Whisky Mac on the Macc

by Ian H Bruce (2008)

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When friends cruise the Macc’s muddy line
Of spirit we know there’s no lack
So mix whisky and green ginger wine
And pour out a large whisky mac

Whisky mac on the Macc, with friends knock it back
Jokes, laughter, songs and whisky mac

When a bitter nor-westerly blows
And its bite feels as sharp as brass tacks
The answer as each boater knows
Is to down several large whisky macs

The dangers of consuming booze
Run like water from a duck’s back
When at the end of a long cold day’s cruise
You’re offered a large whisky mac

When you’re feeling crabby or stoned
If your mood is at best labelled black
Your narrowboat’s no alcohol free zone
So drink down one more whisky mac

When floating at five one eight feet
Of water there’s sometimes a lack
Though grounded do not be downbeat
 “Bottoms up” with a large whisky mac

If your boating wardrobe’s incomplete
As your waterproofs you didn’t pack
Think not of the rain, snow and sleet
But the warmth of a large whisky mac

When you cruise above the Cheshire plain
And geese launch dam-busting attacks
Ignore their foul bombing campaign
And cheer up with some large whisky macs

When walkers pass you don’t grouse
If you’re o'ertaken by everyman Jack
Just make haste to a warm public house
To join friends for a large whisky mac

Now this teacher’s escaped from the bells
And the incessant yackety-yak
No more evil laboratory smells
Just good friends sharing more whisky mac

After a recent social get-together with numerous boating friends, we were introduced to Whisky Mac by one of our number. Knowing no better, I followed instructions and achieved the correct proportions of whisky and ginger wine but was perhaps overly generous with the quantities dispensed. A very convivial evening was had by all and Whisky Mac has now become a popular winter tipple at the end of a cold boating day. A week or so later when those who could were recollecting this evening, it was suggested that ‘Whisky Mac on the Macc’ could be a good song title. I mulled this over and then came up with the above lyrics in which I have managed to make rather contrived references both to boating on the Macclesfield Canal and brands of whisky and ginger wine. One such contrived lyric is 'When floating at five one eight feet'; this, allegedly, is the height of the upper level of the Macclesfield Canal above sea-level. Many boaters would suggest it is usually a foot or more less - and not because sea levels are rising! The last verse is a personal one as I have recently retired from the frustrating task of trying to teach Chemistry to 'those that know everything already'.