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16-04-2012, 13:32
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As reported by Kent Online (http://www.kentonline.co.uk/kentonline/news/2012/april/13/pre-loading.aspx):

Clubbers and pub goers could be breathalysed as they venture out in Maidstone in an attempt to measure levels of drunkenness.

Urban Blue Bus volunteers will carry hand-held intoximeters to determine the volume of so-called 'pre-fuelled' drinkers who load up with alcohol BEFORE a night out in town.

A recent study by Maidstone Town Centre Management indicated many revellers are well above the drink-drive limit before they even set foot in a pub.I wasn’t aware there was any law (yet) against being above the drink-drive limit when out around the town on foot. Indeed, isn’t that sort of the point of leaving the car at home? Hopefully any revellers asked for a sample will give a robust two-word response, although possibly they may take a sense of pride from how high their reading is.

It is also misleading to use the drink-drive limit as a measure of drunkenness, when in reality it is set at a relatively low level where there is some statistical evidence of impairment of drivers’ judgment. People at that level, or indeed a long way above it, are not in any meaningful sense “drunk”.

The comment by “Invicta” is spot on.

If you really want to stop pre-fuelling (rather than simply enjoy telling people what they should and shouldn't do which I suspect is more accurate), remove the smoking ban and stop over-taxing one of the few pleasures people have in this rapidly developing Orwellian nightmare.There is, however, an outbreak of common sense from one councillor:

One of the group, Cllr Dave Naghi, was shocked to see drinkers relieving themselves at the side of the road. “It was disgusting,” he said. “We're going to get some toilets back in the High Street.”One of the original purposes of public toilets was to “prevent nuisance”. And, as sure as night follows day, once you shut them all down the “nuisance” returns. In the old days many towns, especially in the North, had a large number of basic public urinals that presumably were to some extent intended for the convenience of blokes walking home from the pub. However, dog-in-the-manger demands for gender equality and disabled provision have now put paid to all of those.

(h/t to Chris Snowdon (http://velvetgloveironfist.blogspot.co.uk/2012/04/binge-drinkers-of-maidstone.html))
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