Confessions of a Nightclub Owner: Part 2
Noah: "I sure hope we don’t have any more broken water pipes in the future.”
“It was just a one-off all fixed up and no problems now!”
Noah: “Come on, I’m not stupid. I’ve been in the industry for a long-time kid, who ratted on you, who tried to shut you down, it was the vodka bar down the street wasn’t it?”
“Hmmm, I was told it was just an anonymous tip but that makes the most sense.”
Noah: “Fuck em! Let’s crush them tonight, that pisses me right off we were gaining some huge momentum up until last weekend, I’m not happy, you shouldn’t be happy, how happy are you about them trying to screw you?”
“Pretty pissed, but I don’t like to show my emotions.”
Noah: “Good call kid, this industry will eat you alive, I’m going to pick up the DJ I’ll see you in a couple hours let’s ram this place!”
And Noah took off, he was a local promoter, but not the cheesy kind with a bunch of young kids trying to sell some cheap product. He had been in the business over 10 years had owned a couple clubs in a few different cities and had really made a name for himself not just in town but all over the country.
He was a good ally that I had luckily fell into a deal with he would bring in international DJs and we would split costs and profits for those nights. It was a great deal and I needed all the help I could get to really make this dive bar a success.
This was my first weekend open after the unfortunate liquor license debacle. The DJ was supposed to bring in a huge crowd the largest this location has seen in years. After losing a large amount of revenue the previous weekend I was prepared to do whatever I could to make this night a real success.
My legal capacity was 400 people. On an average night, we would see 600 through the door but a consistent 200-300 in the club at any time. But tonight, I was prepared to push my capacity limits as far as I could. What was the risk? Only about $10,000 for a small club — just starting out, this was a lot of money but I had to do what I had to do.
Before continuing, I must mention my club was in the basement of a very old building. There was only one legal entrance into the club and three emergency exits with very narrow stairs. If this club was on the main floor alone my capacity would have been 750 and with more entrances, it could have been bumped up further but legalities kept the capacity at 500.
It was a couple hours before opening and my staff started to roll in, my porters first followed by bouncers and lastly the bartenders would come in after sleeping their day away. I had just hired a new bouncer, Seamus. He was big 6’, 250 lbs, had lots of experience in the industry and had pretty good references, little did I know he paid those references to forget some of his shady past or his present shady activities.
He wanted to be the head bouncer and manage the security staff, this didn’t set off any flags given his previous experience. He came in early and was begging for that position and a raise and he didn’t even start his first shift. I was annoyed with him but wanted to see how well he did before making any further judgments.
It was half an hour to doors and people were already lining up, I started to get nervous butterflies this was the last night of the month I needed a good turn out so I could make some real cash for the month. All my staff were in place and everything seemed to be ready to go I had no idea what that night would have in store for me.
Doors were at nine and people came flooding in. The door girl was pushed to the max and the line didn’t let up once. Despite getting people in as fast as they could there was still a lineup down the block of at least 100 people and we had barely been open for half an hour.
It was a cold winter's night and all my staff were sweating their asses off. It was going to be a night everyone looked forward to. I was going to make some cash and they were all going to score some major tips. I did a cash drop at 10 pm and had already pulled out over $5,000 in sales with 4 hours to go and still not even close to capacity. At 11 pm I did another cash drop this time I was well over $15,000.
The cash kept flowing in and I was finally loving what I was doing thinking this is it, this is the good life I was looking for. If I can get a DJ like this every weekend I’m set for life.
Seamus was doing an excellent job I had no complaints and he was good at spotting issues before they happened. He found nearly a dozen mickeys when he was doing pat downs, he caught a couple patrons trying to smoke dope by the fog machine he was a natural. I was impressed and my previous concerns had gone by the way-side.
Seamus: “Luke we need you at the front door right now”
“On my way.”
I thought it was probably just a friend trying to name drop to get in, nonetheless, I made haste and got to the front door only to see a terrible sight. A girl dressed in very, VERY little was convulsing outside on the sidewalk and her boyfriend was hunched over her crying.
“Call an ambulance, why did you call me for that?”
Seamus: “Luke you don’t want to do that it looks bad on the club and you and all of us, the boyfriend has to call and then we have to say they were not allowed inside no matter what, the authorities will trust us before they trust a drunk/high couple.”
“What in the actual fuck, we can’t let her overdose and die out here in the freezing cold.”
Seamus: “Sir, let me handle it.”
Seamus took off his coat covered the girl and told the boyfriend what to do. Within minutes the ambulance arrived took the girl away with her boyfriend and he washed down the sidewalk of the puke and piss. It was embarrassing but sad I couldn’t believe someone would get that drunk and high that it wasn’t even midnight and they had overdosed, like what’s the point? Why do that?
Drugs were foreign to me and I didn’t get the point, it was a total eye-opener for me. But this was a common occurrence that is covered up a lot of nightclubs and bars only to keep their image clean. I wish I had been able to do more for them but in the same token this was my business all the cash rolling in tonight would go up in flames if it was known that they had done those drugs and drank so heavily in my club.
The night must go on and I had to keep my composure. The promoter was ecstatic he didn’t think I would allow him to ram that many people into that nightclub. We had over 800 people in the club around 1 in the morning, this was our best night at the club yet!
The happiness could not be contained. We got a couple celebratory shots at the VIP bar we clinked glasses and downed them. I wouldn’t drink during service hours but this was a night I could drink to. I went back to my office to prep for cash out. Less than an hour until last call! It was a great night! Woooo!
BANG. BANG, BANG!
What the fuck is that?! My office door was being banged on hard I got up to the door and opened it. Seamus’ face was bloody his shirt was half ripped and hanging off of his body. Two of my other bouncers carried him into the office and put him on the couch by the door.
Seamus couldn’t even talk yet he was dazed, confused and he obviously had a concussion.
Maurice: “3 o’ da biggest, badest, motha fuckas just came in and beat da livin’ crap out o’ him.”
In my head I started to freak out, I was like what the fuck, these guys are coming into my club and beating up my big bouncer and my others couldn’t do much to stop them, like how am I supposed to control this or stop this or do anything to prevent this.
The other two bouncers didn’t give me much more than three big guys, beat the piss of out of him, so I would have to look at the cameras later. I got Seamus a new shirt and kept him sitting until he regained some idea of what was going on. Not once did he tell me why this happened, no matter what I was asking he just said he didn’t know, the truth would come out soon enough though. He called a cab and met the cab out the back exit to void anyone seeing him. This would be his last shift at my club especially after what I found out later.
I went out into the club to see where this happened and I couldn’t tell where this happened, it was shoulder to shoulder people Not one person seemed phased by what had happened, I asked my bartenders, porters, beer tub girls opening DJs, and not a single person saw this happened except for my bouncers. I was amazed, still not pleased it happened, but thankful the repercussions were not worse. I had to check the cameras to see what happened but there was no time.
The rest of the night was a blur, I cashed out bartenders out after last call, the bouncers seen the rest of the patrons out and by 3 AM, all that was left was a whirlwind of debris from the sheer amount of people in the club. The two bouncers that carried Seamus into my office stayed behind they wanted to see the cameras too. We rewound the footage to just before 1 AM. We seen three HUGE, shaved head bodybuilder-looking dudes walk up to the door girl, one of them paid for all three of them and they proceeded to go downstairs into the club.
They didn’t act normal they were searching frantically around the entire club, obviously looking for Seamus specifically. Within a minute the roughest looking of the three spots Seamus and pushes him into a dead spot just outside of my office. Ironically, not even 10 seconds before that I had walked into my office.
Seamus doesn’t do much to try and defend himself he puts his hands up to try and plead with the rough looking guy, but he wasn’t being heard. Now this rough looking dude man handles Seamus like he is a child and as I said before, Seamus is 6’ 250 lbs, so just picture three dudes all far bigger and far stronger. The rough looking dude starts beating Seamus into a pulp the other two big dudes stand guard to keep my other bouncers from helping him out.
One of the big guys even told my other bouncers, “Our beef isn’t with you, stand back.” This whole ordeal only lasted 45 seconds, after which the rough dude leans down into Seamus’ ear and whispers something, then grabbed him by the shirt and ripped it in half. Nonchalantly the 3 big dudes walk out of the bar like nothing happened.
Maurice: “I got sum bad news boss, I did sum investgatin’ after dis happened an’ Seamus owes a lot o’ cash to a lot o’ bad people, dose guys weren’t da bad people just da muscle sent to do da dirty work.”
“How do you know this?”
Maurice: “I see dese guys at da gym, really nice guys, I never thought dey would do sumting’ like dat.”
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