“Give me the girliest drink you can make!”

This phrase is often accompanied by a smirk that never fails to make me squirm. As a bartender I am torn. Should I make him something with cranberry juice and move on to dealing with my less annoying customers? Should I ask what exactly makes a drink “girly”?

For my first post I have decided to tackle an experience that often occurs in public house culture. Definitely not the worst example of annoyances that have undercurrents of sexist assumptions, but definitely one of the most common. This man either prefers sweet/sugary drinks and instead of just unapologetically ordering what he wants like everyone else, he puts on a front that this is a special occasion. Or, the idea of ordering something other than beer or whiskey strikes him as momentous and so hilarious that he is compelled to take me on this thrilling ride of his act of rebellion.

In Britain, I am told, it is the norm for woman to drink half pints. Men, however, would never be seen in public with half a beer. I can’t help but pity those male – identified persons who like a little sweetness with their alcohol. Or perhaps, just don’t feel like a pint-size glass of brew.

As a woman who drinks whiskey, I am often met with surprise and admiration when I order my drink of choice. It’s as if my palate automatically makes me a more interesting person. I am not one of those cosmopolitan drinking girls. I must be (insert any word synonymous with cultured). My love for whiskey drinking allows me entry into the ‘boys club’, I am no longer just a pretty face. The double standard is unmistakable and frustrating.

As the lone woman working in an east Toronto pub, I have to tread the thin line between affable and assertive, easy-going and stout. I often choose to ask critical questions rather than angrily retorting in the face of problematic language. However, when it comes to silly statements like the one informing this post, I tend to go the passive aggressive route:

I served him a Jameson. Neat.cosmopolitan-150530_960_720


4 thoughts on ““Give me the girliest drink you can make!”

  1. Great post. If I was in your shoes I’d find it hard to resist having fun with these customers, perhaps offering a cutting side of insight with their drink. These instances could be a gold mine of material for you blog, depending on how you react.


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