Sunday, 8 July 2012

The Session 65: So Lonely... – The roundup

EDIT: Last minute addition at the bottom, I've also added the host of the next session





Wow. Just wow. I am completely overwhelmed and surprised by the amount of replies I got because A) I’m only a new beer blogger – I’ve only been doing this since March & B) After I decided upon the topic, I had a second thought... I thought it was a bit of a shit topic.

Turns out it was quite a good and thought provoking topic.

I’ve been trying to work out the best way to do this with so many replies. I think I’m going to do it blog by blog and quote from each. It might be alright. We’ll see.

As you know, my topic was about going to the pub alone and in my post, I confessed that I go to the
pub alone quite frequently and gave a whole host of reasons why I do this; my favourite reason has to be just to get away for a bit. Out of it. With nice surroundings and a nice pint.

I noticed a theme whilst going through all of your posts: no matter where you are in the world, the same stigma of alcoholism is associated with going to the pub alone. It's interesting.


Anyway:

To start off; my good friend Stuart, manager of The Ten Bells in Norwich commented on my original post saying that one of the things he misses most now that he's married is being able to go to the pub alone... just have a solitary few pints.

Neil (Also a commenter on the original post) raises a good point and says that going to the pub alone, no matter how infrequently should be encouraged as it is keeping the British institution that is the pub alive and kicking.

Elliott from the blog Misplaced Hours says about going to the De Molen Festival at Craft Beer Co. in London on his own armed with nothing but a book and his wallet and enjoyed every minute of it.

Jon from 10th Day Brewing says he drinks at home mostly and with people. He goes on to say that one of his favourite parts of the craft beer movement is that you are never alone. I completely agree with this.

Pintsized Ticker says on her blog that she had literally never been the pub alone in her life so she thought she'd 'take the plunge'. It turns out that she enjoyed just sitting there with a pint and the paper but she wouldn't go out of her way to do it again. For her, the pub is about friends.

Kristy from The Lighter Side of Beer hadn't been to the pub alone in 6 years so she headed to The White Horse in Leamington Spa for a lone pint. It turns out she wasn't a fan - "I'm in a pub, I need conversation and noise and laughter and friends."

 Nick, the Beer Prole says he enjoys going to the pub alone as he can sit and sip his beer; appreciating the aromas and flavours then get lost working out cryptic clues, however, if he was living in Iceland he wouldn't do that as he'd have glaciers to stare at. I probably would too.

Next up, Steve from Beers I've Known says that he enjoys drinking alone too - he can sit there with a book and a pint without having to think about being sociable and in any case, if  he does want to be sociable there are plenty of people in the pub to talk to. He advises not going to the pub in a bad mood, though, as the beer will make you feel worse. Sound advice.

Tandleman's post for The Session starts with an old Bavarian saying "Nur ein schwein, drinkt allein" which means "Only a pig drinks on its own" but goes on to say that drinking alone can be both liberating and uplifting. As well as the common theme of you not really being alone in the pub.

Stan from Appellation Beer posted about not drinking alone. He enjoys summer in the city drinking with friends.

My good friend Justin who you might remember from my Beer & Thai Food Pairing post says on Get Beer. Drink Beer. in his first ever session post says that he frequently stops at the pub on his way home from work. It's his time to forget about the day and focus on the object of his desires, beer. He leaves on a line that made me smile (speaking of me) "I have had a few drinks with him in Norwich, thus proving that I don't always drink alone."

 David, the self-proclaimed Broadford Brewer says that he doesn't go to the pub alone often but if you pick the right place, be in a positive frame of mind and enjoy the quality of the beer rather than the quantity, then drinking alone doesn't have to be so lonely. I couldn't agree more.

Alan from A Good Beer Blog raises the point that "Going to the pub" doesn't really exist in much of North America. The closest he can come to is his shed. (It's a very nice shed, by the way; if I had one I think I'd quit going to the pub alone. Maybe)

Bryan from This Is Why I'm Drunk comes straight out with I Drink Alone by George Thorogood before pointing us to an article from the May 2008 issue of Esquire and says that for him, drinking alone may force you to become more involved in the drinking progress. Definitely something that us beer bloggers need to do, right?

The Homebrew Manual, John does something completely different... he decides to brew a single malt beer all alone! Let us know how it turns out!

Derrick from Ramblings of a Beer Runner starts off by sharing with us a personal story of when he was going through his divorce - he hadn't discovered craft beer back then so didn't go to the bar alone (wouldn't have been wise) but he would go to coffee shops alone (something that's not uncommon) and just sit there with a book. Now, if he's away on business he can happily go for a couple of pints and chat to the person next to him about beer or the sporting event on T.V.

Mr Beersay, Phil doesn't enjoy going to the pub alone. He does it - he thinks nothing of wander around strange cities trying to find a decent beer but doesn't enjoy the solitude.

Curtis who writes the blog HopHeadSaid doesn't enjoy drinking alone either but he says he's not sure you could be a beer blogger if you didn't drink alone.

Mr. David J from Good Morning... talks about the way he recently spent an afternoon drinking alone in Brewdog Camden and says that it's a good place for solitary drinkers and I completely agree, having had an experience like this a couple of months ago. I spent about 5 hours in there just talking to the bar staff and I even met James Watt at one point. Had a really enjoyable time, alone.

Another Session virgin, Chris from WhosIsBrew has never drank in a pub alone and doesn't really want to.

Paul, the Sustainable Alcoholic is another solo drinking hero and raises the point that with all of this modern technology, you're never really alone.

The Beer Nut says on his blog that his favourite pint is the lone afternoon point and recently he checked out a new Japanese restaurant/Bar in Dublin that had Hitachino Nest Nipponia on draft.

Mr Shipman of OthertonAles mentions something that I've been thinking about a lot lately - drinking alone in a group. "If you’re on the fringe of the group, maybe you don’t know everyone or don’t have the relationship that you can see others have, it can be very easy to feel excluded, or feel that you’re missing out on the rapport and relationship others have" - I feel awkward when I'm in the pub with all of my mates who are with their girlfriends. I sometimes even feel that I have to leave because I can't relate to their conversations.

James, another music and beer nut writes on his blog Beer Bar Band that with the right beer in hand and in the right setting, he will never be lonely. In fact, he even wrote his post for The Session alone in a pub with a nice, cold pint in from of him.

Boak & Bailey open their blog post about not enjoying going to the pub alone with a single line that could've literally been their whole contribution, I wouldn't have complained - "We rarely find ourselves alone in the pub because, as a bare minimum, we’ve usually got each other."  - I envy them.

Chris, editor of Draft Magazine tells us about his favourite ever moment of drinking alone. He made a road trip to go see his favourite band The Flaming Lips, all alone and wound up talking to some other beer nerds in a bar who were there for the exact same reason!

What We're Drinking tells us of a time they skipped class and went to a bar, only to find their Professor in the bar drinking alone who didn't really seem to care. Answered the question that was asked then returned to his book.

Mr Moustache wrote on his blog In Cervesio saying that (as far as I can understand from google translate - Los Sientos if I got this wrong) saying that the alcoholic stigma of drinking alone in Mexico is a very big one and going to a bar alone begs too many questions - people expect you to fully justify why you're there alone.

Mr Landells is yet another one of us who enjoys drinking alone and says on his blog that he loves that we have modern technology so he can be in the pub alone yet he can talk on twitter to people from anywhere in the world so he is not alone. Never alone.

The Alcofrolic Chap tells us that he has a couple of secret pubs that he likes to escape to after work or on a Sunday afternoon and he's keeping those a secret.

Mr Simon Johnson or The Reluctant Scooper as he is more commonly known is quite right - I didn't think anybody would bother writing for the new kid on the block. Not only drinking alone, but blogging alone. But no, even he joined in and he's another who wrote his post while in the pub alone because, well, he enjoys the solitary pint too.

Sean from Beer Search Party said something that slightly amused me, being British. He says it's not weird to see a movie by yourself... over here, a lot of people see that as weird. I mean, I go to the pub alone all of the time but I've never even thought about seeing a movie alone. He goes on to say that no matter whether he's with friends or alone, drinking, he does it with a smile on his face. That's all that matters really, right?

At Beer For The Weekend he talks about a lone trip to Bristol and the joy of just being able to go to whatever pubs he liked, not worrying about what friends thought. He talks about networking and just generally talking to people he came across, be it landlords or other drinkers and even a man he hadn't seen in years.

Rob from Beer PHXation says that there are no pubs in Arizona. This makes me sad. However, there are what he calls 'pseudo-pubs'. Places that sell beer that aren't really pubs. They sometimes even sell cask. Again, he will never really be alone as he'll often meet new people or beer industry folk.

One of the main men in beer blogging, Jay from Brookston Beer Bulletin posts a whole load of links that basically say "If you drink alone, you're an alcoholic" but argues that it's all about context.

Mark at Kaedrin Beer Blog says that he does most of his drinking alone. Of course, he drinks with friends but there are reasons to go to the pub alone such as hard to find beers that his friends aren't bothered about, pubs that have great food and good conversation with strangers.

Jon at The Brew Site is another for whom drinking is more of a social activity.

Czech writer Pvini Filosof explains that he likes going to the pub alone because there's a good chance he'll bump into someone he knows and if not? Well, he's got a book and/or his own thoughts.

Looke mentions on his blog, Likely Moose, something else that I do frequently - go to pubs with live music on. Music is another thing enjoyable by itself.

Beardyman Zak Avery tells us in his post that he doesn't think he's ever gone to the pub just to drink. If he does to the pub alone, more often than not it's so he can catch up on some work while having a pint. He also likes to take his shoes off which is something I can't imagine ever doing

David of Beer Tinted Spectacles fame tells us of his father-in-law who follows the same routine every Sunday - He gets up late and spends the afternoon in the pub alone, but not really alone as he is an institution in his village, everyone knows him.

Daniel on his blog/video Beyond The Pour says that going to the pub alone isn't something he really does as it requires him to drive and he ends up getting drunk too quickly.

Wow... that was a lot to get through, I will leave you with one final post and probably my favourite of them all; It's from Scott at Beerbecue. See the below video:


I want to thank everyone who wrote a post for this month's session. It really means a lot that you've taken your time to write on a topic of my choosing. I also want to thank Jay & Stan for letting me do this. If you're a blogger and haven't been involved in The Session before, please get involved. It's good fun. Read about it: http://brookstonbeerbulletin.com/the-sessions/

If I've missed you out, it's because I don't like you. That was a joke. Just let me know and I'll fix it.

The next session is on August 3rd and will be hosted by Craig Gravina at Drink Drank, it is called The One Beer to Rule Them All. Get involved.

Cheers!

Nate

8 comments:

  1. Excellent roundup, Nate! The blog by blog review tactic worked well for this topic. I really enjoyed reading it and seeing the very diverse responses from everyone...across the full spectrum of for/against/middle-ground...which is really how it should be! Good work & cheers.

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    1. Thanks buddy. Working out how to do it was the hardest part... it's so bloody massive!

      Thanks for contributing!

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  2. TLDR

    Only joking. Interesting round up, the analyst in me wants to know how old everyone is, what job they do and besides the couple is everyone male who has replied. Basically I would like to know if there is a connection between the people who enjoy being in the pub alone and those that don't. Good topic, I might write something for the next one.

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    1. Oh, you!

      That's a very good point - maybe age, gender and general background has something to do with whether or not you enjoy solo drinking.

      I know that 99% of people of my age (let's say the 18-25) group I hang out with would never dream of going to the pub alone...

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  3. i like to go alone sometimes has i get to drink what i wanna drink and chat to strangers making new friends where i would not be able to do that if i took someone or met someone there

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  4. Here as well:
    http://makeminepotato.ydog.net/?p=1659

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  5. Nice round up. Glad it went well - I couldn't think of anything to write, only end up in the pub on my own when my mates are bloody late!

    ReplyDelete