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The curious case of the Bearded Baby Button

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Sometimes it really is the little things in life that can often bring the biggest smile to my face, and I hope the words that follow will also compel you to show your own pearly whites.

I’m delighted to tell you about a new, small and genius initiative that might soon be coming to a restaurant or bar near you:

Bearded Baby Buttons.

When you take a look around in Tacoma, you’ll see all kinds of thumb-sized buttons appearing on the collars, shirts or backpacks of a variety of individuals.

Chances are these buttons are of the Bearded Baby sort.

Bearded Baby Buttons is a concept that started between Chris Trashcan Miller and Christopher Fuzzy (or Quan Fi) Wilson, both of The Red Hot fame.

The next time you go to The Red Hot, upon entering, I need you to immediately look to the left, which is where you’ll find the first Bearded Baby Buttons vending (gumball-like) machine.

Fuzzy and Trashcan (with some help from friends and family members) create each of the thumb-sized treats with their very own custom button maker. What will crack you up, and should also show you only greatness will follow, is the categories of buttons that they’ve created so far.

Currently in the Bearded Baby dispenser, your 50-cent capsule will be filled with a button (and for really lucky ones, two buttons) from the Food vs. Planet of the Apes category. That means you’ll get a picturesque button that has either bacon, corn on the cob, pizza, steak, donuts, hot dogs (of course), or a member of the Planet of the Apes, including Charlton Heston.

Previous buttons have included Zombies vs. Robots, ’70s vs. ’80s cartoon stars, Mr. T vs. Chuck Norris and Bruce Lee vs. Rap Superstars.

You can often find a lineup of people waiting to sink their quarters into the machine to see what kind of button they’ll get; they trade them, and more of these vending machines are sure to show up at a joint near you. Within the next couple of months, Bearded Baby vending machines will likely appear at House of Tattoo, the Top of Tacoma, Rosewood and The New Frontier Lounge.

Bearded Baby can also produce 100 full-color buttons for your individual business, band or organization for $30, and they’ve done so for bands including Helms Alee, Cody Foster’s Army, The Plastards, Mico de Noche, Lozen; organizations including Feed Tacoma, The Parkway, The Rosewood, Flaming Dragon and House of Tattoo; Izabella’s (Miller’s 8-year-old daughter) Valentines Day gifts to her fellow students; and UW Professor Dr. Don’s Egyptian studies program.

How fun: Future button categories will likely include Famous Tacoma Faces. Could the next pin be of you?

For more information, go to The Red Hot and drop your quarters in, or e-mail

[The Red Hot, 2914 Sixth Ave., Tacoma, 253.779. 0229]

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