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The First Time I Got My Daughter Drunk (Maybe)

June 20th, 2011  |  by  |  Published in Uncategorized  |  9 Comments

Yesterday was Father’s Day, and I wanted only one thing for the annual celebration of my successful attempt at procreation: to sleep late. And I did—till almost 8 a.m.! The rest of the day saw us meeting out-of-town friends for brunch, then a nap back home, and finally a trip to Carroll Park, where Sasha in her “fairy dress” refused to run in the sprinklers.

While we were at the park, I realized I did have one real Father’s Day wish: to stop in at Gowanus Yacht Club, one of my favorite bars in the city. For those of you who don’t live here, the bar’s name is, uh, kind of ironic. The Gowanus, for one, is a nearby canal that is so polluted that it became the city’s first Superfund site. For another, the Yacht Club is not a yacht club but rather a bunch of picnic tables set up in a semi-abandoned lot; decent, cheap beers and burgers and hot dogs are what you consume there. It’s seasonal, and it’s fantastic, and I never get there often enough.

But yesterday, when Sasha was done playing, we stopped in for drinks and snacks. A Narragansett lager and kielbasa for me, a plastic cup of cava for Jean, and a couple of sauerkraut-laden hot dogs for Sasha. A classic babies-in-bar scenario. Thing is, Sasha often sees our drinks and demands to taste them, which, well, we’re mostly against. But not entirely against. So, with a couple of quick glances to make sure no police were watching, we gave Sasha a sip of Jean’s cava. She loved it, demanded more, we said no, Sasha threatened to escalate, and then the hot dogs arrived to distract her.

Soon, however, Sasha got chatty, and silly, and affectionate. She high-fived our neighbors, she tried to cram half-a-dozen pickle slices in her mouth. By the time we left, she was acting strange—holding the back of my shirt as we walked down the street, and swinging her head around when I carried her, and babbling, and singing, and talking about one thing before suddenly talking about something else, and acting kinda-sorta tipsy.

But was she? Could two sips of cava really send her for a loop like that? Or was she simply being a toddler? The two states of mind are actually almost indistinguishable, especially when you’re talking about a toddler who was fast approaching bedtime. Sleepy, crabby, prone to hugging at random moments—does that amount to inebriation? I don’t know.

I do know this, however. A few hours after we got Sasha home and put her to bed, she woke up crying in the middle of the night—pretty unusual for her. When we got up and tended to her, Sasha demanded to sleep in our bed, and we relented. She fell back asleep immediately—and wet the bed. I still don’t know if that proves she was drunk, but if so, she was a bad drunk. Toddler boys of the world, watch out for this one!


  1. SCOTTSTEV says:

    June 20th, 2011at 8:35 am(#)

    Between campaigning for toddler’s in bars, and getting them drunk in said bars, you’re really just running an investigative thumbsucker on Child Protective Services, aren’t you? Let us know the Sunday it’s running, and we’ll look for the quotes “despite publicly admitting to such in his slightly better than average yet to-date unprofitable blog…”

  2. Matt says:

    June 20th, 2011at 11:19 am(#)

    Are legal fees deductible if I write stories about the process?

  3. John says:

    June 20th, 2011at 4:08 pm(#)

    Huh. On Father’s Day, you were in a bar with your kid. I was in church with mine.

  4. Matt says:

    June 20th, 2011at 4:46 pm(#)

    Huh. They have happy hour there?

  5. Spencer says:

    June 20th, 2011at 6:32 pm(#)

    Huh. I was sent to a bar without my kids. Happy hour was good.

  6. Lance says:

    June 21st, 2011at 11:10 pm(#)

    John: So now you know there are options.

  7. karen says:

    June 24th, 2011at 1:03 am(#)

    Oh Matt. (Insert eyes rolling here …)

  8. John says:

    June 25th, 2011at 4:47 pm(#)

    When I was in NYC the other day I went to brunch at Eatery on 10th avenue with some friends – and my two year old boy. There was complete chaos as we made our order but it got through. I had ordered a Bellini – champagne and peach juice – and it arrived with a tray of drinks and appetizers. My son loves peach juice – we ordered him a plain one – but mine was there first so I gave him a quick sip. Set it down and went about our way to distribute all the food, etc. His peach juice arrived but when I looked over mine had almost disappeared. He had been guzzling it while I was busy with the other stuff!!! This got my attention to say the least and when I struck up a conversation with him, he was looped!! It didn’t last too long but I felt pretty guilty – at least it was champagne. And he was darned cute.


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