Jan 12

Unusual (but very appreciated) care package from Stella Artois…

I’ll preface this post by saying “Don’t judge me”. No seriously, don’t judge. I take my “me time” wherever and whenever I can get it, whether it’s a quick lunch at Barnes & Noble with the laptop, or a coffee at Panera with the tablet, or as in this case, a single beer at Chili’s while my son is doing a 45 minute karate class next door.

I sit down, knowing (a) I only have 40 minutes, and (b) I can only have one beer since I’m the epitome of the responsible driver, and order my usual (again don’t judge), a pint of Stella Artois, draft. The bartender smiles sadly and says, “sorry, the manager replaced the Stella tap with Yuengling a couple of weeks ago.”

Jaw. Drops. Seriously? And before I get a flood of “hey, I like Yuengling” comments, I’ll cut you off: I don’t. At all. And I’m a beer snob. A crisp, clear, cold pint of Stella is hard to match, and Yuengling falls well short, in my opinion.

What does a socially-responsible person do? Tweet, of course:

What happens next is the unusual part. I get an email the next day via my site from the New York-based marketing company that represents Stella Artois in the US, saying “Stella Artois saw your tweet about replacing it at Chili’s, and wanted to send you something to fuel your creativity.”

Wha? I immediately email back with a “Stop it, seriously?” only to get a “Yes, seriously” right back. So stalking aside, I send back my address, thinking I’d get a logo coaster or two…but no. Next day UPS:


Which turns out to be 12 bottles of Stella Artois:


Fueling creativity indeed. A big thanks to Stella Artois to being aware, the HL Group for saying hello, and Chili’s for screwing up in the first place.

I think these will get me through a few new chapters. Or one. Mostly.



About the author

Steve Umstead

Steve Umstead has been the owner of a Caribbean & Mexico travel company for the past ten+ years, but never forgot his lifelong dream of becoming an author. After a successful stab at National Novel Writing Month, he decided to pursue his dream more vigorously…but hasn’t given up the traveling.
Steve lives in scenic (tongue-in-cheek) New Jersey with his wife, two kids, and several bookshelves full of other authors’ science fiction novels. Gabriel’s Redemption was his debut novel, published in February of 2011.


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  1. Shay Fabbro

    SchaWEET!!!!!!!! :D

  2. robert

    Wow, awesome!

  3. Sheilagh Lee

    You are a lucky man that was very sweet of them. Stella is very popular hubby and daughters love it too

  4. Robert "Sharky" Pruneda

    That’s so cool! What a nice surprise. Cheers!

  5. Woelf

    Oh, man, I like that. It’s so neat and rectangular and foamy-protected. I just love it! You almost want to cut off the flaps and leave the box next you, and instead of bubble rap, you just put in ice cubes and you’re settled for the afternoon, or morning, or whatever. ;-p But seriously, it’s awfully nice of them to have done that. Enjoy!

  6. Sydney Aaliyah

    Everyone is going to start sending tweets about their favorite beer now. That was really cool of Stella Artois.

  7. Dannie Hill

    You are a winner, Steve! I’ve never tried Stella Artois. Don’t know if they have it in Thailand, but I’ll be back in the States in a couple of months and will be giving it a go.

  8. alien

    I love Stella! What a terrific story-thanks for sharing! Oh, and if you don’t finish all of them, please send me a few…

  9. Meeks

    Wow – what a fantastic story. I wish I could do that with my favourite chocolate. Hey Guylian! I miss you. [Hmm... I guess it's not their fault I'm on a post-christmas diet. ]

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