Chatting in Micro Pubs/Bars – A Guide

Inspired by this post from Richard Coldwell and the initial comment from “Dave”

First of all we need to define the difference between what is a Micro Pub and what is a Micro Bar

“All pubs have a bar but no bar has a pub”

Note: this guide assumes the location of said micro outlet is in a small-to-medium sized town, not a city or tourist trap/destination.

Micro Pub

The Drinks

The emphasis is on cask beer and generally session strength at that.  If there is any keg dispense it is usually a lager because the founder understood who his core clientèle would want to drink.  There will also be a red wine, a white wine, a Prosecco and some spirits (usually gin or whatever is on trend) all in order to increase footfall over the weekends.  Cider may also exist in known bottled varieties or boxed “real” ones.  Soft drinks will be dispensed from 2 litre plastic bottles blatantly purchased from the closest supermarket.

The Drinkers

What you’d find in most macro pubs, with slight variation depending on how close the nearest bookies is.

They are the kind of people who’ll walk into a micro bar and complain about the prices.

The Décor

All wood but that is because it was the cheapest material, a lick of paint here and there but pretty much like a macro pub, only it looks like your 50 year old twice-divorced uncle has simply converted his spare room.  Has one toilet.

The Landlord

Your 50 year old twice-divorced uncle who wanted to do something different.

The Wildlife

No cats. Cats are not found in micro pubs.  Dogs are allowed; they will be hulking beasts curled at the owners feet and fed occasional crisps or hog lumps.  Drool will be present.

 

Micro Bar

The Drinks

The emphasis is on keg beer and generally bastard strength at that.  If there is any cask dispense it is usually one pale and one bitter because the founder understood what his day trip visitors would want to drink.  There will also be a plethora of red wine, white wine, Prosecco and a massive choice of spirits, at least 25 gins. Soft drinks will be dispensed from 100mL glass bottles.  Lager may also exist but in bottle form, from some obscure German brewery, this is in order to increase footfall over the weekend and then hope they never return.  Probably also doubles as a bottle shop for retail purposes.

The Drinkers

Beer bloggers, overly-agitated graphic designers and those who’ve wandered in on the recommendation of some lifestyle journalist who wrote that piece by plagiarising what the aforementioned beer bloggers wrote about the place.

They are the kind of people who’ll walk into a micro pub and complain about the lack of choice.

The Décor

All wood but is was massively over priced because of the patina effect, a lick of paint here and there but pretty much like the railway arch the beer was brewed in.  Has one toilet.

The Landlord

Your 50 year old uncle who has always had that funky beard.

The Wildlife

No cats. Cats are not found in micro bars.  Dogs are allowed; they will be small, fluffy, lap-based things brought along by the owner in order to kick start an interaction.

How To Have A Conversation

Close proximity and bench seating demands conversation be had however this still depends on where you are.

In a micro pub, assuming most of the people aren’t doing all they can to avoid eye contact, let alone conversation because they most likely lie on the autism scale somewhere, you are in for a simple and quiet drink.  Talking may occur over the clarity of the pint in front of you.  You will only drink a pint (568mL), a half is acceptable if you’ve kept your coat on because you’re going to be racing to catch a bus/train/you are driving.

In a micro bar, you will get talked at, those doing the talking even know the brewer, they are on first name terms, or at least have over heard them talking to someone else, once.  You will drink a pint as your first session ale and loosener but then progress on to halves and then thirds inversely proportional to the ABV of the drink.

Talking in the micro pub may stray on to politics, you might get offended with the frankness of the views expressed and the terms used.

Talking in the micro bar may stray on to politics, the overly-agitated graphic designers will sulk off in tears or demand you leave their safe space.

Talking in micro pubs is a rare thing, generally kept between those who recognise each other.

Talking in micro bars because massive ABV’s plus immense egos results in verbal diarrhoea.

 

Use these pointers wisely; know your surroundings, know your adversaries and your conversations, or lack thereof, in micros up and down the UK will be blissfully symphonic or wonderfully, silently golden.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

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Let Teachers Teach, Let Parents Parent…

Link 1

Link 2

This is in light of the apparent need to schools to prepare children, as they move from primary to secondary education, for the perils of social media.

This shit is not something schools should be concerning themselves with.  It is just another attempt for state interference at the behest of the lazy and the conceited of those in the parenting world.

Another pointless “social education” lesson that creates unnecessary workloads for teachers and wastes the time of all involved.

But I suppose if the end goal is another generation schooled in group think and unblinking, unquestioning minds then I suppose it is for the best.

For me social media is a new beast that people of all ages chose to use or not, adapt or not but for kids, the searching for likes and responses is no different than when every kid was growing up, wanting what the other kids had, be it the newest trainers, or a calculator watch, a hula hoop.

Only in this day and age kids can do it without Dennis being a menace anymore, I wonder what the Beano fan club badges will say on them now?

 

 

Thanks for reading.

Down with Moistened Bints

That is Republicanism in a “not monarchy” sense, not that strange party that the US electorate have to decide if they vote for them because they are less strange than the Democrat option.

It is always a funny old time over Christmas and New Year in relation to the Royal Family in the UK but then again it has been a strange time for the length of my lifetime.

Nation Anthem

I’ll get this out of the way now, it isn’t a national anthem, it is a royalist dirge. We’ve expunged the final verse down the memory hole; talking about crushing rebellious Scots (written prior to Salmon/Sturgeon) so we mainly sing only the first verse, but for me a song that bangs on about two entities I don’t either support or believe in, monarchy and God, is not something I will ever sing.

Punk – Silver Jubilee (1977)

Not that I was actually around at this specific moment in time but I was born into a post-Sex Pistols world, when the UK seemed very much loyal to Queen Elizabeth II, without focusing too much on “the troubles” going on in Ireland.  This was just some up-washed counter culture movement that didn’t have much impact on anything other than selling papers.

And that is the general key to all of this, the relationship between the media and the monarchy.  As I currently write this we are in the midst of a media fawning session.  How this quite translates into public views I don’t know but it has been fun to note that just because Prince Harry (Harry, because he’s normal like, he is anything but a Henry) has decided to shack up with some mixed race (bi-racial) woman in Meghan Markle that this is supposed to herald the brave, new dawn of a modern monarchy.

Quite how it does this in general I do not know, when media outlets such as the Guardian, Independent and Observer, once notoriously republican themselves, bang on about this modernising while at the same time questioning privilege in other strata of society you do begin to wonder when they will get punched by a big hypocrite fist.

Paris – Princess Diana (1997)

Quite possibly the only time I’ve had sympathy for the royal family and again it derives for the media and their love (hounding) of Diana Spencer.

I don’t really care for conspiracy theories or who she was dating, the simple facts are she was alive at the crash scene. 4 people were in that car, only 1 was wearing a seat belt and that 1 person survived.

If Prince Henry wishes to talk about things close to his heart, perhaps road safety would be a good place to start.

Honours List (2017)

Talk is that it will soon be Sir Nick Clegg.  Now granted a lot of these “honours” are put forward by the government of the time but for me it is just a way of keeping the serfs in line.  Our God chosen betters recognising work done by us plebs, while also honouring the privileged, regardless of just how big a failure they’ve actually been.

 

Our monarchy is not benign and as an institution it is a massive slap in the face to what could be a mature and fully fledged democracy, but that has long been the smug comeback by those who love a bit of the status quo, “what would you want, President Blair? President Branson?”

The other bit of propaganda trotted out as routine twice a year is how much the royal family “cost” verses how much the bring into the country via tourism, etc.  Can’t ever want to change anything because we may end up a bit poorer.

The most sensible argument for keeping the monarchy is just how many people are employed by them, of course when they aren’t using schemes (legal ones of course) to avoid paying tax in the a country they “rule.”

I have nothing personal against any individual in the royal family, put it to a vote and Elizabeth Windsor would probably be the box I ticked, Charles is a bit debatable, as is his progeny, but that is me liking a bit of tradition and seeing subsequent successions to the throne as a change, much like Australia may well vote on, to end this royal line and move on to something that sees the UK lose another few levels of authority making it’s people more independent, and yes, put another nail in the heart of actual privilege.

Anyway, lets just stick to the funny…

 

Thanks for reading.

 

 

 

#MeToo – Poisoning the Well

Nearly two month ago I wrote a piece about the random hysteria and fall-out from the Harvey Weinstein case, in which I made a passing comment about the Orwellian nature of politicians wanting to “raise the conviction rate” for sex crimes.

This week there was this story about Metropolitan Police review of rape cases evidence in which at least 30 rape cases will be reviewed, it is implied because of the way evidence was handled in each of these cases.

Commentators have been putting forward their reasonings for these failings and the above BBC link sums it up perfectly:

Undoubtedly the squeeze on resources, with cuts in the Crown Prosecution Service and policing and a national shortage of detectives, together with the increased caseload for sexual offences units, have played their part.

An inspection report this year also pinpointed inadequacies in training and supervision.

Some see the problems as a direct result of a misplaced culture of “believing” the victim, where police don’t look for or withhold contradictory evidence – but that’s an assertion for the attorney general’s inquiry to examine.

It other words, its the governments fault for a lack of funding, training, etc. but it is dubious whether we’ve now put too much emphasis on securing convictions whatever the cost.

It is very sad that it has come to this.  It strikes right at the very heart of a legal system that is built on innocence until proven guilty and in all these scenarios both the accuser and the accused will end up have a diminished amount of faith in the legal system and the pursuit of having a fair trial.

In other Orwellian fall-0ut from the #MeToo histrionics, if it wasn’t enough to send Kevin Spacey down the memory hole for simply being accused of improper conduct, it is now Matt Damon’s turn, for merely speaking, quite clearly and precisely about his views on conflation of behaviour with actual rapes and sexual assaults, to have his roles in current and future films considered ripe for exorcising from history.

This is a troubling path we are travelling down and precedents are being set at a knee-jerking rate because you can’t be seen to hold even a slight difference of opinion from the new orthodoxy.

Matthew Hopkins would be proud, confused but proud.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

Schadenfreude vs Principles

Following the continued fall out from the accusations against Harvey Weinstein and the subsequent #MeToo fire-storm that followed I wrote a piece which was basically looking at all these accusations and stories (stories in the generic sense, not in the “fiction” way) in a cold, detached and rational way that would put the rule of law and the adage of innocent until proven guilty above believe wholesale any claims made by anyone against anyone else.

I held of making this specific piece all 2 of you are reading now after serial Trump-baiter and one trick pony actor George Takei had allegations of groping levelled against him.

I held off again when the most snobby of all famous man-hating virtue-signallers Lena Dunham defended one of her shows writers after allegations were made against him.

Then I wrote a piece about something called “hipster racism” a wonderful bit of made up phrasing I’d only become aware of after this was what Dunham was also accused of being.

But I could no longer hold back when, earlier this week, Harry Potter author Joanne Rowling, defended the casting of alleged wife beater Johnny Depp in another of her insipid brain fluff movies, this after “months of silence” on the issue following the release of the original Fantastic Beasts movie.

The fact of the matter is that I am ideologically at odds with the roles that Takei, to a lesser extent, but mainly Dunham and Rowling have both ascended to but also had placed on them thanks to the power of social media and the giant echo-chamber witch-hunting that can arise mainly on twitter

These 3 have constantly stirred up discontent on twitter, be it on purpose or just lending weight to certain hysteria, for numerous amount of right-on and horrible illiberal liberal causes that always attack at the cores of free speech.

But this should not detract from the fact that, in Takei’s case he is indeed innocent until proven guilty and in the other two cases, they themselves are holding this principle to the letter when it comes to things close to them.

Granted their stances are massively hypocritical given some of the previous things they have said but this doesn’t change the fact that they are well within their rights to defend people because they are directly linked to them.

It is amusing watching this whole sorry mess of liberal pie eat itself and the backlash, especially against Rowling has been amusing and caused warm feelings of Schadenfreude to coarse through my veins but it isn’t really personally, it is just it it a magnificent way of holding a mirror up to the fetid, festering, moral Gordian knots that a certain type of persons love to tie themselves up in.

 

Thanks for reading.

 

Lindsay Shepherd and the Mis-Education of Universities

This news probably won’t be that big here in the UK but it is a fine example of the backwards step the universities are taking in educating what are supposed to be future generations of free thinking, highly educated people (well, those who aren’t doing media degrees).

In a communications class (no, I don’t know what that is), a graduate teacher played a clip by a renowned lecturer and current lightning rod of the transgender debate, Jordan Peterson, in order to explore and debate the use of pronouns; he, she, they, it, ze, zer and a whole new range of other made up words that look like someone who was particularly poor at Scrabble or Countdown would offer as an answer.

A complaint (confidentially of course) was made against her and she was brought into a disciplinary meeting to discuss what was said and how they could vet her lesson plans in the future.

This seemed to stem from the disciplinary panel having little faith in the ability of their students (all 18+, so adults) to process critically anything that they might disagree with.

Lucky the teacher in question, Lindsay Shepherd, had the forethought to record the meeting on her phone, which has since been “leaked” and it offers not only a glimpse of what a cool, collected and calm person Shepherd is but also the staggering lack of common sense and horrible group think that the panel of other teachers also display.

 

As with anything these days, when the ultimate stupidity of some is laid bare for the world to view, the aggressors are generally quick to apologise, which the university has since done

FULL TEXT: Apology from Wilfrid Laurier officials over handling of free speech controversy

But they still insert caveats into their climbdowns

Let me be clear by stating that Laurier is committed to the abiding principles of freedom of speech and freedom of expression. Giving life to these principles while respecting fundamentally important human rights and our institutional values of diversity and inclusion, is not a simple matter.

Free speech is a very simple matter, you have it or you don’t.

Universities in the UK are seeing an invasion of the anti-free speech crowd.  This is currently manifesting itself as safe spaces.

This has led to some offering “Brave Spaces” which only reinforce the safe space mentality of hurt feelings being more important than free speech and free thought.

Likewise, following the pernicious Rhodes Must Fall debacle, now a student in Liverpool wants former PM Gladstone to have his name removed as the name of a halls of residence because of his apparent lack of opposition to the slave trade.

University has changed a lot since I was there and not for the better.

 

Thanks for reading.

Women Vs Transgenders…

Stop calling pupils girls – it reminds them of their gender

 

Lily Madigan voted in as a Labour women’s officer

 

Rapist who underwent gender transition has been moved to a women’s prison

 

UK government opposes the term “pregnant woman”

 

The inevitable war between clear, level headed women with common sense and the identity brigade, 3rd wave feminists and general twats will be an extremely entertaining show of face-palm ridiculousness.

I look forward to mansplaining some aspects of it at a later date.

 

Thanks for reading.