Proper Burgers and Liquor Laws

A delicious thing to do in my gorgeous state is go to a brewery and eat. There’s a certain Utah-ness about it all sometimes though. As a lifetime local, let me explain.

Because Utah’s liquor laws are as useful as a fish with a bicycle complex, patient purveyors cannot serve a burger, a beer over 4%, and sell you a bottle of beer to take home all in the same space. Each thing can get done of course, but there can be some running around to do it. It’s just that each thing needs a different license but you can do each one separately or combine some of them but everything needs its own license or many licenses or a specific kind of license and a lot of walls in many places. And a unicorn horn and two Hydra heads.

I was researching the rules but got bored, so I decided to drink a hard-fought beer instead. Maybe a real-world example will help.

Proper is a local company that makes craft beers and also burgers, both tasty.

At Proper Burger Co., you can order draft 4% craft beer and enjoy it with your fancy hamburger.proper_burgers-2

If you’d like a fancy hamburger and something stronger or if you’d like to drink the non-draft (over 4%) bottles of craft beer, you go next door to the bar, Proper Brewing Co., and Proper Burger Co. will bring your hamburger to you.proper_burgers-8

If you want to buy Proper craft beer here to drink at home (instead of driving to a state liquor store), you have to go through a separate door in the Proper Brewing Co. building to get to the Proper Bottle Store.proper_burgers-10

Still with me? Let’s review.

You can get this burger at Proper Burger Co.proper_burgers-6

And also here at Proper Brewing Co. proper_burgers-11

You cannot get these bottles of beer at Proper Burger Co.proper_burgers-13

You can get them at the Proper Bottle Store. And also at Proper Brewing Co. Which is connected to but totally separate from Proper Bottle Store. You cannot drink them at Proper Bottle Store. You can drink them at Proper Brewing Co.

Which is next to but a different building than and not visible from Proper Burger Co.

Which is where you can also get this burger. And also at Proper Brewing Co. Which is right next door.proper_burgers-1

Which is next to the Proper Bottle Store. Which is open on Sundays. State liquor stores are not.proper_burgers-7

You know what? Forget it.

Just call me and tell me what you want to do and I’ll tell you how.

On Autumn

Fall in Park City is brief. Unpredictable. We have a dozen hot days and then one morning it’s freezing and we can’t remember how the furnace works. Next we have six or eight cold days and then it hits 85 and we all get sunburnt. Dressing ourselves is a struggle. On the first day of fall we ceremoniously parade out our fleece jackets and our knit sweaters, giddy about the soups and stews we’re going to make. And by that afternoon it’s so hot we wish we hadn’t boxed up the golf clothes and the last thing our damp hands want to touch is that godawful fleece.


Autumn snowstorms erupt out of nowhere. The morning starts out innocent enough, with just a bit of a charge on the air. Lunchtime is warm and we all linger on outdoor patios, drinking our beers and white wines and eating salads. By the afternoon, however, the sky is dark. Vengeful. And by morning there is a dusting of white on the mountain tops and a feeling of panic sets in as we all wonder where in the world our windshield scrapers got off to.

The first snow brings out the contrast in the fall colors. The aspens turn brilliant gold except for a special few spots on the hilltops where the soil is just so and instead they turn as red as any maple. If you’re very lucky you can find red scrub oak and yellow aspens at the same time, dotted around the dark green pine trees. The elk and deer, coyotes and lap dogs start to lose their dark summer tones. We wear oranges, and browns, and deep dark reds, and hope to make time in our busy schedules to head to the mountains and see the leaves. We know. We all know. The leaves will fall. It may take another month and we have plenty of time, or it may happen tomorrow and we’re out of luck. The foliage is not something that we can count on for long. The foliage…is a metaphor.


And it’s not even an interesting one or one that presents any kind of epiphany when we recognize it. It’s an absurdly obvious testament to the delicacy of a season. The months keep walking, the years keep running, and we decide what to slow down to see as the world turns. But there is always Something else we could be doing. Something Very Important. And when that Thing is done there is another Important Thing to see to. And before you know it you’ve done Many Important Things but everything and everyone around you suddenly looks old. All the leaves have fallen. Fall has come and gone you weren’t watching.

The Things can live without you. Go for a drive. Hold hands with someone. Press your nose into your dog’s head. Stand outside with arms stretched wide, with the sun on your face and breeze in your hair. Pay attention.


Because someday none of the Things will matter at all and you’ll wish you’d spent more time looking at the leaves.

Call for Submissions – 10/15/16 Deadline

It’s that time again! Our winter Collections Magazine is coming up, and the deadline has been announced to reserve space: October 15, 2016. This gorgeous full-color coffee-table magazine showcases our listings state-wide, local information, and articles about the Sotheby’s Auction House and collections.

In order to reserve space in this fabulous bit of marketing, we need to have your property listed by October 15, 2016. (We may be able to withhold it from the MLS for a short while if you’re still working on interior projects, decluttering, etc., so see me for details.)

October 2016 Newsletter

Newsletter time again! Click below to read October’s edition, featuring snow in Park City, listings coming to market, classic cars coming onto the RM Sotheby’s auction scene, and some very cool auctions at Sotheby’s (a complete Dodie Thayer dinnerware set!).


French Fries at the Boneyard







I got these spuds at the Boneyard, which is a very popular bar/wine bar/restaurant. Or something. There are two different menus and like four different dining areas and it’s all very confusing and I like to meet people there and arrive late so they can tell me where the hell to sit.

But it is extremely cool inside. There are a thousand and one photo ops. boneyard_fries-2

This is one of the bars. I approve of the brick, exposed ductwork, the periscope cupholder thing at the bar bar, and those studded chairs. Lovely and comfortable. Dear saloon owners: barstools need to be comfortable. If they are not, people will not linger and order more overpriced cocktails.


And here is another bar. The wine bar maybe? It’s a little less busy than whatever other bar I was in but those turquoise chairs and black and white checkered floor just slay me. boneyard_fries-3

The menu I think we ordered off of is a bit more uppity than the gastropub concept of the twenty-aughts. Yes there is a cheese dip but it’s walnut encrusted baked brie. Yes they have a Caesar salad but it has brussels sprouts in it.


They brew their own iced tea, which is nice. And they served me fake sugar and Sugar in the Raw, which is less nice. Sugar in the Raw is delicious and crunchy sprinkled on sugar cookies or mixed into hot coffee. But in a cold drink you may as well just throw gravel into your cup and pretend it tastes sweet. Though I stirred my iced tea five thousand times much to the dismay of my table-mates, drinking it was bitter bitter bitter bitter gritty sweet. P.S. Saloon operators: if you serve iced tea you also need to serve finer-ground sugar.boneyard_fries-7

But it is a light, fun place to have a beverage with other adults or to blow off steam after work. There are TVs with Sports! but it’s not overwhelming. Nor is the music or overall sound level. You can come have a good time, have a conversation and leave without feeling like you need to take a shower when you get home.


The fries are perfect, but a little difficult to get. The Boneyard sells “herbed pomme frites” which are dusted with rosemary. They also sell “house-made french fries” with truffle oil and asiago. You have to ask for PLAIN DAMN FRIES. Considering the dipping sauces, I think these ended up as the Herbed Pomme Frites without the Herbed. Just be super clear, all you want are plain french fries: potatoes cut up, fried until brown, and salted.


AND YOU WILL BE REWARDED. These are fantastic. They are exactly the same as if you cut them up at home and fried them yourself but without all the grease in the air. Delicious. Go just for a plate of these. Go for two. Two plates of plain fries and a beer please and maybe my companions are here somewhere but I can’t find them and well, they can order their own.

Whatever you’re doing, keep it simple. And do it better than everybody else.

On Social Media

imagereader-aspxI love social media. I love creating content. I love the unwritten rules that you only pick up on when you’ve been around a while. I use hashtags on Twitter as ironic commentary since only #brands use them seriously. I save certain photos to post on Instagram because they don’t particularly have a point, but the lighting might be good. And I always write two different versions of a joke because Facebook is a fickle mistress. But for all of this, I do wonder what what has happened to my brain and more specifically, my attention span.

Rather than presenting posts in the order they were created, platforms now present posts that Skynet thinks you’d like to see most based on your past behavior, which is a smooth-talking avenue for delivering targeted advertising. As such, I’ve become a curmudgeon. On Facebook I willfully refuse to interact with posts, and rather than just scrolling past, I take the time to click “hide this post.” Hide that post. Hide those posts too. So now my algorithm is pretty much just exciting cars and Bon Appetit articles, which has vastly improved my experience. Twitter is one of the few with an intact timeline, and it used to be loads of fun and a great avenue for storytellers but lately it’s all apocalyptic warnings of the upcoming election and “how to stock your food storage” articles, which falls under the same category.

I’ve read—in short bursts—that because of this constant exposure, we can’t concentrate for more than a tweet, 140 characters, which you can read in about 2 seconds. Human beings, with the largest brains and the greatest capacity for creative thought of any creature on Earth now have the attention spans of goldfish. I find that once I’ve checked the timelines of all my platforms, I’m going back and looking at the first one over again to see what I’ve missed while I was checking the others. And we wonder why we all seem so on edge and antsy all the time. We’re constantly at the ready for the next quick thing to react to.

To combat this I’m reading a thing called a “book.” Do I remember books? Those paper things I used to burn through, cover to cover, everything I could get my hands on, hundreds of tweets long. Books. Except this time they’re digital and readable on the little black monolith that fits in my pocket and runs my life because let’s not go crazy with that cold turkey business. So far, so good. Now, when I’ve made the first social media loop, instead of going back I just open my book and read a few pages. One congruent story, in one voice, with a singular cadence and no images but the dusty stick figures my lazy, out-of-shape imagination can shake out.

And decidedly ad-free.

Game Night Games

I arrived, dressed in a sci-fi cartoon graphic tee and immediately knew my street cred had fizzled. Wearing a sci-fi tee and being engrossed in gaming culture are two very different things and I’ve only managed to be proficient at the former. The board game concept is nothing new of course, but there has been a hardy resurgence in recent years. Not only is getting together with other people to play games okay, it’s cool. And to play board games of the sci-fi/fantasy ilk? Ice cold and possibly with some manner of hazing ritual. Details unclear.GameNight-5

What I came in for was a cribbage board, and the minute the air conditioning whooshed by me as I opened the door I knew I was punching above my weight. Boxes filled an entire wall, alphabetized, and I arrived at the 3-D puzzles in the corner without having recognized anything. Cards Against Humanity was on the top shelf, in its unassuming black boxes, high above prying eyes. I imagine they keep plain brown paper bags behind the counter for those sales. What I came in for is a game with pegs and cards. Pegs and cards. Lord only knows where that sort of thing is kept. Past the figurines? What is a board mat? Do I need more than one? Why do they sell paint? I kept walking, pretending to be such a connoisseur that I had to inspect every shelf. Why am I not part of this world? Is the “and” in Dungeons and Dragons an ampersand? AN UNEXAMINED LIFE. Continue reading “Game Night Games”

Nice (Furniture) Package

When you’re buying homes to live in full time, you typically furnish those homes over time. You may have your grandmother’s buffet, the end tables you bought in California, the new dining room table. And as you move you buy or sell pieces to fit your needs and tastes. When you buy a vacation or investment home in a different area, odds are SO VERY GOOD that you aren’t going to bother with shipping things out to furnish it. This is why many properties in Park City are sold furnished: it’s absurd for the sellers and buyers to ship all of their furniture out or into the house, so we sell them with furniture because it’s convenient.

Barclay Butera’s Park City showroom, please note the WALL OF FABRICS

Continue reading “Nice (Furniture) Package”