Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Comerade número dos

Hello again!

I have some good news. As of the first of September my good buddy Anthony Houlihan will be joining me and committing to his very own month of abstinence! Well done Spanko! Although Spank is the the second volunteer he will be the first person undertake the challenge. I'm thinking of making him a General. I'll keep you posted on that! If you would like to help us raise money for the brain tumour research campaign you can sponsor Spank at
And my link should be at the top if this page
Thanks a lot to you Spank for getting involved, it's really appreciated mate. And a massive thanks again to everyone who's reading the blog and giving up their hard earned cash. The more I talk to people about this the more I here of others who's life's have been affected by brain tumours in similar ways, so please spread the word as I'm sure there are plenty more people out there who would be willing to donate.

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Wednesday, 17 August 2011

And the grovelling little bastard who wanted to be my mate

The devil on my shoulder at Toby and Debbie's wedding

Guilt free

16 days in and all is going well. I haven't faced any considerable challenges since the wedding. I've been to the pub a few times and had mates round but it seems to have sunk in that booze is off the menu. Occasionally I find myself walking home when a sudden thought pops into my head " It's been a while since I've had a drink, I'll just bob into mully's and grab a few bottles" and then as suddenly as it bobs in, it bobs right out again when I remember I'm nay drinking.
Due to the constant lack of money in my account buying beer always leads me into a battle with my conscience.
"Ooh, think I'm gonna get mi sen a few beers"
"you shouldn't do that mate, thought you were trying to get out yer overdraft?"
" only a few, a fiver at most"
" a fiver! Think of that ten times over + going out, it all adds up"
These thoughts last until the first sip is taken when they are instantly drowned. It's quite refreshing not to be battling conscience in that way for a change.

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Saturday, 13 August 2011


I've had a bit of time to mull it over now and you know what? It was absolutely fine, I still had a great night with all my mates, I didn't do anything I had to be worried about in the morning and I could remember that myself. I saved a tenner on the taxi by driving home and I felt great the next day, even had a swim and a sauna before breakfast! Don't get me wrong I'm not saying that this is preferable to a nice cold pint or a glass of red because to me it isn't, but I suppose it is preferable to being absolutely monstered and making a tit of myself.

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Friday, 12 August 2011

Post par-tay

I still don't know exactly how I felt watching everyone revelling in all the free booze. There moments when I felt quite envious, I don't ever remember dying for a drink though, I don't think that I missed it that much on a moment to moment basis, I was certainly getting pretty sick of drinking tonic water but that was all. I found that rather than battling not to have a drink the real challenge was the mental struggle of thinking that I was missing out on something, although I knew I wasn't really. I was at the same party as everyone else, having roughly the same experiences, I just wasn't drinking. I wasn't the only one either, there were a few people who weren't and they seemed to be doing fine. I also noticed that I came away having spoken to less of the people I didn't already know than I would if I'd have been drinking. Perhaps that's a good thing though, I can never remember what I've said. I can Imagine conversations the morning after several weddings I've been to.
"Who was that twat with the beard?"
"God knows, he kept going on about inventing a pie that just had cheese and a fried egg in it though".

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Thursday, 11 August 2011

Debbie's Limoncello

1 Down

So I've completed my first week, not that long I know, but I have been to a wedding with free alcohol.
We drove over to Newbury on Thursday night so we could be there to help out on Friday morning. I spoke to Toby as we were setting off and felt a slight pang of jealousy when he told me that they were off out for a few drinks to celebrate his last night of "freedom". My ears pricked up for a moment until I remembered that I am 4 days in to my yearsans. Fortunately I was able to rationalise the feeling of jealousy and process it quickly.
" You can still have a good time without drinking Gaz. Your having a break, it's not forever!" and so on.
It was late by the time we arrived and almost last orders so we didn't make it to the pub anyway.
The temptation started early on Friday, we bobbed round to drop of some speakers at the marquee first thing and the tables were strewn with bottles of homemade limoncello. Then prior to the service we all met up in the pub, my first visit since I've stopped. Whilst everyone else had a nice pint I had a sparkling water and a tomato juice (which I quite enjoyed). I wasn't feeling to hard done to by this point but it was fosters on Tap so nothing to get to green about. It was when we arrived at the reception that I started to feel a bit sorry for myself. The champagne was out straight away, a nice glass of bubbles to get warmed up. After that it was pretty much a free for all, there were box's and box's of ale and lager and cider. There was red and white on the tables along with the lemoncello. Later on some bottles of sloe gin got passed around and a huge box of spirits that had been sitting on the floor all day suddenly made it's way onto the bar to become the star attraction. Thankfully The temptation wasn't so strong as to leave me champing at the bit or where there ever any thoughts of throwing in the towel, but it was a strange new experience for me. One which will take some getting used to....

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Wednesday, 3 August 2011


It's Wednesday the 3rd of August and it's going well. Chris was round ours for tea on Monday night, testing my will with a bottle if red and my jilted bottle of Tyskie. I think the Tyskie knew what was going on, it just sat there on the table, condensing the warm air until it beaded down it's frigid Polish neck. Bitch.
Everything is going well on a personal level but everything is going absolutely fantastic on a raising money for way ahead level! It's only day 3 and we've already reached 10% of the overall goal! How fantastic is that! So I would like to say a


You have all been very generous and it really means a lot. If you haven't sponsored then I do appreciate you taking the time to read the blog, it's getting more hits than I expected it would. Get us a pint in when you get paid though eh!
Thanks you'ns

Tuesday, 2 August 2011


Bye for now

We got a taxi back from the Grand about half ten, only an hour and a half to go until my self imposed year of prohibition begins and there's no beer in the house, I should have thought it through. The taxi driver was happy to stop at the offie but unfortunately the offie wasn't that well stocked. I came away with a bottle of Tyskie and a Westons organic cider, I cracked the cider about 11 o'clock and nursed it. I was so full it took me the next hour to drink the bloody thing and consequently I didn't make it to the Tyskie. So my last beer for a year was a cider! A decent cider but a cider all the same, I did enjoy it though. So that's it my yearsansbeer starts now.
So long, old friend


After that George returned from work and we got dolled up for our meal at the Grand. We arrived and headed to the bar for an apéritif. After our drink we were shown to our table in the conservatory, it's a bonny restaurant that looks out across the road to the sea. The food was good, George had rabbit spring rolls, black pudding stuffed chicken in parma ham and sticky toffee pudding for dessert and I had wild boar ham with pickled veg, lobster in garlic butter and a cheese board to finish. This was accompanied by a nice bottle of Gavi and a port with my cheese. So all in all it was an excellent meal to end the year. Thanks to all of you who made it a proper Bo thirtieth, you know who you are x

I was just sittin out on the step...


So I left Al and Tim and headed back home for my last beer on the step. Ben, my neighbour and I frequent the step like a couple of old boys on sunny evenings, supping and bringing down the look of the whole street.
Tonight I plumped for a bottle of Erdinger, another white-beer, this time from Germany. I think white-beers also rate amongst my top beers, my favourite being one I first tried in Austria about 10 years ago called Franziskaner. That's a great beer to drink on a hot day. So I sat in the sun with Ben and drank my last drink with him. It was a pleasure as always


Duke's balcony


So onto my last day, I'm still trying to catch up with myself as I didn't get a chance to post much over the weekend. Sunday was a really good day. I woke up feeling reasonably well considering. Unfortunately George had to work so I got up with her and opened my cards n pressies before she went off. Thank you everyone!
As it was my birthday I decided to go to the cinema where I was joined by the afore mentioned AliT. We have an excellent art house cinema in Brighton called the Duke of York's Picture House. It's a lovely old fashioned pictures with a varied schedule of films you would rarely get a chance to see at a multiplex style cinema. We went to watch a documentary called "cave of forgotten dreams" by German auteur Werner Herzog. Did I mention there is a bar?...
Needless to say we had a pint whilst watching the film (which is excellent by the way). Then another on the balcony once it was over (see photo).
Afterwards we went to meet another friend of ours and AliT's partner in the shop where I work, Tim. I had a few pints of Harveys best, its become one of my favourite drinks since I've been down here, along with their seasonal old ale it's a piggin cracker! We had a proper good roast and a nice bottle of white too before heading up the road to sample a bit of blue moon. That's another excellent drink, completely different to Harveys, it's an American craft beer not dissimilar to Hoegarden, well worth a try if you spot it.

Final days

Went down the beach with George and some friends for my penultimate night on the pop. We were initially going to have a barbie but my back is still giving me jip so couldn't really be bothered messing around with all the gear. We ended up getting a chippy instead. Everyone was enjoying a drink, I never really considered it then but that was certainly the last time I would be down there with a beer for quite a while, but you know what, I don't think I'm even that bothered, I don't always have to be drinking, do I? I've had a little bit of ribbing about giving up, I have a diatribe of a text message from my friend and employer AliT which predicts my instant downward spiral into a world abject misery. I'm considering posting it.

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Monday, 1 August 2011

A comrade

Not only did we have a great night on Thursday, I also got my first volunteer to do a month! Meet Ryan "buzu" Busitille
Who has very kindly offered to join me in abstinence through the month of February next year! Good man Ryan! And don't think that I didn't realise that you chose feb because it's the shortest month! Good effort though, cheers cock. 

A comrade

Final week

This week is flying by, I feel like I'm on death row. Counting down the moments until my last drink. This week has been put to good use thus far though, on Wednesday I was duped into thinking we were going round our friends Helen and chris' for tea, only to arrive there and be told that we were off down the Regency for us scran. The regency is a famous fish restaurant on the seafront which, over the years has been frequented by many famous faces, such as chiko (chiko time) Lenny henry (there's only one thing that's small and that's the price time) and mc hammer...
It's a great restaurant that serves cracking unpretentious food and we had a great night. We supped a nice white but I can't remember what it was, a few beers and finished off with a wee whiskey. I don't take it very often but I do enjoy the occasional tot. Thanks a lot guys.
On Thursday we were round Gemma and Ryan's with Helen and Ryan for another great night. We had some WWF on't telly n some ale in us belly and we ate some decent Mexican food. We were treated again as the guys clubbed together and bought us dinner for two at the Grand hotel for our 30th's. We are really looking forward to going down there, cheers amigos!
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