Bob Young has been posting some incredible reminiscences within the Facebook group Capturing Rainbows, most recently one about his debut as a bartender at Lafitte's in New Orleans back in 1979 ...
We had arrived at Lafitte’s. It was old and dark inside with a big fireplace towards the back wall and near the side of an oblong bar, made of cypress planks, with a burlap skirt around it. Clyde said the bar top was polished by the arms and hands of 40 years of queer men rubbin’ and cruising on it. Looked shiny to me. There were already a lot of guys around the bar. They looked hot and sexy, moustached, jeans-and-boots kinda guys and they were partying already. One of the managers, Jeff Beauregard came over and Clyde introduced him to me and Al.
Jeff was a Cajun, bearded, dark haired man with a handsome face, hairy chest and blue eyes. He was very polite and said "So this is who Clyde has sent down for an interview?" Interview I thought to myself? I thought I already had the job! I had to interview?!? "C'mon back with me," Jeff said and I followed him, in past the fireplace through the back door. Once through that door, there was a small alleyway, then we entered another building. The bartenders’ count out room was here. The room had a long L-shaped counter. Jeff and I sat on barstools. He was hot.
"So Clyde says you'd like to work here over the Mardi Gras weekend? “ he said. “You ready to start working as soon as possible?" "I guess so," I replied. "Good, we have some changes going on right now I don't want to get into, but let’s have you come in tomorrow night, start you first at the Corral Bar upstairs. Come in about nine o'clock. Okay?” "Okay," I replied. And that was it, and we went back out front. Jeff hung back by the fireplace and I went back to the bar with the guys.
I love the image of the shiny bar!