An Open Letter to Utah, Re: dumb liquor laws

Dear Utah,

Really? You have a law that says you can’t have more than two drinks in front of you at the same time – even if those drinks are shot-glass-size sample beers at a beer brewery? Really?

And I thought Arkansas was backward.

We  like to taste different beers on our travels, and when we discovered a brewery near our campground in Moab, we were delighted. But when our waitress said we couldn’t order a flight of beers at a brewery, we were stunned. And she was embarrassed. It’s true, she said. It’s the law.

What happened to you, Utah? Was there a rash of people ordering three drinks at once and … I don’t even know what? I can’t understand how that would be a problem at all, much less a problem that needed to be addressed by the Legislature. I’ve been to a lot of bars, and I’ve never seen anyone order more than two drinks. Does it turn people into sinister, crazed lunatics? Is three drinks a magic number that makes people insane?

We went ahead and sampled each beer anyway, just two at a time. So your law didn’t stop us from having the drinks, it just made more work for our server. Well-done. I’m sure she appreciates it.

I suspect your incomprehensibly dumb liquor laws have something to do with religion. Forcing your religious views on others is not only un-American (Taliban, anyone?), but it’s bad business. Who wants to go out for a night on the town when the town is handcuffed by the morality police? Nah, I’ll just relax in my trailer and wait for daybreak, when we can get the hell out of Utah and back to civilization, where people have a few drinks sometimes.

Maybe I’m being too harsh. In fact, the more I think about it, the more I think you might be on to something. You don’t want outsiders coming into your world and ruining everything. And you can’t just let people do whatever they want. That would be anarchy! So here are some other ideas I came up with:

  • A ban on outside. People are less likely to sin if they’re indoors. Or maybe it’s the other way around. I can’t remember.
  • A smile tax. Every time someone smiles, they pay a fee. Double that fee if there’s laughter. Use the money to pay for very tall walls around natural beauty like Arches.
  • Institute a State Food requirement that people in Utah have to eat only white rice. Nutritious and frugal!
  • Ban colors. There’s really no need for purple anyway, is there?
  • And did I see women working alongside men? You should put a stop to that right away. Nothing good can come from that.

I dunno. Just a little brainstorming to get you started. I’m sure you can improve on these.

Mike and Adrienne,

Colorado Springs (our breweries are awesome)

P.S.: And by the way, the beer wasn’t even very good. I guess that’s what happens when the alcohol content is only 3.2 – another of your wonderful laws.

Four small glasses of sin
Four very small glasses of sin.