Signed, Sober You: An Open Letter To My Responsible Dad Self Before I Head To Stagecoach & Make Countless Bad Decisions

A shirtless man holding a drink and a straw
Matt Cowan/Getty Images for Stagecoach

Dear Stagecoach Me,

Don’t do it.

Do NOT shotgun that Joose.

You might look a little like Koe Wetzel right now with your unbuttoned shirt and gut full of beers and tater tots. But you are NOT actually Koe Wetzel. I repeat, YOU ARE NOT ACTUALLY KOE WETZEL. Stand down and find the water station!

As George Strait said, you may “still feel 25, most of the time” today at the festival. But tomorrow morning, you will not. You’re 38, and you’ve aged five years since noon. It’s only 3:48pm on Saturday and you’ve had six beers and a funnel cake.

For the sake of your children, your cholesterol, and your wife who is rolling her eyes at you at this very moment, get your act together and pace yourself. Drink a Liquid IV, wipe the powdered sugar off your moustache, and button your damn shirt up, it’s embarrassing.


Sober You

P.S.: Here in the real world, there’s a garage full of Coors Lights waiting for you back home. There’s a lawn to mow and a grill to fire up. There are some kids to yell at. You’re a dad first; a White Claw-soake, lawless festival derelict second. Don’t ever forget that.

When you do start to feel over your skis, do what a dad would do. Put on too much sunscreen. Tell a stranger that it’s hot today, but at least it’s a dry heat. Say “Looking good, buddy” to that fellow dad with an American flag t-shirt tucked into his jean shorts. And head home early for the Pedialyte nightcap I left for you on the bedside table.

Lean in to your authentic, dad self that doesn’t quite seem to fit out here in the desert. And for the love of God and your hard-earned, responsible dad reputation, lean away from that Joose.

I know you’re stoked to be out here, but you can do it. I believe in you.

And… maybe stow that Joose in your backpack? I might have a sip when you get home tomorrow…

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock