I’ve just come back from a stag weekend. It’s fair to say they’re not my natural environment — I’m too introverted and uptight to really let loose — but this one was fun. At the end, traveling back to Penzance with a disgusting hangover, I realised something: I hadn’t thought about beer all weekend.
Of course, I drank plenty. Heineken from a mini-keg; canned Kronenbourg 1664; even a few very welcome pints of real ale in cosy country pubs. But I wasn’t in charge of the beer or where we drank it, and simply went with the flow.
In fact, refusing to drink what was shoved into my hand, or insisting on one pub over another, would have been a serious social misstep. The point of a weekend like this is for everyone to bond through shared experiences. If any individual should be the centre of attention, it’s the stag or hen, not the prima donna with the sensitive palate demanding special treatment.
Drinking a few dodgy lagers didn’t kill me and, anyway, just as we’ve always found on holiday, they taste better in the right context.
Aside: at one point, I was asked to recommend a hoppy beer in a pub. I didn’t recognise any of them and asked the landlord for advice. He shrugged. “Don’t ask me, mate.” Crap, right?