First, despite the fact the staff had seen me leave the bar only two minutes before, they refused to let me back upstairs to clear my tab and get my card. They insisted that a member of security would have to go up and get it instead unless I gave them “a name”. I’ve heard of needing “a name” to get into an event, but “a name” to go get my debit card? Is that legal? In any case I was in no mood to play the “name game” so fine, let the staff retrieve my card.
But then this led to the second problem: they hardly asked me my name and didn’t even ask which of the two physical bars in Le Bain I had been in. I could already tell this wasn’t going to end well. After watching 15 minutes of the door people using various demeaning, if not abusive, language towards potential patrons (which, by the way, included a total of about six people—they weren’t exactly “busy”), I’d had enough. This couldn’t have been further from the charming French company I’d just been in. I decided I needed to up the ante a bit if I was going to get home anytime soon and actually crossed the rope again into the aforementioned sacred area. Of course this infuriated the staff, in particular this power hungry frizzy-haired woman who resembled some cross between Chelsea Clinton and Portuguese Water Dog, but lo and behold! My debit card magically arrives within about one minute.
I exasperatedly sign the bill and am finally handed my card. But then it wasn’t. That’s right, after all that they had brought the wrong card. At this point I’m really impressed. I’m also getting a real feeling for why the Gothamist has referred to the entry of this place as “a humiliating scene on the sidewalk”. Talk about exceeding all of the wrong expectations. The way they are acting it is almost more humiliating for the Standard than it is for the groveling would-be party-goers. At this stage in my mind they’ve crossed over from typical elitist hotel behavior to an utterly unprofessional and pathetic excuse for a drinking establishment. The staffs of most dive bars have it better together than this place.
I came away from this experience with two general sentiments. First, although a spending an evening with a group of ridiculously beautiful and well-connected people in New York may sound boring and/or prima facie intimidating, their reputation as rude, uninteresting, self-important cretins is not always warranted. The people of Jalouse are wonderful. Second, when it comes to the Standard doorstaff’s reputation as rude, uninteresting, self-important cretins, it definitely is.