While drinking with your mates at bars, The Beer Shout comes with inalienable rights and obligations.



If you haven’t read my previous blog about “dealing poker when you’re 20”, you should do so before reading this one. It’ll make a lot more sense (

Basically, single mum Sandy, asked me to help her twenty-year-old son Rick, become less socially awkward. I agreed to use the noble art of blogging to cover things that he may struggle to find written elsewhere.

If we did have a chat:

Rick – “Getting the first shout upon arrival Cool Hand (my self-ascribed poker call-sign), you’ll probably be buying less beers right? Because not everybody is there yet?”

Me – “Clever, however if any blokes arrive within ten minutes of your shout, you are obligated to offer them a beer, thereby having to go to the bar twice.”

Rick (with a cocky smile) – “Not eleven minutes?”

Me – “Ten. You want to hear the rules or not?”

Rick – “Yes, sorry. If there have already been a few jugs bought, am I obligated to get the same type again?”

Me – “Nope. Your jug, your choice.”

Rick – “Can I ask for help carrying the drinks?”

Me – “You are entitled to a beer-helper, only if there are five or more glasses.”

Rick – “Is it better to quietly shout when it’s your turn?”

Me – “Absolutely not! When it’s your turn you loudly announce to the table – MY SHOUT LADS. And when you return you are Jesus, turning water into…beer. Make sure everybody knows about it!”


Me – “And try making the shout jugs, not individual beers. It’s a hell of a lot easier to carry 1-2 jugs than 3-6 schooners. And if anybody is a little more or less thirsty, they can fill their glass as full as they wish.”

Rick – “What if people argue when it’s their shout Cool Hand?”

Me – “Every time you’re asking a bloke to put his hand in his pocket to provide you with beer, there’s going to be a momentary push-back – IT’S YOUR F#CKING SHOUT MACCA, will automatically be responded by something akin to – NO F#CKING WAY, I GOT THE SECOND LAST ONE. The person you’re calling out, always has a right to defend himself initially, then you work out whose turn it actually is. It’s very structured.”

Rick – “What if people try to avoid their shout?”

Me – “Rick, an under-shouter is the lowest form of life in an Aussie bar setting. “Whisperers” (because they under-shout) are like an All-Blacks fan, a soccer injury-feigner and a Steve Irwin-hater, rolled into one. You have the right to lambast with lines like – MACCA WOULDN’T SHOUT IF A SHARK BIT HIM.”

Rick – “Does every group have a Whisperer?”

Me – “Unfortunately they do in “Hornswood” just like everywhere else Rick. So don’t be naïve. Watch them like Delta Goodrem watches a muscular, young male contestant on The Voice. They will tend to be the same Whisperers, so you’ll know who to hawk.”

Rick – “Do over-shouters exist Cool Hand?”

Me – “Despite their best intentions, a “Bellower” (over-shouter) causes nearly as much chaos as a Whisperer. If some brief discussion is going on as to whose turn it is and a “Bellower” says “I’ll go”, it screws up the order completely and lets the Whisperer temporarily out of his shout.”

Rick – “What if I want to stop drinking?”

Me – “It’d just be dumb to ever drink more than you feel comfortable with Rick. Really dumb. You can stop after your shout.”

Rick – “What if somebody is drinking faster than everybody else?”

Me – “They get themselves a “wedgie”, a personal in-between-shout. This has no impact on the rights and obligations of the regular shout however.”

Rick – “What if everybody else is ready for another and I’m still drinking?”

Me – “As irresponsible as it sounds, if you are in the shout, you have to roughly keep pace, or drop out.”

Rick – “Cool Hand what if somebody asks for a bourbon and coke?”

Me – “Despite many shouters getting annoyed at this, bottom-shelf spirits are roughly the same price as beers, so let it pass. However, you are entitled to complain about the extra effort – OH FOR F#CKS SAKE MACCA. WHAT AM I YOUR F#CKING SERVING BOY?”

With all due respect to actual serving boys.

Rick – “What about offering waters with my shout?”

Me – “Very responsible, but unfortunately likely to be met with derision. When you are shouting, just scull two glasses of water yourself while you’re at the bar. If somebody throws in – CAN I HAVE A WATER ALSO? You reply – OH FOR F#CKS SAKE MACCA. WHAT AM I YOUR F#CKING SERVING BOY?”

Rick – “What if somebody is drinking softies?”

Me – “Coke Zero comes cheap, but not free. However, softies are excluded from the shouting process. So if your mate asks for one, you are obligated to get him one and he doesn’t have to shout-partake. But you are permitted to get up him in lieu of a drink – F#CKING HELL MACCA! GET IN THE F#CKING SHOUT OR GET OUT OF IT.”

Rick – “Thanks Cool Hand. You’re generously explaining things that could take years to learn myself, if at all.”

Me – “Don’t mention it mate. Just being a good man is thanks enough. Look after your family and remember… shout responsibly.”


Thanks for reading. I’ve put my heart and soul down in words, for you. Like a noble, armour-clad knight astride a powerful war-steed, in dogged pursuit of my elusive dream of being able to claim at parties much to my wife’s chagrin, that I am in fact… a writer.

If you could Share via the buttons below, that would be wonderful. Cheers. Jase. 


  1. For once in your life CH you’ve got it bang on. Though I’ve always thought that the overshouter was a bit of a prat, trying to impress with his largesse


  2. Great stuff Cool Hand. Didnt experience too many bellowers on the north shore when I lived in Sydney. Bellowers mostly came from the country mate, with you Hornswood folk whispers! Classic how the shouting protocol gets passed down from generation to generation. My Dad gave me two great bits of advice: (1) there’s a steak in every beer; and (2) you don’t want to be known as the bloke that doesn’t shout! Love it. Keep up the good work mate.


  3. Great insight into the “shout” culture Coolhand. You are to be congratulated on reinforcing this old age Aussie tradition. Although I would say the “over shouter” should be seen as a legend not a problem. He highlights the problem of the “whisper “ or as I’d like to say “free loader “. A real mate goes all out to look after his mate and ensure he is “fully watered”. Never ever criticise an over shouter who is doing his bit.


  4. Geez Cool Hand, for a bloke who never shouts you sure seem to know a f#ck of a lot about it! Great and informative blog, definitely understand the ritual better now.


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