I think it would depend on the level of recounting you wanted to do.
Think about how you relate past anecdotes to your friends in real life. Do you sit there giving a line-by-line account? Probably not. You give the loose details and call it a day. So have your narrator just give the gist of it and go from there.
If you need more than that, one thing you might be able to do to help differentiate is have the narrator "tell" his side of the conversation but "show" the bartender's. As an example:
Sally: So then what did he say?
Bob: Well, he said something like, "I've been debating whether to tell you this for a long time, but it's time to come clean. I... Am your mother."
Sally: Oh my god.
Bob: Yeah, seriously. As you can imagine, I didn't believe him, but he said, 'No son, it's true. Many years ago, your father and I came together for one night of passion. I thought we used precautions, but I was surprised to find out a month later that I was pregnant. Not least because I, like you, am a man.'
Sally: ...That doesn't make sense.
Bob: I asked him why he wasn't famous the world over, and he said, 'Well, we didn't want to cause a ruckus. All them scientists who think they know how the world works... They don't like hearing that maybe they don't understand all of it yet.'
Sally: You're making shit up.
Bob: Wh-- Honey, no! I'm not!
CWatson: (from atop white steed) No, but I am!!
Sally: Oh, CWatson! You're so sexy! Sorry, Bob, but I'm leaving you for him!
Bob: ...What the fuck?
I dunno. I am
making this shit up--to my knowledge, this is not an established technique. But I can't see why it wouldn't work. *shrug*
"Haiku are easy
to write, but may not make sense.
"The plural of 'Surgeon General' is 'Surgeons General.' The past tense of 'Surgeons General' is 'Surgeonsed General.' "
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