Archive for the ‘General’ Category

Listen and think

Categories: General, Videos

Open season

Outstanding evening in Driftwood, Cala Montgo. Lasagne to kill for, magic chips, and a top rated Provençal pink wine. Great to be back.

Categories: General


March 22, 2017 1 comment

I went to Edinburgh today. I had two meetings, so I took my car, to see if it was as bad as I had heard.

It wasn’t. It was much, much worse. 

I can only hope that they let the lunatics take over the asylum, for they have to do a better job than the councillors.

Categories: General, Politics


March 22, 2017 3 comments

I’m pleased to announce that Somewhere Over the Rainbow, my political folly, is now available on Amazon, in paperback format as well as in Kindle. Soon, it will be available also in audio, physical and download, published by Isis.

Here’s a link.

I know, I think Jeff Besos is  the Anti-Christ, but he’s driving and my young friend Matt works for him.

Categories: General

Cleft stick

March 14, 2017 2 comments

Here’s the way it is.

In the Independence Referendum, I voted Yes, because I’m passionately Scottish, and I believe that my nation can not only survive but be a force in the modern world.

In the EU Referendum I voted Leave, because I do not wish my grandson to be a citizen of the monstrous, ungovernable, riven Federal European State that I believe is  inevitable. There’s already talk of the French ceding control of its nuclear deterrent to Europe.

Now Nicola wants me to vote again. She’s asking me to choose between remaining British or remaining European. The dozy mare is asking me to vote for the lesser of two evils.

Sorry lass, my grandson will always win.


Categories: General, Politics

Fall of the dinosaurs

Time to stick my head above the parapet, re Muirfield.
First, I’m pleased the HCEG has reached the decision it has, for its own sake. It’s the people who know least who have had the most to say about the issue. Ignorance is never a good a starting point for a debate, but much of what’s been written on social media has been mere abuse. Even in the wake of a positive vote that hasn’t changed.
I don’t know the whole story but I know some of it, having lived more or less next door to the place for 46 years. In that time I’ve played the course twice, but I know several Muirfield members and none of them are dinosaurs. Today is the second occasion on which theyve voted to admit lady members, having been hangstrung by their constitution first time around.
Golf is a competitive game played largely by men against men and women against women, so it’s not unnatural that separate men’s and ladies’ clubs have evolved over the years. They were what they were but some were more exclusive than others. In the case of Muirfield, when the first lady member tees off she will not be the first lady to have played the course, not by a long chalk. There’s a legend of another club where ladies were not permitted to walk in front of the clubhouse windows.
As for the Open, Muirfield doesn’t need it financially, and I’m told that many within the club would prefer if it remained off the Championship rota. But it will be returned, and every twelve years or so Muirfield’s members will continue to enable the substantial contribution to the Scottish economy that it brings.
Categories: General, Politics, Sport

Thanks, regardless

March 8, 2017 1 comment
I’m going to say something here that I say often at events. I don’t understand why people pay any attention to reviews of anything that could be called, however loosely, art, be it written, spoken drawn or painted.
My interest is books, and this is what I believe; every time a story is consumed, that is an intellectual experience unique to that reader. There can be no such thing as a bad book; one that doesn’t work for you or me will be a rollicking good read for someone else. No two individuals read exactly the same work.
What are reviews about, and what drives people to post them unsolicited on Amazon, blogs or anywhere else? Ego? Attention-seeking? A genuine desire to help and guide others?
Probably all three.
This, however, is undeniably true. Those Amazon stars do influence buyers and I’m grateful for everyone I score.
Categories: General

Hear hear

Some good news about Somewhere Over the Rainbow, my political fantasy, which until now has only been available in ebook form on Amazon and Kobo. Sometime soon it will be available in audio format, physical and download, published by Isis. Once I can find time to finish an edit it will also be available as a paperback on Amazon.

Look out also for downloadable audio versions of the two Oz shorts, Born to be Wild, and The Last Chickenpig.

Categories: General


February 27, 2017 Leave a comment

RIP Gerald Kaufman, MP, and thanks for your kindness as the Scotsman crime fiction reviewer.

Categories: General

Hold the front page!

February 27, 2017 3 comments

I am delighted to announce that after scrutiny by PwC it was actually me who won the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay, for the film version of Skinner’s Rules starring Oz Blackstone.

Categories: General, Uncategorized


February 22, 2017 Leave a comment

Thanks to everyone who has been catching up with the affairs of the not-so-late Oz Blackstone, as outlined in my two short stories, Born to be Wild and The Last Chickenpig.

I had hoped to be publishing another today, but I’m still in full Skinner mode. Coming soon though.

Categories: General


February 20, 2017 Leave a comment

I stopped being a fan of film musicals, if I ever was, around half a century ago. In truth Guys and Dolls was the only one that ever stood out for me. I skipped West Side Story, and found myself hoping that the Von Trapp family didn’t make it to the border.

Therefore when my dear wife asked me to take her to see La La Land my eyes didn’t light up with the anticipation of it.

We went, though. My verdict? Better than just okay, but I don’t anticipate a sequel. 

Categories: General


February 18, 2017 1 comment

Why is WonderWoman on the front of the new Royal Bank fiver?

Categories: General

How would you feel

February 17, 2017 Leave a comment

I could spend all morning listening to Ed Sheeran. But I’d better not.

Oh Hell, why not? The new stuff is an Earworm  Festival.

Categories: General

‘Take a wee seat …’

February 13, 2017 2 comments
  • Why do seats in Edinburgh only come in one size?
Categories: General

Steph off

February 10, 2017 1 comment

Switched on BBC Breakfast, switched it off again. I will not have Steph McGovern forced on me at this time of the morning, or any other time, truth be told.

Categories: General

Choose life

February 9, 2017 Leave a comment

Last night I finally got round to watching Trainspotting, after all these years. Nice cameo, Irvine.

Categories: General

Since you’ve been gone . . .

February 7, 2017 Leave a comment
Categories: General, Politics

Thank you, but …

January 26, 2017 3 comments

Yesterday I shared an opinion piece from the Guardian attacking President Trump for signing an order denying US funds to any organisations that support abortion. Note that word: opinion. This morning in my mailbox I found a tirade from someone called Ed . . . that’s all, just Ed . . . instructing me to stop reading the Guardian and start thinking for myself. Mystery man, having thought about it, I can’t decide whether that was more insulting than stupid, or vice versa. Close run thing.

Ed suggests that the time to think about wanting a baby is before you think about having a relationship. While it might inspire a debate about carts before horses, he’s entitled to that view, as is the Guardian columnist to hers. But he also believes that contraception is the only way to prevent unwanted pregnancy. Well, Ed, it’s not; that would be abstinence. It would also be rather difficult for practising Catholics. Where he really consigned himself  to the trash can, though, was in offering in support of his belief . . . a belief to which he is entitled and which I respect . . . a story line from Coronation Street.

They make it up, Ed. Best avoid Holby City, for the good of your health.



Categories: General

This photo sums up Trump’s assault on women’s rights

January 25, 2017 Leave a comment
Categories: General, Politics