Friday, 9 December 2022

Why Is This a Thing?

 On Wednesday, my car was going in for its service and MoT, and it had to be there early. So, duly dropped off at the garage just after a quarter to eight, I could either walk home - twerly for my bus pass - or better still get some brekkie.  It was also perishing, and I'd already spent a bitterly cold quarter of a cold hour defrosting the car, so cups of tea were my priority and as our local JDW was just opening as I walked past, unlimite
d refills beckoned.

Despite me being there on the dot of eight, a couple of other hopefuls were in, but I was first to the bar to place my tea order. The other two were separately selecting their usual prime positions by the windows. My main concern was to get my tea and a seat as far away as possible from the icy blast emanating from the door, so no issues there. The pub started to fill up with faces I recognised from previous visits. Seats were carefully selected and greetings exchanged. I got the odd "Good Morning" too as I warmed up with cups of Tetley. The next half hour passed serenely enough, punctuated only by the odd gale of laughter from the staff breakfasting near the bar.

However, the pace quickened up as the witching hour of nine o'clock approached. I'd moved on to breakfast by then. The usual JDW fare, but it was fine and certainly warmed me up. A few workmen, in for some snap, were added to the regulars who were by now folding newspapers and checking watches. The atmosphere was getting a little more tense as they approached the bar on the dot of nine.  Now in the past my observations were that the John Smiths would flow, but alas, not now.  That is no longer available, and it seems that the replacement,  Worthington Creamflow, does not hit that sacred spot. No, Stella seemed now to be the drink of choice, though one outlier was on Stowford Press Cider.

Now here's the odd bit. Several - well three of the punters including Mr Stowford - returned to their spot alone at their chosen table with two pints each. These were carefully placed in front of them. Why?  Why would you buy two pints for yourself at once in a rather quiet pub, first thing in the morning? I've noticed this before, but not only in the Middleton JDW, but all over the country. I remember, in Nottingham I think it was, a geezer returning from the bar at 9 a.m.with two bottles of Newcastle Brown - as if one wasn't already too many - and elsewhere too, this seems to happen.

So Dear Reader, next time you find yourself in a JDW just after alcohol sales begin, look for this strange phenomenon.   And if you know why they do this, do let me know in the comments.

I thoroughly recommend JDW for early morning people watching.   You can guarantee something of interest.

Another thing. Seems JDW now sell 660ml bottes of Camden Hells.  In this case for a mere £3.69. Anyone seen it elsewhere?


retiredmartin said...

People watching in Spoons, as in Sam Smiths, is a seriously underrated occupation.

And yes, I've seen Old Boys with 2 pints, most recently in Grantham. I guess when you're drinking a pint in 15 minutes it saves a trip to the bar.

Curmudgeon said...

As someone said on Twitter, if you're a solo drinker it's a good way of stopping anyone else from nabbing your table.

Many years ago, I often used to have a pint with my dad in a particular pub on Sunday lunchtime. There was a chap who regularly came in, about the age I am now, whose routine was to order two pints of bitter and a bottle of lemonade, and work his way through them while reading the "Observer". This was the days of meters and oversize glasses, so there was plenty of head space to pour the lemonade into.

IAN WORDEN said...

In my local Wetherspoons, if I go in on my own then I do buy the first two pints together, so if I want another later I can time it for a quiet spot in service. You need to be careful when going back to the bar but usually a curry club menu over the top of a partly drunk pint, plus a coat and large bag on the seat, will deter glass collectors from removing it.

Spinko said...

I've not noticed this, but I do find it interesting how the "feel" of a Wetherspoon goes from morose at 9am, to slowly perking up by 10, to full of life by 11.

(Being someone who wakes around 4am and usually have done my day's duties by 9am, it seems unfair to get a bit looked down on for having a 9am pint.)

Michael the Seafood Man said...

This is easily explained

Bowel Evacuation.

I am a quite regular person and I guess the old fellas in the Wetherspoon establishment are also the same. If like me they go in the morning then a couple of pints of the old falling down water (as David Lee Travis would call it) loosens things up.

With the clean and upmarket loos, plus some fine Wetherspoon News reading material, this makes the morning ablutions a pleasurable experience.

Next time you are there observe that when the have 'been' they then trundle home. Obvious really

Anonymous said...

For some people the beer in many places, particularly keg, is served much too cold. Buy 2 at the same time and the second one is warmer and has more flavour by the time you get to it. If you are in for more than 2 buy the 3rd as you finish the first.

Pauline sharp said...

I love this -there is a 2 pint chap at our Spoons .with his paper & I think he has a little smoke too (outside obviously ) He looks very content with his lot

Sat In A Pub said...

I first noticed this phenomenon several years ago. Later in the day, yes, it's a good way to keep your table but early Monday morning in Bury there are plenty of seats. Curious, I used all my sociological training to discover the answer: I asked the guy at the next table why he had 2 pints. His answer? "Because I'm a lazy bastard". Out of the mouths of babes etc.

Cask Socialist said...

These broken, yet proud men, are the victims of the war against Thatcher. They sit and drink their two pints to forget the perils of the campaign they fought. These are the former shipyard workers that are part of Middleton's proud socialist history and fabric. The coal miners, the foundrymen, the steel workers. All carrying the ghosts of past conflict in the welcoming embrace of Mother Spoon.

They never asked to be the subject of a blog. Let them happily have their one, two or even three pints.

Solidarity with the Wetherspoon Twos!

Cooking Lager said...

9am Spooners are a friendly bunch. Ask 'em.
I did. Most are drinking with an invisible white rabbit called Harvey.
The rest are a bit crazy.

The Stafford Mudgie said...

Hasn't Tim realised the need for quart glasses ?