Dear Whole Foods Daddy: Holiday edition

Your seasonal Boulder questions, asked and answered


We all have questions and need advice, but sometimes the pseudo therapy in the Instagram stories of astrology girls doesn’t cut it. Or maybe the gate-keeping culture of adventure bros has you fearing the judgment that comes with revealing yourself as a newbie at anything. This advice column exists to hold space for you and your (holiday-coded) Boulder queries — especially the uncool ones.

Best holiday cocktail in Boulder?

Depends how you define “best.” By some standards, a $17 “winter-edition” drink with an uncomfortably horny name like The Naughty List Negroni  (i.e. a Negroni with cinnamon liquor) crafted by a License No. 1 mixologist with an alt-right haircut is the superlative holiday cocktail. Here’s a better recipe: 

  • 12 oz Traditional Medicinals Throat Coat tea
  • 4 oz cheap whiskey
  • The best company money can’t buy

What do you do if you’ve been skipped over this cuffing season?

Stop selling yourself short. You haven’t been skipped over; your standards have just been too high to succumb to swiping right on that total fuccboi you see every Wednesday night at The Spot. Stay strong, friend: 2.5 months of warm, but kinda … sandy-feeling? … cuddles aren’t worth the awkwardness of a subpar, small-town situationship. (Sidenote: “Subpar Small-Town Situationship” is a Zach Bryan song waiting to happen.) 

It’s not too late! Here — play the webpage-refresh-game as soon as Gregory Alan Isakov NYE at Gold Hill Inn tickets go on sale, and buy two. Make suitors fight each other to the death for the chance to be your date to the most exclusive night in town. You’re welcome. 

Thoughts on research suggesting “hoes don’t get cold” as plausible. 

The research referenced in this question claims that feeling objectifiable is associated with not actually perceiving the cold. I’m calling BS on this science. If my hazy memory of those nights serves me right, it’s not that the hoes in question don’t feel miserable wearing a questionably constructed Urban Outfitters dress shivering in line for the Sundown Saloon; it’s that it’s all worth it for the 0.5 seconds of attention from a worthless frat bro. 

Which hotel lobby can I post up in around the holidays to ogle the silver fox daddies?

While I can’t condone explicit creepiness, respectful gazing is permitted. Daddies? They’re not at the Boulderado or the St. Julien; they’re on the Pearl Street Mall, waiting to plop their offspring on the lap of the silveriest, foxiest, daddiest daddy of all, who’s been making a list and checking it twice. “Please,” his children beg, “can we have some treats with refined sugar this year?”

Does a self-respecting Boulderite get a real Christmas tree?

YES. Every Boulderite remembers their first Christmas tree in their crappy Uni Hill sublet that was definitely decorated with prayer flags — definitely so cool and not cringe at all in hindsight. But hey, at that age you’re more concerned with lighting up other kinds of trees if you know what I mean, haha! Get it? Because CU kids smoke a lot of weed …

Do people still you-know-what inside the big star on the Flatirons and take a bulb when they do? Traditions!

To answer this question, I consulted the experts, i.e. those who actually got some action in high school, and it is indeed a thing. As with anything fun, someone (probably jealous of their hot roommate’s increasing collection of large LED light bulbs in the garage) fenced off the area at some point in the past few years.

. . . .

Boulder nice list

Boulder City Council meetings. If you haven’t experienced the Parks and Rec episode vibes of Boulder City Council meetings, you’re not just missing out on the sartorial sensibilities of over-educated retirees; you’re missing out on the spiciest issues of the Boulder zeitgeist, including Marshall Fire conspiracy theories, NIMBY tears and our collective moral obligation to the lives of East Boulder prairie dogs.

Big pastries. For a few years, Boulder pastries had become fashionably itty bitty. Those of us feeling underfed after an Instagram-able but microscopic kouign-amann from Boxcar were left wondering if a pastry could ever constitute a full-ass meal again. But trends change, and hip coffee shops like Beleza are once again serving up some honkers. Shout out to the Breadworks, whose cinnamon rolls have always been, and remain, some BIG OL’ BOYS. 

Samples are BACK, baby! While the pandemic took many things from us — in-person work meetings, Herman Cain — one of the hardest was sample culture. Well let me tell you, tiny plastic cups of marinated salmon and random tortilla chips have once again materialized in Whole Foods, and you bet your booty that I am sticking my nasty hand into that weird half-sphere-shaped container and taking two thank you very much. Nature is healing.

. . . .

Boulder naughty list

Co-opting mushroom culture. Must every subculture be gentrified into white-mom aesthetic? Oh, so you think that white-spotted red toadstool mushrooms are cute to have as a salt and pepper shaker? Can you name the top 3 visions you’ll have after being poisoned by Amanita muscaria? Um, clearly not, poser. 

Deion Sanders’ sunglasses. Coach Prime has clearly yet to have the crucial Boulder experience of listening to a very spun girl very intensely explain why eyes are the windows to the soul. Please, Mr. Sanders: The last thing Boulder men needed was another excuse to wear sunglasses indoors in an effort to avoid emotional vulnerability.

Sharing screenshots from dating apps on social media. I know, everyone will think it’s sooo cool when you post screenshots of you owning a girl on a dating app chat who clearly is not as much of an expert on early-era Grateful Dead as her profile picture of her wearing a slutty Dead shirt would suggest. OH MY GOD this is unclassy, especially in a small town. I have no jokes, just please stop.

. . . .

Alone but not lonely
Your guide to a solo holiday season in Boulder

It happens. All the homies went home for the holidays but you. Or maybe Boulder is home, and none of the other Boulder-borns made it back this year.  (Damn you East/West Coast significant others — give me back my single friends and their wide-open availability!) Either way, it’s just you, your regrets and some edibles this year. But I promise it can be survivable, even a blast, if you keep these three guidelines in mind.

Give into the Xmas sleaze of it all. Sure, 11 months of the year, Peppercorn is where you buy some granny-ass napkins for your mother-in-law’s birthday that you totally forgot about until day-of. But during this most special time of year, Peppercorn is a good ol’ Christmas orgasm. Stand amid the holiday-frenzied tourists and the niche Euro-candy vibes, and let it seep into your soul. 

Get pagan with it. When it comes to religion, Boulder is like a slightly awkward but intellectual teenage girl searching for identity. We like to consider ourselves a little “alt,” and of course, became Buddhism-curious after reading Dharma Bums. But just because we don’t have as many crosses in our houses as midwestern folks, that doesn’t mean Boulder doesn’t absolutely fuck with Christmas. But, as Boulder yuppies and crunchies alike have found, hip Winter Solstice parties can bring the seasonal vibes without the attachment of the problematic Western Christianity vibes. Wander your lonely ass into a moonlit circle of influencer-coven-bitches on the eve of Dec. 21; I promise, no one checks the guest list on these things. 

Embrace the true meaning of the season. Some of us, yours truly included, believe that this time of year is holy regardless of and across religions. There is something ancient and universally shared in the recognition that, in our hemisphere’s coldest and darkest hour, there is light in human connection. As the Gen Z-ers in your life would say, it’s giving “giving.” It’s radical empathy. It’s being in the Whole Foods express checkout line behind an oblivious lady with a shopping cart fully exceeding the 10 items (or fewer), and thinking, “She must be in a hurry! I hope she has a good rest of her day 🙂 Oh my god, is she actually going to make a thing about her Amazon Prime membership?”

Look over there, at that older man sitting at the Trident (yep, that one with the hat and vaguely off-putting vibes!) who is visibly starving for human interaction. Striking up a conversation with this fella is about as hard as getting your sweet mother to eat just one more piece of peppermint bark from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory —  that is to say, he’s more than willing. You’re also doing two good deeds, since you’re also sparing the vulnerable young ladies in his geographic vicinity from his unintentionally creepy, but still very creepy, attempts to engage them in conversation. 

And, whenever you feel alone, look up at that star in the foothills. Take a deep breath, and remember that you might be alone for the holidays, but two people with freezing tushies are probably getting illegally laid inside that very star. Happy Holidays, baby. 

Got a Boulder-centric question or conundrum? DM @wholefoods_daddy on Instagram, or email [email protected] with the subject line “Dear Whole Foods Daddy.”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here