Masking for trouble

Published 10:47 am Thursday, July 16, 2020

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Pam Stone

Just sayin

If there’s one thing that gives any woman of ‘a certain age’ a little boost, it’s being asked to show identification when buying beer at a mini-mart. Especially if you conveniently allow yourself to forget that it’s mandatory for any customer, and, no, frankly, you don’t appear to be under 21.
There are evidently, however, still plenty of places that don’t check I.D. and teenagers around the country have seized upon the opportunity to score booze by…wait for it…disguising themselves as senior citizens with fake wigs, make-up cunningly used to create ‘wrinkles’ around the forehead, bifocals, and the rest of their face covered with a mask. To complete the ruse, they hobble in with an aluminum walker.
I never went to that much trouble over even the most elaborate Halloween costume.
Man, these kids today have no idea how good they have it. Back in my day, you had to lurk behind a building and ask total strangers to buy it for you. At least that’s what friends of mine endured, although I did, on occasion, buy beer for my dad (Falstaff, can you imagine? And my father was European—what self-respecting German would drink Falstaff?). He liked a beer with dinner and If we were in the car together, he stuff a couple of dollars in my hand (Yep, $2.50 a 6-pack) and have me run into the grocery store and pick it up. If we were entertaining, which was experienced slightly less often than an appearance of Halley’s Comet, I might be dispatched to pick up a bottle of gin.
I learned quickly that if you are 14 years of age and 6 feet in height, people, or at least those running the cash register in those days, assumed only a human being over the age of 18 (the legal age in those days) could reach such a freakish height and so I was never asked for identification. With this new found heady freedom, it was easy to buy a 6-pack of Budweiser. Considering it cost $3.00 to fill up my VW, that was quite an outlay of wasted cash as after one nose wrinkling sip, I threw the rest of it away and wondered why anyone in their right mind would drink anything other than Coke.
Of course, tastes change and I haven’t had a Coke in years. Or a Bud. Looking at the photos of these disguised teens, parading their illicit gains on social media, triumphantly hoisting a bottle of wine or beer in the air, I have to file wryly at the memories of those days when it all seemed a very big deal.
You, children, will hopefully learn the same lesson as did I.
A photo of you proudly displaying a bottle of Boone’s Farm will be as mortifying to you in a few years as being discovered to have worn the giant, lacquered bangs of the ‘80s. If you’re going to go to this sort of trouble, at least develop some sort of palate.
Furthermore, a shot of vodka in a bottle of Yoohoo is just….nasty.

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