Friday, May 26, 2006

Bankers on Mars

This story is based on actual events.

Four bankers walked into a bar. Well, to be accurate, two investment bankers (Blake and Seth), one hedge fund analyst (John), and one equity derivatives trader (Connor) walked into a bar. For the sake of simplicity and a conventional joke start let’s just call them all bankers, despite one’s unparalleled mental math ability and the other’s overwhelming propensity to reduce risk in any and every possible situation.

So four bankers walked into a bar…but the bar is Mars Bar (see here and here). In summary, Mars Bar is a “crazy anarchist bar where all sorts of freaks, exhibitionists, punks, rockabilly enthusiasts and wild looking characters hang out.” Also described as a place where “I could take my drink with me to smoke, and then simply smash the glass when I’m done.” Dicey.

Our four fine, upper middle class young professionals had no idea the seediness of the shithole they were going to enter. They were clueless to the level of bleeding edgefulness, dirty hippery, and post-punk punkdom they were going to witness. Our unfortunate financial friends had merely all managed to all get out of work early and decided they’d go to a “dive.” Unfortunately for Blake, Seth, John, and Connor, they were thinking “dive” like Dive 75 or Off the Wagon-“dive”, not “dive” like “let’s jab each other in the eye with needles filled with H and then dance around dead baby carcasses”-“dive.”

So what happened?

When Team Gentrification got to 2nd Ave and 1st Street and had to ask a homosexual (eek!) where the bar was because it had no sign, they knew they were markedly out of place. Blake was scared of the façade’s pentagrams and wanted to go watch reruns of West Wing, and John (the hedger) did some quick stochastic analysis and concluded they’d be better off wrapping themselves in American flags and grabbing beers in Fallujah, Iraq. But Seth and Connor wanted to go in. Seth went to Phish concerts all the time…even once “before they were big” and had seen some pretty weird shit there, and besides, Connor was a trader of Dartmouth JV Wrestling fame—they’d be fine.

So the boys went inside and found a corner to themselves. They started drinking PBR in an effort to fit in but got hammered and into superfrat mode very quickly. Fitting in was out the window. They “Ooh!”-ed and “Oh shit!”-ed when Blake told a story about hooking up with a back office woman at the Christmas Party and laughed big laughs and pointed when Connor reminded Seth that while he did work in banking, he worked for Wachovia. He mocked their old and horrendous ad campaign: “So Seth…please elucidate…What can being a teller teach you about investment banking?” Even Seth laughed and slammed his glass because, after all, he hated his company’s weird retail banking looking logo. These cats were gettin’ rowdy!

The Mars Bar “locals,” meanwhile, were getting’ angry. The Billy Idol-type middle-aged men dressed in jean jackets and leather and the Suicide Girls wannabes from 40 stops out on the L or a plane ride from Portland or God knows where started growling in the direction of our biz casual clad friends. They wanted desperately to make weapons of their spikey sex toys and fashion little Burberry wearing voodoo dolls to light on fire. But they must teach diplomacy at art school, because instead of first fighting, the locals sent one of their own into the bullpen to “talk” to the yuppies.

Colt, a 48 year old jeweler with a thick British accent and a ring the size of a Titleist marched over to the corner where a Quarters game was in progress and clenched his fists in rage as he watched The Unctuous Underwriters vs. The Polished Peddlers. Colt tried to interrupt, but they wouldn’t stop playing. He began to lecture them, teaching them about the “old East Village” back when he used to live in a $270 3 bedroom on Saint Mark’s and babies carried machetes in Thompkins Square Park. That was the true East Village, and Mars Bar was one of the only places that was still legit.

More sternly, though, he warned that people got beat up “all the time” for not respecting the place.

This scared the foursome. They stopped guffawing and slapping each other on the back and pulling down their pants and became quiet. The Mars Bar locals smiled at their apparent victory and resumed hating everything else in the world.

Seth (Wachovia) huddled up his friends and whispered…”I think it’s time…I mean, I really think it would be best if we…Yeah guys, we should def just…”


And he told the petite Asian bartender “25 shots” and paid with hundreds.

Connor passed out the shots, and the locals looked on astounded—this was a blatant slap in the face of everything they lived on welfare for. John, Seth, Connor, and Blake slammed back two shots each immediately; a couple of the punks passive aggressively sipped theirs slowly.

Connor (the trader) was blacked out at this point and couldn’t hold himself back after witnessing the sipping of Jaeger, a unforgivable sin. “Hardcore MY ASS,” he screamed, “THIS is how we do it on Broad & Wall, bitches!” and pounded another shot.

In an uncharacteristically risky move, John went over to the jukebox.

“OMG I hope he doesn’t play John Mayer!!!” a little blond girl with septum piercing screamed. She raised her hand to cover her ears and her tank top raised slightly, allowing John to catch a glimpse of her “tramp stamp” lower back tattoo. The girl was dirty and smelly and who-knows-what infested, but the sight of the tramp stamp made it all disappear. John was in love.

But that would have to wait until later. John had more important things in store for Mars Bar… he waded through the jukebox’s numerous homemade punk and cock rock mixes and somehow was able to find…a gem. Somehow, some freak sequence of events had inserted “(I don’t wanna lose) Your Love” by The Outfield into a Misfits compilation. How serendipitous.

“Josie’s on a vacation far away!” the jukebox screamed, filling the room with the National Douche Anthem.

“OH SNAAP…” Blake screamed from across the room, “THAT’S MY JAM!!”

And they all did a brief double-fisted jig. When they stopped and looked around the bar, though, the found that no one was there. No one. Disgusted with the state of what was once their solace, their hate-haven, every single punk had left, even the bartender.

And the scoreboard read…Bankers 1, Punks 0.

57 comments for this post.

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  1. +4 votes + -
    joey Said:

    ‘who are you people? you sound about 10 times more whipped than the people whose lives you are feverishly examining. Im from a top tier bulge bracket, from am ivy league school, and currently at a top PE shopand still have my own life and identity. the poor sods you write about are grossly caricatured” this douche is so in denial. before he says he has his own identity, he defines himself by his jobs and school. wake up call son – you are not an individual. you are just another borg bitch. these comments are funnier than the prose. always an idiot who takes this so seriously. go ahead, laugh your holier-than-thou laugh. the jokes on you bitch.

  2. -2 votes + -
    anonymous Said:

    Maybe we don?t like loud obnoxious yuppies ruining everything with your shitty music and stupid stories and thinking you can pick up women there just because they?re poor and you drive an Infiniti or some shit. Mars Bar is blue-collar till death. You?re just not welcome. ”Colt” aka Gary is an old regular and a great guy and was trying to do you guys a favor. People really do get beat up, I see it happen all the time.

  3. +1 votes + -
    Anonymous Said:

    Wait, is this story true? Mars bar is soft?

  4. +1 votes + -
    anonymous Said:

    hilarious. love the stereotypes

  5. +3 votes + -
    Bitchtern Said:

    THIS is how we do it on Broad & Wall, bitches!??? Where can you go from there? Seriously, this is truly classic. I hope these works are recorded with the likes of Sophocles. Mangus Opus

  6. -2 votes + -
    Lumbergh Said:

    Anonymous Said: June 1st, 2006 at 6:11 pm Money is freedom. You can tell your children that you traded their Exeter tuition for Monday night drinking and hiking on long weekends. Im going to grab for the brass ring. F**k being poor. In fact, F**k being upper middle class. Hope you enjoy the state run nursing home I saw on 60 mins. If you enjoyed your life like I did instead of spending what free time you have working out at Equinox or Excelsior or whatever that place is called like the yuppie loser that you are, then you wouldn?t have to worry about getting old enough to require any sort of long-term care, state-run or otherwise. Word to the wise: start smoking and drink a fifth of whiskey every night. Or just kill yourself.

  7. -1 votes + -
    Anonymous Said:

    Your Love = the National Douche Anthem” $$$

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