Monday 1 August 2016

In Praise of the Deserted Pub

Busier than the usual Monday afternoon, then?

The Public House.  I'm sure my readers here are well acquainted with the concept.  Some more than others, and some a lot more than they should be.  Theoretically, anybody can walk in and stay there providing they obey the rules both written and unspoken.

It's well known that pubs are likely to be busier at some times than others.  This is what's behind the ever increasing phenomenon of Monday Closing, much bemoaned by regular drinkers and travelling pub bloggers.  Few people go out on a Monday, having blown their disposable cash at the weekend.  So, if you find somewhere (apart from Spoons, obviously) that is actually open at that time, you are likely to be the only customer.

Working an atypical shift pattern (retail), Monday is my day off so I see plenty of this.  Not known for my sociable tendencies, I prefer it this way,  If you're sufficiently bored enough to compare this blog's posting dates with the calendar, you'll see a lot of them are posted on a Monday.  As I find there are too many distractions at home, I go to a pub 20 miles away I know will be deserted and write the blog there where I know I'll get some peace.

I can deal with a certain level of custom, but once I find I can't move easily or my potential escape route is blocked, I get anxious.  One notorious incident of this happened a few weeks back when (stupidly) I decided to go to a Meet The Brewer event at the local.  Apparently, I was last spotted propped up against a wire fence next to the A6, breathing heavily and trying to calm myself down. And sadly, the alcohol wasn't helping.

As a realist, I know that if pubs always had my preferred level of population, the trade as a whole would be completely unviable.  There's no money in catering to the social needs of misanthropes and hermits. Humans (I'm told) are a social species and generally seek each other out, sometimes for networking and mating opportunties, but mostly to fill in the time before death that would otherwise be spent staring at the wall or arguing with family.

I like being alone. Less potential for hassle or grief.  Going to a pub, therefore, maybe considered pecualiar for someone like me.  But as a long-time observer, I can pick my times when I'm going to be comfortable.  And also, you get to see what happens in the pub when the staff know nobody's going to see it, which helps for blog research purposes.

So, if you ever wonder about a pub opening early on a quiet day and think "Bloody hell, what's the point of that, then?" then consider that, maybe, some people prefer it that way,


  1. Good for you. I don't usually drink on Mondays, but I'm on holiday this week & I had something to celebrate, so I've been to two pubs this afternoon. Neither was empty, though - the second was positively buzzing. God knows who all these people are - they can't all be rota workers.

  2. I like quiet pubs, but if you're the only customer it can be a bit embarrassing. It can also be difficult to avoid conversation with the landlord :-(

    No shortage of tourists about on Mondays in many areas, of course.

  3. Each to their own. It would a boring world if we were all the same.

  4. Ditto re conversation with the landlord. I'm a first time visitor Mr M., but like you am from Preston (38 Heatley St) and am fond, very fond of the amber liquid. Here in NZ we have some wonderful brews, too many to keep track of, and very few that are downright repulsive. Cheers.

  5. You get left alone when you sit in the park with a cool bag full of Spesh.

    1. But then all the other tramps say "Oy mate, gizza swig!"