The Original and Best

One of my favourite reads is Paul Bailey’s Beer Blog, mainly because he gives us so much context to his pub visits we get a real insight into his family dynamics.

I particularly enjoy the posts about his foreign trips with his son Matthew (a charming lad) and Paul’s determined (doomed ?) efforts to convert him to”proper beer“.

Last week I had to pop into my own son’s college to drop off his driving shoes (he’s taking lessons so he can drive me round Fife next year).

Dad, can you take me out to that pub for lunch, my lesson is two hours away“.

Queen Edith

That pub was the Queen Edith, Cambridge’s most recent new build and closest pub to Addenbrookes.  Not that does it any great favours.

Now you’ll know that, at 17, Matt is getting the sort of Dad-to-Son chats about life that all 17 year olds get.

“Son, do you know why this pub is less busy than it would have been in 2007 ?”

The original version of Twin Fantasy is the best, and don’t ever let me hear you say otherwise, young man

“Promise me you’ll never dress like BRAPA”  etc etc

We always have wide-ranging chats about pubs and Car Seat Headrest, and I always get told off for taking surreptitious photos.  This Friday lunchtime didn’t look like there’d be anything blogworthy though.

Matt wondering what the WiFi  code is in the corner

The Queen Edith had been edged out of the Beer Guide, but would be a shoo-in anywhere north of the A689.

Proper pumpclips

I went for the lower ABV mild, an acid test of quality on a slow-moving session.

No jokes about bulls

Where are you sitting ?”

Over there near the old carpet

“The carpet !

Yeah, the carpet

Back at the table, Matt had obviously been reading my blog*.


Are you combusting at those people all standing at the bar ?”  I was.

All was forgiven as they turned out to be lab technicians, always great blog material.

Several of them had that Bayerische beer with the blue and white label; always a giveaway.

Most of the bantz was about colostomy bags and continence pads (mind, that’s pretty much my day as a volunteer OAP shopper). But eventually, the truth emerged.

“I keep an axe under the bed”

“I keep a rugby bat under mine”

“What a load of asinine dross”

I was surprised they didn’t start on the Mastermind.

It made an excellent creamy Minotaur (NBSS 3.3, same as the ABV) even better.

Lacings alert

And Matt enjoyed a months supply of calories in one portion of nachos, half of which I nicked when he went to the loo.

Get away Jamie !

He’ll learn.

*Actually the little traitor is a confirmed BRAPA fan.




  1. I’m wondering about this with my baby nephew (9 months old at the moment) and when he learns to use Google (poss. in 18 months) and he finds out about the life I’ve led of drunkenness, idiocy and hanging out with BRAPA.

    I’ll say “Uncle Matthew was naughty when he was young.” It’ll be a while till he realises I’m in my 40s.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Young Martin,you know I’m more of a pisshead than a pedant.
    But shoo-in,not shoe-in, is a hobby horse of mine.
    Shoo-in is an old American term from the racetrack that comes from the verb shoo, meaning to drive a person or an animal in a given direction by making noises or gestures.
    Hobby horse.
    Geddit ?
    The Prof.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank-you for your kind words Martin, and for the plug for my blog. Glad to see your Matt is being schooled in the ways of life and the joys of visits to the pub.

    The dislike of photography must be a youth thing, as I am always in trouble for pausing to take photos of pub exteriors or, even worse, photographing my meal/pint/the pump-clips etc.

    Matthew was only 15 when he accompanied me to Munich, on our first foreign jaunt without his mother. As the legal age for drinking beer is 16 in Germany, he got away with sinking a few half litres, although in reality we were both breaking the law.

    I obviously led him astray, although I don’t feel guilty. That trip is probably where his love of lager comes from; although he has been known to enjoy the odd glass or two of cask.

    It’s definitely worth your son persevering with his driving. It comes into its own when, like me, you need picking up from the station, or from a night on the town, and makes up for all those times when I turned out, late at night, to do the same for Matthew.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re safe Paul;
      “At 14 minors are allowed to consume and possess undistilled (fermented) alcoholic beverages, such as beer and wine, as long as they are in the company by a Custodial Person” (from Wiki). I did think it was 14 if accompanied. Far too early !

      Liked by 1 person


    Marvelous! 🙂

    ““Promise me you’ll never dress like BRAPA” ”

    Oh, I say… steady on. 🙂

    “Matt wondering what the WiFi code is in the corner”

    He could’ve looked above the bar. Oh, wait – you mean he’s in the corner?

    “No jokes about bulls”

    I can ‘man’age that.*
    (* – Minotaur; get it?)

    “Yeah, the carpet”

    Bloody Vikings.

    ““I keep an axe under the bed””

    Bloody Vikings.

    “*Actually the little traitor is a confirmed BRAPA fan.”

    I’m sure it’s only for sartorial tips. 🙂



  5. Our son is now 19 (also named Matthew, as it happens), and we’ve recently had the pleasure of having a drink or two with him at home. Sadly here in the States he’ll have to be 21 before I can clink glasses with him in a bar. I do look forward to that day, though, at which point maybe I’ll have him buy me a pint. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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