Jan. 12, 1 p.m.: I’m at Butler Brew Works with Rob Soltis, owner of Craft Pittsburgh. You’ve likely read his magazine at your favorite brewery or lawyer’s office. If you haven’t, he’s online too. Do your Googles. We met up here so I could knock off two birds: write about BBW and his paper in the same column. If you read my last one, you know that plan went to shit. While his family enjoys the front of the house, we’re interviewing** with brewers in the back. Real business-like stuff. Do not disturb. Officially official adult work in progress.
Jan. 12, 3:26 p.m.: It starts to get late and we haven’t had a chance to rap one-on-one yet. His family’s patience has limits, and no one ever wants to piss off the DD. So, we head to the bar to wrap things up with a quick interview about his publication. At least, that’s how I drew it up in my head.
Me: It’s crazy, because we’ve already had this conversation on Drinking Partners.
RS: So, is that what you want to do? You want to just interview me and what we’re doing, or do you want to do something special?
Special, huh? Well how about …
Rules for Bringing Your Kid to a Brewery
- No kids at the bar (maybe a kid at the bar).
Me: I feel like the bar is a watering hole and there’s a lot of movement, drunken movement. I don’t want to worry about your kid’s head.
RS: The only way I ever sit at the bar is if we’re the only ones at the bar. I never take a seat from a paying customer.
- Breweries are an adult environment.
RS: If you’re bringing your kids, you’re bringing them to an adult environment, and you should not expect that environment to adapt to your child.
Me: The impetus for shelter or censorship is on the parent. It’s not a family friendly environment.
RS: No. It’s an adult environment that’s cool enough to bring your kid to. So, you can’t get mad if a drunk dude falls over, or you don’t like the language, or the music being played. People are out. It’s their Friday night too. They shouldn’t have to tone it down because you decided to bring your kid.
Taptender: Would you guys like another beer?
RS: I’ll have another Bless The Rains.
Me: Kolsch please. I’m trying to come down.
- Don’t censor. Educate.
RS: My wife and I have never filtered our language. We don’t use the term “bad” to describe words. We call them “at home” words. So, if there’s a rowdy table next to us saying “fuck,” it wouldn’t phase her.
Me: Children need to become acquainted with the internet at an early age to survive in the future. The tricky thing about the internet is it’s vast and nearly impossible to censor. Also, kids are better at it than us. So, why try?
- Don’t let your kid ruin someone’s evening.
RS: You don’t know who you’re sitting next to. It could be their first night out.
Me: It could be a Tinder date!
Taten Soltis (Rob’s wife): They could have swiped right, and now you’re making their night go left.
- Set yourself up for success.
Me: You have to know you’re in an adult environment with a kid, and it’s on you to keep everyone happy, because it’s a very selfish thing you’re doing right now. If a kid decides to be a kid, you can be disappointed, but you can’t be mad.
RS: And don’t take it out on the kid. Come prepared. Bring the snacks, quality reading material. Make sure the batteries are charged. But we all know you can do everything right and if they aren’t feeling it, chalk it up. Didn’t work today. Better luck next time.
- This should go without saying, but don’t get loaded and drive your fucking kid home.
RS: Maybe we should probably say that.
Me: Yes, we should definitely say that.
- Decide who the designated driver is before you leave the house.
RS: Don’t get there and try to figure that shit out, because at the very least, your wife is going to hate you.
**Yellowing up our organs with barley juice