"THAT’S really one of life’s great pleasures”.

Two of the great pleasures that many of us have had to do without during the pandemic are going to the pub and travelling abroad.

The man quoted above was a dream partner for both of those activities.

Anthony Bourdain, who sadly passed away in 2018, was a successful chef and author of the brilliant ‘Kitchen Confidential’.Glasgow Times:

It’s for his travel documentaries, however, that he’s most fondly remembered. Passionate, thoughtful, heartwarming films with high production values and zero pretension.

It was on a 2015 episode of his Parts Unknown series that he visited Glasgow and spoke of those “great pleasures”, referring to the haggis he’d ordered alongside fish, chips and curry sauce at the University Cafe on Byres Road.

It’s life-affirming stuff. You want to be in that cafe with him, just like you want to be with him in a Berlin dive bar or Detroit house party.

There’s a lot to be said for Somebody Feed Phil, or even the relentless Da patter of Rick Steves’ Europe, but if you’re a masochist like me who spent most of 2020 and 2021 torturing themselves with programmes about places you had no hope of visiting any time soon, nothing beats Bourdain.

As someone equally adept at telling stories, asking questions and actually listening to the answers, Bourdain exuded one of the most admirable qualities a human can possess: ‘Good Pint Energy’.

The pint glass can be filled with alcohol, water or anything else, but if it’s in a pint glass you’re in a pub, and if you’re in a pub a good night can become a great one thanks to a companion with Good Pint Energy.

Some people can tell a tale, and others can get into a decent back-and-forth, but only a few can bring the whole table together and sustain it for the night.

This skill was recently given a name, thanks to the great Larry David. In an episode from the latest season of Curb Your Enthusiasm, Larry perfected and defined the tricky art of ‘middling’, wherein a guest situated in the middle of the table must not only produce consistently good anecdotes but must also be able to bring all sides of the table into the conversation.

He explained: “You have to be able to carry the conversation. You have to be interesting. You are the point guard. You’re distributing the ball.”

Larry was speaking about his natural habitat of the dinner party, however, and is unlikely to be found in a pub, so he’s technically a Potent Shindig Energy guy.

Anyone who’s heard his music or seen his interviews would be tempted to nominate Mike Skinner AKA The Streets, but while he would undoubtedly be good company he technically falls under ‘Strong Gaff Energy’. Skinner might be relatively understated in the pub, but at 4am in someone’s kitchen he comes into his own.

Louis Theroux seems an obvious candidate, but by the end of the night he’s documented your darkest secrets after sucking you in by being all posh and awkward.

There are also arguments to be made for the likes of Jarvis Cocker, Jane Fonda, Jeff Goldblum and Nile Rodgers, but it’s a small table (we’re sitting at the back of the raised bit in Sleazys on Sauchiehall Street) so we’ve got to be picky.

The four living celebrities who best represent Good Pint Energy are Kathy Burke, Miriam Margolyes, Ally McCoist and Bob Mortimer.Glasgow Times:

The enthusiasm of Ally ‘I HAVE to say’ McCoist. The surrealism of Mortimer. Burke calling your ex a d*** and Margolyes calling her ex a d***.

If you’ve got a friend with Good Pint Energy, treasure them. They are Gods of the night who walk among us, and they will probably approve of these words from Bourdain in Kitchen Confidential: “Your body is not a temple, it’s an amusement park. Enjoy the ride.”


If ‘Good Pint Energy’ exists, it follows that there must also be Bad Pint Energy, and no-one embodies it quite like Nigel Farage.

For a man rarely pictured without a pint, the idea of sharing drinks with Farage is about as appealing as the idea of sharing opinions with Farage.

On Wednesday, presumably after clearing scotch egg crumbs from his keyboard, he typed: “Tune into GB News for Talking Pints with Kerry Katona. Aside from being a pitch that even Alan Partridge would consider a bit demeaning, it’s another reminder that this is not a man to be taken seriously.


‘It’s scandalous how Spotify treat artists. What is it, a third of a penny for a stream? Shameful’ is a thing I’ve said to my musician friends. At the same time, ‘When is Spotify Wrapped this year?’ is a thing I’ve thought and typed into Google.

My 2021 number one will almost certainly be ‘Chaise Longue’ by Wet Leg.

Find me another song with a lyric like ‘Is your mother worried? Would you like us to assign someone to worry your mother?’ and it’ll top my Spotify Wrapped 2022.

Sorry, I meant to say ‘Seriously, £.00034p? Get them boycotted’.