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Friday, February 22, 2008

Every Child Deserves a Father and a Father…

posted by on February 22 at 20:00 PM


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I was mixing cocktails by the age of seven.

Posted by Boomer in NYC | February 22, 2008 8:15 PM

Well yeah. Who wants to pay the big bucks for an 8 year old bartender when a 7 year old can do it just as well for half the price? If only Mo Bar would hire some 7 year olds maybe you could get a drink around there during Happy Happy Slog Slog...

Posted by elenchos | February 22, 2008 8:22 PM

I was most certainly the family bartender by ten, at the latest. I distinctly remember two episodes, pre-teen variety:

* Learning from my father how to make a Manhattan

* Seeing a glass of bourbon and, thinking it was Coca-Cola, taking an enormous gulp. I swallowed before I could spit it out (so premonitory...) and, in turn, got sloppy drunk and awful sick. A visual of my Uncle Harry -- who looked exactly like Cary Grant -- laughing his ass off stays with me to this day.

But for Christ's sake, Dan, tell the kid that's a white wine glass.


Posted by Jubilation T. Cornball | February 22, 2008 8:22 PM

This would be a perfect end to the series, Dan :D

Posted by bellevue & belmont | February 22, 2008 8:28 PM

Amateur night. Are you kidding? My parents could beat up your parents. Training. Kids need training... prepare them for the worst

Posted by KELLY O | February 22, 2008 8:38 PM

goodness...poor ecce's brains are gonna fly out of his eardrums when he sees this.

And yes, training is essential.

Posted by gnossos | February 22, 2008 8:54 PM


it should have been a picture of some drug mule crapping out my next heroin fix...or at least toasting up my next meth blast...hell, even mixing up my next gin and tonic.

bored now.

Posted by pissy mcslogbot | February 22, 2008 9:11 PM

wow. i always thought i was the only kid who was her parent's bartender. i was mixing scotch and water on the rocks by age 10. messed up man! but now i won't even let my daughter bring her grandparents a beer!

Posted by Suz | February 22, 2008 9:18 PM

that's a kid...that looks like me tonight

Posted by Jiberish | February 22, 2008 9:19 PM

No, like I submitted last night--aside from the starved baby I posted last night that Dan picked up today--HERE'S a reason to let hets have kids.

Not to be bartenders, or to be anything but targets:

"Oh sure, her daughter may have commited suicide over my/our prank, but look, I've had to CHANGE MY CELL PHONE NUMBER because of it...pity me. My business has suffered..."

Oh, please.

Posted by Wolf | February 22, 2008 9:25 PM

Is your son decanting Two Buck Chuck?

I'm calling CPS! :o

Posted by NapoleonXIV | February 22, 2008 9:57 PM

I remember making beer when I was 11.

Posted by Will in Seattle | February 22, 2008 10:25 PM

When I was five, my parents' hippy softball team let me pour the beer for them. I would sneak sips when they weren't looking. They knew what was going on though because I became cranky and then sleepy (much like nowadays, on the SLOG). But they let me do it anyways.

Posted by Big Sven | February 22, 2008 10:52 PM

Pathetic, really pathetic.

Posted by ecce homo | February 23, 2008 12:19 AM






Posted by Jake | February 23, 2008 1:24 AM

Please, do let them smoke. But make sure it's Philip Morris, so that my stock can go up.

Posted by Jason | February 23, 2008 2:47 AM

Poor DJ. Just remember to tell him, "Your Auntie Mame can open doors for you!"

Posted by MichaelPgh | February 23, 2008 3:06 AM

Jake, Jake, Jake, Jake, Jake. You must be drunk to write with such retarded fury. If you're not drunk, then I hope you're sterile.

Posted by Donovan | February 23, 2008 4:34 AM


Neither - child welfare advocate.

And I can tell you have no kids and really don't like them much except as suitcases to adults lives.

Rearing kids is not a joke nor a silly nilly game.

Posted by Jake | February 23, 2008 5:04 AM

I like those kids raised as little men robots - except they are always very messed up as adults. Since they are not allowed to be children they never really understand who they are.

And booze and early age kids, how stupid can you be?

If the family has wine at meals, at some point in early teens the young adult should have a half glass. Thus it is natural, rational and part of really growing up. The French system is this approach.

Posted by GUEST | February 23, 2008 5:16 AM

I think my parents attitude about alcohol were a reaction to having grown up during Prohibition. They also never took me to a funeral or wake for fear or traumatizing me. They were influenced by the movie "The Three Faces of Eve".

Ultimately my own issues with alcohol have very little to do with the sips of my mother's scotch I took while sitting on her kneee. Alcohol as a crutch for lives problems was a greater influence.

Posted by MrEdCT | February 23, 2008 5:46 AM

I have an old photo my parents took of me drinking what looked like a martini (water in a martini glass) when I was about 5 years old. I have it in a frame on my wall. During a party one night a social worker/control freak saw it and freaked out. She actually demanded I remove the photo and give her my parents address and pissed and moaned about how "inapropriate" it was.
My parents had passed away by that time and the photo is still on my wall.
Lighten up folks.

Posted by Heather | February 23, 2008 6:12 AM

When I was sixteen my Grandfather got me stinking drunk on Southern Comfort.
Outside of some drinking in college I never really liked the stuff much and swore it off thirty years ago. I figured life would be difficult enough without alcohol, why make it insurmountable with an addiction to it.

Posted by Vince | February 23, 2008 7:03 AM

@18- Err, no. It's pretty good science that acclimating kids to alcohol (obviously not getting them drunk, but allowing small amounts and not stigmatizing it) before they are teenagers reduces the likelihood of them becoming alcoholics before they hit their 20's. Nothing is any fun if your parents approve.

The French had it right all along.

Posted by Tdub | February 23, 2008 7:05 AM

I used to take drink orders and deliver them to people when my parents had their friends over. (They didn't let me mix because I had too heavy a hand.) I had a little silver tray and white napkin. I'm sure it was adorable (when am I not?), and it was a lot of fun being with the grown-ups, who were middle-aged and not big drinkers. Usually a few cocktails before heading out to dinner somewhere.

And when we went out to eat, my family and I would always sit in the bar and have a drink before we got seated. Cocktail for Dad (he loved his Martinis) wine for mom, and a Shirley Temple for sis and I. Iowa (and even Nebraska, believe it or not) are much more civilized than Washington state when it comes to that. A child can go in a bar - with an adult - and no one screams and faints.

I'm now 42, hardly every drink hard liquor, and don't drink that much wine and beer. Sis is 48, much the same way. Dad's dead (ciggies, not tinnis, killed him at the ripe old age of 82 after 40 years of not smoking.), and Mom still likes a glass of wine in the evening.

Granted, I've seen some families where booze is a problem. But that's usually because of a deeper problem.

Posted by catalina vel-duray | February 23, 2008 8:19 AM

Interesting comments. But DJ isn't pouring or drinking in this photo. An adult tried to take his picture--a friend, not a parent--and DJ grabbed the first thing he could hide behind: the bottle of red wine on the table. (They don't have any red wine glasses at the Summit Hut at Panorama.)

Posted by Dan Savage | February 23, 2008 8:21 AM

Dan, what the hell's up with DJs bowl cut? Yikes.....

Posted by Yeek | February 23, 2008 8:32 AM

I wish Dan would adopt me. I've already had my shots and my college...

Posted by Henrietta | February 23, 2008 8:39 AM

My Gramps had a full wet bar in the basement of his house that we kids would play behind during holidays. I'll never forget the one time I broke a bottle of gin--bumped it and it smashed to smithereens on the tile floor. No one was upset that we were playing there, but rather that was the last bottle of gin and it was Sunday.

He also taught me how to mix him a bourbon and Coke--the only thing I ever saw him drink. He had a set of glasses with a design on the outside. Fill the glass with ice. Then all you had to do was pour the bourbon up to the tail feather of the pheasant and fill to the top with coke. I poured him lots of those over the years--many in that same glass.

I think of him fondly every time I pour myself a B&C.

Posted by Tom in Chicago | February 23, 2008 9:06 AM

Yeah, Booze and kids, Hilarious...

Spare me the references to the French. Thats just a way to justify really stupid parenting.

BTW, I'd put money on the fact that the people who don't have kids are the ones who say it's no big deal.

It's hilarious that people who don't have or like children are the ones who have all the parenting advice one could ever need.

Posted by ecce homo | February 23, 2008 9:28 AM

@ 20 and 24:

WTF are you thinking?!

The French expose kids to booze early, and there is absolutely NO evidence that the rate of alcoholism is lower.

If you have proof via good controlled studies, let's see it. Just because they drink wine with everything doesn't mean they're more or less immune to just means that they drink wine a lot. And then they surrender to whoever knocks at their border.

Posted by Wolf | February 23, 2008 9:33 AM

I'm going to have to go with Yeek@27 on this one - spare the child, chop off that bowl cut. Trust me on this one...

Posted by Hernandez | February 23, 2008 9:39 AM

@30: Ecce, I normally ignore you because I think you're an asshole but this time I will respond.

Take a look at all the previous posts from people who were in some way exposed to alcohol as children. None of them to my knowledge grew up to be skid row bums, psycho serial killers or even Republicans. This picture does not constitute child abuse. If you want to see fucked up parents scroll down to the story about the assholes who left their baby in the car for eight days. Grow the fuck up.

Posted by RainMan | February 23, 2008 9:45 AM

Cute picture.

This debate is ridiculous.

Posted by tabletop_joe | February 23, 2008 9:49 AM

Well, you can take the word of self righteous, imperfectly socially sculpted but nonetheless resilient posters who were exposed to alcohol as children as proof that there's no correlation, or you can assume anyone who was affected by childhood exposure to alcohol is either asleep/hung over right now or doesn't give two shits about slog or anything on it.

So the title of the post should have been maybe "hiding behind a wine bottle."

Posted by duh | February 23, 2008 9:59 AM

I kinda thought a cute picture and a ridiculous debate was the point of posting it in the first place....

Posted by NapoleonXIV | February 23, 2008 10:01 AM

I grew up pouring, mixing, and serving alcohol to my family and their friends. My parents made a point to tell me not to drink until I was older. And I didn't drink until college (as many people do).
But the experience of pouring, mixing, and serving has taught me valuable life lessons. Like what wine goes well with a pork loin. And how to mix a good martini. And nothing is cooler in college than knowing how to mix dozens of drinks.

Posted by Will in STL | February 23, 2008 10:23 AM

I think it was a joke.

Posted by maxine | February 23, 2008 10:28 AM


Come on, don't be retarded. Taking cheap shots at the French is hilarious, right? Nevermind the fact that the French forces were almost annihilated during WWI, they spend a few years rebuilding and WWII rolls around. The Nazis decide to take France and the four remaining soldiers in the French army who had all their limbs said "Hey nazis, we'd fight you if there were more than four of us and our country wasn't blown to tiny bits by the last war you fuckers decided to start, but things being as they are, we'll hand over our pile of rubble and spend the next several years fighting you guerilla-style from the underground because there's pretty much nothing else we can do. Also, fuck you too." Of course, being a true American patriot means you take cheap shots at France. American as apple pie. All those years that America stood by while Europe got slaughtered don't count. WWII started at Pearl Harbor, right?

Trust me, I'm over it, but don't be an asshole if your brain isn't attached to it.

Posted by bearseatbeats | February 23, 2008 10:33 AM

err... and I'm not saying the nazis started WWI. That would be stupid since they didn't exist then, but you get the point.

Posted by bearseatbeats | February 23, 2008 10:37 AM

I don't think responding to ecce on this one is troll feeding- ON THIS THREAD he's (relatively) politely disagreeing with the conventional wisdom. And articulating a not-uncommon view- his post bothered me a lot less than JAKE's.

ecce, I am a parent. 10 year old girl and 7 year old boy. They don't drink at all- I once let them try a sip of wine, and they didn't like it. I'm not sure what I would have done if they had liked it.

My kids know already that when they get to be teenagers, there are only three things that Daddy is going to be a hardass about: risk of pregnancy, driving that might lead to accidents, and drug use. "There's a time and a place for everything," said Chef, "and that place is college."

My story of manning the keg back in 1973 doesn't have an unhappy ending. I did some binge drinking in college, but haven't been drunk since 1990. I average 1-2 drinks per week- usually at events like Moe's or having some wine w/ my wife.

So I guess I'm saying that kids are resiliant, and even a little hippie permissiveness won't automatically turn you into Lindsey Lohan.

Posted by Big Sven | February 23, 2008 10:40 AM

Picture of the kid with wine on the internet - probably not a good idea.

That hair cut? My god. Dan, help the kid out a bit and take him to a decent barber.

Posted by johnnie | February 23, 2008 10:43 AM

Parent here, and child of Euro parents (not French as that matters to you), given small glasses of red wine with Sunday dinner when I was 8 or 9.
I'd say my husband & I have a healthy relationship with alcohol, and plan to not be prohibitionists with our son when he becomes curious and old enough to understand. Just some common sense, that's all.
And I got the joke with the picture. That's all it is, a joke.

Posted by Madashell | February 23, 2008 10:51 AM

it's 11 a.m. here in lake city, aka the next morning, and i'm sitting here thinking, gawd, that glass of red wine looks pretty good. let me know when it's noon.

Posted by superyeadon | February 23, 2008 11:05 AM

Lake City has become metaphor for a hangover?


Posted by NapoleonXIV | February 23, 2008 11:09 AM

@15, Jesus, lighten up and lay of the caplocks, moron.

I would think that it's obvious that a healthy attitude about alcohol, instilled early, is better than parents saying DON'T TOUCH ALCOHOL IT'S BAD BAD BAD.

Posted by Julie | February 23, 2008 11:17 AM

The most unsettling thought for me is that ecce homo might have daughters.

Posted by Kiru Banzai | February 23, 2008 11:28 AM


one of each.

And I was "allowed" to drink the occasional beer on pizza night with my folks. It taught me one thing: That booze is not a big deal. This attitude brought with it many problems later in my teenage years as binge drinking became popular.

Permissiveness in some areas is NOT acceptable. Drug and Alchohol use is one of them. Drinking leads to higher rates of teenage pregnancy - something I hope my daughter NEVER has to experience. Drinking leads to higher numbers of a car accidents for teenagers.

Spare me the 'stories' about how you were educated on how to drink. Sounds kinda like the pot heads who say "I drink better stoned".

And I am shocked that parents of pre-teens let their children drink. You may like to think of yourself as evolved parents, but your children will likely suffer at the alter of your own needs of being thought of as "hip". You are your child's PARENT not their fucking friends.

Posted by ecce homo | February 23, 2008 12:32 PM

^oops I meant "Drive better stoned".

Posted by ecce homo | February 23, 2008 12:33 PM

Jesus, Julie, so someone isn't all cool with all your assumptions. Go have a couple of double drinks as soon as the hangover goes away from last night.

You have no kids, easy to tell.

Calling someone a moron cause they left the cap lock on is surely proof- that - you are the moron.

Drinking is like smoking - it can become a very negative bad habit. Do I have to outline all the problems drinking causes? All of them? Oh, you never knew.

My family small and extended are the wine at Christmas type drinkers. Suits me, and Uncle Jake is surrounded by kids. I like them, make friends with them and have THEIR well being in mind.

Like my mom and dad raised me, duh.


Posted by Jake | February 23, 2008 12:38 PM

@ecce homo

"Permissiveness in some areas is NOT acceptable."

Glad we have a self-appointed arbiter on hand to tell us all how to live.

"Drinking leads to higher rates of teenage pregnancy"

Correlation isn't the same as causation. Not that I'm defending teen drinking, but to say it makes you pregnant is braindead. It may be that if you're a teen, and drunk, and poorly educated or not thinking clearly, you might engage in unprotected sex and get pregnant, true. To ascribe that entire chain of events to drinking is stupid.

"Sounds kinda like the pot heads who say "I drive better stoned"."

Inconvenient for your moral outrage, I know, but studies done in England actually show that stoned drivers are more cautious behind the wheel than sober people.

Then again, if you're a Republican or something I guess you wouldn't care much about scientific research.

Posted by AMB | February 23, 2008 1:01 PM


"Drinking is like smoking - it can become a very negative bad habit."

So can television, religion, and any number of other activities.

PS - you're going to die someday.

Posted by AMB | February 23, 2008 1:02 PM


You are retarded

Go smoke a bowl and fantasize about being someone.

Posted by ecce homo | February 23, 2008 1:27 PM


At its core this thread is about messages sent to kids about drinking. I think there is a case to be made to message smoking as negative and drinking as well.

I think there is a need to stress facts, have discussion, tell them to use your own powers of observation.

As far as death goes, I am HIV. I have addressed that topic in the face for several years.

You are no kid, your education is of little interest to me. Go have a drink, or two. Once a month, all in moderation. Oh, I forgot, a message .... about half of America drinks little or not at all, by the way. I fall in the little category and usually I am the designated driver.

Posted by Jake | February 23, 2008 2:00 PM

A plastic water bottle!?! You should be ashamed of your self, Dan. What kind of an environment are you going to leave poor DJ?

Posted by Eric Grandy | February 23, 2008 2:13 PM

Have a drink or two, once a day Jake, not month. That's moderation.

Posted by PdxRitchie | February 23, 2008 2:57 PM

@50 - Man do I have the most awesomest save the little kiddies job for you: France. You wouldn't believe it, but they let kids touch demon alcohol over there! EVERY DAY! Not just special occasions! You definitely need to head over there and let them know just how wrong they are. Once you fix them head next door to Germany, I heard they do the same thing!

Posted by LT L | February 23, 2008 3:36 PM


You sound like a Puritan. Lying to kids is the best way to get them to disregard what you say.

Kids aren't dumb. When they see people have an adult beverage and not turn into a furniture-throwing maniac, they're going to look at anti-drinking hysteria as precisely that.

Posted by AMB | February 23, 2008 4:04 PM


No Puritan in sight here. My niece is in college, and we are close buddies. She told me recently how much fun she has, likes her school and is just doing fine.

Allison commented that Uncle Jake you can't believe how drunk everybody gets, esp. the boys. She added she drinks a couple of beers at most, and has a lot of fun at all the parties.

Then winking at her Uncle she added that the boys not so drunk were a LOT more fun.

I got it. And just to finish the story, I gave her a years supply of good condoms last time I saw her and a bit of a motherly talk.

No Puritans here, just moderation and good sense in drinking and enjoying the sex. Allison seems to agree.

Walk off the party line here and you all get mean. What is that? Insecurity? Country folk lacking life experience?

Remember this started about messaging to little kids about booze.

Posted by Jake | February 23, 2008 4:33 PM


Now you're making me feel puritanical, and like I need a shower.

Posted by AMB | February 23, 2008 5:39 PM


You just supported my argument. Thanks.

Posted by Wolf | February 23, 2008 5:47 PM

Sounds like Jake et al. are insecure about their parenting abilities and have to put everyone else down to make themselves feel like the "perfect" parents.

While we're on the subject of horrendous child abuse, does anyone else have memories of rolling cigarettes for their granparents/others in those old cool machines? That was one of my favorite pastimes when visiting the grandparents. Oh how it stung when you rubbed your eyes afterward. Memories. (am a non-smoker, by the way. Otherwise I am sure that I would not be allowed to look back fondly on those memories according to nsome)

Posted by ams | February 23, 2008 6:08 PM


Posted by Mr. Poe | February 23, 2008 8:06 PM

Man, I suck. The only thing I ever got to do as a kid was bring my Dad a beer from the fridge and maybe get a sip as a reward. And I never got to roll cigarettes for my grandparents. OK, my parents did have me delivering joints and quaaludes to bored suburban housewives while pretending to do a paper route, but I never got to mix drinks or roll cigarettes.

Posted by wile_e_quixote | February 24, 2008 12:35 AM

Sorry Dan, but this is totally weak. Where are the tales of hetero parents boiling their offspring alive in oil and eating their young with a side of coleslaw and fries?

That's what "Every Child Deserves a..." is all about. Not this riduculous tripe.

C'mon, somewhere in America, some hetero parents is doing something utterly despicable to their children. I depend on you to find it and let me know. Children drinking isn't despicable, it's like letting your kids watch too much t.v. or something. It's small time. I want boiling oil, smashing the child's head against the wall and baby eating!!!!

Posted by wet_suit | February 24, 2008 10:39 AM

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