Observations From The Beer Man

In April of this year I was issued my very own locker at Busch Stadium home of the St. Louis Cardinals. Like every other child growing up in St. Louis I long dreamed of playing for our beloved Cardinals. At my age my baseball days are long behind me and truth be told I never was much of a ballplayer. No, I was issued a locker for a different pursuit entirely, an arguably more noble pursuit. I had just recently taken a new part time job as a ballpark beer vendor.

I am a beer man.

Since opening day I have found the beer man experience to be both extremely enjoyable and extremely exhausting. As a life long Cardinal fan I love working at the ballpark everyday. It is a different way to experience the season. In some ways it’s a closer look at the season and yet you see less of the season because you experience the games in a different way. I enjoy the atmosphere, the people, and of course the baseball. I don’t get to see all of the action of course but I can stop and take glimpses. I try to stay aware of what’s going on in the game so if a key moment comes up I can stop and take a look for a moment or two. Plus being aware of the game gives you things to talk with customers about. Engaging with folks in the stands is a great way to drum up business and increase your tips. It keeps things fun too. The work itself is physical and back breaking. It can be very hot, the beer tub is heavy, and there are lots of stairs to climb. Through it all the people are friendly and funny. Each game is a bit different and it is never boring.

Beyond that there is a lot that goes on in and around a big league ballpark. Some of it has to do with baseball only peripherally and some has nothing to do with baseball at all. The experience of being a ballpark beer man provides a unique perspective into many aspects of these goings on their connections to and implications for our city and our nation.

My mind is constantly engaged when I am at the ballpark. I am observing, listening, thinking, and searching for connections. I find the experience fascinating. There are thoughts about the experience that I’d like to share and I thought other folks might enjoy hearing a bit about what it is like to be a beer man at the ballpark. So I present to you “Observations From The Beer Man”.

During what’s left of the second part of the season I am going to try my best to write entries after each game that I work. I will also write entries that are not specific to any one game but instead relate to things I have observed or experienced as a Beer Man. I would like this to be an interactive experience so I invite anyone who reads this or any other entries on this blog to please feel free to share your thoughts and ask any questions you may have.

Now if you’ll excuse me I’ve got to get downtown to the stadium. The Cardinals are playing the Diamondbacks this evening.

Thanks for reading. See you at the ballpark!

Please tip your vendors!

Cold Beer Here!