It's difficult to describe what it actually feels like to step behind a bar for your first time and serve up your first cocktail to your first customer. It's eerily similar to that time you had to stand up and give a speech for your first time in middle school. All you can hope for is to not look stupid, not make a mistake, and pray that they love it.

After you attend bartender school and cross your first bridge, you will soon come to find out that your job may be the best one you will ever have. You'll reflect on your current job as the future meets present and realize that you may have had the best times of your life while making money.

A compilation of things found to be the top 10 things about being a bartender have been strung together for your amusement and to help you gain insight into the world of bartending. So here you go, the top 10 things about being a bartender.

  1. Always have a job: Through thick and thin, the alcohol industry has always thrived including the prohibition era. There is one slogan that has been learned through the years of bartending: "When times are good, people drink. When times are bad, people drink more." In this job market, what's better than job security? This is absolutely one of the top 10 things about being a bartender.
  2. Schedule Flexibility: When you think about a bartender or someone in the service industry, people seem to think of a student or someone that is putting themselves through school. The two seem to go hand and hand. With the different types of bartending that are out there and all of the different options for shift times, there isn't a better way to put yourself through school while maximizing the amount of money you can make.
  3. Meet interesting people: There is hardly a dull moment while you are serving drinks behind a neighborhood bar. You will meet people with stories that you wouldn't think ever happen. You will gain life experience through other people.
  4. Create or recreate cocktails: As you start to learn the tricks of the trade, you will become tired of the basic tedious routines of a bartender. This is where you start to test or recreate some new or obscure drink people have forgotten about. You shouldn't have to want to take your job to seriously to enjoy someone's reaction to a concoction of your own mind.
  5. Networking: Even if you don't see bartending being your life long career, you will begin to make friends you never thought you would know. These bridges are similar to being in a fraternity or sorority, in which you will make friends that will help you down your career path. Even if you don't meet someone specific to your career choice, you will come to appreciate the real world experiences long before you have to deal with them.
  6. Great Pay: The hourly may not be anything to write about, as most states pay well under the federal minimum wage guideline that the government put forth. On the other hand, receiving tips will be unlike any other experience you will have. The general rule of thumb is to tip 18%, but in the bar industry you will more than likely make a higher percentage depending on how well you can interact with the guests. You won't be constrained to the hourly wage most people are familiar with. You will actually have total control over your wage.
  7. Learn something new everyday: Every day in bartending is a new experience as you will meet new people and are almost certain to learn something new everyday, whether it be a new cocktail or life experience. It is far different from your mundane desk job every person strives for in accordance with society's laws.
  8. New opportunities: Every day you go to work as a bartender, might be the day when a new opportunity opens up for you. As you start to meet and greet, you will learn that everyone is looking for someone trustworthy and that is a hard worker. Bartending can and will open doors that you never knew to exist.
  9. Job Flexibility: One of the best things about being a bartender is that the job can literally take you anywhere you want to go. The range of bartending can go from you local hole-in-the-wall to the cruise ship/resort bartender, cruising the world and meeting new and interesting new people. It's unlike any other job. If you become tired of your day to day work, you will have the opportunity to take your skills anywhere in the world.
  10. You're a bartender: The number one reason to get a bartender license is, honestly, just to be called a bartender. Countless songs, rhymes, and poems are about knowing, being, or visiting a bartender. It should be considered the job that everyone wants to secretly do. Life's all about excitement, and bartending will be sure to provide plenty.