Food & Drink
Sponsored by

How to Be the Best Person in the Bar

Sponsored by
Best Guy In the Bar
Anthony Humphreys

Being the best person in the bar isn't about telling people they can put their drinks on your black card because you want everyone to know that you have a black card. It's about taking every opportunity big and small to make the bar a better place, thereby making everyone's night that much more excellent. Sometimes you'll get credit for this stuff, sometimes you won't, but if there's such a thing as karma, then by closing time everyone's going to appreciate that you're a damn special human being.

(FYI, here's why you should never leave the bar before said closing time.)

Anthony Humphreys

1. Buy shots for the whole damn bar


2. Give a stranger the rest of your songs on the jukebox

It'll save them a couple of bucks, and save you from cueing up "I Think We're Alone Now" in desperation because you can't figure out what else to play with your 9th selection.

3. Ask the bartender to turn the jukebox up/down

There's a right volume for every bar. A good bartender will have already found it, and you won't have to ask. A less-good bartender will stare at you like you're the worst person in the world, but sometimes taking one for the team's what being the best person in the bar's all about.

Anthony Humphreys

4. Get the bartender to put the TV on the better game

You can't really expect a busy bartender to pay such rapt attention to the TV that they know exactly when to change the channel from a game that's getting out of hand to a game that's still competitive. Get over that weird "I don't want to bother anybody" fear that people have about asking bartenders to change channels, and everyone will love you for it. Except fans of the team that's blowing out the other team.

5. Invite that group of foreign tourists to join your party

Give them an American experience they'll never forget no matter how hard they try!

Guard dawg
Anthony Humphreys

6. Guard the men's room for a lady

Nature's call doesn't care about a sign on a door.

Guard dawgg
Anthony Humphreys

7. Guard the ladies' room for a man


Sly tip
Anthony Humphreys

8. Without letting anyone know, slyly cover the tip for some jerk who left without tipping

When the bartender's happy and not pissed off about some jerk who left without tipping, everybody wins.

9. Beat an annoying pool shark and then give up the table

This dude's been owning the table all night, much to the dismay of everyone who just kinda wants to play some pool without getting all Alpha about it. Own him, then tell some pool mortals "It's all yours" and walk away without ever saying your name. Such an Eastwood move.

10. Gently maneuver your friend's butt out of a server's path

You're subtly ensuring the machinery of the bar stays operational, and you get to touch your friend's butt. Or shoulder.

Selfless man
Anthony Humphreys

11. Be a truly selfless wingman or wingwoman

You know how when you play wingperson, in the back of your mind you're always thinking, "I'm so freaking charming right now, this chick/dude is loving it; if my friend screws this up is it a terrible thing if I let nature take its course?" Banish that thought. As the Dalai Lama said, "Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can't help them, at least don't hurt them.” And this is exactly the situation he was talking about!

12. Save a stranger from a creepy person's unwanted advances

You could try the standby tactic of pretending to be their boyfriend/girlfriend. Or you could pretend to be their husband/wife and say something like "Is this the person you've forsaken our beautiful baby for?" But maybe try the first one instead.

13. Stop a fight before it starts

There are many ways to diffuse tension, but experts agree the most reliable one is "Hey boys, how about I grab us all a beer and we talk this out?" Ideally one of the parties will say, "No, no, it's cool," and then the other party will say, "Yeah it's cool" and they'll separate to opposite sides of the bar and you won't have to actually talk to them.

Push ups
Anthony Humphreys

14. Volunteer to officiate a push-up competition. Be hilarious.

Push-up competitions generally only serve to make everyone in the bar uncomfortable, especially if they're shirtless push-up competitions. And while you can't stop a push-up competition from happening, that doesn't mean you can't use genuine enthusiasm combined with subtle mockery to turn it into the can't-miss event of the evening. If instead of whispering "I can't believe this is happening" to each other the whole bar starts counting out loud, you'll know you've done a good thing.

15. Give up your stool to a group of friends that just needs one more stool

Now they all get to sit down and talk to each other without one person having to stand around awkwardly, kind of being part of the group but kind of not -- and you get to stand up for the first time in two hours.

16. Buy pizza for everyone

Assuming the bar's cool with it of course.

17. Prove a know-it-all wrong

If some dude's killing everyone's mood by lecturing loudly and pedantically on a topic nobody else cares about, stroll by and, with maximum authority, say, "Actually, that was Wade Boggs" -- then just keep on walking. It doesn't matter if Wade Boggs was actually involved or not.

18. Appear to be slightly less attractive than you actually are

This might prove difficult because you're so damn good looking it's hard to hide it, but if there's a way for you to appear just a touch less hot, that would be a benevolent gesture that could help everyone else in the room feel better about their own comparatively average looks.

19. Buy shots for the whole damn bar again

There are a whole bunch of new people who showed up after you bought shots last time. Shouldn't they also bask in the glow of your awesomeness?

As a loyal reader, your opinion is more important to us than oxygen, or hydrogen even. Please take this quick survey and tell us what you think!