Can you take your baby to a bar?

Sad mom and babyDear Mmes. Bradley and Kennedy:

I had a baby a few hours ago, and, like most new mothers, as soon as that baby was out of me, my first thought was: did I miss happy hour? Judge me if you must, but I’ve been sober for nine excruciating months, and on Friday nights at my neighborhood pub, ladies get free custard shots! So when I found out my timing was perfect, well, what better way to celebrate my new baby than with a night on the town, am I right? And with whom would I rather celebrate than my new baby? No one, that’s whom. But when I walked into the bar the bartender said babies “weren’t allowed” and the bar manager asked if I was “still wearing [my] hospital gown” and the police said “ma’am you are now under blah blah blah,” I don’t quite remember that part because I got a little crazy!

So: who’s right? Me? Say me.

Tippy McCallum
Boise, Idaho

Dear Tipsy (see what we did there?):

Some naysayers believe that just because you’re a parent and, as such, are legally and ethically responsible for another being, you should avoid the local watering hole, which is probably filled with criminals, fraternity brothers, and sad-eyed down-on-their-luck salesman. Instead, bleat these latter-day Carry Nations, new moms should spend their evenings somewhere more wholesome, like a water-filtration plant or regional math bee.

We reluctantly agree with these party poopers that bars are no place for a baby. After all, do you really want your child to know what a “jukebox” is? To think bathrooms are soiled warrens scratched up with anonymous names and their accompanying phone numbers? Do you want your baby to watch someone play pool, a.k.a. “The Devil’s Pole ‘n’ Pocket”?

In your case, however, we believe with every bit of our sober hearts that you’re going to get drunk no matter where you are. Therefore, you should be in public, where you can be closely monitored. So here are some tips to help your baby gain entry into the bar of your choosing.

-Tell the bouncer that you are disabled and require the assistance of a “guide baby.”
-Put the baby in a sling and introduce him around as your new grotesque tumor. All you have to do is say, “He’s attached to me via a conduit of tissue and fat cells!” and no one will dare look at either one of you.
-Two words: lemon wedge. No, five words: baby biting into lemon wedge. There is nothing cuter. Once the bartender gets an eyeful of Baby Puckered Face, he won’t remember what he was kicking out!
-The Decoy: hire a friend to wheel in a carriage. While the manager explains that babies and their vehicles are not allowed in his establishment, quietly suck down as many drinks as you can manage before total blindness sets in. Then initiate the predetermined complicated hand gesture which tells your friend that you’re done, and then she reveals that her baby is a WOODEN baby, and while everyone laughs you tiptoe out, but wait a minute, where’s your baby? Did you leave the baby on the bus again? DAMN it!

On the other hand, maybe you just want to invite a few friends over to your place. Just a thought.

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