Leap of faith

November 7, 2014 Leave a comment

Quote of the day by Labour grandee David Blunkett, commenting on the internecine plotting within his party:

“When you are standing on the edge of a cliff it is unwise to believe that by jumping you will suddenly learn to fly.”

Categories: Politics

Music while I work

November 6, 2014 Leave a comment

Arrogance ignorance and Greed –  Show of Hands. Thanks to my friend Mike for the tip.

Categories: General

Skippy

November 5, 2014 Leave a comment

If I was Rio Ferdinand, I think I’d be suing the FA for restraint of trade. That body seems to think it’s all powerful; it isn’t, and it’s time that was made clear by the courts.

Categories: Sport

Jolly

November 5, 2014 Leave a comment

Am I wrong or is Bryan Ferry looking more and more like Rikki Fulton, the older he gets?

Categories: General

I wonder

November 5, 2014 6 comments

I learned long ago to avoid commenting on US politics on this blog. However I would like to know my good friend Pat Wright’s view on the new situation and on the fact that regardless of that outcome, every on-line bookmaker listed on Oddschecker still had Hillary Clinton as a very short-priced favourite to win the next Presidential election.

I’m interested, Pat, that’s all.

Categories: Politics

Mud on the tyres

November 5, 2014 2 comments

I have just driven to Haddington and back, and arrived home wearing my Mr Grumpy hat. Isn’t it time that farmers were obliged to clear up, on pain of a financial penalty, the crap, mud, etc that their vehicles leave on the public highway?

Categories: General

Music while I work

November 4, 2014 Leave a comment

In Time – REM. To get me in the mood for going to the dentist, and also because it contains a wonderful version of ‘Star Me Kitten’, with vocals by W S Burroughs.

Categories: General

Open wide

November 4, 2014 9 comments

Lowlight of my day: I’m going to the dentist in an hour.

Categories: General

Stranger sets sail

November 3, 2014 Leave a comment

And so farewell Mr Acker Bilk. I go back to the Trad Jazz days of the Sixties, when all the top bands played the old St Andrews Halls in Glasgow. Acker was the only one I didn’t see live, but there were plenty of tales of him in the surrounding pubs. As a young man I once tried to match the scrumpy record that he set in a pub called the Avalon. Big, big mistake.

Categories: General

Too bad

November 3, 2014 Leave a comment

For a few weeks I’ve been avoiding Scottish football results. As a Motherwell fan the last decade has been unsettling; the club has been well run on a shoestring, having learned  the lesson of the administration experience, and we’ve had a succession of excellent managers. On a couple of occasions we’ve even been the best of the rest, winners of the unofficial championship that ignores the Old Firm teams. That’s not what we’re used to, not we supporters who begin every season with a prayer for survival.

Nothing lasts for ever; there was always going to be a blip. The last couple of months have been luckless, and the club is back in what used to be its customary position, holding up the league. However I doubt that there were many fans who didn’t have faith in Stuart McCall to turn things around.

Sadly Stuart didn’t share that faith for he resigned over the weekend. He’ll be missed, and he’ll be a hard act for any successor to follow. Who will that successor be? Time will tell, but whoever takes the job won’t be in it for the money. David Moyes? Maybe not.

Categories: Sport

Music while I work

November 2, 2014 2 comments

Stacey Kent – Close your Eyes. In preparation for hearing her sing live, next Sunday in the Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh.

Categories: General

Thanks

November 2, 2014 Leave a comment

To everyone I met on my signing tour yesterday, thank you for being there. And many thanks also to GM for arranging everything, for the constant tweeting and doing the driving.

PS Good luck to Robert Topping, a true bookseller, and to his family. I look forward to meeting up again, next time I’m in St Andrews.

Categories: General

Move over, darling.

October 31, 2014 5 comments

My good friend Jackson is going to love this one.

I’ve just opened a letter in today’s mail. it’s from the Leader of the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, Ms Ruth Davidson, inviting me to a drinks reception in Edinburgh on Tuesday, November 11, so that she can thank me in person for my support during the Referendum campaign.

I’ve suspected in the past that Ruth might be from another planet. Now I know for sure.

Thank you, my dear, but I won’t be attending.

Categories: Politics

Music while I work

October 30, 2014 Leave a comment

Two Men with the Blues – Willie Nelson and Wynton Marsalis . . . . . and it’s Live!

Categories: General

Big Dinner menu, Monday October 27.

October 30, 2014 Leave a comment

Categories: General, Pics

The greatest

October 30, 2014 Leave a comment

This morning I read one of the great sporting quotes, by a boxer named Chuck Wepner, after he lost to Muhammad Ali in a fight that was said to have inspired the Rocky movies. This is what he said:

“The day of the Ali fight I bought my wife a powder blue negligee and told her ‘wear this tonight, ’cause you’ll be sleepin’ with the heavyweight champion of the world’. That night, when I got back to the room, she said: ‘Do I go to his room or will he be coming to mine?'”.

Categories: Sport

Copped it

October 30, 2014 Leave a comment

Is that the end of Scott and Bailey, after only four seasons of the ITV flagship cop show? It looked that way last night, with one of the three lead characters retiring, another applying for a new job, the third seemingly bound for stardom in the force, and Rachel’s sket of a mother killed off.

If that is how it plays out, the producers have probably timed it right, for a concept that is overtly sexist, and an affront to health education, cannot go on for ever, however entertaining it might be.

The worst thing its makers could do would be to bow to the critics and continue the show with a male actor as the third lead player. It was what it was, and it was brilliant, but its time is up.

Categories: General

Gone

October 29, 2014 Leave a comment

After looking up Loretta Lynn, I checked out Jimmy Scott, to discover that he died last June aged 88, unremarked upon by the British media, most of whom had never heard of him, I’ll wager. Their loss, for he was a true great. If you don’t believe me, check out the catalogue he left behind him, from his younger days with Lionel Hampton right up to the recordings he made in his seventies. There will never be another.

Categories: General

Music while I work

October 29, 2014 4 comments

To all the girls: WIllie Nelson.(It was a gift, okay.) The old guy duetting with 18 very high class ladies, including his daughter Paula, and Loretta Lynn, who’s even older than him. In her dotage, she sounds remarkably like Jimmy Scott.

Categories: General

Infamous 5

October 28, 2014 Leave a comment

It’s all very Hallowe’en at Restaurant Mark Greenaway, Monday October 27

Categories: General, Pics
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