This weeks offering is so squarely aimed at freshers, it could be boxed with a decal reading Ucas clearing, byotch and a metric tonne of pasta. But what might an instant pub bar and beer pong baize, in tablecloth form, add to the decor of a normal home? Im ideally placed to judge, being one of those disappointing almost men: urbane yet a little slovenly, somewhere on the spectrum between please use a coaster and lets build a beer pong coliseum in the flat.
The polyester cloth is large, hand washable and wrinkle-resistant, with Velcro ties that attach to table legs. Leagues away from classy, the russet and oak are nonetheless mellow, and the printed bar towels, stools and Jack Russell charming enough.
Being under 60, I dont own a tablecloth, so its better than nothing. And it does make the place feel cosy. I keep the pub environment in place for a week and observe. Weirdly, despite the ring stains printed on the cloth, standards start to improve. Im polishing my wine glasses more, wiping the bar down in the evening, keeping cups of nuts around. Even coasters finally make sense. How about the beer pong element? If you dont know, this game involves bouncing ping-pong balls into cups of lager, which your opponent has to drink. Its democratic, being based on neither strategy, strength or skill. If chess is the sport of kings, this is battleships for binge drinkers. And its so much fun. Have some clean water handy so players can clean their balls before throwing, the instructions read. Nuts to that, they should have showered before they came. Still, evenings in are vastly improved, I dont need to get an Uber home, and being a bar manager is a good way to instill order in my life. Turn your home into a pub? Why not? Its time, gentlemen, please.
Its time, gentlemen the Pub Bar and Beer Pong sets. Photograph: Graeme Robertson for the Guardian
If I ran a pub, it would be named something impulsive Turbots Tickle, The Happy Beaver, Thirty-Four Bees, I dont know. Not Dog & Duck, which is what youre stuck with here.
Counter, drawer, back of the cupboard?
Buy now, before stock runs out. I hear theyre on last orders.