Sunday, October 30, 2005

Nashville whipping everyone's butts last night.
Last night was the first night I have had either alone or off in a very long time. I realize what a loser I am. I actually worked until about 10:30 and then I watched shows about Zombies and haunted houses. As the saying goes " you can't be cool all the time"
Last week I had some friends in town and I bought a board game called " The Worst Case Scenario Survival Game" Pretty entertaining.
How to eat a Frog?
A. Skin it, cook it, and eat the whole thing
B. Eat only the legs, the rest of the frog contains toxins
C. Boil the frog, discard it's intestines, and consume the rest.

I actually won the game but only because my last question was about the symptoms of larvae growing under your skin. Thanks to the discovery channel, I learned about that just a few months ago.
Sending Kevin to review a spot in Toronto. I'm crossing my fingers.

I found this article amusing: from Times Picayune ( New Orleans paper)

A roof in north Kenner damaged by Hurricane Katrina helped detectives close the final chapter on a 26-year-old armed robbery case.

The leak led residents to their attic late last week, where they found about $1,100 hidden in their soggy attic insulation, said Capt. James Gallagher, spokesman for the Kenner Police Department.

"Katrina reveals stolen loot," said Gallagher, envisioning the headline atop the story of the Kenner residents who found the dye-stained cash originally stolen in a 1979 bank robbery.

"They were seeing spots on the ceiling so they went into their attic to check on the source of the leak," Gallagher said.

The money was covered with red dye from an exploded dye pack and tied with a band that read: "National Bank of Commerce."

"That's how they knew it was from a bank robbery," Gallagher said. When they mentioned the discovery to neighbors, they were told: "That's where the bank robber used to live," Gallagher said.

Kenner Detective David Stromeyer chased down the tale. He determined that the house's former resident, Jorge Arevalo, had stashed the money in the insulation after robbing National Bank of Commerce in Metairie in 1979.

Arevalo pleaded guilty that year to armed robbery and was sentenced to 10 years in prison. Then-Gov. Edwin Edwards pardoned him, and he was released in 1985. Arevalo could not be reached for comment.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

It interests me that people can write me scathing letters about myself and the industry that I am a part of. The humorous part is that these people will quote from the Lil Spills that I write. "If you hate me and the bar business why in the world do you read my blog and go to my website?"
I would say that 99% of my e-mails are very positive but there is that 1 % and I can't lie it amuses me.
Yesterday I received an e-mail that was from a resident of New Orleans. The letter was a " please come back to New Orleans letter". The person actually said " don't worry you'll find a new stylist." I laughed so hard. I promise you that my decision is not based on getting my hair done, it is solely on my son and his quality of life.
Busy week. We have deals all over the world going on right now. I'm concerned about our two spots in Florida and our potential spots in Cancun. Kevin B and I have been trying to contact people to access the damage if any to these sites. Unfortunately, I have a feeling this will be a big worry for years to come with this horrific weather.
I received an e-mail from Jacqui yesterday that had me laughing all night. She actually went out and bought a $200 hair dryer. Her reasoning " all the stars are using them!"

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Austin bar just kicking everyones butt this week. Those EMT workers can drink. Yesterday Austin had a 120 bodyshot count from 5pm til 2 am. That's 9 hours. I know Tampa did more but it was for 10 or 11 hours. And NY only did 102 ( I think) but the average bodyshot per girl was somewhere between 3 and 4 per hour which was higher then Tampa. I'll get the specifics from Marshall and do the calculations later.
Last night a fun night in Denver I was told. Jeff Wiseman was meeting some potential foreign partners at the Denver bar. He e-mialed me yesterday telling me that he had just contracted poison oak and had it all over his body. But he perservered and met with them at the bar. No doubt it was a 20 beer night for him. The owner of Coors was also in the Denver bar last night, I think he had a crush on the B sisters we have working on Tuesday. Jeff Myers seemed tickled. I had to send Jeff there because I had to let go of another manager there. Denver is my nemesis when it comes to managers. All my other bars the managers are happy as can be and I am happy with them. I just can't seem to get it right in Denver. Again I want to commend Mellissa. She is our new assistant manager in Denver and has really risen to the occassion with so much turmoil with the GM. There is some big convention out there and I got an e-mail from Jeff M saying that he had to sleep at the bar last night because he couldn't find a hotel room . I feel really bad for him. Well I'm hoping there is a light at the end of the tunnel I have a third interview with someone this week. Hopefully Denver will have a new GM in the next few weeks.
I am the only house I have seen that is decorated for Halloween in Austin. No competition from anyone. It's a disgrace. At least in New Orleans it was a healthy 1 month contest. Everyday you secretly add to your already elaborate house. I mocked them a few years ago and now I wish there was a neighborhhod in Austin that upheld this tradition. If I could just combine the natural beauty of Austin with the fun loving spirit of New Orleans I would have the perfect city ( also get rid of the right wing conservative assholes). Oh well, maybe I'll be like Johnny Dep and just move us to France.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Austin beating everyone last night. It's nice when the smaller bars put up big numbers. Yesterday was an employee outing in Austin so Daniel and marshall were screwed when they got a huge hit of people. Daniel had to bartend all night. He claims he was #1 bartender in all of Texas. I foresee some compettion with that.
People keep asking about the calendar shoot. It went unbelievably well. I have looked at close to 10,000 pictures over the last week. Clay the photographer really captured every girl so well. On a side note, I think he out phermoned Lee. It was funny because normally women swoon to Lee but this time they were stepping over him to get to Clay. It was hysterical.
I've been a bit of a hermit in Austin. I feel horrible that I have not spent much time at the Austin bar but I have come to the conclusion that I have post traumatic stress syndrome or in lay mens terms , I've been depressed. I'm so torn on whether I should move back to New Orleans in January. Chantel called me and told me my two favorite rituals were gone. 1. Our hair stylist has moved to Oregon ( my roots are about 3 inches long now) 2. Saks isn't reopening for another year. Man that was part of my routine. Every Wednesday when I would open the New Orleans bar I would walk across the street to Canal Shops and go to Saks. Most of the time I never bought anything but I would walk around the perfume counters and go look at handbags. I did this every Wednesday.
On a positive note I did receive a letter from my yoga studio in New Orleans and they are opening in November. In Austin I can not find a yoga studio that has any daytime classes. Fat and depressed is no way to live ones life.
Another positive thing that happened this week is Njia came back to work for New Orleans. We knew she had relocated to Boston but we were unable to get a hold of her for the last few weeks. Friday night she showed up at the bar and said " I'm ready to go back to work". I can't tell you how happy that made me. This week we are up to 5 girls and 3 bouncers. It's slow but it's moving. I'm pleased with our progress.
I had a dream Jacqui and I were going to drive throughout Europe in a very small sportscar. I don't know the significance of the dream but I will say the sportscar was nice.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

The New Orleans girl that will be in the calendar was from a town called Slidel. If you watched the news, the town barely exists anymore. She had to relocate. She did not quit. She wasn't fired. If there had been no Katrina she would still work for Coyote that's why she's allowed to be in the calendar. I can't blame her for not wanting to move back to Louisianna. My whole family thinks I'm nuts for wanting to move back!
I would like to repeat myself just to get the point across to all my bars. When I first started in this business I was in my teens. My first job in this industry was as a banquet waitress. I have been a busgirl, a runner, a food waitress, a cocktail waitress, a service bartender, a bartender, a manager, and a owner. At every bar or restaurant that I worked at there was a schedule. Some changing every week and some constant every week. The rule at all these places was that you were given your schedule and you never took off. It never seemed strange to me. That was life and that's how I made a living. Just to prove my point further. When I first opened Coyote and Jacqui was one of my Coyotes, she worked two shifts. For the first 3 years she worked Thursday day shift and Friday night shift. Then she worked another 3 years Thursday night and Friday night. It was 4 years before she ever missed one of her shifts. 4 YEARS. Even on holidays. On holidays the only time the girls would get off is if I worked them myself , so I would tell the girls don't worry about it I'll work. But if I had plans then they had to work their shifts that's it! But Jacqui never complained or the girls who worked for me years ago never complained. Because it was the industry standard. That was how everyone, not just me, ran their bars and restaurants. I'm so tired of hearing from the managers that "so and so "doesn't want to work that night or "so and so" doesn't want to work on Thanksgiving. In my day, you took your schedule and you worked no questions asked.
I think it's a different work ethic now adays. They don't care because they can run back home to mommy and daddy and they'll take care of them. My god, Have some dignity.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Holy shit. I have spent 9 hours today sorting through the calendar pictures. My god these girls are beautiful! One of the girls lied to us. One of the girls from one of the franchises was fired about 6 or 7 weeks ago. She didn't say a thing. Came to the photoshoot and acted like nothing happened. I just found out 2 days ago that she had been fired. We were very clear, if you don't currently work for one of the Coyotes you can't participate in the calendar. We actually got in touch with one of the original new Orleans girls who had been picked before the hurricane and we are flying her to NY for a shoot. Things work out for a reason. She does not currently work for the new Orleans bar but in light of the present situation I'm willing to make an exception. It makes me happy to be able to have the New Orleans bar represent even though everything is such a mess.
Denver and San Antonio kicking ass this week!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

When I was in New Orleans I actually got mail service. I just opened my energy bill. $600. OK so I thought we haven't had electricity since Late august. How the fuck is my bill so high?
I had to remove my headshot off the web because the photographer claimed we didn't provide him with enough pictures. I'm actually happy about that, I looked a bit chunky. Denver has been doing unbelievably well!!! Cross my fingers. New Orleans pulliing up the rear but knock on wood, not as bad as I thought. It's so nice to see New Orleans open again. Lala fllies in today to add a sixth to our 5 employees. Whew wee!!
I got the managers log from san Antonio about the girls being overworked and crying. I have told the managers FOREVER to start being stricter on the girls with their schedules. What happens is that the primadonna girls always call in sick and the managers replace them by with the consistent girls who always help out. So the good girls are now burnt out. NEW RULE: if you're going to allow the girls to take off then the manager on duty has to bartend their shift. I have a feeling they'll get stricter if that's the case.

Monday, October 17, 2005

What a weekend. I drove to New Orleans from Austin and it took me 10 hours due to traffic. When I drove to the bar it was so nice to see so many regulars at the bar. The staff seemed so overjoyed to have them around. Jeff Myers was floored by the love these customers have for the bar. What's funny is that they accepted him like family. So many issues that I don't know where to start so I'll save that for latter.
My house. My house had electricity and it did not smell half as bad as I was expecting, so that was good. Saturday morning I woke up and went to the kitchen. There no longer is a refrigerator but in it's place is a pot, which Kevin set down in case the water pipe leaked. As I looked down at the pot I realized it was my only "All clad" cookware. All those pots and pans and he used my one good one. I was outraged. Jacqui laughd at me this morning about this . "" All Clad" is a very expensive brand of pots and pans. The set costs close to $1300. So about 2 months ago I decided to buy 1 pot and test it out to see if it is worth the money. I can not explain the sheer horror when I saw my beautiful $100 pot lieing there with a rusty pipe leaning into it. But true to it's advertising, I just cleaned it off and it looked good as new.
There are two negative things that I saw this weekend that bothered me very much. The first was on Bourbon St. I walked down Bourbon St. to flyer and this young man had his 2 year old daughter with him outside one of the bars. He was obviously a bit loaded the wife was inside and the girl was wailing just wanting to go. What fucked up parenting. Why are you bringing your 2 year old daughter to Bourbon St? They shouldn't have children, just so upsetting.
The second bad thing happened on my ride back to Austin. I was about 2 hours into my ride on I-10 West when I saw a car on the east bound side lose control. The driver swerved through the grass meridian , cut the guy off in front of me, and then ran into a tree on the side of the road. I pulled over as well as another driver. I called 911 and walked to the car. The 2 passengers seemed shaken and beat up but remarkably alright. The driver was not so lucky. The engine was partly in her chest and her arm was missing flesh which layed right next to her. A nurse showed up on the scene and she started tending to the victims. She walked over to the driver who was not conscious and realized there was really nothing she could do so she then went to the passengers and started helping them. I can't get out of my head the vision of the drivers body convulsing while her flesh was dangling next to her.
I am very thankful that she did not hit another driver. I am also not going to drive alone again to New Orleans. It's an 8 hour drive and I would rather fly there then risk getting tired and dozing off while I'm driving.
that's it

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Last night a tearful goodbye because the New Orleans crew left Nashville for the final time . Chantel told me that they went into the nashville bar last night to say goodbye . She was so moved by the tears and emotion that the Nashville staff showed to the New Orleans crew . She said it was a very emotional night and that they will always share a kinship to the Nashville bar. ( thanks Nashville for taking care of them) As of tomorrow we are officially opened in New Orleans 7 days a week. I'll be at the New Orleans bar tomorrow night having a cold one. ( Knowing my luck I'll get the 1 beer they forgot to throw out and has been sitting there skunked for the last 6 weeks.) At least that's not as bad as the NY girls serving me jagged glass in my drink. Skunked beer doesn't make for a hospital visit.
These two florida projects are becoming a real headache. We have hit every possible roadblock. Unbelievable . Well the up side is I just got invited to the Caribean to check out some spaces. Man I need a vacation!
Weather: Mother nature is pissed. It's so strange what has transpired with the earth the last few months. If it helps I plan on buying a hybrid car. Every bit counts

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

We finally finished the calendar shoot. I really enjoyed it. My job was stylist. I was bone tired everyday. I did not realize how much work went into being a stylist for a photoshoot. With a little help from the photographer, his assistant, and Lee, we really did a great job. The calendar is going to be kick ass!!
I got off the phone with Jeff M. a little while ago and he was telling me a bit about his recent trip to New Orleans with the New Orleans crew. I asked him to start a new concierge program so that the hotels can refer people back to the bar. He told me he hit 9 hotels. None of the hotels had concierges but they all had a policemen stationed at a desk in front in charge of verifing the guests that came through. Jeff said he spoke with each officer and left flyers and cards. During the weekend we actually saw some of the cards come back to the bartenders, so someone actually handed them out.
I want to give a special thanks to Sicboy in New orleans. "I can not begin to repay you for all the work you've done at the bar and in the building. Thanks so much"
San Antonio kicking butt this week. It was so nice seeing all the girls from the different bars this week. Back to New Orleans this weekend!

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Here in San Antonio for the first annual Coyote Ugly Calendar photoshoot. We took the girls out to dinner and then we came back to the bar. They are all so cute. We had a lot of fun last night. But we are ready to get down to business today. Looking beautiful is no easy job.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

The New Orleans bar opened yesterday. Business was like a very good day shift ( AM) . Chantel said a few regulars came in and some NY firefighters. It's going to take some time. But I am happy that we at least got opened.
San Antonio had the worst Friday! Thursday night they did phenomenal business and they wrote me a letter saying " We crushed Denver " They jinxed themselves.
On my way to SA today. Big Photoshoot! I am going to scramble to try and get a few last minute things. This should be fun and SA is going to be so nice because the weather is gorgeous right now.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

I don't know what changed but I'm feeling great today. It is a beautiful day in Austin. I'm hoping to pop into the bar tonight say hello.
I spoke with a real estate agent today in New Orleans. I'm hoping to rent my house out until I go back. She was very complementary. " Your street looks like a war zone but I love the colors you painted your house." That just made me laugh so hard. Something changed with the staff going back to New Orleans today. This whole week they were very worried and fearful of going back. Today they were all in good moods and ready to make some money. Big day tomorrow! I hope we pass our health inspection.
I take back what I said about Lee yesterday. Denver crushed everyone as high sales last night, even with Lee as floor manager. Awesome. Knock on wood , all the bars are doing quite well.
Jacqui called me up today and she said " I know money is tight right now but I saw some awesome cowboy boots for you. I think you need them in two colors." What the fuck , sure. I love cowboy boots!
Esther in austin is so cute. She called me yesterday about the photoshoot. The girl is drop dead gorgeous. A speed bartender. And she happens to be one of the kindest people I have ever met. She'll go places in my company.
I'm proscastinating, I have so much paperwork, I can't see straight.
I would like to tell everyone that I, a complete computer illiterit ( sp), figured out how to bluetooth my files from 1 computer to another. I haven't been this proud of myself since I figured out how to do a 3 way call on my phone.
Ft. Lauderdale, let's go. I'm getting very excited. I get excited , Kevin gets an ulcer. Bring it on!!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

I don't know if Austin is for me. There is so much traffic. Everyday I log in at least a couple of hours driving in my car. I forgot Jackson's lunch today now I have to go back and drop it off. That's about 40 minutes.
We received a letter from the health dept. telling us we can't open ( new Orleans) unless we get inspected. Always something!
I can hear the trepidation in the voices of the New Orleans employees. They want to go home but they are scared too. I have been hearing positives and negatives. the hotels are doing very well, they are completely booked. Some bars are doing alright. Chantel and I keep on talking about every scenario but we will never know until we open. Having Coyote be so successful has been a mixed blessing. The positive is that I was able to house and give jobs to the staff who ask for help. The bad is that the staff doesn't want to come home and they are content to stay at the various bars. I can't force anyone to go back to New Orleans especially if they have no home to go home to. Blah, blah
Nashville has been kicking some butt! I'm so pleased. San Antonio AWESOME night last night. Austin, very nice. I'm pleased it's getting better. Denver pulling up the rear had a handicap last night, Lee was the manager on duty. I'm not sure about NY I haven't spoken to Jacqui. Those girls are so consistent. I love that! ( sorry won't jinx you guys)
I want to say that the Austin bar has a lot of really nice employees. I've even grown fond of Daniel. He gave me a 6 pack of dildos and a tube of " Anal Eze" for my birthday. ( I would of paid money to see him actually walk in a store and purchuse the " anal eze" I have a feeling he has made that purchase before for himself)
It is very interesting to see the different styles of managers. Jacqui , Chantel and I are very similar. Kelly and Mike are very similar. Jeff M. is a combination . Now that I am in Austin I have spent a little time at the bar. Marshall has the girls speak at a pre shift meeting, then they communicate during their shift and then they have a post shift meeting.
When I was a floor manager, this would be my preshift meeting " Let's make some money!" My during shift talk: " See that guy in the green shirt take him for everything he's worth" And my post shift meeting: " Mama's gonna buy a new pair of shoes, see you tomorrow."
But it seems to work for them in Austin. They are very hard working and more serious. ( although when they are off, they are as wild as any girls I've seen)
In some ways it is so quiet here. The staff doesn't seem to have many issues, they are all very conscientious people. 4 years in New Orleans, I got very used to " Can't come in, I'm in jail." " My dad shot me a few years ago and the injury still hurts." Someone else responded to that " I've been both shot and stabbed. Getting shot is so much easier." "My fake boob burst during rough sex."
They were a rough bunch and I have to say I really miss them.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

A full week of bullshit! If there was a machine that measured stress, I would be at an explosive level. What more could go wrong? Lee and I were laughing at 9am because so much is going on that it is completely absurd.
Denver is having their photoshoot, Lee seems very pleased. A lot of pretty girls at the Denver bar.
The Coyote Ugly Calendar shoot is going on this weekend. What an ordeal moving it from New Orleans to San Antonio. When we planned it for New Orleans we had set up free clothing from various local stores. We had the hotels set up for the girls. We were taking them out a few nights on the town etc. Well now we are so behind and we are scrambling to make sure we have everything. It will come together but I hate being under the gun. And to boot the two New Orleans girls can't come back for the shoot. So I need to work something out because New Orleans needs to be a presence in the calendar.
Some delay in Ft. Lauderdale but nothing major. I'm hoping for an early December opening.
I am wound up so tight right now!
I need to do yoga, get myself centered.

Monday, October 03, 2005

I went overnight to Nashville. I tend to forget how good these girls are at singing until I walk in to one of them singing " Proud mary". It's pretty powerful. I got to see some of the New Orleans crew for the first time since before the hurricane . When Chantel picked me up we both were teary eyed. I miss my Chantel. We had our rountine, every monday we would have a meeting at Rock and Sake one of our favorite Sushi places. We would order the LSU roll and eat and talk for hours. I miss that. When I saw Pump he was so cute. He said " thanks for letting me work in Nashville but I really want to go home." Well he's getting his wish. Tara was working and she walked out from behind the bar and embraced me. We both had tears in our eyes and I realized how hard it's been for everyone. Well this week will be our tester week. I'm sending 4 people down to New Orleans to open for 3 days, Friday - Sunday. Chantel and I had to sit down and figure out exactly what we needed to open up ? How much money, how much inventory, how would the staff bath, how would customers go to the bathroom. Wow it is overwhelming. I'm hoping this weekend we gage what we have to do to reopen and also gage the climate of the city. The following weekend we will open up on a more permenant basis. I still am planning a grand reopening for the second week of November, I figure that will give me enough time to get a skeleton staff together and have some of the housing issues resolved.
Until last week, I was trying to adjust to Austin I even contemplated Jackson and I moving here. But going back to New Orleans last week made me unsure. I need to do what's best for Jackson but it was a very easy life there for us. Life is not quite as comfy here for us.
I received a lot of wonderful presents last week from the staffs at the different bars. I wanted to say thankyou so much. I am very lucky to have so many really nice people around me.
Nashville kicked some butt this past weekend. keep up the good work.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Went out Thursday night with some of the staff from both the Austin bar and the San Antonio bar. It was the first time since Katrina that I really let my hair down. I had a lot of fun. I told Marshall and Daniel that the 2 hours of throwing up at the end of the night helped me lose those unsightly 2 pounds I've been dragging around. Again don't mix wine and crown royal.
Nashville, killer Saturday night!!!!
I am heading to Nashville tonight to see Chantel and some of the New Orleans staff. It's been a long month.

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