A Queenslander currently visiting Melbourne for something that his wife thought would be interesting is currently experiencing a mild sensation of claustrophobia.

This feeling is common for Queenslanders travelling interstate, particularly when they feel like having a beer.

Ando Glenella (36, Heavy Rigid Machinery Sales) says it felt like the walls were a bit close when popped into a pub round the corner of the bed and breakfast that the missus booked on the internet.

As someone who’s done his fair share of drinking in a vast array of Central and North Queensland breweries, Ando isn’t necessarily rocked by the culture clash between schooners and pints. The way he sees it, pints are appropriate in the cold country, and inappropriate in the heat,

However, the idea that he was able to find a pub ‘around the corner’ is a bit foreign to him.

“Not only that” he reckons.

“But the joint couldn’t have been bigger than 200 square metres”

“Felt like a newsagent, not a pub”

Like most Queenslanders, Ando is not familiar with the idea of a ‘local’ – unless you’re talking about a local ‘tavern’ – which looks like a medium sized shopping centre and is just as air-conditioned.

This is because Queensland’s interpretation of ‘local watering hole’ changed dramatically in the 1980s, after the State Government brought in laws that only gave bottle shop licenses to existing licensed venues. Overnight, the Woolworths and Coles duopoly bought every sleepy corner pub in the city and flipped them into alcohol grocery stores like BWS and The Thirsty Camel.

Some of these pub-killers even relocated their new bottle shops down the street and sold the old hotels to property developers who went on to repurpose them as apartment buildings with florists underneath. Under, Sir Joh, most pubs just torn down because nobody really gave a fuck about heritage listings back then.

That’s why any Queenslander under 60 cannot really remember drinking in a pub like the one Ando just walked into.

“The fucks going on here?!” he aks the bartender.

“Where are the machines?”

“You’re telling me I can just take this thing out onto the street and sit in one of those chairs?”

“Thought I’d seen it all”


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here