Please buy responsibly

Every alcoholic beverage has some form of the words “drink responsibly” printed on its packaging.

I’d like to request that students who smuggle booze onto campus consider these words in effect as soon as they start driving to a liquor store.

I ask this not because I fear for anyone’s safety, but because I fear for my own sanity.

Mainly because I work at a liquor store near campus.

There are some basic rules to the booze buying process. Over the summer break I’ve had a pretty good run of customers, be they younger regulars or older random customers, who practice basic liquor etiquette.

With the steady stream of students flooding back into town from parts unknown, that streak has been broken. Here are some tips to possibly fix that problem:

Bring an ID

Unless one visits a legendarily picky chain of stores in town, the liquor-buying process is simple: have a government-issued photo ID. Greencards, passports and military ID cards are popular substitutes for the usual driver’s license.

As the semester starts I find myself having to kick more and more people wearing USI spirit wear out because they’ve accompanied a friend in shopping but had no intentions of buying anything. Everyone in a party gets carded, it’s the law.

Trust me, the minimum wage liquor store clerk isn’t going to go on a power trip from telling a 23-year-old to get out of the store. It does nothing but hold up the line.

Just take the receipt

Seriously. I and my fellow clerks appreciate when a customer attempts to lighten the mood, but there are a few comments we hear about a thousand times a day.

In every transaction I, as an employee, have to ask the question “Do you want your receipt?”

In this moment, some people politely accept or refuse. A vast majority see this as a moment for levity, to crack out a joke the clerk hasn’t possibly heard yet.

No, that isn’t the first time I’ve heard a customer joke about using the receipt to return beer. In fact that is probably the fiftieth time I’ve heard that joke that shift.

Nobody cares

It is university policy that alcohol isn’t allowed on campus, but that policy seems to stop few people. I’ve seen seniors in sweatpants grabbing a quick bottle of wine for the weekend, and I’ve heard fraternity brothers invite people to on-campus parties as long as they brought booze.

If one has already made the decision to break rules on campus, fine. I can’t stop you, there is a cadre of people on campus paid far more than I am per hour to enforce public safety.

Just don’t roll up in my store with a car rocking the resident parking sticker, accidentally drop a student ID on the counter and spend a couple of minutes explaining how the expensive craft beer on the counter next to said ID isn’t going to campus.

If you drink responsibly, I sincerely don’t care.