Tag Archives: pubs

Perchance I Shall Thumb My Nose

Will government do the hokey cokey and close
The pubs (which only reopened on 4 July)?
Scientists cry,
“We maintain, that the pubs must close again!”.
And the electorate thumb their nose
At politicians,
As the country goes
To pedition.

And I think
Of a dry
Autumn to come.
So will enjoy a drink
In the hot summer sun.
And rhyme
‘Ere time
Is called, and the pubs are closed.

And, perchance
I shall thumb my nose
At those
Who would destroy
The dance
Of joy.

Super Saturday?

On Saturday 4 July, (the first day on which pubs in England reopened), the so-called “Super Saturday”, I went to my favourite local pub with friends. For anyone who isn’t aware, the pubs (along with restaurants and many other venues) closed in March, due to an order from the government, the instructions being designed to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

On entering the pub, my friend and I had our temperatures taken by a young woman. Then, our temperatures being normal, we sanitised our hands with sanitiser. Following this “new normal”, my friend and I where conducted to a table, from where we ordered our drinks.

Anyone familiar with the British pub may well have visions of people standing or sitting around the bar, chatting, reading newspapers or swearing at the television when their favourite team misses a chance to score a goal! Sadly, under “the new normal”, this has been replaced by the rule that customers may not congregate at the bar, and must be served at a table which, following their departure will be sanitised by pub staff.

Whilst it was good to catch up with friends (another friend and his wife joined us later), I missed the mingling which is part and parcel of the traditional English pub. There was no more going up to the bar and exchanging banter with regulars, nor could one (officially at least) invite someone who was not part of the original party to join your table.

The young woman serving us (the same lady who had taken our temperatures) was wearing a mask. Whilst I can, of course understand her reasons for doing so (to protect against the possibility of contracting or passing on the virus), I couldn’t help thinking how she would cope on a baking hot summer’s day!

If you read the reports of “Super Saturday” you will, no doubt come across stories of “drunks not socially distancing”. All I can say is that neither my friends or I witnessed any such behaviour. Indeed the pub was rather quiet, perhaps owing to the fear of contracting the virus which does (I know through conversations with people) pray on the minds of some.

Whilst I was delighted to enjoy a few pints in the company of friends, I felt a sense of sadness at the sanitised atmosphere. We have, I fear lost something, I hope not permanently. We have lost the natural vibrancy of the traditional British watering hole. We have lost the stopping to chat to old acquaintences at the bar as we order our drinks. We have lost the ability (at least officially) to invite strangers to join us for a drink at our table. All this may be necessary, but it is still a loss and there is no getting away from that fact.

Kevin

When A Barmaid Who Is More Than Divine

When a barmaid who is more than divine
Said, “sir, you have had to much wine!”,
And I said, “only a fool
Could possibly fall off this stool!”,
She said, “you are lying in the wine!”.

A Case of Mistaken Identity

A few days back, I received an email from a lady saying how nice it had been to meet me, expressing thanks for looking at her poems and asking if I could please provide her with the telephone number of a MS S. We had, she said met in a pub called The Bull.

All of this was delightful. However, I have no recollection whatsoever of having met the lady in question. I don’t frequent a pub called The Bull and I am not acquainted with MS s!

On receving the email, I had a moment of doubt. Had I, suffered a memory loss, or been in some third dimention! A few seconds thought led to the obvious conclusion that the lady had emailed me in error. She had, I assume met with another poet and wishing to ascertain Ms S’s number had searched online for the poet in question. However, rather than finding her acquaintence she had found one K Morris Poet online, namely myself!

I sent a polite response to my correspondent saying that she had emailed me by mistake and wishing her well with her poems, and that was the end of the matter save for a brief email from the lady apologising for her mistake.

This is not the first time that I have been mistaken for someone other than myself. I have been asked whether I played the piano in a pub I have never drunk in, and been asked if I used to live in an area with which I am unfamiliar. Perhaps I have a long lost twin of whom I am wholly unaware!

Whilst I have never propped up the bar in The Bull, I have, for many years enjoyed the convivial atmosphere in The Railway Bell, https://www.rampubcompany.co.uk/visit-pubs/railway-bell. The Bell has an unofficial lending library where customers can leave books and borrow those left by others. I am delighted that several of my books are on the shelves (you can see my “selected Poems” in the photograph below).

Kevin

The English Pub

I have stood
In many an English pub
Drinking beer
Both indifferent, and sometimes good.
Its queer
How people with nothing in common mingle
And those who go in single
A couple become
(At least until the rise of sun
On the morrow
When sorrow
May come,
Or they say
“That was fun”
And go their way
Or perhaps they are forever
Drawn together
As birds of a feather,
(Well, at least
Until eternal peace
Breaks their heart apart).

I have stood
In many an English pub
And sometimes caused a fuss
When I did discuss
Political matter.
No friendship did I shatter
Though I have heard
Many a foolish word
And spoken more than one or two
Its true.

I have shared a glass
With a pretty lass
At the bar
And wondered how far
(Or near we all are
To paradise
Or vice),
And I have said “good night”
And thought on delight
That never was
Because she
Had no interest in me,
Or maybe
I missed the cue to dance
And my chance
To go far
Beyond the bar . . .

I love
The solid wood
Of the traditional pub
And the way in which people, for the most part
Get along. For at its best the pubs at the heart
Of the community.
A unity
In diversity, where you see
People of every class
Raise a glass,
And as they drink
Think, “this is our pub
For bad or good
And we will keep it this way. Things will change
But the pub will remain
For it is more
Than you or me.
It is tradition, tolerance and diversity.

Blind Publican

Last night, I had a dream in which I had agreed to work in my local pub. Being blind, this would, no doubt have been a very interesting experience for me and the customers of that esteemed establishment.
My peculiar dream led to the composition of the below rhyme.

When a blind man whose name is Grub
Got a job in his local pub,
Those wanting brandy
Got lemonade shandy,
But the grub, it was really quite good!

I Know A Young Barmaid Named Page

I know a young barmaid named Page
With whom I try to engage.
But when I ask her to dance
She says, “you have no chance,
As your bar bill you haven’t paid!”.

I know a young actress named Page
With whom I tried to engage.
But when I asked her to dance
She said, “you have no chance,
Then she threw me off the stage!”.

Skid Row

When, before 9 am
I hear the clink
Of bottles, I think
On the fine line
Between those who,
Like me
Drink coffee
Or Tea.
And enjoy a pint or 2
(In the afternoon or evening),
And men
Who, before 9 am
Bottles chink
On the quiet street
That does go
Down to Skid Row.

I Know a Tough Young Man Called Grub

I know a tough young man called Grub
Who works in a very rough pub.
A tattooed young lady named miss Moore
Throws troublemakers out the door
And me, I own that pub.

“I don’t repeat gossip … so listen carefully”

“I don’t repeat gossip … so listen carefully”.

Yesterday (Sunday 23 September), I ran into an acquaintance in a local pub, and he invited me to join him at his table. I accepted gladly and enjoyed catching up as we haden’t come across one another for a while.

During the course of our chat, my acquaintance came out with the above quotation, which greatly amused me and I fell to pondering on its origin.

The quote can be found on metal plaques and mugs, but one of the few places where it’s origins are discussed is here, https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=733071. However this post gives no conclusive evidence as to the quotations origin. If any of my readers know where the above eminates from, I would be very interested to hear from you.

Kevin