4 Mar

When I lived in France, I used to be so snobbish about wine; for the price of a pint of lager in this country, I could buy a very drinkable bottle of Beaujolais from my nearest corner shop. Outside of work, inebriation was my sole pastime, and drinking wine was the only economically viable method of realising this.

Buying wine in London is a mug’s (or at least a very rich person’s) game; almost anything under 7 quid is effectively just hangover petrol, and even then you’re still stuck solidly up Jacob’s Creek. This is not to suggest I drink any less at home than I did in Paris- quite the contrary, in fact- but that any sheen of sophistication my intoxication had has long-since vanished. These days I prefer the anonymous thrash of supermarket own-brand gin; it’s cheap, it’s dull, it does the job; it is the most utilitarian conduit to affordable drunkenness.

There are few things I miss about living in Belleville, but from time to time, I do pine for my days of respectable alcoholism- or, at least, what little I remember of them.


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