So we got out to Minute Maid Park this weekend to watch the Mets kick the crap out of the Astros. We learned Hunter Pence is angling to wear the crown vacated by Jeff Bagwell for providing Least Useful Home Runs, with a shot to make it 10-3 in in the ninth.
We also learned we are apparently a whole lot younger-looking than we thought.
As we walked in, we naturally gravitated toward the concession stand for a beer. The young man pouring asked us for an ID.
Which was plainly nuts, because....let's just say I'm not going to be mistaken for anyone, anywhere who might need to show ID for a beer. But he took the driver's license, looked at it and then walked over to his supervisor, apparently because he himself was too young to handle the responsibility of affirming that this old-looking guy was actually over 21.
He then ambled back and poured the beer. We took it, turned around, walked two steps to where the cashier was...and was again asked to produce a frickin' drivers license.
We thought of asking just why the cashier thought his colleague two steps away, not to mention his supervisor, could be so incompetent that their ID-checking needed back-up, but by then we were pretty thirsty.
This also happened to the old-looking guy behind us.
We asked Aramark what was up. We know they've been having troubles with the TABC (who doesn't?), but does that mean they're asking for ID from everyone who walks in the park? ("You!! With the walker!! I wanna see some ID!!")
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The process also tended to seem a little unnecessary when we discovered during the rest of the game that the vendors will sell you beer without any questions beyond "Bud or Bid Light?"
Aramark just got back to us, and we don't know whether to be flattered or not. David Freireich tells us:
At Minute Maid Park, for each alcoholic beverage purchase transaction, our policy is to ask for valid photo ID from every customer who appears to be under the age of 35; however, in many instances, servers will ask all customers for ID.
While it may be a minor inconvenience, it is a policy we have in place that is intended to promote the responsible sale and service of alcoholic beverages.
So, probably, the answer is...not flattered. Just annoyed. Oh, and baffled.