Tuesday, June 15, 2010

You too can manage a sports bar!

If you love sports and you love drinking, then you've undoubtedly fantasized at one time or another about running your very own sports bar. But for whatever reason, you thought managing such an enterprise was beyond your grasp. Well, I'm here to tell you that you are incredibly stupid. You totally can! After all, what is a sports bar? It's a bar with a tv! Do you own a television? Well, look at you, you're halfway there already! All you have to do is follow these steps to fill in the little gaps and you'll be up and running in no time. Touchdown!
  1. Location - Find an open space in a nearby strip mall. This should be very easy. Because no matter where you live, there is a strip mall nearby and there is at least one open space in it. Don't worry if there is already a sports bar (or even two) in the strip mall. There are strip malls that are comprised entirely of sports bars. I've seen 'em. They're spectacular.
  2. TVs - One tv isn't going to cut it. You need at least six; one for each ESPN channel, one for a channel carrying the local team and one that is always tuned to a Law & Order re-run for some reason, even when the Super Bowl is on. Try to make sure your biggest tv occupies a prominent spot in the restaurant but the picture is an indistinguishable mass of purple blobs unless your standing within 15 degrees of dead center of the screen.
  3. Decor - Sports stuff! Clean out your closets and garage, raid the flea market, steal some shit from the Y. Whatever. Get your hands on as much as you can. Pennants, posters, deflated footballs, old softball uniforms and trophies, broken golf clubs, those plastic novelty batting helmets. Tack it up on every inch of available wall space. Did you run out of room? No problem. Serve food in whatever is left over. You'll also be receiving promotional sports items like neon beer signs from your local beer distributors. By all means, use 'em! One of the things you'll get is a huge poster with your local team's schedule on it, designed for you to update on a regular basis with wins, losses and scores. Tradition dictates that you leave it up all season long but stop updating it after about 15 games. Four, if it's a football schedule.
  4. Food - Serve chicken wings, of course. Burgers and french fries too. That's what every sports bar serves. But you want to stand out, don't you? Sure you do. And the way you do that is you name stuff after people. What people? It doesn't matter. What matters is that your chili becomes "Cindy's Secret Recipe Chili". Your curly fries become "Ted's Famous Curly Fries". Who the hell are Cindy and Ted? Who gives a shit? It's the names not the people. You'll have regulars who eat at your place four times a week who'll think they've had beers and watched the World Series together. "One thing about ol' Ted; he always likes his fries curly."
  5. Staff - In the kitchen; anybody you want. On the floor waiting tables; cute young girls in shorts and tee shirts. The cuter the girl, the more slack you'll be given if your service sucks. This is what's known as the Hooters Paradigm. Deviate it from it at your own peril. You might...might...be able to sneak by with an older waitress who used to be cute if she's sassy to the point of being downright nuts and your customers are afraid of her. Hire a male waiter and your sports bar will be closed and re-opened as a Subway or a nail salon before you get back from the bank.
  6. Branding - I could give you about a hundred clever suggestions on what to call your place but why bother since you're just going to name it after yourself, right? Yeah, that's what I thought.


Jordi said...

This is great! I loved it. Clark, you are a genius.

Why, it's Clark! said...

Ah, thanks! I'm just a guy who likes his fries curly.

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