Thursday, 29 October 2009

I allus has wan at eleven

I have always been baffled by the cracked mirror we have in the corner of the room I never go into at home... What the hell does "I allus has wan at eleven" mean? I always took 'wan' to mean won, 'has' to mean had, and 'Allus' to be the scary looking Santa impersonator in the picture. Was 'eleven' a game?

It was never as though I gave up guessing. And despite searching the National Archives, and Google's research abilities, I'm still guessing. Apparently the scary Santa impersonator was an English gold prospector named Sam Griffin. He rocked into Victoria just as the gold was running out but he worked at a saw mill and at a pub near Warbuton. A photographer from Melbourne took a photo of him at the bar and a few years later Carlton Breweries bought the pic. They renamed him Sam Knott and shortened his original quote for a promotion.

He originally said: "I allus has wan at eleven, it's a habit that's got to be done. Cos if I don't have wan at eleven, I allus has eleven at one." Fair call. So 'eleven' isn't a game, it's a time. Further research tells me it was 11am, to be exact. And 'wan' is not won, but one.

With today's society tut-tutting a drink before mid-day, yet binge drinking being the norm, I put it to CUB to re-release this promotional material with the last part of his quote: "I allus has eleven at one". There. Much more responsible. Nobody likes an early drinker...

So that just leaves me with one question. Who the hell is 'allus'?


Kenan said...


harry said...

"i always have one at eleven"
it's part of a poem-
i always have one at eleven,
it's something that i've always done.
'cause if i don't have one at eleven,
then i have eleven at one!