(no, not a typo)
A short break from ill-advised strolls through tower-block Sheffield to bring you more hidden gems from 2020’s rich seam of pub blogging.
Today’s recommendation comes from one of the 37 Marks I follow on Twitter, but this one is the “Real” Mark and we know how well that went for Eminem, don’t we.
Shove it, Chuck it, Toss it… sounds like one of those Canadian porn films that Russ favours, but happily it’s a tour round traditional pub games in the Midlands and beyond.
Sometimes life is all beer and skittles (and doms).
Mark’s posts this last year have captured pub life before and during the pandemic, and well beyond the Beer Guide as he visits a lot of boozers that shamefully don’t have 7 beers on from railway arch micros.
“Pubs are certainly taken for granted, particularly by the ‘locals’ who use them more than most“.
writes Mark, speaking for a lot of us who enjoy pubs for the simple pleasure of banter, companionship and somewhere different from home, rather than variations on citrus-infused DIPAs.
It’s worth reading Mark’s blog for the gorgeous photos of Old Boys With Carrier Bags In Pubs, officially recognised by National Geographic as an endangered species in 2017.
This shot, from Covid hotspot Wigston, is my personal favourite. Nice technique, Mark.
I’ll confess, I like the idea of pub games more than the reality.
When our boys were young we’d take them into the skittle alleys of rural Leicestershire Everards pubs where they could enjoy the simple pleasure of outscoring Dad while Mum drank 3 pints of Old Original in the corner.
In his most recent post Mark review old Skittles instruction books from the ’50s; not since the notebook for a BRAPA day have I seen such complexity.
Elsewhere Mark quotes from an 18th century Guide to Skittles which makes early GBGs seem positively woke;
“The author makes a strong argument for promotion of the ‘manly exercise of skittle-playing‘ over the more ‘effeminate‘ games lately introduced such as Cards and Dice. Games redolent of an ‘…over-fed age of people‘, their souls ‘…insipid with ease and sloth‘ leading to ‘bog bellies, swelled legs, gouty feet, and other ailments of the loaded corpse‘.”
And switching to the present, the blog brings us more reminders of what makes a Proper Pub.
Ah, Kettering. Discovered by BRAPA, rediscovered by me, eulogised by Mark in 2020. Must almost make up for it still being Kettering.
NB: His Twitter page is pretty good too;