Archive for the ‘booze’ Tag

The blog in the rear view mirror   Leave a comment

New-Belgium-Slow-Ride-Session-IPA

Warmest regards to Fatty from Tucson for spotting this beer label (if anyone knows where to get Fat Tire in Swindon or Oxford please get in touch)

 

It has been a good run — one of nearly 6 years, nearly 1300 different pubs, a few marathons and a bunch of halves (and shorter races), good entertainment, fulfilling work, and a couple of laughs.  But, it is over … at this address, anyway: I’ll continue on in much the same vein at the Endless British Pub Crawl (continues) but this site will just be an archive for the first 1292 pubs and memorial to itself and a lot of ill-advised fun that went into gathering the material herein.

EBPC1 hits 2015-01-03

I want to do a retrospective of this blog’s 6 years but it deserves better than what you have before you.  Them’s the breaks…here it is in tedious detail.

delivery-at-stretham-local-shop

In 2177 days, there have been 2537 posts.  Of those, 1292 were specifically for 1st time pub visits, 367 were for last year’s Daily Tipple (with added Haiku), 210 have been for the Chippy Challenge and the Kebab Challenge, and 169 were for the 2012 Yellow Beer Challenge.  The remaining 499 involved running, mocking the serious beliefs of others, laughing at the weak, bitching and moaning about one thing or another, obituaries, and other things that serve to strengthen my bona fides of Britishness.  According to WordPress, these pages have been visited just over 350,000 times…get a life, losers.

pigeons

Most frequent pub names so far (and how many of each):

43 Red Lions
24 Crowns
22 Ploughs
19 (tie) Bells, White Harts
15 Greyhounds
14 (tie) Black Horses, King’s Arms, Queen’s Heads
13 (tie) Rose and Crowns, Swans, White Horses

in-free-press-4

Best names: Five Mile From Anywhere No-Hurry Inn, Far From The Madding Crowd, Cafe Rene, Sally Pussey’s Inn, The Bee’s In The Wall, The Roaring Donkey, Who’d A Thought It

Fuck that place: The Angerstein Hotel, The Woodman Inn, The Black Horse

London Marathon last mile

Personal favourite pub write ups: The Chequers in Cottenham, hangover after a night in the King’s Arms in Ely, handing the puzzle over to the Dog and Duck in Linton (Cambs), the Crown in Penzance (a low-key 25th anniversary), the Glue Pot in Swindon after my first Wildcats Hockey match, the Blackfriar in London (not so much the write up as the architectural details), and the Rose and Crown in Chippenham for the fantastic people watching.  Certain there are other decent ones but this list contains the two or three I’m really pleased with.

dog and duck puzzle

 

Other pubs worthy of mention (good or bad):

The Red Lion in Southampton for architecture and Henry V connection
The Hop Inn for the locals’ alternative names
The five Red Lion Run back in 2010
The New Inn, Blists Hill (a historic museum town)
The Goldfinger (accidentally found Ian Fleming’s grave on run to this one)
The Blue Boar, Aldbourne (Dr. Who link)
The Blind Beggar, Whitechapel (Kray Brothers link)
The Red Lion, Aston (a town of ‘tards)
The Brass Monkey, Teignmouth (George W Bush on their sign)
Wernham Hogg’s, Slough (The Office tie-in)

wernham hogg slough office

The writing isn’t brilliant but it was never meant to be stunning. I have occasionally stumbled into something I’m happy enough with (to mention here) but never anything I would attach a real name to.  Some of those are:

What a Bunch of Dicks”  (September 2011)
Our Ex-Neighbours”  (September 2011, with links to the whole saga)
Risk Assessment: Proper Use of Bins”  (October 2012)
British Citizenship Exam”  (November 2012)
My Pet Leeches”  (September 2013)
Me and the Queen”  (June 2012)

closer magazine leech orgasm story

It wasn’t all drinking and knob jokes.  Occasionally I ran, sometimes quite a lot (although usually whilst stopping regularly for drinks and to tell inappropriate knob jokes).  I even race a bit with some of my favourite racing efforts here:

Grunty Fen 1/2 Marathon and general thoughts on the finisher’s medal (September 2009)
Snowdonia Marathon pub crawl (October 2009)
The River Run — Cantabrigiensis HHH (October 2009)
New Year’s Eve 10K Little Downham (January 2010)
Historical notes on the 30 Pack Marathon (April 2010)
Thame 10K and morning chunders (June 2010)
Florence Marathon (December 2010)
Bupa 10K plus bailout for the London Hash (May 2011)
Run For Heroes 5K or thereabouts (August 2011)
Chippenham Half with a sponsored pub stop (September 2011)
Swindon Half whilst hitting every pub within 1/2 mile (October 2011)
Cricklade Half + 8 mile warm-up (October 2011)
London Marathon pub crawl (April 2012)
Great British Beerathon Like the 30-Pack only smaller and including food (August 2012)
Great Bustard 5 or getting there’s half the fun (July 2013)
Beat the Bore at Night (September 2013)
Malmesbury Carnival 10K done twice to hit some pubs after  (August 2014)
Isle of Wight Marathon pub crawl (October 2014)

11:58 My big head notwithstanding, this is the Joe Strummer Subway

11:58 My big head notwithstanding, this is the Joe Strummer Subway

In fact, I started the blog for people in the States that already knew about my running idiosyncrasies (i.e., running to get to a bar, drinking heavily there or at one or more other bars, then running home).  So, for them the “racing” entries are no surprise nor are some of the other efforts, which I enjoy as much or more.  These three Birthday runs are typical:

2010
2013
2014

I also used to ‘hash’ before I found the one true way; my life as a hasher came long after I started drink-running (and drug-running, for that matter) and that it has become just a passing fad baffles some of those folk although I still encourage hash virgins to go to a hash as a kick start to Hashlam.  I would, indeed, encourage all of you to go hashing at some point.

We saw some good shows and bad shows and some shows.  I saw Springsteen in the Atlanta Fox Theatre in the 70’s but Jackie never had so we booked a trip to Maastricht to fix that…and it was awesome.  We causght Neil Young in Hyde Park and Paul Simon there as well another year.  Two of the best shows were Lloyd Cole in Stroud and George Thorogood in Cambridge, and you can’t go wrong with the BeatHoles.

beatholes poster from sunday

Tourism ideas:

No trip to Wales is complete without a ride down this highway. (November 2009)
Find out why they refer to Oxford as the City of Dreaming Spires. (September 2010)
You can wait for English Heritage or the National Trust, but the loving family fits their own plaques (like this one to Arthur Stanley Eddington).  (August 2011)
If you get to Germany, indulge in the local folklore like the Bremen Musicians. (June 2012)
Nothing is more fun than old buses. (June 2014)
Get out on the street furnishing trail, maybe starting with post boxes. (November 2014)
And, to be serious, here are a few ideas for London.

shark house oxford

Recipes and food:

A friend that travels in China sent some delectable menu items to look for but I still haven’t found them in any Chinatown restaurants.  On the other hand, you can find the most interesting spices in the Caribbean markets, here.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so you shouldn’t shy away from complicated recipes like this one.  Or, as an alternative you could start your day with one of these.
There were, of course, a lot of booze recipes, but these are worth the efforts involved and better than the pictures would suggest:
Lupini
Cassoulet (one of several versions blogged herein)
Rabbit

chinese menu 1

Finally, no look back wouldn’t include obits.  Mostly, I obitted people I don’t know but knew of but on occasion I actually had a relationship with the deceased (Rest in Peace, y’all):

Vic Chesnutt (December 2009)
Bus Job (October 2010)

Andy Holden (whom I did not know but feel a special connection to, January 2014)

This blog (January 2015, which you are reading right now)

 

 

DT #362, 28 December 2014 (Egg Nog)   Leave a comment

Egg Nog

The weather is right
And it wouldn’t be Christmas
Without some Egg Nog.

Name: Egg Nog
Type: booze
Recipe: The old family recipe, always delicious
Venue: house

Review/notes: I have this at least once every winter as a nostalgic way to prove I’m both fearless and foolhardy.  On the other hand, this is one of the finest concoctions known to man.  Twenty minutes in the freezer makes it a fine dessert (although I use it as a protein shake for breakfast).  Divine.

Not so divine was the run today…sore and cold and the pavements were icy and free from traction.  Was quite glad after 3.3 miles to return home to some household chores and the rest of the nog.

2014-12-28 town centre loop

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

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DT #351, 17 December 2014 (Pina Colada)   Leave a comment

pina colada

 

Pina coladas
And getting caught in the rain:
That’s England for you.

Name: Pina colada
Type: booze
Recipe: For two: Put 8 shots of rum, 6 shots of pineapple juice, 3 shots cream of coconut, and just enough ice to make it fill two glasses then blend like a motherfucker…you want it to be lump free.
Venue: house

Review/notes: By now, you have that insipid song stuck in your head (please accept my apology; really, I meant no harm).  I was running this afternoon in wintry precipitation and thinking about the big bottle of rum and what I should have but instead of Hot Buttered Rum (which makes more sense) I thought, hey, something tropical when I get home would be pleasant…pina coladas and some Peter Tosh.  It should have been white rum and the coconut milk just wasn’t creamy enough but it is what it is.

The skies opened about 10 minutes into this one...of course.

The skies opened about 10 minutes into this one…of course.

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

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DT #349, 15 December 2014 (Dark and Stormy)   Leave a comment

Dark and  Stormy

Hangover I have
Is frightful, the Post Office
Queue is just spiteful.

Name: Dark and Stormy
Type: booze
Recipe: Ice in a glass, pour to two inches from the top with some alcoholic ginger beer then float some dark rum on top (typically 8 oz ginger to 2 oz rum, but do what you like)
Venue: house

Review/notes: We had this, the national drink of Bermuda (the Dark and Stormy), on our first trip abroad together (for our 14th anniversary with the hopes that the Millenium Bug would leave us stranded there). They were absolutely wretched and sold pre-mixed in cans in the few shops we could find open during our holiday stay (at the time — and probably now as well — Bermuda shuts down over the holidays).

This version of the Dark and Stormy, on the other hand, was actually sublime although the actual recipe (I got it from the Mr Boston) is copyrighted and calls for two specific ingredients I don’t have easy access to.  Still, it is fantastic and I would recommend it to anyone.  Especially if they spent the day getting their blood sugar to stabilise after a weekend bender.

The run was 3.2 miles to the Toys ‘R’ Us then the Decathlon Sport, but I didn’t find what I was looking for (I drew someone in the Secret Santa pool who is impossible to buy something for and thought ‘games’ would work but I think she’s just going to get a bottle of rum).

2014-12-15 secret Santa run

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

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DT #348, 14 December 2014 (Jägermeister)   Leave a comment

Jaegermeister for Christmas decorating

 

Making it noisy
In the silent lab I found.
Then, beating retreat.

Name: Jägermeister
Type: booze
Venue: house

Review/notes: Yesterday we went poaching greenery in the Lawns Park and today (when we both were finally home from work — I had a Sunday thing in the lab) we put on some Christmas jazz and polished off a bottle of Jäger whilst some duck legs roasted and Jackie arranged the pine, laurel, holly, and cedar snips on the mantle.  This feels like Christmas should do, and I’ll savour the murderous hangover to come.

The lab had to be shut down on Friday for some planned diagnostic power outages so I went in to bring the mass spectrometers back to life in time for the kids to have at them Monday morning.  As soon as the vacuum systems were started I figured I had at least an hour to kill and headed out to do a loop around Marston, North Oxford, Wolvercote and the tow paths.  Not as nippy yesterday:

2014-12-14 pumpdown break at lab on sunday

 

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

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DT #347, 13 December 2014 (Aberlour scotch whisky)   Leave a comment

Aberlour scotch whisky

Beautiful and cold,
Our day off together with
JMW Turner.

Name: Aberlour Scotch whisky
Type: booze
Venue: house

Review/notes: Ten years old but not at all harsh (although not as smoky-peaty as I generally like, either — Speyside’s like that).  Would be a good introductory malt and I’d really like to try one of their more mature bottles sometime…maybe next Holiday season.

We spent mid-day chasing last minute Christmas cards in Old Town and stopped in the Swindon Museum of Art to catch the last day of the JMW Turner exhibit…breathtaking although very limited.  I especially liked the watercolours he did around Bristol when he was only 16 years old (and there was an extension to the exhibit of other landscapes inspired by Turner).

2014-12-13 Burderop out-and-back

Brimble Hill run was a might nippy this A.M. and my fingers were cold and dysfunctional so I left the GPS on the kitchen counter whilst making a hot beverage (hence the especially slow pace the last 2/10 mile).

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

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DT #344, 10 December 2014 (Old Golden Hen)   Leave a comment

 

Marston's Old Golden Hen

 

My job’s just to be
A janitor, not a cop.
Just make the mess good.

Name: Old Golden Hen
Type: golden ale
Venue: Royal Standard, Oxford

Review/notes: Running to the Butcher’s Arms but couldn’t find it so, wanting to see if I could find Gadget’s trail after lunch, I headed back toward the main drag and, generally, where I expected to find powder.  No luck, as it turned out but on my return to the labs found equipment that everyone should know better than to fuck up and yet fuck it up they did despite my warnings that the thing was easy to fuck up and up with which fucking would be imminent should they fucking try to fix it on their own…on their fucking own.  Oh, well, top 1% of the academic world and all (bunch of fucking assholes).

[DT =Daily Tipple, explained in DT #000 here]

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