Thursday, August 2, 2012

Megan Riley and the Texas Chili Parlor

Caroline Hailson, daughter of Megan's friend and former
co-worker, Olivia Hailson.  What time is it?
Shot time!
Our last post included a photo and a question.  This is the photo, a young lady holding a sign.  The sign asks "What Time is it?"  and has a picture of some beverage.  I couldn't figure out the answer to the sign question so I asked blog visitors for help.

Outlaws wide receiver Megan "Red" Riley replied.   "The answer to this sign  is 'Shot time' lol."  She went on to comment:  "After the game, ladies, after the game."

As with many answers, hers raised more questions for me.  Like why would Megan's fans associate a shot of anything with football?  And that gave me a topic for today's post.

Megan's nick name is "Red" because, well look at a couple photos from Outlaw's practices. 

Not clear in this picture but I wanted to get
context - Megan is a receiver and this is a shot
of her practicing receiving.  In the next photo
she has received and is starting to practice running.

In this one you can see the red hair.

Right.  She's a red-head.  Natural nickname, "Red."

But that's not the reason for the sign.  The sign relates to her work.  Megan is a bartender at the famous Texas Chili Parlor located at 1409 Lavaca in downtown Austin.  The TCP website promises "A visit to TCP will do your spirit good—great food, full bar, lively staff, and funky atmosphere..." (emphasis mine)

Megan became an instant celebrity for me when I learned she is part of the lively staff at TCP.  I have a fond memory of taking some corporate guests to the Texas Chili Parlor.  I worked at the local office of a large corporation based in Bloomington, Illinois.  (Illinois.  North.)  A couple corporate associates visited me so I could show them the right way to run a top quality department.  As a special treat I took them to Texas Chili Parlor.  

My friend Ron ordered Chili - what else would you order at a Chili Parlor?  The waitress asked what grade, one-X, two-X, or three-X.  Ron timidly said one-X but quickly upgraded to two-X when he saw a look of derision cloud the server's face.  A little later and about half-way through lunch we noticed Ron had become quiet, his face bright red,  beads of sweat dripping down.  We asked how he was enjoying his Chili.  "Great," he lied, "but I don't think I could have handled the three-X." 

(By way of full disclosure, I'm a Yankee, too.  I didn't order Chili at all because even one-X scares me.  Give me mild food...)

So Megan, who are these fans of yours?  The one holding the "What Time is it" sign is Caroline Hailson.  Caroline's mother is Olivia Hailson who, five years ago, worked at "said Chili Parlor" and became friends with Megan.  The whole family came to the game loaded with signs and good cheer to encourage Megan. 

Left to right, Louie Hailson, Olivia, daughter Mary (red hair), niece Rachel (who currently
works with Megan at the Chili Parlor), and "baby" Hailson Caroline who lives in Denton.

Being a photographer at Outlaws games has enabled me to meet many fascinating and fun and nice people.  Even some celebrities, like a bartender at a Texas landmark establishment.  I have great admiration for bartenders even though my alcohol consumption is limited to a glass of wine from time to time. 

On the chance some of Megan's friends and co-workers will see this blog post, I browsed my photos looking for shots of Megan in action.  Found a couple.  I think they capture the essence, if not the fun, of the game.

Sometimes wide receivers get to carry the
ball from scrimmage. 

The ground is hard.  Can you see Megan's eyes?  Is she wincing?  Or did I just catch her
in mid-blink.  Sure looks like fun, doesn't it?

Megan, one of these days I'm going to revisit the Chili parlor and let  you pour me a glass of Kendall Jackson Chardonnay.  And maybe a little Chili - do you have zero-X Chili?

Can I have your autograph?


Megan Red Riley said...

Love love love it Dennis! I feel like a celebrity! My friends are going to be blown away! Thanks!!

Megan Red Riley said...

Also, that's a chili parlor tshirt in those practice pics.. How appropriate!

Jenriley78741 said...

Awesome! Me loves me some Megorita!!!