When is a person less than 1 person? (1 bottle/person limits)

Discussion in 'New England' started by onthebusin03, Nov 27, 2017.

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  1. onthebusin03

    onthebusin03 Zealot (575) Jan 11, 2008 Pennsylvania

    So, this is a thing that has bothered me for a while, and recently it happened again to someone I know. I'm aware that there are some people who work in/run bottle shops, as well as the larger contingent of beer consumers/buyers, so I wanted to get some thoughts here.

    A year or so ago, maybe two, we went to Hunger N Thirst in Lancaster, a place we really like and still do to this day. Went in to the bottle shop after having called to confirm they had bottles of Weyerbacher Riserva, which is probably the beer my girlfriend and I both love the most. Went in, guy said it was a 2 bottle limit per person. No problem, happy to follow the very clear and obvious rules. My girlfriend and I questioned if we should get 3 or 4, at which point the guy mentioned that for us, it was really 2 per couple. I asked him which one of us was not a person, as he indicated in his original relaying of the rule. He just tried to deflect, saying "I don't know how not to be a d!ck about craft beer" which prompted my reply of "I know.".

    Then, somehow we were able to buy 3 bottles, and it was presented to us as if he was doing us a favor of sorts. No favor, really, but whatever. Not going to win that battle.

    Fast forward to this past weekend, when, of all places on earth, the Giant in Middletown had bottles of BCBS (1 per person) and my brother in law and sister were there grabbing beer and figured, hey, why not. The person running that area alerted them that it was 1 per person, but really 1 per couple.

    Why is this a thing? Why not just say that it is 1 per couple if the individual gets a feeling that two people are romantically linked and therefore have condensed into 1 being instead of 2?

    Has anyone else had this happen to them?
    Sabtos, Samlover55 and Junior like this.
  2. rozzom

    rozzom Pooh-Bah (2,534) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    Haven’t had this happen. But I can understand why it does. Beer retailers are stuck between a rock and a hard place with this shit. Either they’re perceived to allow muling or they’re sexist. Maybe there should be a three question quiz at the counter.....
    jrnyc, Dando274, jmdrpi and 1 other person like this.
  3. Xerlic

    Xerlic Maven (1,374) Aug 26, 2016 New York

    I've never heard of the 1 per couple rule. Not saying it doesn't exist, but I've never seen it. Anytime I've seen 1pp it's always meant 1pp. That's why you have all these running jokes of people bringing their grandparents/wives/girlfriends on line to places like Other Half and Tree House.

    My bottle shop guy is always strict about beer with a 1pp rule, but he always counts couples as 2 people. Just this past weekend, I had to get my wife out of the car and come stand by the counter so I could buy 2 Black Notes.
  4. zekeman17

    zekeman17 Pooh-Bah (1,986) Feb 14, 2010 Pennsylvania
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    Standing in line early Friday for BCBS, I heard the woman behind me ask her boyfriend or husband "now what kind of beer is this?"
    She got the same allotment as everybody else.
    If they try to implement/enforce 1 per couple, they're going to end up with a lot more time wasted on single transactions vs 2 people, 2 allotments, 1 transaction.
  5. onthebusin03

    onthebusin03 Zealot (575) Jan 11, 2008 Pennsylvania

    I guess perception of muling to me would be negated by the low limits per bottle? And really, if a place wanted to get out in front of muling so badly, which I'm not even against (the restriction of it, not the practice of muling itself) then don't say x bottles per person, then change the rules on the fly.
  6. rozzom

    rozzom Pooh-Bah (2,534) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    I’m not condoning it at all. I’m just saying I get why it happens.
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  7. onthebusin03

    onthebusin03 Zealot (575) Jan 11, 2008 Pennsylvania

    Right, didn't mean to indicate you were all for it.
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  8. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Grand High Pooh-Bah (8,033) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Pooh-Bah Society

    Perhaps they could still discourage muling by requiring that the per person limit must be separate transactions? I dunno how much of a deterrent that would be.
  9. onthebusin03

    onthebusin03 Zealot (575) Jan 11, 2008 Pennsylvania

    Yeah, who knows. I'm not here to solve the muling problem, though I'm open to the discussion going wherever it goes, but I guess the main point is whatever your policy is, stand behind it and don't play jazz.
  10. William_Navidson

    William_Navidson Maven (1,451) May 1, 2015 Pennsylvania

    There's no way to logically uphold that sort of policy. That's the reason limits are there in the first place.

    And sorry to hear you had this happen at H 'n T, I've had nothing but fantastic customer service there, personally.
  11. onthebusin03

    onthebusin03 Zealot (575) Jan 11, 2008 Pennsylvania

    Sorry, I'm probably just being dense, but what policy are you saying can't be upheld?

    As for H n T.... yeah, that experience sucked, and not because we only left that night with 3 Riserva bottles instead of 4. Heck, we went back a month later and bought more. Just the whole interaction was so blatantly inconsistent with the idea of a rule/policy/etc, that it irritated us a bunch. Like I said, we've been back a number of times and will continue to go there when in Lancaster.
  12. William_Navidson

    William_Navidson Maven (1,451) May 1, 2015 Pennsylvania

    A "policy" (or lack thereof, I guess) of providing 1 beer pp except to couples that the cashier believes are together.
  13. cap1088

    cap1088 Initiate (0) May 1, 2017 Nevada

    In my opinion, it's not the cashier's job or duty to enforce anything other than the stated rule of 1 bottle per person. To assume that two people are romantically linked or that a guy is using a woman as a mule is way out of bounds. Who is to say you aren't sharing the bottles or drinking them separately? While I'm aware of how common the 'beer mule' is these days, it's almost welcoming confrontation by taking this type of approach with customers. I haven't seen many breweries take this stance and I don't think bottle shops should either.
  14. TomFoley

    TomFoley Pundit (921) Mar 19, 2005 Pennsylvania

    if a clerk tried this with my wife, he would end up extracting said bottle from a rather sensitive place. Hell, she's been homebrewing for 25 years, and she knows her beers.
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  15. IGaveYouPower

    IGaveYouPower Savant (1,046) Dec 2, 2010 New York

    I have NO problem at all with limits, and even low limits. By all means, spread the beer to as many prospective clients as you can. Make 200 people happy instead of 50 people REALLY happy and 150 people disgruntled. It get it.

    But trying to impose a "per couple" limit is problematic for myriad reasons. One, that's straight-up not what the language 'one beer/4-pack/case per person' says. Two, as others have pointed out, it assumes any two people together are a couple. That's idiocy. Three, there's an underlying sexism here in the assumption that if Tom and Mary Smith come in, that Mary is just buying a bottle/4-pack/case so that Tom can have two, not because she wants one herself.

    TL;DR This is a gross practice and I wouldn't shop in any store that tried to implement it.
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  16. rozzom

    rozzom Pooh-Bah (2,534) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    The opposite extreme is a guy gets to the counter with his gf looking bored/confused, nana in her wheelchair and the guy that causes you to double take as he looks very like the homeless guy you see regularly a couple blocks away, and says “all four of us would like our bottle of BCBCS please - my treat”.

    Somewhere between that scenario and the scenario of the couple with matching Weyerbacher Riserva face tattoos, there’s a line where a good clerk who understands the reason for limits should ask some questions. Where that line is is obviously very hard to say and a potential minefield.

    Obv in op’s case they were out of line.
  17. BeastOfTheNortheast

    BeastOfTheNortheast Pooh-Bah (2,091) Dec 26, 2009 Pennsylvania

    This is the first time I have ever heard the term 'muling'. I knew people did this, but didn't know it was so prevalent that a term was created. I guess it's good that I don't really care about the really, really limited stuff (1 bottle pp nonsense).
  18. Junior

    Junior Pooh-Bah (1,859) May 23, 2015 Michigan
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    This happened to me last year. Two of us walked into a bottle shop Black Friday looking for BCBS. Said he had a 1 bottle/person limit. He recognized me as I was in there earlier in the week to ask if he would be getting it and to check out the place (the store had only been open a few weeks). He let me buy a bottle but not my friend. My friend goes back the next day and he let him buy a bottle, but would only let him have a BW. I have not been back since.
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  19. jmdrpi

    jmdrpi Grand High Pooh-Bah (8,033) Dec 11, 2008 Pennsylvania
    Pooh-Bah Society


    the infamous Grandma mule picture:

    yes, it's bad when a term originally used for drug smuggling made it's way into craft beer.
    maximum12 and rozzom like this.
  20. rozzom

    rozzom Pooh-Bah (2,534) Jan 22, 2011 New York
    Pooh-Bah Trader

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