I had to take a mile or so walk this morning through my south Birmingham suburb and the recycling bins were out for collection. I noticed that about 9 out of 10 had empty alcoholic containers in them, wine bottles, beer cans, cider bottles etc.
What does this indicate about our drinking habits?
It is a fortnightly collection and some containers had 15+ wine bottles, others 50+ beer cans.
I enjoy a few rum & cokes at the weekend but like to keep a clear head during the week for work so I buy one small bottle of rum per week.
There are constant reminders in the news about increased hospital admissions due to binge drinking and alcohol related problems but pubs are closing down at an alarming rate. Is drinking at home becoming the norm these days?
I'm a G&T man, nothing better than a cold glass straight from the freezer with a large measure of Bombay Sapphire, ice, tonic and a slice of lime. Sipped whilst admiring my neatly manicured lawn, as the sun goes down!
By jove Flaak999 I've just done the garden, walked the dog on the moors for a couple of hours and biked 7 miles down the tow path, I'm going to have one now.
The sun's far enough over the yard arm, it looks like being a long shadowed evening to not to have wait until the local cricket match starts and I have all the ingredients in the fridge. Oh what it is to be British!
To paraphrase Aitchbee for an awful lot of people it's a matter of simple economics. You either drink at the local or at home. Drinking at home is about 1/4 of the price, so, unless you need the social intercourse provided by your fellow man, there really is little choice.
Personally, I do both as, on certain nights of the week, I enjoy the drunken companionship of some, not all, fellow drinkers.
As I don't like tinned beer - too fizzy and doesn't taste the same - I only drink real beer in pubs.
But the amount of recycling of cans and bottles I see in some peoples bins as I wander past is enormous, some houses seem to get through about 20 bottles of wine a week.
The answer is as clear as a bell, yes most people do drink mostly at home. The booze is too cheap in the supermarkets etc. and too expensive in the public houses. That's why they are shutting down hand over fist, Plain as a pikestaff.
Price is of course a big factor but you have to add in the effect of greater awareness of drinking and driving. Some people will prefer to stay home and have a couple rather than drive to the pub and make one last all night.