Plastic pint glasses?

I could not help but chuckle and roll my eyes simultaneously when I stumbled on this article about calls for plastic pint glasses in Britain.

Plans are afoot in Britain to replace the classic pint glass with one made out of plastic.

The government’s idea is that by introducing shatter-proof plastic vessels it will help address the increasing problem of beer drinkers using pint glasses as weapons in their local pubs.

Needless to say the plan has gone down about as well as a warm beer served, well, in a plastic cup.

There have been cries about how the proposed plastic vessels will substantially affect the quality of the amber nectar being drunk.

Others claim it’s yet another example of the government’s attempts to transform Britain into a “nanny state”.

The last point is a good one, although sometimes you wonder if a nanny is needed when you see statistics like this one, also from the article:

The motivation behind the push for the new model comes from official figures showing that 5,500 people are attacked with glasses and bottles in England and Wales each year.

I do not know what to do about Britain’s binge drinking culture, or the associated violence. I experienced some of this for the first time a few months ago, when on a sunny afternoon I had to walk out of my way to avoid a drunk guy who was covered in blood and fighting with another guy. It just made me sad. And a little frightened. One of the things I loved about England when I first moved there was the ability to walk down the street at night alone without feeling as frightened as I would have in the US. But that’s no longer true, especially when you take the pub closing times into account.

It is my last full day in America until December, something which has made me surprisingly melancholy. I think I spent too long in the states this trip–I’ve acclimated myself back to American ways and now I anticipate a tough transition back to British life. That said, I am tired of living out of a suitcase, something which I have been doing for most of the days since late June. I have no travel planned until mid-December, and for that I am increasingly grateful. I also look forward to getting back into a normal routine after all this time on the road. I woke up yesterday afternoon, napping after returning very early from the beach (to avoid beach traffic) and had absolutely no idea where I was. That makes sense, as this trip has seen me in New Hampshire, Boston, Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia, North Carolina, Wisconsin, and last but most certainly not least, Minnesota. No wonder I had no idea where I was! And that’s after a summer that also included Singapore, Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney. Time to go “home” to England and stay there for a while.

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11 responses to “Plastic pint glasses?

  1. You called England ‘home’ (even if you did use quotation marks)! Is home then simply defined as the place where you don’t have to live out of a suitcase?

    Your summer sounds mad, but fantastic! Looking forward to Sept.

  2. Definitely. Home is where I hang my clothes in my own closet, cook with my own kitchen equipment and have my own books and music to entertain me!!!

  3. Wow, you really are well travelled.

  4. you guys have a aussie domain and you talk english? wtf lol

  5. We had plastic beer glasses at our student union (for health and safety reasons apparantly, although I think it had more to do with the fact that they couldn’t afford to replace all the glass ones that would inevitably get broken). People would just throw them in the floor instead of returning them to the bar. The ones on the floor got stood on, broken and if you happened to stand on a sharp pointy edge it HURT! One girl even cut her foot on one. My point? If drunk idiots really want to fight I’m sure they’ll find a way to turn a plastic pint glass into a weapon.

  6. > But that’s no longer true, especially when you take the pub closing times into account.

    Isn’t it certainly true that England has a lower level of violent crime than the U.S?

    • On matters of personal security, I don’t see how a US vs UK argument is relevant. It’s more critical to look at the more local environment. Violent crime averages for the US include high and low crime areas, and different types of crime as well. Same for the UK.

  7. You said that you no longer felt safer in England than you would in the U.S. (unless I am misunderstanding what you said). If you were to look at the comparative statistics you would find there is no particular reason to feel so.

    • I don’t give a flying f*%$ about the statistics. What I care about is that in the US, I have never been walking down the street and encountered a bloody, drunken brawl. That scared me. America may have a crime problem, particularly a gun crime problem, but I have never had to deal with the blood in person in my own neighborhood. In the middle of the day. In public. With all the people just walking by and looking at the bloody, drunk guys fighting because they’re used to it. The bloody drunk guy makes me feel not safe. That’s what I care about. Not the statistics.

  8. Note from the moderator: a comment from Howard has been deleted. The moderator always reserves the right to delete comments that are outside the bounds of friendly discourse, especially when they purposefully ignore the previous comments written in good faith.

  9. Yes.

    Not the first comment of mine you have deleted, NFAH!

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