By Andy Tarnoff Publisher Published Jan 05, 2009 at 2:19 PM

The Cactus Club's Crystal Stephens isn't your average drink slinger. In addition to her job as a bartender at the Bay View rock club, she also works the audio for Brewers and Bucks telecasts. Stephens was a bartender at Austin's famous Continental Club, and, prior to moving to Milwaukee, she served as an assistant tour manager to Bob Dylan and the Butthole Surfers, the latter with whom she remains close friends to this day.

We caught up with Stephens at the Cactus Club, 2496 S. Wentworth Ave., for this latest bartender profile. Your cell phone has an Austin area code. What are you doing in Milwaukee?

Crystal Stephens: I met a guy and moved up here. I'm from Texas, and Alabama before that. I've been here four years, off and on.

OMC: How long have you been a bartender?

CS: Do I have to reveal my age? About 20 years.

OMC: Between sports television and bartending, you have two pretty different jobs. Are they similar in any ways?

CS: It's all public relations.

OMC: What's your signature drink?

CS: A shot of Jameson or a shot of Maker's Mark.

OMC: What's the most ridiculous thing you've seen a bar patron do?

CS: I don't know if I can discuss that.

OMC: Have you ever had to break up any bar fights?

CS: Not really. We try to extinguish those before they start.

OMC: Do pick-up lines work?

CS: Never. This dude came in and said he'd been in town for a couple of hours and said I had the best legs he'd seen in Milwaukee. Another guy came in and said,"I want to give you an apartment, a car and a credit card -- just don't tell my wife."

OMC: I take it those didn't go over so well?

CS: Not really well, no.

OMC: Who are better tippers, men or women?

CS: It just depends. Anyone in the service industry, always.

OMC: What bars do you go to when you're not working?

CS: Burnhearts, Blackbird, Foundation, Buck Bradley's -- it's right across from the Bradley Center. My God, they've got some really great bartenders there who will make you the martinis I will not make you here.

OMC: And they have the longest bar east of the Mississippi.

CS: Then there's that.

OMC: What's the best part about bartending?

CS: Watching human behavior. It's fascinating.

OMC: What do you like least about it?

CS: Cleaning up after all the idiots.

OMC: Do you drink when you bartend?

CS: There is a shot done now and then. Especially here at the Cactus Club; we are a shot bar. I keep it to a minimum.

OMC: You have some regulars here tonight, don't you?

CS: Friends and strangers, but they become friends as soon as they get in.

OMC: What was it like being on the road with Bob Dylan?

CS: I was the assistant tour manager in 1998. I worked on a couple of movies, too, which were exceptional, but being on the road with Bob Dylan had to have been the best thing in my life. He's an absolutely cool guy. Everyone told me stories that he's the worst person to deal with, but as soon as you're in his family, his tribe, you're in.

Andy is the president, publisher and founder of OnMilwaukee. He returned to Milwaukee in 1996 after living on the East Coast for nine years, where he wrote for The Dallas Morning News Washington Bureau and worked in the White House Office of Communications. He was also Associate Editor of The GW Hatchet, his college newspaper at The George Washington University.

Before launching in 1998 at age 23, he worked in public relations for two Milwaukee firms, most of the time daydreaming about starting his own publication.

Hobbies include running when he finds the time, fixing the rust on his '75 MGB, mowing the lawn at his cottage in the Northwoods, and making an annual pilgrimage to Phoenix for Brewers Spring Training.