Wednesday 2 July 2014

Here we go again round the mulberry bush

I recently spotted this blogpost on the perennial issue of children in pubs. It’s basically a parents’ user-guide for how to go about introducing children into the world of pubs and, as I said in the comments, if every parent was as thoughtful and responsible as the author, there really wouldn’t be much of a problem.

However, unfortunately all too often that is not the case. Irresponsible parents allow their children to cause a nuisance and licensees are extremely reluctant to confront bad behaviour by children for fear of coming across as, well, curmudgeonly. It needs to be stressed that the problem is not children themselves, but irresponsible and thoughtless parents who take them to inappropriate places and fail to control them.

Plus, some parents take affront at the idea of their little darlings being barred from any part of any pub at any time, and refuse to accept that it is a legitimate desire for adults to want to enjoy a quiet drink in the company of other adults.

As I’ve said before, the pub trade is best served by having a variety of offers so people can make a choice – some serve food, some don’t, some have Sky Sports, some don’t, some admit children, some don’t, some allow dogs, some don’t, some allow smoking, some don’t. Oops, did I cross a line there? But too many people seem to think that their own preferred model should be imposed everywhere.

It brings to mind this blogpost and the subsequent lively comment thread from last year.

Actually, I get the impression that, as just going to the pub for a drink during the day and early evening becomes less and less popular, it is starting to become less likely to encounter young children outside the obvious dining pubs.

And it always baffles me why those who are so keen to encourage children in pubs are strangely reluctant to campaign to allow them into betting shops. After all, far from there being nothing for them there, surely it would be an excellent way to habituate them into the adult world of drinking gambling.


  1. When's Mudgie Day Care Creche opening?"

  2. Seeing as there are suggestions that pubs be used for kids to eat school lunches in, betting shops would be ideal venues to hold maths lessons (not entirely being facetious there). ;)

  3. It's often impressive how good supposedly thick people are at working out betting odds and darts scores - suggests their capabilities are not being properly developed by the education system.

  4. Both darts and betting odds are more about remembering the results of standard equations rather than mental arithmetic.

    I'm thick and I can tell you the out shots of many combos. They are recalled not calculated. Like learning times tables by rote.

    Likewise with betting. If you have a set stake, you just know and can recall the returns from a range of fixed odds. Accumulators require a bit of arithmetic but most gambling doesn't.

    Having said that, once rotes have been memorized it tends to have a positive effect on mental arithmetic.

  5. Likewise it could be said that much of the ability to do mental arithmetic stems from memorising times tables.

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  7. memorizing times tables allows short cuts in mental arithmetic. If you buy 2 items at 58p you know 2x6 is 12 & 2&2 = 4, therefore 120-4=116. As a quick route to the sum.

    But in darts there is little actual mental arithmetic. The best out is 32 because it halves cleanly on missed shots, and you only have an out on 170 or less. You also want to control the pace of the game so your opponent dwells on missed shots. Hence once on 170 or less you recall rather than calculate your out so as not to procrastinate & ensure your last dart is halvable should you miss your double.

  8. Slow day at work is it today, Cookie? :p

  9. The days of computer related bobbins are never slow, Mudge, hence my lifelong so far unrealised ambition to one day be a professional darts player, hampered only by a lack of any discernable talent. Some men dream of being James Bond and having nifty suits and lots of chicks. For others it's professional football where the crowd cheers and models chuck their knickers at you. Many a beer blogger dreams of being a Pete Brown or Roger Protz, though I gather that's more a life of getting pissed than knobbing lots of ladies.

    My heros are Jocky Wilson, Andy Fordham & Bobby George. The pints of piss weak lager, the cheer of the crowd, the nylon shirts, the gold sovereign rings, the walk on music. Nirvana, heaven, valhalla.


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