Life Beyond the Bar Scene: Starting Over and Other Stupid Resolutions
Jan 2011 04

Life Beyond the Bar Scene: Starting Over and Other Stupid Resolutions

Posted In Blog,Love,Relationships,Sex,Society

by Laurelin

The promise of a new year is always something that gives me such hope. It’s silly really. It’s a day in your life, the day after yesterday, and the day before tomorrow. It is no different from any other day except for one number after the same year as last year. But for some reason, every new year people make new promises: promises to become better people, thinner, nicer, get a better job, forgive their parents, donate to more charities. People want to feel like they have the power to change the path they are headed down, no matter what path it was; it doesn’t matter because it is a NEW YEAR and we can be anything we want. I am just like everyone else in the sense that I crave a reason to make me try harder to be someone worthwhile, but I also am not disillusioned that this new year can just magically bring about immediate change for the better.

You know what can bring about immediate change for the better? A new city where no one knows me as their bartender, or Dave’s ex-girlfriend. A new city where people might take me seriously, and not expect that every night I’m down for drinking until 5 AM. A city where it’s sunny all the time, and that’s as far from Boston as possible. I knew there was a reason that I haven’t ever bought real furniture and that the only things of value in my life are books and a cat. It’s going to be really easy to just pack up the car and move to California….

It sounds so clichéd, picking up and leaving Boston’s bitter cold winters and people’s frostbitten attitudes for the sunny West Coast. I moved to Boston from Rhode Island five years ago, and I still think it was one of the best things I could have done for myself. I was stuck in a dead end job waitressing at a strip club and was getting way too comfortable spending way too much money on stupid things. I had been out of college for years at that point, and while I had had a few great jobs in my field of study (archaeology and creative writing), I was making more money walking around in high heels and my underwear than most people who got amazing jobs right out of college.

I was drinking a lot at work, drinking a lot out of work, surrounded by friends who drank a lot, living in a college town filled with bars, catering to people who drank a lot. I was in and out of useless relationships and slowly drowning in a sea of strobe lights and glitter. I had an internship briefly at the Boston Museum of Science that year, and one day, heading home, I went the wrong way and got lost. I pulled over and asked for directions at a little coffee shop on a corner and I fell in love. I found myself wishing I was anyone in that shop, the girl with the pink hair on her laptop, the tattooed girl reading the newspaper and listening to her iPod.

I didn’t know anything about the area, but right down the road from where I had parked my car there was a sign for an apartment for rent. I walked in and handed the rental agent $1,000 cash and told her I would move in in six months. It was impulsive, crazy, stupid, and amazing. I felt great, and five years later, here I am in the same apartment across from the same coffee shop with a new life. I just…. Left the rest behind and started over, and I was good at it.

Take these last five years and break them down. I traded the strip club for a sports bar. I traded one college town for a college city. I stopped drinking shit ton and started drinking…. Sort of a lot. I traded one dead end relationship in Rhode Island for an even more dead end relationship in Boston. Truth be told, I am now just more in control of a lifestyle that is just too easy.

For new years this year, my bar gave me a fantastic gift. After two and a half years of working there full time, they are circling the drain and are starting to let people go. Happy new year, you’re only working two day bar shifts this week. Happy 2011, we hope it’s good to you, and we sure do hope you’ve been saving money. This is the chance I’ve been waiting for to end this cycle of making the same mistakes over and over. It is 2011, and I think that it will be the same as any other year if I let it. I might. I might not. But I’m going to do it somewhere else.

It is 2011, and I am still resolving to meet a guy that isn’t a lazy piece of shit, who doesn’t have a girlfriend or a wife, and who doesn’t want to take off his pants in public to show me the tattoo he has on his thigh. I am still a 28 year old bartender at a bar that is falling apart from the inside as well as out, and I am still in a mind frame that allows me to think that running away from all my problems and starting over somewhere totally new is the answer to this bar scene life that I keep creating.

Well, it is. And I’m getting the hell out of here.

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