The first Mojito I ever paid for myself.
I know what you’re thinking. She bought her own drink?!?!?! This girl must have some real self esteem issues. Why wouldn’t she just wait for a guy to pay? I’ll have you know I nursed the above 6 ounces until the condensation on the outside of the glass made my fingertips pruney.
A crucial skill learned in my 20s was mastering how to get a sponsor at the bar.
I don’t mean an AA sponsor (that’s probably shit you learn in your 30s) — I’m talking someone to sponsor your bar tab for the night. While there are many milestones that confirm one’s sense of self-esteem, having someone pay 10 times what it would cost for me to get drunk at home is a huge pat on the butt. Back. Whatever.
Back to the master class! The rules are pretty strict:
1. Get a drink in hand — The first 5 minutes in the bar are like a Choose Your Own Adventure book. You may be allowed to buy your first drink because you don’t want to look desperate or obvious. But if you’re patient, the first drink is either on the bartender, or the creepy old man who’s been there since breakfast. Your call. But don’t stand around too long or you’ll self-destruct. Andale muchacha!
2. Commence to prowl — Once you have a drink you now have the universal green light to mingle comfortably. It’s time to be seen in the sexy outfit you spent your week’s grocery money on. An outfit that says “I’m eligible, and thirsty.”
3. Land a Sponsor — There are all different levels and types of sponsors at any given bar. Even in Albany. (Refer to the tiers below).
The Easy Mark — this guy, possibly named Mark, is the guy you kinda feel sorry for because his attitude says hey ladies, but his style says I teach shop class. Your guilt prohibits this from being more than a one-drink sponsorship . Which is ok, kudos to you for being a good Samaritan. Even though no one says kudos anymore. (Or Samaritan).
The Silverback — the guy over 50 with deeper pockets than Mark.
A Silverback in the wild
Enjoy your 20 minutes tops with Mr. Silver. His bedtime is usually 11, by which point his 2-drink-sponsorship has gotten you pretty loose.
The All-American —while he doesn’t have the Daddy Warbucks wallet, he works hard for his green, probably fixing Daddy Warbucks’ pipes. Seriously. He’s a plumber.
This sponsor is totally capable of getting the flow through your pipes. Am I right? He likes taking shots, and burping, and he’s gross. So enjoy it while it lasts. Which should be for no more than 15 minutes.
The Bachelor Party in the VIP area with bottle service — this is the motherload of sponsors. They’re carefree. They’re competitive. And they want to look cool, with good-looking girls around them, because their egos are out of control and their sense of self is nonexistent. This tier sponsors not only you, but all your friends.
Here’s what you’re thinking. Ugh, now I’m obligated to go home with one, or all of these sponsors because of their donation to my needy charity. Nothing’s free in this world. I’ll take the plumber, the shower drain’s all backed up.
No. It’s just a drink. Or two. Or more. It’s not a save-the-date.
Oooh. Here’s a fun bonus. Turn the hunt into a contest of who can land the hottest sponsor, the first one, the weirdest one, or one in costume. One time a Liza Minnelli lookalike wearing a fur with the head still attached bought me a Grasshopper. I won that one. Because…Grasshopper!