And now for something completely different: Good Friday

Oh the most hated day in the Irish calendar. We loath it, despise it, curse it above all other days. Such hatred, derived from a religious holiday might seem strange or ironic but when you think about it, religion is the cause of some of the most vile and despicable moments of hatred in history. I often think the world would be a better place if there was no religion.

Why do we Irish hate today so much? Well the answer to that is simple. It's the only day of the year where the sale of alcohol is prohibited. Well not quite true, the same is true for Christmas day but no one goes out on Christmas day to a pub so we don't really care about that day. Perhaps we should.

We do however care about good Friday because it's the beginning of the Easter long weekend. Most business's are closed on Easter Monday, in fact many are closed on Friday as well but that's not even the real reason. What gets up my wick, what pisses me off about today is the reason we can't buy alcohol. It's bad enough that alcohol sales are restricted until after 12:30 pm on Sunday afternoons but to have days where it is outright banned for religious reasons is just backwards and  fundamentally wrong in a multicultural and modern society.

The reason for restriction would historically be to make sure Irish people, men in particular had nowhere else to go except to church. Once mass is over, usually by 12:30 on a Sunday, the pubs open and everyone spills in to try and forget the last hour of mind numbing boredom they just went through.

In modern day Ireland, I believe less than a 1/4 of the population of Catholics actually go to mass. Many consider themselves Catholic, as if it's a badge of honour but probably don't believe a word of it. They probably have not set foot in a church since their communion and that was only to get their gifts, usually money. Ireland has a high population claiming to be Catholic, 84% at the last census in 2011 although I highly doubt a fraction of that number is real. If 1/4 of Catholics go to mass, that might be closer to the truth.
With an ever increasing number of non Catholics in Ireland, why are we still subjecting citizens to this archaic law? Why is our government still allowing the Catholic church to dictate when we can buy alcohol?

I could now go on and rant about the ever increasing restrictions on alcohol trading in Ireland, such as reducing the opening hours of off-license (liquor stores/supermarkets) to 10pm at night. Or this bollox about minimum pricing but anyone with an ounce of sense knows that the more you restrict something, the more it will be consumed and you only end up hurting responsible people, those that make up the majority of the population. Rather than do that, I will direct those interested to an article that Beoir chairperson Séan Billings wrote last year. He uses fancy graphs and everything.

The funny thing is, there are exemptions to the ban. I can go to a theatre or concert at the National Concert Hall and take in a little culture and a few pints. Or I could go and gamble at a greyhound stadium and enjoy a drink to celebrate my win or drown my sorrows after losing all my money. Or I could book in to a hotel and as long as I'm resident in the hotel, the hotel bar can serve me. I wonder do hotels in Ireland see an influx of people on good Friday?

I think alcohol should be available to any who want it on any day of the year and at any time. If I'm at a 24 hour supermarket doing some shopping, I should be able to grab some beer or wine for the next day.
If the reason for the alcohol sale ban is the Church, then they should be told to fuck off.
If it's another ridiculous attempt to reduce how much we drink, then the government should fuck off and have a long hard think about things. They should be changing the way people see alcohol instead of restricting it.
One politician did try to do just that. Michael McDowell proposed to grant licences for café-bars in 2005. These would have a limited capacity to serve alcohol and food. It was hoped that this would combat binge drinking by introducing a more European "café culture". This initiative was dropped owing to objections from publicans. Many politicians are also publicans, so you can see where the real problem with our drinking culture might come from. The very people who say we drink too much, we  better restrict alcohol are the very people who likely cause us to drink so much in the first place.
The best way to tackle alcohol abuse is to make it socially unacceptable to be drunk. Let people drink as much as they like, when they like but keep it in check and go home sober without causing disruption to anyone else.

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hendrick,1,Streaky,1,stumptown tart,1,sublimely self righteous ale,1,Sullivan's,2,summer,1,Summer IPA,1,summer lightning,1,summerwine,1,sunburnt Irish red,1,suntory,1,supervalu,1,sur amarillo,1,surrender to the void,1,survey,1,sushi,2,sweden,1,Swedish beer,1,sweetwater,1,sweetwater brewery,1,sydney,6,Syvturys,1,t-shirts,1,T' Pakhuis,1,tactical nuclear penguin,1,tally-ho,1,tangle foot,1,Tankovna,1,Tap X,1,tapster,1,taste test,2,tasting,1,tasting session,1,tawny 05,1,tayberry,1,tea,1,teeling,1,tempest,1,temple bar chocolate festival,1,terrible beer,3,tesco,1,thanks to the big boys,2,the banshee,1,the beast,1,the beer moment,1,The Big Lunch Beer Challenge,1,the black sheep,1,The Brewrey Tap,1,the end of history,1,the fearless,1,the force,1,The Golden Pints Beer Awards 2010,1,The Great divide,3,the haka,1,The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy,1,The Late Night Levy,1,The little Brewing Company,1,the lord nelson,1,The Matt Brewing Company,1,the old stand,1,the oslo,4,the perfect publican,1,the rev james,1,The Rogue Hop,1,the salthouse,1,the session,41,the white hag,2,theakston,1,Thieving Bastards,1,thirsty bear,1,Thornbridge,6,three notched,1,thwaites,3,Thwaites double century,1,Tig Bhric,1,Tig Neachtain,1,timothy taylor,1,tis the saison,1,titan ipa,1,To Øl,3,tojo,1,tokyo*,1,tommyknocker,2,Tongerlo,1,toronado,1,torpedo,1,tralee,1,trappist beer,2,Traquair ale,1,Traquair House,1,trashy blonde,1,travel,30,travel notes,1,Treaty City,1,Tripple FFF,1,Trois Pistoles,1,Trouble Brewing,3,truck stop honey,1,tsar,1,tuatara,1,Turbo Yeast Utter Abhorrence from Beyond the Ninth Level of Hades III,1,twiglets,1,twitter,2,two hearted ale,1,Unertl,1,Unibroue,1,untappd,1,Urban Brewing,1,urbock,1,valentins,1,vandeoirsprong,1,Vapeur Cochonne,1,ventnor,1,versa,1,vertical tasting,1,very nutty black,1,vg noster,1,victory,1,Victory Golden Monkey,1,victory hop devil,1,victory hop wallop,1,victory storm king,1,video post,3,viginia,1,vintage ale,1,Vitesse Noir,1,vrienden,1,Waiheke Island,1,wainwright,1,warrior ipa,1,water shortage,1,website,1,Weihenstephan,1,Weihenstephaner,1,Weißenoher,1,Weisser Bock,1,Wellington,1,wells and youngs,1,Wells Banana bread beer,1,West Cork,1,western herd,1,westvleteren 12,2,wetherspoons,1,What Ales Ye?,1,what beer means to me,1,what's the matter lagerboy?,1,wheat beer,4,wheat wacker,1,wheat wine,1,Wheaty Goodness,2,whiplash,1,white gypsy,1,white gypsy vintage,1,White Island Wheaten Ale,1,White rabbit,1,white shield,1,whitewater,1,whychwood,1,wicked elf,1,Wickham Tap,1,wicklow brewery,1,wicklow wolf,2,widmer,1,wildcat,1,williams brothers brewery,8,windsor and eton,1,wine,1,winter ale,1,Winter Ales and Cask festival,3,winter lager,1,winter solstice,1,winter spirit,1,Wit,1,witty fella,2,wj kavanagh.,1,wobbly boot,1,woolpack,4,woolpacker,1,wordpress,1,world beer awards,1,world market,1,worlds best beers,1,wort,1,worthingtons,2,wrasslers,1,wynkoop,1,xx bitter,1,xx strong ale,1,yamamori,1,yardsman,2,yeti,1,york,1,young's,2,your local,1,yule ól,1,zero degrees,1,zeus,1,Zlatý Bažant,1,Zunbeltz,1,
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The Tale Of The Ale: And now for something completely different: Good Friday
And now for something completely different: Good Friday
The Tale Of The Ale
http://www.taleofale.com/2013/03/and-now-for-something-completely.html
http://www.taleofale.com/
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http://www.taleofale.com/2013/03/and-now-for-something-completely.html
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