As part of our mission here at Why Daddy Drinks to revel in the humorous lunacy that is fatherhood, and to promote the drinking of quality beverages, we bring you our weekly segment highlighting something that should be in your glass. This is The Drink Of The Weekend.
One of the many, MANY things that come with having kids is a change to your social life. You just don’t get out and do the same things you did before you had kids. At least you don’t do them as often as you used to do.
That’s especially true here in the San Francisco Bay Area, where babysitters—and we do have a couple of awesome ones that we use from time to time—charge at least $15 an hour to come over and make sure your kids don’t electrocute themselves while you are off trying to have a nice dinner with your spouse at a place where Kraft Macaroni and Cheese isn’t on the menu. Few things suck more than getting into that third hour of a date with your wife and feeling like you have to keep one eye on your watch, as paying for the sitter can end up costing as much as the rest of your night out if you aren’t careful.
So, what you often end up doing is kid-related socializing. This means playdates that are centered around the kids but, hopefully, give you a chance to hang out with your friends a bit, and a lot of birthday parties that, with any luck, come with a dad smart enough to bring a cooler full of beer. And I got to experience both this past weekend during three-straight days of kid socializing up and down Alameda (Calif.) County.
Working backwards, on Sunday, my wife, The Thoroughly Awesome Ms. Crums, and I took our daughters to a birthday party for a friend’s little girl who had just turned three. One of the three things in life that I truly hate is being late for anything. But, since we have two daughters of our own, who are four and two, we never get anywhere on time and this party was no exception.
What made me go crazy internally was that we were the people who lived closest to the party and, yet, we rolled in about 45 minutes late…But the birthday girl’s dad knew his audience. Right next to the table with all the food, there was a glorious cooler loaded with several great IPAs and other ales and lagers. And for that, Ryan Batty, I thank you. I slaked my thirst enough that even today I don’t care about forgetting to put sunscreen on my forehead.
This followed another birthday party that we went to on Saturday in San Jose. Anyone who knows the Bay Area also knows that unless you live in San Jose, driving to San Jose is a pain in the ass. From Oakland, where we live, it’s an hour’s drive on a good day with light traffic. And there is never really any light traffic. Once we got there, I managed to drain a couple of Rogue Dead Guy Ales as the sun scorched my face. The party was fine, but I was a little concerned by how this one couple let their daughter splash around naked in the kids’ pool, while their son, who was probably seven, had obviously never had a haircut in his life. Call me Old School, but put on a swimsuit and get a trim, please.
Then there was Friday, and the trip we made out to Pleasanton, Calif. for a pool date with our daughters, Maddo and Little Sis, and the kids from two other couples we know. I got to do all the pool time, as my wife had just gotten her hair done and, thus, couldn’t get it wet for fear of it either all falling out or turning into the equivalent of a cobweb duster. I’m still not convinced she didn’t plan her appointment for the pool party day, but anyway…
Ever try single handedly policing two little kids in a pool who don’t know how to swim, yet want you to take them over to the deep end so that they can splash around while you re-learn how to tread water and keep from going to the bottom yourself? You’d almost think a “Sharknado” would be preferable.
Almost. Because after the girls had finally had enough, and I could get out and relax, one of our hosts, Paulette Albert, offered me what would be the Drink Of The Weekend, a Sierra Nevada Summerfest Lager.
Now anyone who reads these entries is well aware of my love of India Pale Ale. But on a hot day, when you’ve just spent the last couple of hours pretending to be Michael Phelps, few things are better than a cold, fresh and GOOD lager, and the Summerfest did the trick. This is one of those beers that, for me, is like fish and chips. I don’t have it very often, but I love it, and when I do have it, I always think, “Damn, this is good. I should have this more often!”
Which is why I picked up a six pack of Summerfest on Sunday. And if it’s available near you, you should, too.