Frank Prem

B of E #3: the interview

when you've said ‘see ya' to the boys
at about four
you jump in the car and head for home
because there's always a few odds and sods to be done
the missus will want to see you
and let you know a few things
and so on
until it starts rising six o'clock
when you get in the car again
and head for the pub


now there's some blokes
you know
who like to start early
and head for the one over the road there
on their breakfast break at work
then back again
for a liquid lunch
but I reckon they must be bloody alcy's


the evening session is good enough for me


and really
if you're a bloke in this town you have to be there
because all your mates will be in and they depend on you
want to know what's going on if you don't show
they'd never let up some of them
if they reckoned your missus was playing the dictator
so it's important


my word
that first touch of foam is good
a man works all bloody day for that moment
tastes better than a woman


position is important in the main bar
you can't stand over there
it's too close to the open fire
boil your beer if you're not careful
a bit of distance is better
and a lot of the places are claimed by regulars
Greggy and Darc generally go to that corner
Norm and Freddy prop the bar
just beside the TAB betting
Johnno's back against the fishing club wall over there
under the stuffed murray cod
big bastard that one was
Bluey got him above the weir in '79


and so you usually end up about here
with a bit of something to lean against
good view across the bar
to see who's coming and going in the place
and you want to have a sticky at the bar-girls of course
Janie and Marie
lovely girls they are
Janie organises the children's hospital appeal every year
It’s a big deal around the place
Marie's married to a blow-in from out of town
they live on a little hobby farm on the outskirts
five bare-arsed acres of scrub and a hacienda


some blokes like to sit on a stool
but really you're better off to stand and talk
there's something about the sound of voices in the bar
around about happy hour
that just makes you feel at home


anyway what else do you want to know


oh well
a lot of the blokes in this town work shifts
with plenty of days off and holidays
and end up with time on their hands
now and then
so they'll come here and have a yap with the other blokes
to see who's got a bit of cash work on the go
you might as well earn a bit of beer money
as spend your spare time going nuts at home
with the missus and kids around you all the time
it's a good place to do business
is the pub


something you should remember
if anyone happens to ask
is that you only ever have two beers at the pub
never more
the first one and the last one
that'd be right
wouldn't it
only ever the two pots


so by the time you've finished that second one
that I just told you about
it's pushing seven thirty and you've got to get going
because the missus will have dinner done
and getting cold
so you tell the blokes ’hoo roo' and get gone


we don't have much trouble with the coppers here
but it's best to be careful and go the back way
mind you
you never know where the buggers will turn up these days


sometimes you'll sit down at the table
to have dinner with herself
but often as not
you might as well sit in the lounge
and watch that ‘Blue Heelers' show on telly
she'll clean up the dishes
and as likely as not you might drift off for a minute
catch a little bit of shut-eye
it's a long day you know


the movie might be worth watching
but most nights it's easier just to go to bed
for an early start in the morning


will that do you


all right
cheers then




  • Goldfinch60

    Cheers Frank. Back in the day I used to go to the pub every night. I like the idea of only ever having two pints "the first one and the last one".

  • Lorna

    Thanks for this wonderful picture of "pub love" for us in the States.....

    • Frank Prem

      Hi LOrna.

      I guess it's different over there.

      These days drinking habits are largely different, but not everywhere.

    • Tony36

      Great write

      • Frank Prem

        Thanks Tony.

        • Tony36


        • Laura🌻

          Tomorrow is another day. As my dad’s favorite baseball player would say, “It’s deja vu all over again.” One of my favorite
          Enjoyed the read...
          especially about the pub!


          • Frank Prem

            That's a great yogi-ism. Ours has been a real pub culture until recent years. Very hard core. It's mostly Bistro life, now.

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