Somebody has to be brave, somebody needs to find the courage to say it, and I, for one, will finally speak up. The Tron is the worst pub in Edinburgh. More particularly, on Wednesday evenings the venue, staff, drink, and clientele together contribute to a drinking experience which is breathtakingly abysmal, and quite uniquely bad.
Perhaps on Tuesdays and Thursdays, the pub is unobjectionable, but Wednesday night is now generally established amongst students as a weekend-in-itself (“I’ve done three days work without getting drunk!”) and the Tron belongs to a franchise with a “Yellow Card” scheme which allows students to buy a beer for a pound on Wednesday nights. One may assume that this is all very jolly – that giving cheap beer to students will lead to fun and laughter – but the opposite actually occurs. The Tron ends up with the same atmosphere as Princes Street on the first day of the January sales. Everybody is out for a bargain, and the Tron consequently resounds with a smug, very petit-bourgeois satisfaction at saving pennies.
“I’ve paid only a pound for this,” the students in the Tron will tell each other all evening, referring to their pints of warm, watery shit-beer. For those of us who are several millennia ahead in the evolutionary race and drink Guinness, it remains routine extortion; but even if one can get a beer for a pound in the Tron (and the few good beers usually sell out by eleven), one may purchase beer just as cheaply in a supermarket and then drink it in the Meadows, which would be much more pleasant than the food-aid-arriving-in-famine-stricken-Ethiopia scenes around the bar in the Tron.
After rapists and paedophiles have died, they will wake up to find themselves serving drinks in the Tron for eternity. I imagine that this is the sort of contract by which people are employed behind the bar at the Tron. There are never enough staff, they always look furious or suicidal, and I dislike being made to feel that my order is another crack of the whip on the hide of a tortured prisoner. Considering that most drinkers take only pound coins into the Tron – and that they may wait for fifteen minutes to be served individually at the bar – it may be altogether more civilised to sell beer in the Tron through vending machines. Rather than a bar and two tormented barmaids, there would merely be a row of vending machines which would dispense bottles of beer. This would probably accord with the ambition of the devils who run the Tron to produce a no-frills pub, the drinking equivalent of Ryanair.
Last night I very foolishly left an agreeable dinner party to join some friends in the Tron, only to be told at the door that there was a queue to enter. There were about thirty people in this queue, and I was reminded of those medieval woodcuts which show witches lining up to kiss the Devil’s arse. This really was the final straw. Can there really be enough people so stupid as to actually produce a queue for this pub, which is as crowded and unsanitary as a refugee camp, as hot as an armpit, and as full of penny-pinching, tight-fisted bastards as a Lidl in a middle-class neighbourhood? We need Revolution. Or Dropkick Murphy’s… or the Peartree…