If I have learned one lesson in life, it’s to always befriend the bartender. Mikey picked me up after work last night and we headed to North Beach. I wanted to swing by the new Joe DiMaggio’s Italian Chophouse, as the Chronicle had surprisingly positive things to say about this new joint. I showed Mike the website.
“It looks like a chain.”
“I don’t think it is. But who cares? Look at the leather banquettes!”
“It’s like Disneyworld does baseball.”
None the less, we wandered in and sat at the bar, finding our bartender, Victoria, attentive and hilarious. We ordered my standard white wine by the glass and Mikey’s standard Kettle One up with two olives and looked around. The boy was right, it was pretty touristy. Had they not covered the walls in really obvious Marilyn and Joe black and whites, it’d look like an upscale, Midwestern, Republican, oil tycoon hangout.
In the ladies, I met a woman from Colorado.
“I love your pants.” I lied, eyeing her red satin tuxedo trousers, pulled all the way up to her fake boobs. “Are you having a good evening?”
“Yes! Isn’t this place wonderful? I’ve been obsessed with Joe since I was a little girl and insisted my husband take me here.”
And elderly woman emerged from a stall and proceeded to brush her teeth at the sink. Through a mouthful of toothpaste, she gurgled, “I love your pants, too. Where y’all from?”
Ah, I see.
I returned to the bar to find Victoria refilling our drinks. “You guys want to try my new drink?”
“I just invented this new drink. Hold on, I’ll make it for you.”
A minute later, gorgeous martini glasses filled with a marvelous red concoction appeared before us. Victoria’s Ruby Red Tuesday was marvelous, the out of town businessman next to me declaring it “the perfect chick drink.”
“Why is that?” I asked.
“Because you give this to a chick and all the work is done.”
“By all the work, do you mean like, talking to her and listening to her opinions?”
That was either my cue to throw down or politely move on, so we said our farewells to the fabulous Victoria and decided to pull a Van Nostrand. (For those who don’t have the pleasure of partying with Berkeleyist, the Van Nostrand is the concerted effort to hit fancy bars and cheap eateries, swinging by taco window before gracing the pristine couches of the Four Seasons.)
We grabbed sandwiches at Mario’s and headed to the WashBaG. Sipping our drinks, we spotted a guy at the end of the bar who we both instantly decided was a complete shithead. He kept asking the bartendress lots of stupid questions, complaining about the lack of his bullshit, obscure booze ordered for the sole purpose of impressing his hideous date.
“God, I hate that guy.”
“Me too. I think the bartender hates him too.”
“How do you know?” I asked.
“I can just tell. Let’s ask her.” Mikey leaned over the bar. “Excuse me. Do you hate that guy at the end of the bar as much as we do?”
She laughed, rolling her eyes. “So, do you guys want to do shots?”