Why Opening That Bar with Your Friends Will Never Happen and Is a Terrible Idea

It’s the inevitable peak of drunk talk. A lull strikes your highly cerebral discussion on fantasy football and girl butt. You glance around—there’s nothing else here but a few tables, a couple cute bartenders, and some sort of feral child mopping up spills and dancing for dimes.

That’s it. Eureka. Running a bar seems awesomely simple, truly a perfect life packed with booze, chronic sleeping in, and quid-pro-quo waitress sex.

The rest of the table’s effortlessly persuaded by the vision you paint of an all-you-can-drink-and-fuck buffet. Fiscal solvency, working with your friends, a career embracing functional alcoholism—this conversation’s become all pomp and no circumstance.

Giddy, your potential partners and you start rattling off ideas, parties, and promotions you could host. In your mind you can already see the ABC sitcom based off you and your boys’ habitual pub shenanigans being immediately green lit. Life will be easy, the money will roll in, and Jon Taffer will start coming to you for advice.

Now I’m going to be a wet blanket. Much like a cock block, vagina de-moistener, or brutally pragmatic fun burglar, I plan to steal all enjoyment out of the prospective situation you’ve imagined. Yes, call me a high-school guidance counselor because I’m about to dump a steamy load of reality all over your dreams.

Attempting to open a bar with your buddies is an awful idea, way more expensive and even more abhorrently terrible than your last plan to acquire some unfortunate dog to reside within the vodka-drenched filth slum you guys call a home. Much like the dog adoption, this bar scheme is shortsighted in every sense.

Money is at the root of every misgiving here, as I’m presuming you and your posse are not all trust-fund babies or master extortionists. From the building, to the stock, to the liquor licenses and insurance, there’s some serious buku bucks to be spent before you ever open. The fantasy never goes, “Sleep all day, party all night, wet t-shirt contests, pussy tasting contests; oh, plus, I got this guy who does good, up-to-code work installing wood floors. Yeah, we should definitely get at least a quote on floors from Kevin.”

With any new business, money is tight. Initially, you probably won’t be able to hire subordinates or capture an illiterate forest child to take care of all the nasty bitch work. Hence, it’ll be left to you guys to constantly mop up girl tears, de-pukify pool table pockets, and un-upper deck toilets. Then the reward for a hard day of cleaning is getting to watch it all become re-soiled with spilled booze and bodily fluids while you, ever vigilant for potentially crippling lawsuits, sit relatively sober so you can babysit drunks. Lawyers are expensive and someone needs to make sure no stilettos tumble down the stairs, no asshole concusses himself after climbing on a table, or no boozy whores get bludgeoned by a storm of dance floor erections.


There’s red tape. There’s thankless work. There’s a ton of expenses and incurring debt. Plus, in a few years, you’ll be tired of the college scene. You’ll keep getting older and they’ll stay the same, irresponsible, predictably blackout age. At that point you’re stuck either accepting your exhausting fate for the next thirty years, trying to sell it all to some other sucker, or doing your best to take out maximum-coverage insurance policies while carefully studying Internet forums on subjects like “Making it Look Like an Electrical Fire.”