It was your first night at the Clare then. Drunk, 19, and wearing a Mossimo trucker hat. It was the first pub you began to routinely order jugs instead of schooners. It was the first pub your ordered a jug just for yourself.
You stand in the pokies room because the couches sit too deep; you have to yell from those things. You smoke while Piggy Ridell slots one after the siren, watching the 16 inch television above the bar they never use. You joke about Piggy’s booze and fag intake. It’s not original but it’ll do.
The bar girl puts on Bloc Party. She pours a beer then goes and changes it to Outkast. Three years later she puts on Javelin. You Shazam it.
Some team wins trivia. They roar.
Later on, you sit outside on the beer kegs, even though they’re not very comfortable. It’s commonly accepted that it’s “a lot like St Jerome’s.” Guys are drunk bragging through the toilet window.
Everyone generally agrees that the James Dean pizza was entirely adequate. There were some boosters who rated it higher, and it always started a debate about where the best pizza was. Experts.
A girl shrieks. Some johnson with a pool cue has just done something cheeky. His hair is thick and unkempt and you resent him.
You look at the suits. There’s only ever two at a time and they prefer to drink at the bar. Five years later, you prefer to drink at the bar. You think about how much you used to like Jose Gonzalez.
The ATM won’t work.
You can’t figure out if the pub has weird and changing opening hours, or just doesn’t open on Mondays. Maybe Sundays too.
It represents three girls to you. They live in the couches, just outside on the pavement, and in a nervous area near the pool table where you were desperate to be liked.
In the afternoons the summer sun sounds like happy voices.
It’s the last night at the Clare now. They’re not replacing the kegs as the beer runs out.
By the excellent Alex Vitlin.