I am still amused at the bravery (idiocy?) which compelled the thinking drinking duo to pull me out of the crowd to participate in their show, Broadway Baby lanyard clearly visible around my neck, notepad and pen in hand.
In a quick rundown of alcoholism over the last few millennia, the first beverage covered was beer. We were treated to a rapid history, from claiming that Jesus’ miracle was in fact turning water into beer and that Our Lord was undeniably an ale man, to talking about the Benedictine monks who were the first brewers. Then, one man came in dressed in monk’s robes to show the audience how to brew beer. Due to his vow of silence, the other man did all the talking. I was hauled out by the silent monk (‘Oh he’s picked a girl... again’) before a pungent mix of hops, oats and yeast was sprinkled into warm water; I was then rather suggestively shown how exactly to employ the handheld electric mixer. For my assistance, I was gifted with a bottle of ‘Bishop’s Finger’ beer, a drink whose dubious name is surpassed only by its foul flavour.
Attempting to prove that artists produced far superior work on narcotics than stone cold sober, the pair held up some Picasso reproductions which they claimed to have been painted when Picasso was ‘off his tits’. Right. They then held up another picture, ‘discovered buried in the British museum, a Picasso that the public has never seen before’, and painted during a time of alcoholic abstinence. It was a scrawl of a penis. After that startling cultural discovery, it was concluded that alcohol is in fact awesome and should probably be compulsory.
Next came spirits: vodka, rum, whisky, gin and absinthe. With shots circulating of each, my memory fails me of what happened next. I doubt it was hilarious. For strictly mercenary reasons, I would endorse this show for those on a tight budget. Where else in Edinburgh are you going to get five shots and a bottle of beer for a tenner? The show itself is irrelevant.