at Brooklyn College, and I can go through the reasons for all the protections, and they're good reasons, and it's true that sometimes even the protections in place are inadequate (well, just look at the Innocence Project in the US).

But then there are the other times.

I'm sorry.

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