On Saturday, an employee tasked with updating the bistro's roadside marquee hoped to get some chuckles by changing the sign to read: "BEER SHOULD BE LIKE VIOLENCE . . . DOMESTIC."
A Roots employee hoped to get some chuckles with: "BEER S HOULD BE LIKE VIOLENCE . . . DOMESTIC."
So it turns out, jokes about local brewing and domestic violence — which affects one in four women during their lifetime — don't get many laughs in 2013. But when they're on a sign on a major thoroughfare, they make for great pictures to post online.
As outrage on Twitter and Facebook ensued, manager Kenneth Choate told Katharine Shilcutt that the one-liner was posted by an employee who searched for so-called funny signs on the Internet (bastion of tastefulness that it is). In the end, Choate insists the phrase was only up for about 10 minutes.
Roots management felt the need to respond with another zinger on its marquee: "SERIOUSLY, FOCUS YOUR ENERGY ON EQUAL RIGHTS."
Needless to say, the new sign didn't help. By Sunday, the restaurant posted a full apology — "SORRY A MILLION TIMES OVER HOUSTON" — and went to social media for a more detailed mea culpa.
Roots responded with another zinger: "SERIOUSLY, FOCUS YOUR ENERGY ON EQUAL RIGHTS."
"As the General Manager of Roots Bistro I would like to formally apologize for our recent signage," Choate wrote on Facebook.
"In no way would we ever ever promote violence on any level. We work tirelessly to support the people and organizations in this city and would never want to hurt or offend anyone."
He said the restaurant supports a number of local charities, including women's shelters.
Roots Bistro was not immediately available for comment.