Vail Daily column: Where everybody knows your name
Most of you will remember George Wendt’s character Norm from the TV show “Cheers.” The show usually has at least one scene where Norm would enter the bar and everyone would greet him with a warm, resounding and friendly “Norm!” as he walked in and took his usual place at the bar.
The theme song for the show had the lyric, “You wanna go where people know, people are all the same, you wanna go where everybody knows your name.”
BART AND YETI’S
Well I am not sure I ever go anywhere where everyone knows my name or who I am, and that’s OK, but I really do enjoy visiting local establishments and watching the owners and staff as they interact with the regulars who frequent their businesses. One of my very favorite places to be an observer of warm, resounding and friendly behavior is Bart and Yeti’s in Vail.
I had the opportunity to meet Dennis, Kevin and most of the team back in 2007 and 2008. More recently I was reintroduced through friends Mark Foley and Ben Hohman. As I watch the interactions with locals as well as visitors, read the police department and fire department patches on the wall, and laugh at some of the stickers covering the cooler (especially anything anti-New York Yankee) I am reminded of some of my very favorite spots and places I have had the wonderful opportunity to visit.
Patrons are telling stories, sharing jokes, and when not taking personal shots at one another they are taking a shot with one another. It’s the type of camaraderie between people who obviously have known each other for a long time that I respect and enjoy so very much. And it’s the kind of welcoming environment where someone just stepping off of the mountain can walk in and immediately feel like a part of the scene and the crowd.
WE ARE ALL THE SAME
It’s just like the lyric above says — “You wanna go where people know, people are all the same, you wanna go where everyone knows your name.” At the end of the day, we are all the same aren’t we? I mean we all want peace of mind, security, friendship, good health and solid family relationships. We want to be around people we enjoy, and we acknowledge that even our troubles are all the same, even if they are at different levels or amplitudes.
Dennis and all of the good folks at Bart and Yeti’s, including the staff and all the regulars I have had an opportunity to meet there, all do an incredible job of making you feel like their place is your place. They have fostered a culture of inclusiveness (even letting in the occasional Yankee fan), an environment of fun and a spirit of teamwork as they all do their share to make Bart and Yeti’s the special place that it is. So another big thanks to Ben for reintroducing me to the gang there, I appreciate you all and look forward to seeing you again soon.
Do you have a local favorite spot here in the valley? I have a few more, too, and would love to hear about yours at firstname.lastname@example.org as I will look to feature our favorite local merchants here in this column at least once per month going forward. And when we can go to those places where people are all the same and everyone knows our name, it really will be a better than good week.
Michael Norton is a strategic consultant, business and personal coach, and motivational speaker. He writes a weekly motivational column for the Vail Daily.