One of the main reasons given by those that wish to see minimum pricing for my lovely cheap super market lager advocate that cheap alcohol is irresponsible and results in pre loading. That is necking alcohol prior to a night out and heading out drunk. I have always considered this a dubious argument. If heading out “on the piss” rather than a sedate civilised drink, the idea of getting pissed beforehand is none to wise. I have trouble keeping pace as it is, starting off pissed is a no no.
The argument has struck me as nothing more nor less than an attempt by pubs and bars to deflect attention from there own irresponsible retailing of alcohol to drunks whilst trying to kybosh what they see as competition from supermarkets. An attempt to make price the determinant of responsibility rather than the action of selling a drunk another drink.
If you want to read stories of binge drink Britain and the outrage it creates in polite society then the Daily Mail must be the paper of choice. A link to a recent binge drink Britain story here.
The usual stuff. Pissed up younger drinkers, vomiting and that recent phenomenon of great public outrage “pissing on a war memorial”. I seek to defend none of it, but offer the view that the article would by its nature concentrate on the few that caused problems rather than the many more that went out, got pissed, pulled if they were lucky, fought with no one and vomited nowhere, and learnt the hard way that the next morning getting pissed gives you a hangover. Young lads and lasses have a nice night out isn’t news. Pissing on a war memorial is news.
I have never been on a carnage night out, and frankly would not want to, but it does remind me of a Club 18-30 holiday I once went on when I was single where one of the excursions was a paid for pub crawl. The lads fancied a week in Ibiza and for whatever reason Club 18-30 was cheap. Cheap because the hotel was a dump, but we had a nice time. I pulled, as did a few mates, and those that didn’t were the lads you were not expecting to pull anyway and can’t pull for toffee in England. I also got pissed every night.
We didn’t go on the paid for pub crawl excursion figuring it wasn’t difficult to punt yourself around the local bars and spend the money on lager. We ran into the excursion and the guy running it collared us with “your drinking from your left hand, you have to down it in one”. I replied “No I don’t, I’m not on your excursion, I’m just out with my mates” When he tried further to engage us in jolly banter my mate Cockney Dave said to him “No offence pal, but we’re on the pull, and we’re in with these scouse lasses, so why don’t you piss off back to the kids that need a guided pub crawl and leave us to it”. He turned and went. That is my only experience of a guided pub crawl, not going on one.
Back to the Daily Mail outrage, I have a few questions to ask.
Aqua Lounge club boss Victoria Andrews told the paper: 'When we hear it is going to be a Carnage night, we despair.'
Really? Why is that then? You don’t have to serve a bunch of kids with carnage t-shirts on, you can ask them to leave. Not let them in. If you don’t like it, don’t co-operate with it. Oh, I forget, you’d like to flog these kids a drink and let them know about your bar because they will be studying in the area for the next few years and presumably will want to go out for a drink again. This won’t be the first and last night out for the new students. This is your new trade. Okay then, but you don’t have to serve drunk people do you?
As for how they got drunk. Are we really saying the problem is a drink the kids may or may not have had before going out? Or is the problem of pissed up kids pissing on war memorials the last drink they were served?
If publicans wish to present themselves as the responsible face of alcohol retailing, they might want to do the following. Stop serving drunk people, and shut the fuck up about irresponsible cheap supermarket lager.
Anyway I can’t write this tosh all day, I’ve got 24 cans of cheap Carling to neck and a war memorial to piss on.