20th Century Pub Blogging and writing

Everything we wrote in June 2019

Despite a ten-day holiday at the start of the month we managed to write a little more in June than in May. Or, rather, to find time to type up some of the things we’ve got on the big list of stuff to blog about.

We started the month with a reflection on the unwritten rules of round-buying which seemed to sneak outside of the bubble and got shared by a few people who aren’t beer geeks but are, presumably, interested in how Britain works.

Next, Ray went solo with some thoughts on The Winchester, the pub from the 2004 zombie comedy Shaun of the Dead:

It has an added resonance for me in that, for several years in my own flat-sharing twenties, I lived around the corner from The Winchester… And, to be clear, I don’t mean that I lived near a pub that was like The Winchester: the actual pub you actually see in the actual film was about four minutes walk from my house in New Cross, South London.

We found something to arrest our attention in a 1960s postcard of a town in Yorkshire. Can you spot what?

Meanwhile, over on our Patreon feed, we gave a blow-by-blow account of our holiday, typing up our half-formed thoughts on the beer and pubs of Glasgow, Fort William, Edinburgh and thereabouts. Then, when we got home…

One of the most substantial posts of the month was this attempt to pull together our thoughts on beer and pubs in Glasgow, a city that of course we didn’t get to know in five days. Still, it didn’t seem to make anybody mad, so we can’t have done too badly.

At this point, we’ll mention our biggest Tweet of the month:

Then we took a brief pause from thinking about Scotland to think about the J.D. Wetherspoon chain and its ever-more central place in British culture – the default place for all kinds of meetings, business and time-killing that used to happen in parks, cafes and libraries.

Our visit to Edinburgh was brief but intense: we visited two pubs, gawped at a few others, and left feeling ill equipped to draw anything like a conclusion. The more interesting part of this post, perhaps, is that it gave us an opportunity to confess that the days of exhausting holiday completism are behind us:

Shame you didn’t make it to…” Well, here’s the thing: we’re at peace with the idea that we can’t get to every pub in every city on every visit… Cramming ten pubs into a single day just isn’t much fun for us anymore; we’d rather than spend two hours in one pub and three in another than just 20 minutes each in every stop on a crawl.

We took Ray’s parents on a craft beer crawl and, to our surprise, they loved it. That taught us a lesson: don’t assume you know what people will like based on their age or previous taste.

Tennent's Lager: pint, sign, keg font.

Back to Scotland: we liked Tennent’s. We didn’t love it, we don’t think it’s the finest beer ever brewed, but we liked it. And we like liking beers.

We also put together our usual round-ups of news and links each Saturday:

And as well as our notes on Scotland, Patreon subscribers also got a bit of pub life, notes on our favourite beers of the past couple of weekends and (if they’re paying $5+ per month) a new eBook, One for the Road, pulling together some of our writing on pubs that didn’t appear in Balmy Nectar.

We also kept busy on Instagram:

And, finally, there was a chunky email newsletter with notes on positivity in beer, beer media, eBooks and oral history. Sign up here if you want to get the next one.