Obvious joke

No, it’s not actually a propensity for consuming large amounts of Guinness:

Men should be screened for the “Celtic gene”, scientists urge, as a landmark study finds it increases liver cancer risk tenfold.

It’s about excessive iron. Which does actually provide that link to Guinness as the old, bottled, stuff used to be prescribed as a treatment for anaemia, the opposite problem.

Silly thought

So, you can distill anything that contains alcohol. Do it to wine, you get brandy. Do it to cider, calvados.

OK, so what about beer?

Hmm, not really thought about it before. And this search engine stuff, fun:

Whiskey is distilled fermented malted grain. So basically beer without the hops addition.

Suppose so, really. Whiskey is distilled ale. Discuss.

Whiskey is famously made by distilling beer, but any distiller will tell you that the “beer” that goes into the still bears little resemblance to the commercial stuff you sip on game day. While it won’t kill ya, those who drink the fermented wash before it is distilled hold little respect in the eyes of the distilling community.

The answer, it appears, is yes.


Drivers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are limited to 35 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath, the highest limit in Europe, while drivers in Scotland are limited to 22.
A zero-alcohol limit for new drivers would reduce the risk of people driving home after one drink, after which they usually remain under the legal limit.

You’re over a zero limit if you used mouthwash two hours ago.

Idiot stupidity.

Well, yes, seems likely

“Women do not lose their right to medical confidentiality simply because they are pregnant. Most women report drinking very little alcohol in pregnancy, if any at all, even if they may have drunk before a positive pregnancy test.”

Given the part alcohol plays in the existence of pregnancy all too often…..

Just as a matter of interest

The bars around here sell “balloons”. Which are nitrous oxide I think? A quick high etc.

A “balloon” looks to be a couple of litres.

A tank of 18,000 litres seems to be € 400 or so, mebbe €500. Dunno local prices and BOC might not be the cheapest etc.

A balloon is €5.

€45,000 revenue from a €500 tank?

No, I’ve got something wrong there. And it’s not just that most of it seems to be consumed by the staff.

I’ve got the wrong gas? Volumes are different? What? Because if this is right I’m thinking about a chain of mobile selling stations based upon a basic hot dog cart design…..

And we think it is?

Tom Meighan has announced that he is leaving Kasabian, the Leicester rock band he co-founded as a student in the late 90s. The band shared a brief statement on Meighan’s departure, describing the decision as one taken by mutual consent.

Meighan had “struggled with personal issues that have affected his behaviour for quite some time and now wants to concentrate all his energies on getting his life back on track,” said the statement. The group said it would not comment further.

a) booze

b) drugs

There’s a point at which we just have to say “Sod Off”

I think we’re rather past it now too:

The Treasury has been accused of taking an irresponsible approach to the coronavirus epidemic after a backlash to a post on its official Twitter account that hailed Saturday’s scheduled reopening of England’s pubs.

“Grab a drink and raise a glass, pubs are reopening their doors from 4 July,” the tweet read, while a graphic carried the message: “Pubs are back”.

Many of those condemning the post, which was soon deleted, accused its celebratory tone of being in poor taste given that the virus has killed at least 43,000 people in the UK.

Sod off might not be enough. Can we shoot them?

There are, roughly, 550k deaths a year in the UK. We often enough gather in small groups in pubs to remember one or more of them.

Yes, shoot ’em

And incoming from this blog’s Swiss wine expert…..

The information on which of the good wines will be sold under which of the vin de table labels?

Swiss winemakers are to receive state aid to downgrade their finest appellation labels to cheaper vin de table after sales of quality vintages plummeted during the coronavirus lockdown.

Swiss wineries will receive 10 million Swiss francs (£8.5m) of government funds to repackage thousands of quality bottles unsold after restaurants and bars remained shut for two months in the Alpine nation, leading to a 40 per cent drop in sales, according to producers.

In a boon for wine buffs, wines that have received the coveted “controlled designation of origin” (appellation d’origine contrôlée (AOC)) designation – some of which can sell for hundreds of pounds – will now be on sale for a fraction of that price starting from June 1….

Umm, this blog does have a Swiss wine expert, doesn’t it?

It’s that third pint that does it


Binge drinking among the over 50s could be fuelling a rise in violence within that age group, new research has suggested.

That third pint is what turns the Missus black and blue:

Binge drinking usually refers to drinking lots of alcohol in a short space of time or drinking to get drunk.

In the UK, binge drinking is drinking more than:

8 units of alcohol in a single session for men
6 units of alcohol in a single session for women

6 units is 2 pints of 5% strength beer or 2 large (250ml) glasses of 12% wine

It really is that third pint.

One of the things that does confuse here is why newspapers aren’t laughing this all out of court. Three pints used to be what journalists referred to as breakfast.


Something that Bloke on M4 likes to talk about:

I would expect there to be, in the post-Covid-19 economy, much more home working, perhaps part time and part in the office, than we had at the beginning of this year. Not because our technology has suddenly leapt forward, but because we have now had a taste of how the new way might work and, who knows, we might even like it.

Put into slightly more formal terms, it’s the coordination problem. As to who might benefit from more home working, one idea:

As to who will really benefit from this, my bet would be on the chimney pot pub. We humans are, after all, primarily social beings and once we are not getting our gossip at the water cooler, something will have to take its place. Why not that ancient grand hub of a British community, the pub on the corner?

Do I have any Bath based readers?

I know there is at least one formerly Bath based reader. Bloke in Bilbao grew up 50 yards away from me even if it was several hundred by the road. But that’s not quite what I mean. Is there anyone actually in Bath at present?

I think, maybe, Flatcap Army might be? But anyone else?

The point here. Mother is in lockdown which at her rate of maturity is a good idea. She’s also running out of wine. At which point, a scheme to try and get her a case.

She’s 100 yards from a Majestic but they’re so busy that delivery dates are out to next century some time. They’re also not doing click and collect. The one vintner I can find (Novel, in Weston) that is offering deliveries doesn’t stock the wine she prefers. Sainsbury’s won’t let me register for delivery or click and collect because I’m not the “vulnerable” person. But the aim of getting me to try to organise a case is that – laughable though it may seem – my computer skills are greater than those of my mother. Lidl doesn’t do click and collect so it’s not even possible to send Abbey Taxis around to collect some.

Yes, obviously, this is being picky, picky.

But what is the potential solution here? The aim being to get a case of the preferred wine to mother. I’ll pay, obviously. There are stores open that stock it but the interaction between delivery options and sometime in the next 14 days seems to be lacking.

Which leads to the question up at the top. Anyone actually in Bath and bored enough to help out?


This is now solved.

The local Co Op, would we believe. They stock the particular wine. And they don’t have any online system, delivery drivers or whatever. They do however have helpful people who will trot down the road that 100 yards with some.

Adaptability see, not systems!


Johnson said that with the agreement of the three devolved governments, “we are telling – telling – cafes, pubs, bars and restaurants to close tonight, as soon as they reasonably can, and not open tomorrow”. They would be allowed to sell takeaway food and drink, he added.

The same instruction was being given to nightclubs, theatres, cinemas, gyms and leisure centres, Johnson added.

Gyms have just become the new offies, right?

So, where are they lying?

That they are, we know. It’s the where that has to be worked out.

Probably best to wait for Chris Snowdon on this:

Alcohol sales in Scotland’s supermarkets and off-licences have fallen following the introduction of a minimum pricing policy.

In the 12 months after the implementation of minimum unit pricing (MUP) the volume of pure alcohol sold in shops fell by 3.6 per cent, from 7.4 to 7.1 litres per adult.

That they’re not telling us that total consumption has fallen means – near certainly – that it hasn’t. They’re also not including cross border sales. But we’ll let The Man Who Knows tell us about this, yes?

The reason for a mass brawl aboard ship

‘Mass brawl’ breaks out on P&O cruise ship Britannia


He said one witness “explained to staff that things kicked off when another passenger appeared dressed as a clown. This upset one of their party because they’d specifically booked a cruise with no fancy dress. It led to a violent confrontation.”