Beer glass generic.
Beer glass generic.

Oh COVID, how I long for a cold one


I NEVER thought I'd say this, but I long for the scent of a stale urinal cake.

Yep, the pungent, offensive odour is often a telltale sign that you have found yourself in a licensed premises.

And not one of these fancy establishments with house music and espresso martinis.

The stench is usually reserved for the most traditional of public bars.

Wooden bar tops.

Sodden bar mats running across the top, catching the loose overflows and specks of froth as they run down the sides of the deeply chilled glass.

The TAB is usually heaving. Crumpled tickets only tell the start of the stories of heartbreak.

The punters riding their hopes home.

The jubilation, as the crowd of mates gathered around know their wallets are staying in their pockets for a few rounds after a sizeable win.

From there we move into the bar.

A bustling metropolis of former GOATs, up and comers, amateur boxers and full-time socialites.

Footy, boxing, pool, darts, it doesn't matter really.

Anything can be discussed and debated.

And for a few golden hours surrounded by mates, nothing else matters in the world except the game on screen and the banter being dished up.

It's been nice being home, getting more time with my little mate, but there's some things home can't provide.

I love it, but it's different.

My daughter looks at me strangely when I flick a coaster across the table at her, pull up a chair and we sit down to an apple juice or an almond milk.

The only horses being cheered on these days are the cartoon variety, as they go on one daring adventure to another, with their group of loyal riders/girl scouts.

I've tried to recapture the feeling.

A few beers in the backyard with the bluetooth speaker turned up was all right, but it's not the same as an average-to-poor singer with an acoustic guitar belting out mediocre Clapton covers.

Trying to cheer people on as they throw a sack of beads into a hole, or try and climb up a bunch of soaped-up stairs is an absolute struggle (but check out The Ocho on Kayo if you haven't, it's absolutely bizarre).

I'm glad the pangs don't hit too frequently.

For the most part we're getting through this isolation fairly well.

But when they hit, they really hurt.

The nostrils ache to catch the waft of a fresh parmy as it's carried to a nearby table.

The mind is begging for the internal struggles.

Do I go for a stock standard heavy or a crafty ale?

The hot tip or the hunch?

To wipe the foam from the moustache now, or wait until the last sip?

There's so much of this curve talk, but the only bend I crave is that of the elbow.