So last weekend I was at the grocery store picking up the usual assortment of things I'm supposed to eat. Lean turkey, lowfat cheese, high-fiber low-carb pita bread, fresh spinach, fresh broccoli, hummus, shredded wheat, etc. I happened by the beer section and saw that a local brewer put out a summer ale that sounded mighty sexy. On a whim I picked it up and took it to the register. The checker was, naturally, underage, and so a supervisor had to come and look at my license for proof of age. She asked if she could take my wallet (um, no, you can't take my wallet), and eventually settled for taking my license. Then she came back and informed me that people with non-New York driver's licenses can't buy beer and if I didn't have another proof of my age I couldn't buy it.
Now, listen, people. I'm approaching a Significant Age that reduces some women to tears in the middle of the night. I myself have felt middle-aged since elementary school, so I can't say that it matters much to me, although I will say that being single at this age is pretty freighted. One of the few compensations for having the 17-year-old supermarket checker look at you as though you're geriatric is the opportunity to buy beer without being audited in this fashion. Fortunately, one of the other compensations is that there is absolutely no desperation about having beer. I'm fairly sure that if I go to the brewery in question I'll be able to purchase said beer even though my driver's license is from Arizona. I certainly don't need beer. Indeed, it was sort of wrecking my healthy food streak, anyway.
But I have one question for that supermarket. If I were underage, would I really be buying my beer to chug alongside high-fiber, low-carb pita bread? Are they huffing pitas now? Seriously, is this some new youth crisis I should know about?