Remember two weeks ago I was speaking about a restaurant with a primarily gay clientele in Los Angeles. By mistake, with two different editors working different weekends the column was repeated, and I apologize for that.
Keeping with that theme, though, I had Herman do some research, and the name of the restaurant came to me.
“A Votre Sante” was the restaurant, which is French for “to your health.” The bar where I worked was upstairs. I remember the painstaking steps I took to get up there with twenty steps up and my MS was starting to bother me big time.
Thankfully I had a wonderful Mexican “bar back” who stocked the bar and carried all the cases of beer and kegs up the stairs for me.
I hate to sound cliché, but I think his name was Juan, and though he didn’t understand what my difficulty was, he gave 200 percent to help.
This was my swan song bartending gig in L.A. It was also the site of the “wrap party” for the movie “The Flintstones,” and I didn’t have Juan there to help me stock the bar upstairs.
Fortunately, John Goodman a big beer drinker as I recall who basically drank Budweiser, offered to pitch in and help me stock the bar during the party when he saw I was having trouble.
This was one of the nicer encounters I had with a celebrity while in L.A.
I remember he said to me, “I don’t know what is wrong with you, but think twice about staying in the business out here. It’ll eat you alive.”
I think, being somewhat in denial about my MS at the time, I told him something about having a bad back, which he didn’t buy.
All the cast and crew from the movie were at the party, but John made the biggest impression on me, because he was so helpful. It’s funny, I’m sure Rosie O’Donnell was there as well, I just don’t recall her.
Also at that restaurant was an English waiter who worked downstairs named Graham. He had a striking resemblance to Bono from U2 and a lot of people would ask him if he was Bono.
Graham would reply, laughing, “Yeah. I’m supplementing my music career waiting tables for extra pocket change.”
The restaurant is still in business and has its own Web site, www.avotresantela.com.