I hope you’ve had a good day and saved loads of pubs.
Unless you’re a Pub Ticker (memberships still available for GBG 21, send s.a.e. for details), you’ll never understand the visceral excitement of closing in for a tick, particularly in these Troubled Times.
As I arrived back at Piccadilly, 20 minutes before an un-booked assignation with Beatnikz Republic, I was as excited as I was when City won their 4th League Cup in a row. No, more so.
The estimable Quosh had arrived seconds before me, and I turned down a pint to settle my nerves in the Tap so I could stand outside Beatnikz in the rain and guarantee a seat. But the rain held off.
Then I kept stopping to take photos of graffiti outside the Premier Inn and other Mancunian gems.
Quosh didn’t mind; in fact he plays the role of tour guide perfectly. “The bassist of the Inspiral Carpets threw up behind those bins”, “Paul Scholes lost a cufflink in that alley after the derby“, and stuff I can’t repeat.
Let’s be absolutely honest. My last new GBG21 tick for central (as opposed to Greater) Manchester loses a lot from being outside on the pavement. In fact, I walked straight past it, confused by the Idle Hands Coffee livery.
In fact, there WERE people filling up those tables, but they were sipping macchiatos or whatever beardy Ancoats drinks these days. Like a competitive dad playing Musical Chairs with toddlers, I threw myself at the last table under cover.
“We don’t open for another 15 minutes mate” said the Beat man. But I sensed it would take 15 minutes to work out how to use the app so we stayed put.
NO CASK ! Duncan would call this a “fake tick”, but anything goes in 2021. Remember kids, Duncan drinks halves.
And keg beer drunk under an umbrella magically converts to cask, anyway.
Quosh let me take his photo after I said he looked like Action Man, we thought the plastic glasses knocked the condition out of what was a decent pale and a sour, and I thought I’d probably head back anyway as It’s only 10 minutes walk from where Matt lives, the lucky sod.
But for now, a tick’s a tick.
And STILL, the rain had held off.