Saturday, 29 August 2009

Avoid Disappointment

And so it begins...

Among the multitude of rubbish on television on Saturday evening was a programme on the Ideal World shopping channel. It's nearly the end of August so, yes, you've guessed - it was Countdown to Christmas. A wee woman, without a trace of shame, sat in front of the camera with a fully decorated Christmas tree behind her, holly and ivy spread around the studio, and spoke about spreading the cost of Christmas.

I've already had several shopping catalogues pushed through my letterbox with a big fat man with a white beard and wearing a red suit and black boots urging me to buy early for Christmas - and avoid disappointment. Too late on this last statement, fella - my intention was to try and avoid Christmas all together but there's fat chance (every pun intended) of doing that even before September begins.

And it's not just Christmas.

Travelodge have sent me an e-mail offering me 'Special Spring Offers for 2010'. Apparently I can book selected rooms for just £12 per night- from 1 January to 30 April. 1 January? Spring? As I pass through Cameron Toll Shopping Centre in Edinburgh there are huge posters on travel shop windows urging me to book early for summer 2010. No doubt to avoid disappointment...

It's small wonder that the older one gets the quicker time seems to go. Having been on holiday last week the past seven days have certainly whistled past. Come Monday morning, however, normal business will be resumed.

In these recession hit times I can understand why some companies are looking ahead to gain customers - forward planning and all that. But I would quite like to see what autumn has to offer first, turn the clocks back an hour and see through Halloween, Guy Fawkes Night and St. Andrews Day before even thinking about the dreaded period of Christmas...

...and booking my spring holiday in January...

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Edinburgh

Some of the more observant readers to these pages will have spotted that I've changed the photograph on the front page of the blog.

This is Edinburgh when the buses were maroon and white and not the artistic atrocity they are now; when Princes Street was a street and not the building site it has become; when blue skies stretched over a once proud capital city.

Not so long ago, actually...

Insomnia Therapy? I'll Sleep on it...


According to one of those countless research studies, one out of 10 Britons can't fall asleep at night. This surprises me as the amount of people I speak to who tell me they can't sleep at night is considerable.

I don't sleep well myself. I put this down to several things. A stressful job. A stressful family. Daughters who give me grief. Grandchildren who give me even more grief. A stressful football team to support - they've given me grief for more than forty years, a couple of Scottish Cup triumphs apart (I do give thanks I don't follow Edinburgh's lesser team, Hibernian) And the fact that I'm not a well man, something that may surprise a lot of people reading this. I don't like to complain about my ailments as most people will testify. All of these factors contribute to my lack of sleep of a night.

Those of us who have trouble sleeping know about the traditional remedies. Drink warm milk, take a hot bath, sip herbal tea, or count sheep. Now, a US study - where else? - claims that on-screen therapy may be an effective solution to arriving in the land of nod. Rather than waiting months for a referral to a cognitive behavioural therapist, there is now an on-line service.

This includes a five-lesson, five-week course teaching patients about insomnia and then offers goals for each week ahead. Patients learn to keep to a sleep schedule, reduce negative thoughts about sleep and practise relaxation techniques for day and for night.

Apparently this treatment has proved to be a great success. I wonder, however, how many of those who have undergone this on-line treatment have to live in a city resembling a demolition site in the name of trams, can't get from A to B without being plagued by bloody tourists, follow a football team whose strikers can't hit a barn door from six feet, have children who think their father is a mobile bank and grandchildren who think their grandfather is a walking assault course.

As I said, I'm not one to complain. And a quick look at this sleep therapy website has impressed me. In fact I would go as far to say.....zzzzzzzzzzzz....

Sunday, 23 August 2009

The Stimulus Package Explained

It is the month of August, on the shores of the Black Sea. It is raining, and the little town looks totally deserted. It is tough times, everybody is in debt, and everybody lives on credit.

Suddenly, a rich tourist comes to town. He enters the only hotel, lays a 100 Euro note on the reception counter, and goes to inspect the rooms upstairs in order to pick one. The hotel proprietor takes the 100 Euro note and runs to pay his debt to the butcher. The butcher takes the 100 Euro note, and runs to pay his debt to the pig grower. The pig grower takes the 100 Euro note, and runs to pay his debt to the supplier of his feed and fuel. The supplier of feed and fuel takes the 100 Euro note and runs to pay his debt to the town's prostitute that in these hard times, gave her "services" on credit.

The hooker runs to the hotel, and pays off her debt with the 100 Euro note to the hotel proprietor to pay for the rooms that she rented when she brought her clients there. The hotel proprietor then lays the 100 Euro note back on the counter so that the rich tourist will not suspect anything.

At that moment, the rich tourist comes down after inspecting the rooms, and takes his 100 Euro note, after saying that he did not like any of the rooms, and leaves town. No one earned anything. However, the whole town is now without debt, and looks to the future with a lot of optimism.....

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how the United Kingdom Government is doing business today....

Friday, 21 August 2009

Pride and Compassion


Nearly twenty-one years after the atrocity that will forever be associated with the Scottish border town of Lockerbie, old wounds have be re-opened with the release from Greenock prison of the sole person convicted of planting the bomb which blew apart Pan-Am Flight 103 just before Christmas 1988 - Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al Megrahi. His release after serving just eight years has inevitably caused a huge reaction around the world. There has always been nagging doubts about his release. But, under Scots law, he was properly investigated, lawfully convicted and duly sentenced.

270 people perished that fateful night in the Scottish borders. One can only try to imagine what their families and friends went through - and are still going through. Losing a loved one is traumatic enough; to do so in such an unexpected and highly public manner is unthinkable for most of us. I can understand the anger of the relatives of those who died at Mr Megrahi's release. His release on compassionate grounds - it's been said he only has months to live as a result of terminal cancer - sticks in the throat of those who say no compassion has been shown to those who died that night. Not for them, the chance to say their goodbyes to the people they loved.

But whether one agrees with the decision or not, there is one thing that makes me proud of my country. Scottish Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill has taken a decision he knew would be unpopular in the UK and more particularly, the USA. But he has refused to bow to American pressure; refused to be bullied by the powers that be in the States. The decision to release Mr Megrahi was made in Scotland. Our country. Scotland's decision. No one else's. The USA may think it has the right to police any country it chooses and its condemnation of the decision smacks of 'what the hell do you think you're doing?' But Scotland is no longer cow-towing to a London government which itself doffs its cap to America more times than is necessary. President Obama and the American people may disagree with the decision but they should respect it.

Yes,the homecoming that greeted Mr Megrahi when he arrived back in Libya was unnecessary. He is a convicted criminal after all, responsible for the deaths of 270 people. At the same time, there is a school of thought, particularly in Libya, that he was nothing more than a scapegoat. The full story of that night in 1988 is unlikely ever to be told.

Meanwhile, Scotland has bared its teeth to the world. UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown and his predecessor Tony Blair have sucked up to the USA for far too long. When Scotland hopefully gains its independence many people will remember this decision.

And will respect a nation for its courage in standing up to the so-called super powers...

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Hearts in Europe

From the BBC Website as the full-time whistle blew in Croatia following Hearts latest foray into European competition:

2148: Dinamo Zagreb have had 21 shots, Hearts have had one, say the stats. And you know what they say: the stats don't lie. (Except on those occasions when they do.)
It ended Dinamo Zagreb 4 Hearts 0.
A plea to the marketing people at Tynecastle. Please don't start the 'we're not out yet' p*sh for next week's return match. Tonight's display was an embarrassment and it's very likely we'll get horsed next week too.
So, don't. Just don't...

Wednesday, 19 August 2009

The Coastal Town They Forgot to Close Down


Such is the emotional power of music that certain songs remain etched in the memory and remind you of places and people, some you remember fondly, some you may try to forget. Whenever I hear The Four Tops classic number 'Reach Out I'll be There' for example, I'm instantly transported back to Cumbernauld, just outside Glasgow in the late 1960s. As a child in my formative years, for me, this song is forever linked with the new town. To this day when I hear the song I close my eyes and for a couple of minutes I'm back in simpler times when there were no personal computers, no internet, no mobile phones, I would be out playing with my pals - and my mother and father would be in the house keeping a beady eye on me.

Similarly, years later when I lived in Aberdeen there were a couple of songs that summed up my less than happy time in the Granite City. The Proclaimers burst on to the scene in the late 1980s and penned a few memorable ditties, none more so than 'I'm on My Way' (from misery to happiness today) This was a song I never tired of hearing - for obvious reasons - when I left Aberdeen for Edinburgh nearly twenty years ago. But I heard the other song a a few days ago for the first time in years - Morrissey's Every Day is Like Sunday. I had forgotten what a wonderful song this is and it's hard to believe it's twenty-one years since he wrote it. Living in misery in Aberdeen at the time, the lyrics hit a resonance with me which few other songs do:

Trudging slowly over wet sand
Back to the bench where your clothes were stolen
This is the coastal town that they forgot to close down
Armageddon - come Armageddon! Come Armageddon! Come!
Everyday is like Sunday
Everyday is silent and grey

Hide on the promenade scratch out a postcard
How I dearly wish I was not here
In the seaside town...that they forgot to bomb Come! Come! Come - nuclear bomb!
Morrissey was,of course, the lead singer with The Smiths back in the early 1980s before he embarked on a solo career. The Smiths were one of the best bands around in a decade which taste forgot and blandness and greed took over. You may try to imagine how wonderful it felt hearing that song - living, as I did, in the coastal town they forgot to close down...

Saturday, 15 August 2009

ESPN


Following the demise of Setanta Sports, I thought I would register with ESPN, the sports network that has picked up the wreckage from Shitanta to televise live football in Scotland. I phoned last night in the hope of getting some half decent football for £10 per month. They're offering SPL and English Premiership games every week although Sky have the pick of the games. That said, the Dundee United-Hearts game is being covered on Monday night - not that that influenced my thinking...

However, my attempts at getting subscribed to the channel were akin to negotiating the MaastrictTreaty. On Friday evening around 6.45, I spoke to some young lass over the phone who took my details...

Name?

Mike Smith

Smith? Can you spell that for me?

S-M-I-T-H.

Thanks. Do you have a date of birth?

Yes, thanks.

What is it?

26-02-62

1962?

Hmm. Let me think for a minute.

If you could be quick, sir, we have a lot of callers waiting to get through.

Oh, I'm so sorry. Now, Henry Allingham was born in 1896 and had just passed away. As he was Britain's oldest man, that would mean I must have been born in NINETEEN sixty-two as I'm not quite 147 years old. Do you want me to spell that for you?

That won't be necessary sir...

I do apologise. I thought I had phoned ESPN, the sports network but it seems I've got through to an organisation dealing with ESP instead...

She duly took my payment details and informed me she wouldn't be able to take my credit card details and asked if I had a debit card. I gave her the details, she thanked me and told me to keep my television on Channel 16 for the next couple of hours. Channel 16, I asked? That's the QVC Shopping channel. Yes, she affirmed, this would be necessary for the signal to decode (whatever that meant)

Three hours later - and having muted the television to avoid the incessant cackling of middle aged women selling shoes - there was still no ESPN on my television. Cue another thirty minutes on the phone to customer services and receiving irritating reminders that my call may not be answered immediately due to the high level of people wishing to join the new service. Eventually another young lass answered my call. She informed me there was no record of my details. But, I protested with more than an air of irritation, I had spoken to someone three hours earlier. This cut no ice. Rather than go through the whole damn process again I snapped at the girl on the other end of the phone, slammed down the receiver and headed for bed in a foul mood. Despite the huge advance in technology in recent years it seems the relatively straightforward process of subscribing to a television service over the telephone is still a step too far. Especially when they employ snotty-nosed teenagers who don't have a clue what they're meant to be doing.

This morning I skipped the idea of phoning again and instead registered by the website. Why I didn't do this before I really don't know. This time my credit card details were accepted and the sports station was active a couple of hours later. And tonight I watched Arsenal destroy Everton 6-1. Without wishing to concern my good friend Lizzy in the Hei'lands - she is an avid Celtic supporter and her side face Arsenal on Tuesday - The Arse were quite magnificent. It might be an idea for Gary Caldwell and co. to wear brown shorts on Tuesday evening...

To cut a long rant short - if you fancy subscribing to ESPN don't bother phoning the school leavers with attitude. Go to the website instead - at least it won't ask you which century you were born in...

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Daffynitions

1. ARBITRATOR: A cook that leaves Arby's to work at McDonalds.

2. AVOIDABLE: What a bullfighter tried to do.

3. BERNADETTE: The act of torching a mortgage.

4. BURGLARIZE: What a crook sees with.

5. CONTROL: A short, ugly inmate.

6. COUNTERFEITERS: Workers who put together kitchen cabinets.

7. ECLIPSE: What an English barber does for a living.

8. EYEDROPPER: A clumsy ophthalmologist.

9. HEROES: What a guy in a boat does.

10. LEFTBANK: What the robber did when his bag was full of money.

11. MISTY: How golfers create divots.

12. PARADOX: Two physicians

13. PARASITES: What you see from the top of the Eiffel Tower

14. PHARMACIST: a helper on the farm

15. POLARIZE: What penguins see with.

16. PRIMATE: Removing your spouse from in front of the TV.

17. RELIEF: What trees do in the spring.

18. RUBBERNECK: What you do to relax your wife.

19. SELFISH: What the owner of a seafood store does.

20. SUDAFED: Brought litigation against a government official

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Born to be Idle

Glasgow is the "laziest city in the UK" according to the findings of a national health poll.Researchers questioned 2,049 people during May for the not-for-profit organisation, Nuffield Health. About 75% of Glaswegians who responded* admitted they failed to exercise at least three times a week. This figure was 67% for people from Birmingham and Southampton, with London just behind on 66%, Bristol on 64% and Leeds and Newcastle on 62%. The survey also suggested that some Britons were so lazy they would rather watch a television programme they do not like than get out of their chair to change channels.

From the BBC News Website

What a sad reflection on today's society. But, sadly, an accurate one. We live in an ever increasing 'instant' society. Instant meals, instant communication, instant access to information. Time was when one had a sense of achievement when scouring an encyclopedia for information on a topic which added to your educational prowess. Now you can simply type words into 'Google' and the answer is before your very eyes within seconds.

The art of letter writing seems to be a dying art too. Years ago, I used to correspond with a friend in Newcastle Upon Tyne by letter. Yes, dear reader, letter. We used to communicate regularly, not by e-mail or text but by taking the time and effort to sit down and write before taking our chances in the hope that Royal Mail would actually deliver it (which they did on occasion) And we both appreciated the effort each of us put in.

Cooking a decent, nutritious meal used to be a pleasure too. (well, apart from some of my culinary disasters although I do prepare a mean cheese sauce) Now, more and more people come home from their inevitably stress-filled day at work (who isn't stressed at work these days?) stick a frozen ready-made meal into the microwave oven and eat it slouched on the couch in front of the television watching inane commercial-riddled tosh on a wide screen. And what do they eventually do with their dirty plates? (assuming they've bothered to use plates and aren't eating direct from the package) Stick 'em in the dish washer.

The particularly alarming paragraph in the above BBC news story was regarding people not getting out of their chair to change television channels. Alarming, because I watched Scotland's footballers give a pitiful performance in Norway tonight in a World Cup qualifying tie. Well, I lasted until half-time by which time Scotland were two goals down and had a player sent off. At that I switched the television off and went and did something more interesting instead. Like watching paint dry.

However, I thought of those pour souls in Glasgow, stuck on the couch, forced to watch the whole ninety minutes - because the remote control was an agonising few feet away...

*the other 25% couldn't be bothered to answer...

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Monday Monday...

...will be so good to my darling grand-daughter Hannah. She will be two years old on 10 August and so it will be round to daughter Laura's house after work to join the festivities.

Wee Hannah may be just two but she already has the majority of my family wrapped around her little finger. She only has to flash those blue eyes and they all melt before her. But not her Papa, oh no. I can see through the little mite and I let her off with nothing.

I do, honestly....

Happy Birthday darling - Papa will be round later...

A Long Life

The state pension retirement age could be increased further, the UK's pensions regulator has told the BBC. David Norgrove said rising life expectancy meant millions of people would "undoubtedly" have to wait longer in future to draw a state pension. People will not save as much for retirement as in the past, with many people "frightened" to do so, he said.

The state pension age is due to rise to 68, and Pensions Minister Angela Eagle said there were no plans to raise that.

From the BBC News Website

Sometimes I just don't know what to believe. On the one hand, we have health experts telling us that more people die of heart disease in Scotland than anywhere else in Europe. This, we are told, is mainly down to poor diet with too much fatty foods. Scots penchant for the 'chippy' and Chinese and Indian takeaways is a popular as ever despite the recession. I have to say I'm prone to these myself and I know many other people who share similar culinary tastes. There are also those ecologists who tell us the planet is on the verge of extinction as a result of me leaving my television on standby every night instead of switching it off at the mains. Violent crime is also apparently on the increase. If one was to read all of those stories consecutively, one may assume we'll all be dead by the end of next week. We're all doomed...

On the other hand we have other 'experts' tell us that life expectancy is higher than ever and that the human race is getting much older. Advances in medicine and a realisation that eating habits need to change, we need to drink less and stop smoking altogether mean people are living much longer than in years gone by. In fact, some experts believe some humans may live until they're 150 in the not so distant future. It would be childish of me at this point to mention a blogging friend of some note, Adullamite, who can't be far away from becoming the first of that ilk... In any case, given the concerns raised above does anyone want to live longer?

Britain recently lost two of its very senior citizens. Harry Patch, the last Briton to have served in the First World War, died aged 111 while a few days earlier Britain's oldest citizen Henry Allingam took his last breath at 113. Why did those two gentlemen live so long? The reasons are unclear although I loved Mr Allingham's reply when he was asked the secret to old age. 'Cigarettes, whisky and wild, wild women!' he replied. I suspect Mr Allingham died with a smile on his face!

My father died at 58 and his father died at 45. So the chances of me receiving a message from the King to celebrate by 100th birthday are slim to say the least. As a father and grandfather, naturally I wish to live as long as possible to see my family try and achieve happiness and for little Jack and Hannah to grow up to be responsible, talented and popular adults. However, Ladbrokes are giving long odds I'll reach pensionable age.

Which, thanks to those health experts, is becoming further out of reach. That said, I have an unopened bottle of whisky in the cupboard. I'm off to the shops for twenty Embassy Regal - while I'm away if any wild, wild woman fancies getting in touch...

Saturday, 8 August 2009

That's What They Call Progress


The old black and white photograph on the main page of this blog is of Tynecastle Park, home of the glorious Heart of Midlothian, Edinburgh's finest football club, taken in the 1950s. For those of you who read Adullamite's excellent prose, he actually appears in this photo, third from the front with the flat cap and scarf...The photo in this post is of Hearts with the Scottish Cup in 1956. Anyone of the Hibernian persuasion who doesn't know what this is, drop me an e-mail and I'll try to explain...

Before the auld fella retaliates, those days were before my time, being a child of the 1960s. But one of the many interesting aspects of this photograph is the number of smiling faces. Times were hard in post war Britain (as Adullamite will no doubt concur) but there seemed to be more of a community spirit then and a sense of knowing life was tough but just getting on with it. Going to the football was a welcome release from the travails of everyday life and in those less complicated times if you wanted to go and watch the finest team in Scotland - as Hearts were in the 1950s - you just headed for Gorgie on the tram, handed over your pennies and you stood on the terracing to enjoy the skills of some of the finest football players this country has ever produced. Compare that to now.

Hearts will face Dinamo Zagreb in the Europa League play-off round in a couple of weeks with the second leg due to be played at Tynecastle on 24 August. Tynecastle no longer has open terraces with the option of just turning up just before kick-off. Now you have to purchase a ticket for the all-seated 'stadium' (the name Tynecastle Park has been confined to the history books) with the top prices for the game against the Croatians being a whopping £32. I may be wrong here but I suspect £32 may have got you into several years worth of games at Tynecastle less than fifty years ago. And technology is such now that the old season ticket books - where you tore off your ticket for each game from a small booklet - have been replaced with something called a smartcard. I got my small piece of plastic the other week and shall attempt to use it for the first time today when I visit the old ground to watch Hearts pre-season friendly with Sunderland. Knowing Hearts history with such 'innovations' I fully expect it not to work...

Such technology is a sign of our times. Those not going to the game today can keep up with events minute by minute through the internet, mobile phone and Twitter updates - if you asked anyone in the aforementioned black and white photograph if they were on Twitter there would be a fair chance you would be carted away by men in white coats...

Such technology isn't always put to good use. The BBC News carried a story about the release of the Great Train Robber Ronnie Biggs the other day. As if to demonstrate to the younger and perhaps uninitiated people of today they ran a rather grainy old clip of the train involved on its journey back in 1963. Some young techno geek thought it might be a good idea to add a sound effect to the clip and added the shriek of a steam train for authenticity. Except the train involved was diesel. Well, it must have seemed like good idea to some ignorant BBC research assistant...

I wonder how many of the crowd at Tynecastle today will be smiling in the same way their contemporaries did five decades ago? I'll hazard a guess and say not a lot. Of course, those in the 1950s were watching the likes of Dave Mackay, Willie Bauld, Alfie Conn, Jimmy Wardhaugh and Alex Young - players who brought joy to even the sternest of fans.

Today, Hearts supporters will be watching the likes of Christian Nade attempt to hit a barn door....

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

Men Should Weep


Back in 1990 during the World Cup Finals in Italy, Paul Gascoigne, occasional footballer, wife beater and drunk, let his emotions get the better of him during England's semi-final with West Germany and cried as the referee booked him. His reaction was based on the fact this wasn't any ordinary booking - because of his indiscipline earlier in the tournament this booking meant he would miss the World Cup Final if England were to get there - which, of course, they didn't. Nearly two decades on, Gascoigne was in tears again last weekend but this time for a more understandable reason - the death of his mentor Sir Bobby Robson, the man who was in charge of England at the time of Gascoigne's indiscretion.

I read recently about one of those studies that are carried out for no particular reason which stated that 25 per cent of men admitting to crying once a month and letting the floodgates open. I would hazard a guess and say that none of the men interviewed for this research were Scots. Because in the male-dominated Scottish culture it simply goes against the grain for a man to show his emotions. Crying is for babies, women and wimps.
We all suffer heartache and tragedy at some point in our lives. It seems to be a Scots trait that men don't show how much they suffer. Twelve years ago when my father died suddenly and unexpectedly at just 58 years of age, I was an emotional wreck. But in the highly charged weeks that followed, I chewed on my lower lip and kept the tears at bay - at least in public. Alone and in the still of the middle of the night my tears flowed but I was damn sure I wasn't going to let anyone, not even my wife, be aware of this. Why this was the case I don't know.
Three months ago tears flowed aplenty when my daughter Michaela helped to bury her fiance after his even more unexpected death at the age of 21. But the majority of men at the funeral and at the graveside kept themselves in check. My heart broke as I watched my daughter suffer but, again, I fought off the tears.
Yet we live in an age where public displays of emotion are far more commonplace that used to be the case. The death of Diana, Princess of Wales in 1997 - just six months after my father's passing - brought an outpouring of grief in this country that was unprecedented and certainly startled the Royal family. It now seems the norm whenever someone dies in an accident or is the victim of a fatal attack that flowers, teddy bears, football scarves and shirts are laid at the scene as a tribute. I don't remember this happening at all when I was growing up. Grief was a very private thing, something kept within one's one mind.

But it seems that many Scotsmen, certainly including me, are out of step with modern society. It would appear maintaining a stiff upper lip and being the strong, silent type is no longer viewed heroically. Rather, such behaviour is regarded as being an unfeeling, heartless person, a cold potato. The accepted view nowadays is that men are allowed to sob, admired, even, for doing so, when it is something important.

This time next week may well see Scots finally succumb and join the ranks of 'modern men' and wear our hearts on our collective sleeves. For if Scotland's footballers lose their World Cup qualifying tie in Norway, I suspect we'll all be in tears...

Monday, 3 August 2009

Ode to a Runaway Haggis


A haggis recipe was published in an English book almost two hundred years before any evidence of the dish in Scotland, a historian has claimed. Historian Catherine Brown said she found references to the dish inside a 1615 book called The English Hus-Wife. The title would pre-date Robert Burns' poem To A Haggis, which brought fame to the delicacy, by at least 171 years. But former world champion haggis maker Robert Patrick insisted: "Nobody's going to believe it."

From the BBC News Website.

Too right, Mr Patrick. Would an Englishman be able to pen these words?

ODE TO A RUNAWAY HAGGIS

Ye slippery, sliddery hunk o’ mait,
Ye’ve gan an’ slippet aff ma plait,
Ye’ve made me look sae bloody blate in front o’ a’
Weel wid I like tae spread yir guts a’ o’er that wa

The piper there, a sturdy chiel
Wis blawin’ loud an’ strong an’ weel,
Ye made HIM look a bloody feel, ye senseless ba’’
Ye micht hae picked a better time for yir doonfa’.

Ye graceless, shapeless, loathesome lump,
Ye made me look a proper chump,
Intil the bucket you I’ll dump, I’ll nae forgie,
I’ll tramp ye ‘til the flair runs wiyir bree,

I’ll spread yir entrails far an’ wide,
There’s nae place for ye tae hide,
Nae mair frae aff the plait ye’ll glide, ye nasty scunner,
A thing like you’ll nae mak o’ me a nine day wunner.
Jeez, the spellchecker on my computer's just packed in...

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Guess There's No Use in Hangin' Round...


Guess there's no use in hangin' 'round
Guess I'll get dressed and do the town
I'll find a crowded avenue
Though it will be empty without you

I can't get used to losing you
No matter what I try to do
Gonna spend my whole life through
Loving you

Called up some girl I used to know
After I heard her say, "Hello"
Couldn't think of anything to say
Since you're gone it happens every day

I can't get used to losing you
No matter what I try to do
Gonna spend my whole life through
Loving you

I'll find somebody, wait and see
Who am I kidding, only me
Cuz no one else could take your place
Guess that I am just a hopeless case

I can't get used to losing you
No matter what I try to do
Gonna spend my whole life through
Loving you


A video of The Beat's excellent cover version is to the right of this blog.