Pint-Sized Politics: Why We Vote On Thursday

By london_will Last edited 165 months ago
Pint-Sized Politics: Why We Vote On Thursday

You might know the Marquis of Granby pub - it's in Westminster and is very pleasant indeed, although full of civil servants from the Department of Endless Filing and Running Around (DEFRA). In tribute to its political setting, it has been tracking the election with politically themed beers. So as Peter Snow has a Swingometer, the Marquis has a swig-o-meter.

Not exactly scientific then, but all good clean fun. And not at all an attempt to sell more beer.

Londonist has spotted a similar promotion in the Old Thamesside Inn on Bankside, next to the Golden Hinde - there must be others. And it's far from the first crossover of the worlds of politics and beer. Most recently, Labour distributed risque beermats in gay pubs and clubs across the country. The cheeky slogan read "Go to bed with Charlie ... Wake up with Michael".

And of course there was the infamous William Hague claim that he used to drink 14 pints a day. (Odd that that never led to slurs that he was an alcoholic, but Conservative politicians are happy to accuse Charlie Kennedy of drinking.)

There's also the obligatory "Man of the people, drinking a pint in the pub" shot, as shown by the picture accompanying this post.

But this rambling post provides a clear pretext to explain one of the most interesting aspects of elections: why are they always held on Thursdays?

The reason is bizarre. Thursday is the day that men (not women, you understand, they didn't get to vote) are least influenced by booze, their wives, or their church. It was calculated as the day men were under the least influence under the following method.

On Friday, of course, men get paid and spend their money on drink, and are thus incapable of voting. On Saturday, they spend the day under the influence of their wife. And on Sunday they get a sermon at church. So to ensure that their employer, drink, their wife, and the church have as little influence as possible, elections are held on Thursday.

Simple really.

Last Updated 04 May 2005