Archive for August, 2009

Come on look me in the eye You wanna try to tell a lie I’ll bet you can’t and you know why? I’m just like your mother

August 29, 2009

I know. That paints a really weird picture but I do know some really cool (if crazy) mums out there, and I know some others too. The band is obviously The Dead Weather, the album is Horehound and the vid comes recommended by The Man They Call Bean

Yes. It is one of my fantasies and I do like the bit where he uses only one hand. Don’t try it at home….just in case. 🙂

And to those who follow True Blood, my demon is in a sweatshirt. That sweatshirt never leaves the house.

And my final Public Service Announcement this week is thanks. Lots of you saw the piece in The Sun last week about my alter ego and prostate cancer. Fathers, uncles and indeed mums all of a certain age might be more interested than some, and if I or the Prostate Cancer Charity Scotland can help increase awareness………

And to one txtr, yes it is ironic that al-Megrahi and I have something in common, albeit unwittingly. And to another, yes, it is all my own hair. Let’s move on. And let’s move on to my Quote Of The Week. It’s long but it’s worth it. (on reading the script back I realise that that’s an innuendo, Mr BBC Al, but I’m leaving it in.)

Leah Shevlin, fiancee of  Rangers goalkeeper, Allan MacGregor, said of a female rival;

‘only a complete scummy slapper would go to a hotel room with Allan, correct?’

But would Allan go with one? Eh, yes and has. Has Leah ever been to a hotel room with Allan? Eh, yes. Therefore? But most important of all, I want to meet an incomplete scummy slapper and just see the difference.

Janis Forsyth wanted to know this morning whose voice I’d want on Sat Nav. I want Leah Shevlin. 🙂 🙂 Everything would be via Gucci and Armani and Timberland (I need a new shirt okay? That other one looked sooooo faded in the pic, but the garden looked good)

Ambitions, eh? At the age of 42 I’m still young enough to have them. Incidentally bestest friend Caitlin, your uncle is sooooo perceptive. He agrees I am 42 and I wasn’t even paying for lunch this time.

No. There is money coming in from some of my activities, enough to pay that tab in that bar in Italy, but there are other things I want to do to increase that income. I’d be keen to do more in the way of teaching and training, some more paid writing and I have been talking to people about some broadcast work, all of which are sooooo totally confidential, but there are still some gaps in my calendar. Some contracts have still to be signed.

But, sometimes the fun is in the speculation. The devil is the next morning when (totally sober, as I was the previous night) I realise what I have agreed to. It seemed such a simple notion in Bar Ten the other night (One of the reasons I like this place is that one of the barmen does a Virgin Mary with a cocktail shaker….it is not a soft drink, just not alcoholic). And yes, as I walked one of several potential producers back to his train I was jumping up and down, as I do, at the idea, in Queen Street Station.

But now I wonder. It’s a pilot to see if an idea works. That’s fine. But at midnight next weekend, I am going into the graveyard across the road from me with script, torch and a state-of-the art hard drive mic, just to give it a touch of authenticity.  Vampire Slayer, your number is on speed dial, like 1. It’ll be fun.

And I’m taking part in a podcast and other stuff. It’s cool. Limmy started this way. And he’s been off the drink longer than me. Five years, three months and twenty two days, but who’s counting? His TV show will be good.

And I also had a marvellous business meet on a park bench in Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh. It’s the Fest. I spare no expense in entertaining. We went on to watch the free street performers. We then went to the Blook Fest, as it will clrly be called one day.

I spoke to some publishing people. The first mistake I made, dear Editorial Advisory Team, was not to put the finished blook in a kitchen drawer and return to it later. I broke a major rule by not walking away from it. Ho hum. And then going back. (Did you see what I did there? Clever, eh?)

So I’m going to go to an evening class in drama writing to see if I can use the basic story as a screenplay type thing and build on it with romance, car chases, romance, shoot outs, romance, PT winning the Champions League and romance.

Liam Buchanan walks on water. Sorry. It’s a PT thing. Two goals and three assists.

Actually on the subject of night classes, can I draw attention to the cover of Glasgow Met’s Part Time Prospectus? Is Brian May of Queen really teaching guitar lessons at the College then? Oh, and James W, I loved the Superman impression at Queen Street Station the other day. Your superhero secret is safe with me. I couldn’t possibly know any current students, could I?

Incidentally, can I just say to Missie K, yeah, yeah, yeah? I like the ‘sister’ line? Okay? Anyway, it’s been a wee while since we talked. Oooops, sorry , listeners. I was miles away there.

Which reminds me (eh?). Planet Holyrood is back and I’ll be dropping some ppl a wee note. It’s been replicating politicians’ holidays but not expenses, and returns with lots of Megrahi stuff.

But one final word on Homecoming 2009, Tripoli style. Is it true that on the other side of those Saltires were the words, ‘Burley Must Go’?

Leah reckons Allan would still spoil her even if he wasn’t a footballer. Like, if he was an unemployed brickie? I think not. Actually I think I’ve taken a wee shine to her. Her favourite chocolate is Galaxy Caramel. Mmmmmmm, me too, Leah. 🙂 🙂 🙂

So, I’ve maybe found the romantic interest for the screenplay. Why? Who else could there possibly be? 😉

(Leah’s interviews were published last Sunday morning. That afternoon the Rangers’ goalie gifted an easy goal to Hearts and his team only gained a victory through a soft last minute penalty. No. No connection.)

But what makes good comedy?……….Timing………….Leah, you have indeed been Princess of My Week. I thank you.


Johnt850, oh, and Son Brian, that’s good news. But contracts have still to be signed. The coffee table’s on me. And good luck with the exam.

My Space is your space, Facebook is that new place, Dip divin’ socializin’ I’ll be out in cyberspace Google is my professor Wikipedia checker……This is the Now Generation, We are the Generation Now

August 22, 2009

Yeah. I know. Black Eyed Peas. Who’d have thought? Some poverty stricken academics I know are just back from yet another holiday, so that’s for them. ‘Why don’t you do the student flat thing?’ I ask them. (Yeah. Ulterior motives. I confess)

‘Can’t afford it’, they say. I mean, I did the Halls of Residence/student flat thing for a few years and it did me lots of harm. But I didn’t plan my life when I was age 21. I still can’t and I’m 42.

But can I have a quick, quiet word with the Vampire Slayer, please? (I was so made up that u were ‘so proud’ of me the other day, but I was soooooo embarrassed buying the ‘item’ I had to go to a new supplier….just in case.)

And Missie K that was real sneaky the other night. There I was balancing two women at one time (in a Facebook sense) and you ducked in with a really deep question and by the time I’d answered it you’d gone.

And one final ‘well done’ before I move on to the week’s events; a big welcome back to top pop picker Emma (that’s a nice name you’ve chosen for the hamster) J, whose review of Biffy Clyro almost sent me back down to the charity shop to retrieve the CDs. I’m dead proud of you as well.  Gd use of yr contacts bk. That’s why people have my number. I’ll buy the cakes this time. 🙂

No. It’s been a busy week on the prostate cancer front (not for that reason and not personally, medically) but in that voluntary kinda way. I don’t fundraise, cos I’m rubbish but see the people that do….you are brilliant.

Naw. I am a raising awareness person without punting a certain line of thinking. (Here’s a wee plug. If you know of any organisation looking for speakers for the winter and you want a health speaker contact The Prostate Cancer Charity Scotland in Glasgow – 0141 314 0050 – or me, and we’ll see what we can do. I can’t promise me but my mates are just as good looking)

Naw. I was at an amazing event during the week called The Big Cancer Conversation when NHS policy makers met patients and voluntary groups and others. Not only did I come away feeling that our voices had been heard, plus a new friend, Sarah, from Myeloma UK (not melanoma, so I added to my knowledge of cancers) but also a necessary reminder of the dark days that so many people go through. Moi? Sometimes it seems like it was a stroll in the sunshine in comparison. Acceptance and achievement are good words.

The only downside was someone thanked the organisers for ‘allowing’ us to be there. And maybe one day we’ll have programmes on TV and radio standing up for our rights as consumers. Jeez.

Sorry, but it still rankles with me that for many the highlight of Homecoming 2009 was a celebration of the clan feudal system, people deciding things for us; the shouting, the celebration, the Saltires…..oops, sorry, that was Tripoli, 20th August 2009. Easy mistake.

C’est tout que je dis.

I’ll move on. Slowly. It had to be said. C’est tout.

Actually one good thing may have come out of it because my alter ego got a phone call from The Sun to talk about his own personal journey through prostate cancer. That he doesn’t do tekkie terms for these thing is obvious by that fact he calls it a finger up his bum rather than Digital Rectal Examination. I don’t give a toss. It saved his life.

And L frae Troon, not once did my alter ego mention temporary erectile dysfunction but I think he said, ‘Everything’s working’ about fifteen times! How’s her I met briefly a few weeks ago, btw?

And they sent a snapper. Where are your neighbours when you want to impress them? And if they do use a pic I hope it’s one of those they took in the garden. The staircase is a talking point, but that pose?

It can only be better than some of the rubbish published in The Herald. Either that or I had it twenty years before the average male.

I mean, there’s a whole generation of young wannabee journos out there like bestest friend Caitlin and my gd frnd Clr who know the importance of checking facts before making statements, giving people the chance to answer accusations before they become factoids, and Jaymi; you’re right – journalists do ask questions and you were just being really helpful. It’s been a long week. Sorry. 😦

So kinda tied in with that are the wise words of Lindsay C, the Record’s Top Teen Angst Queen who said, ‘You should never have to change who you are for someone else.’ (Ignore the fact that I’m playing The Clash’s ‘1-2 I gotta crush on you’ just now).

Lindsay also blogs but the one time I looked (she looked at mine first, albeit very willingly, is all I’m saying) it was full of Jimmy Choos, recipes and boys….very girly, very chic(k), so I’ve never been back.

(What the hell is ‘beauty blogging’ and should I be doing it, High Horse Level Committee?)

And so there you go, listeners, after the debacle of last week when I hit the publish button too soon, it all seesm ot haev gobne as well as a programme on radio six international. I’ll be podcasting next, but there are limits to my ambitions.

However, my latest ambition is to go back to see Cathcart minor, and others’, performance of Commedia Dell’Arte at the Edin Fest. It’s supposed to be improvisation, so if I hear the same words as the last time, I’ll want my money back.

And finally, before I go can I just say a big thanks to Tesco who now sell Buckfast by the crate on their home delivery service. Not only does every little help, but just think had such a service been available thirty two months and nine days ago, I might never have cold turkeyed (or whatever the tekkie term is), so in a strange way, thank you uber capitalistic Tesco’s for saving my life; oh, and there were other times you were kinda there, kinda…….so, so far so good, as I said to the Sun. But did I name names? 😉

so, there u go, cya


Actually to the brill people from Prostate Cancer Charity Scotland……..I wasn’t too tekkie in my description of what the prostate gland does either but I’m sure Yvonne’ll use more better words……..she’ll check, like all the academics I’ve ever worked with would do, wouldn’t they?

I’m gonna raise a fuss, I’m gonna raise a holler, About a workin’ all summer just to try to earn a dollar…..Sometimes I wonder what I’m a gonna do, But there ain’t no cure for the summertimes blues.

August 15, 2009

That was/is my karaoke song. It was also sung forty years ago this weekend at Woodstock (was I really only two at the time?) by The Who, but that’s the original Eddie Cochran version. Gosh. I’m beginning to sound like one of those top deejays on Radio Six International. Can I be one? Please?

But let’s get Prat of the Week out of the way now, cos it’s me. As most listeners know I eat about one meal a week, but every so often I do this easy cooking thing which gives me and a family of four (Son Brian, I have something to tell you……) enough food for a week. Buy a chicken and a large pack of root veg from supermarket; wrap in foil with chicken on top of ruffly sliced veg and cover with lots of nice garlic flavoured oil and butter; and put in oven for about three hours at 180 degrees.

Do not panic when you go to baste it after two hours and discover your oven is as dead as the washing machine was four weeks ago. (It happens, Jaymi) You always meant to serve tinned tuna and baked beans anyway. Make sure the rest of the wine (BYOB at my house) leaves with the guests….just in case.

No. My mind wandered a lot this week. For example at the start of this week, I told the rainforestriverman about my brilliant idea of selling the blook online. He just looked.

One of the reasons for the wandering was I met a fellow recovering alcoholic. I didn’t know he was. We shared the information. He’s been recovering for thirty three years. I think I’m doing okay at thirty two months, four days, eight hours (but who’s counting?). His view is that people like him and me don’t give up alcohol. We just go each day without a drink.

I take a slightly different view, but if it works, stroke it. (Have I mixed some things up there?)

And I did wake up last Sunday with all the elements of a hangover. Not only did I survive the morning on diet cranberry hi-impact stimulation drink (how very Summerston) but my pockets were awash with loose change. It’s why supermarket self scam machines now exist.

I know I sometimes belittle Summerston but the Times of Evening this week described the area as having a fashionable collection of ‘shops, restaurants and bars.’ That’s our ASDA, and LIDL and Poundstretcher. Wow. Buckfast Bearsden, eat your heart out.

(omg! I met ‘the husband’ this morning. In Beanscene. I think I got away with it. Dead gen. omg!)

And I was interested in what Strathclyde Journo lecturer, Eamonn O’Neill had to say about going undercover this week cos I did that quite often, both in broadcast and PR. Not in that kinda CSI Summerston way of changing identity for four weeks kinda way, but in that standing in the room when someone says ‘we need someone scruffy with longish hair’ kinda way. And that was me off to a bar in the Possil for the rest of the afternoon. No. No hardship. No. No glamour.

Y’see a few years ago I was involved in a Celtic Football Club takeover battle (I may or may not have attended dissident supporters’ rallies is all I’m saying) and I was moving some books about the house the other day when I came across one about those events and there’s a dedication to someone with my birth cerificate name, albeit with a ‘p’ in the surname (it allows deniability).

Well, in between my, I mean, this person’s first and last name are the words ‘double agent’. Try it. No. No comment. But it’s there in black and white.

And if anyone wants Nick Davies’s book (Flat Earth News) about journo ethics, they can have mine. It’s a great book but he gets it so wrong when he slags off a good mate (at the time) called Jo Ann Goodwin in Chapter Ten. So what if she did ‘aggressively distort’ the facts? And why did a judge have to get involved? Okay, it was a murder trial. I’d forgot. Anyway, the book’s up for grabs. Get in touch.

Her Portuguese/Brazilian husband had a fatwa put on him. Jolly difficult going undercover for that one.

(omg! I’ve just had to turn down a paying journo gig this afternoon. Damn you double booking. omg!)

But vampires no longer have to go undercover, at least in True Blood and don’t worry, Rennie or the blogmeister, cos I’ve not seen the latest episode, so no danger of spoiling. But I was thinking about it the other day cos I’d to do some blood tests. (Given that  the last two big blood tests basically have saved my life twice over about four years, it’s an offer I can never resist)

They took three vials of blood……my blood…..and I could feel my teeth sharpen. Tasty or what?

Vampire Slayer, we need to talk when you and Missie K fly (?) back into this country. Anyway, it’s time for a programme review board. I suggest starting off in Vodka Wodka this time and proceeding along Ashton Lane.

Actually if I was having a leaving do that’s where I’d start…but I’ve had so many. Those, auditions and closing nights are my CV.

And that, dear listener is where I must bring this show to a slightly premature halt. My prattishness has continued. My annoyance at missing work (I was that monkey jumping up and down in Byres Road) has percolated into the blogging world. I hit the publish button by mistake a wee bit earlier, instead of preview. You judge where. Serious nuisance.

Therefore, as they say, in all the best weeklies, due to (it should be ‘as a result of’) production problems, clearly some regular featurs re mssing ths wek. Sorry. I rescued some of it but…….. (omg! I shudder to think what ppl might have seen earlier. Dead gen. Serious. omg!)



So, entirely separately, I make no comment on the situation regarding the convicted bomber, Abdelbaset Ali Mohamed al Megrahi. My involvement with Lockerbie began at six o’clock the morning of the day after when we knew there were no survivors and the families had become the story.

Over the years they received calls from me and many others with politeness and an amazing openness despite the obvious and very real intrusion. They deserve closure. Maybe one day……..

I have a secret to tell, From my electrical well, It’s a simple message and I’m leaving out the whistles and bells……Make a little birdhouse in your soul

August 12, 2009

One of the many great songs from the genius that is They Might Be Giants and they’re booked for my final appearance at Maryhill Crem in that rolling five years I have left. Well their CD is. I hope it’s being looked after.

It’s the same five years I had a year ago, just in case.

So, if I’m playing them, then there must be an important reason for that and there is. Y’see, years ago I was once The Monkey of the Week on Dr Paul’s Sub City Radio Show. It made a big impression on me. But despite that, when Dr Paul, quizmaster extraordinaire, asked if he could borrow the blog for a good cause that wasn’t alcohol or cancer related, The High Horse Level Committee paused…..for a nano second. The following public service announcement (without guitars) is in his words:


The stupidest answer you can give at a pub quiz is “me” when the question is “whose round is it?” But apart from that, I’ve marked some whoppers in my time. I once asked:

Q. What African country did footballer Bruce Grobbelaar play for? Clue: the country’s name starts with the letter “Z”.

To which one team scribbled:

A. AC Milan.

Perhaps someone was mixing up Silvio Berlusconi and Robert Mugabe. Or maybe I’m too generous and the team were actually dumber than rocks.

At least they were able to take part. Imagine how much more difficult the pub quiz in your local would become if you were suddenly unable to read or write. Of course, now I’m the one being stupid: everyone can read and write nowadays, can’t they?

Well maybe they can round here, but down in Africa it is another story. 150 million ladies and gentlemen are illiterate in Sub-Saharan Africa. The reasons are many but the result is clear: more poverty and powerlessness. It’s not just pub quizzes you miss out on when you can’t read: there are medicine bottles, election ballots, newspapers and johnt850’s blog.

Seriously, it’s a big problem, so with International Literacy Day coming up (8th September), my contribution is to run a quiz for Book Aid International, a charity which sends books to Africa. So I’m asking you for money. But don’t freak out: it’s a win-win. Enter my fundraiser online pub quiz and you can win 12 books, all signed by their authors.

It’s a varied prize bundle: there’s some serious stuff from Margaret Atwood, funny stuff from Simon Armitage, wild crime from Nick Brownlee and, as they say, much much more! There’s even the autobiography of tall footballer Peter Crouch whose unique sales point is being tall, but its still a good prize. A dozen quiz questions to win a dozen books. Go for it.

Thanks to johnt850 for letting me publicize the quiz here and perhaps when this blog gets turned into a book, he could donate a signed copy for next year’s quiz.

Come and take part and don’t worry – it’s multiple choice, so it’s (almost) impossible to hand in stupid answers…


Dr Paul and Johnt850

I can’t shake this feeling I’ve got. My dirty hands, have I been in the wars? The saddest thing that I’d ever seen were smokers outside the hospital doors

August 8, 2009

The Editors, there, cos I know some folk who’ve gone off to Belladrum this weekend and are you really going to induct your family into the ways of Aleister Crowley? Wicked.

So I decided, after all, to go see my cancer consultant at the Beatson, which is where you see all these smokers, and it wasn’t him, it was his registrar. But that was okay, cos he’d read the notes and his second words to me were, ‘It says here I’ve to keep it fun.’

And he did. But, whilst it’s good that my PSA levels are stable, they should be a wee bit lower. Which in the greater scheme of thing is no big deal. But you can hear the evil cancer bastard have a wee chuckle, and then you walk out into the corridor and see everyone else who’s there and you think, ‘No effing chance will you beat me.’

Sorry. I’ve been reading Reg McKay in the Record and, indeed, I saw him when I was down there. His language and style is much more emotive than mine. He writes about his ‘battle’ with his (different from mine) cancer. It’s reportage but not as I do it, but I’ve got different influences.

Still he makes you think does Reg.

So today saw us PT fans head South to Ayr for the first SFL match of the season minus lashings of ginger beer and mescaline and I like going to games from Central Station. I’m allowed into Oddbins next to it with strict instructions to ‘stand there, John, where we can see you.’

But Ayr was good. Not only did we outplay, outclass and generally gub the local United 1-1, but my continuing knowledge of Scottish hostelries expands. It included a sight which other towns will find hard to beat this season. At two o’clock in the afternoon we crashed a wedding hen party in the Tam O’Shanter Inn. At twenty past two we crashed out again. They were deadly.

But big thanks to a couple of friends (ladies? but of course) who eventually saw me onto the train back to Weegieland. And, yes, we did go back to the Tam O’Shanter. And, yes, they had gone.

But somebody said to me they like the desultory rambles I do in the blog but I don’t do them, do I?……But Dr Paul, what do you mean, Bugs Bunny is very gay? Do cartoon rabbits have degrees of gayness?……and Hi Renny, welcome on board……and nice West End Friday aft, e, but how come ppl know where I buy birthday pressies from……and you and the Vampire Slayer have a good holiday, Missie K and I’ll see you when you get back……and I don’t want to say too much about this weekend’s True Blood but it’s put me right off steak and made me worry about the effects of (too) much tomato juice (just the right amount is good)…….and if the rainforestriverman hadn’t had such a wide smile on his face he might have found his way out of the live TV studio without tripping over everything……and I’m told 13yr old Scott Campbell was on TV the other night cos he’s the Derek Rae of Scottish blogging…….and nice to see Erik the Floodstalker’s words back on the sports pages again, but the biggest byline total of any student this Summer must be Caley Uny Kirsty…….and was there really a TV prog during the week in which Man Who Lived With Bears got eaten by a bear but his camera kept recording inside the bear so there is audio of him being eaten somewhere out there……and gd frnd Clr, I bought the Lenny Bruce DVD. It’s not the exact c 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 r gag but it’s close and I’ll just pop it in the post, shall I, same address as the adtrailer,……and, and, and I’ll stop there shall I? As I say, I don’t do desultory rambles.

And great philosophical questions of our time, ‘How do you tell when black pudding is burnt?’…..but it wasn’t.

And it’s obvious that I’m a BBC apologist (No. No reason…just in case… far, so good) BUT, all that’s happened so far is that there’s been a complaint about your undercover reporter which the police are investigating, so wheest, but putting the apologist hat back on, to those people in Manchester who claim they were plied with drink at the BBC’s expense and they’re now worried that they’ll be made to look stupid, did anyone force you to drink the booze? And did the BBC really buy it? Did you actually ask at the time?

She’s called Lucy and with any luck she’s on Panorama on Monday night, repeated on BBC iPlayer.

Y’see I was looking at BBC kinda commissioning guidelines recently, and before a mate panics, it was the dirty words bit and it was The Green Book from the early fifties. It was what you could and couldn’t say.

For example, you couldn’t say God, Good God, Blast, Hell or Gorblimey; you couldn’t do jokes about ‘fig leaves’ (this took me ages but I think it’s a reference to Adam and Eve); and my own favourite, you had to be careful about jokes with reference to pre-natal influences such as  ‘his mother was frightened by a donkey‘.  Seriously.

Maybe I should turn it into a Facebook competitition? Can you supply the beginning of this gag?

On the Facebook front, btw, can I just say thanks to all those ppl who have sent me things like cupcakes, cheese and a puppy. I’ll get the thanks cards later today from Papyrus and pop them in the post, shall I? Eh, that is how you do it, don’t you?

Mind you he makes you think does Reg, and so does Facebook. Cos it’s all about using the media isn’t it, to tell people things?

Reg is going to get his wife to tell people when he dies. Son Brian, I need to give you some passwords. If you can’t write the final words I know someone else who might. Mmmmm…..You can but ask.

(It’s your call)

And then there is Eric, who died last week from cancer (generic). He blogged elsewhere and his wife (I hate the word widow) told the world through his blog, and do you know what else she did? She invited every reader to the funeral. How cool is that? And I don’t think Eric ever used the word ‘battle’ either.


Johnt850, who used to wake up in the morning with scraps of paper by the bed and not be too sure what they meant. Now I’m sitting looking at one which says ‘Felicity Kendal + bondage’. I think I can explain……….

I’m the kind to sit up in his room, heart sick an’ eyes filled with blue. I don’t know what you’ve done to me, but I know this much is true; I wanna do bad things with you.

August 1, 2009

It was odds-on wasn’t it, that it would be the opening sig from True Blood by Jace Everett? I’m still not sure about the prog but the dialogue is beautifully written. Some people out there might be ‘uncomfortable’ with this tale of small town sex and vampires (I once lived in Bearsden) but at the very least check out the opening credits .

Go Tara, go!

Y’see a few questions arose out of last week’s blog. Like, if I’m going to be 42 for the rest of my life, and vampires don’t age, am I a vampire? Seriously. (Vampire Slayer, this could be an important question before our next meet….have a good holiday….and Missie K….)

Now I’m not a trained journo. I didn’t do a College or Uny course. I’d a rubbish history/politics degree. I wrote for local and student press and knew somebody who knew somebody at the BBC and knocked on a  door at just the right time. So I did what everyone else would do. I contacted the website and posed the question; Do vampires age?

Now apart from those who posted, “Yes we do’, I loved Xentia who said, ‘I haven’t aged since I were bitten 295 years ago.’ VS, I think we’re okay. Except, both the blogmeister and I know the same vampire, and she’s from Uddingston. No. No reason.

And then there’s that rude visual gag referred to last week which, and this is so embarrassing, I re-enacted (gulp) in the Food Court of ASDA. Luckily Jayme, Liz and Cey were not there and it was over very quickly (Don’t even think it, folks).

But it does bring me to David Cameron and his use of t*at word which would not normally make it onto this show, but it’s in context as the BBC, much to my surprise, played t*at extract from the interview and Ofcom issued a statement saying, inter al,  ‘t*at many, especially men, think it is quite mild’. Mmmmmm.

And is there a Head of Acronyms somewhere who decided it was The War On Terror and not The War Against Terror, but that it’s Wives And Girlfriends and not Wives Or Girlfriends? Try it. You know you want to.

And it doesn’t feature on the list of ‘Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television‘ by George Carlin which is on YouTube, but to those to whom I promised to find Steve Martin’s pussy gag, no luck yet, and to my gd frnd Clr, to whom I once promised to find the Lenny Bruce monologue which finishes with the punchline, ‘So there was this M 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀  G C 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀  R‘, I’m still looking but a promise is a promise is a promise.  (Oh, and BBC Al, you’d be amazed how many alternative spellings I have worked out for there….just in case.)

But none of the above will appear in Cathcart minor and friends’ show at the Fringe, details to follow and regards to your mum.

And then, and then, and then……

I had arranged to ‘bump into’ a former academic of mine (good looking, female, obviously) at a pre-arranged time, by chance, and my mobile had just advised me that some money had been paid into one of my bank accounts (I wish I knew how I made a living) and so I was in a really good mood, when she asked that question; ‘So how do you know Doctor Paul?

And a few folk have asked me that. Now the guys I go to the football with, and go ‘drinking’ with, know him but of course his student nights were exactly that…totally hedonistic student nights with games like ‘Toss the Mince’ and me at the back wondering why I was there. Art School nights were good. The next day the car was always where I left it. I’m not sure if I was.

I haven’t been involved in a media fenzy like this since I once appeared in an stv prog called Scottish Women. It’s a long story. Your mums might remember it, Older male members (of your family) will deny it.

And if this was a typical blog – sometimes I feel a bit of a cult writing it – I’d bring you up to date on washing machine (thanks to Son Brian’s mum for letting me use hers. I thought I’d custody at weekends, anyway) and on my credit card account (thanks to Anniesland branch and I’ll send them flowers when it’s all over. It’s the kinda thing my mum encouraged me to do), but it’s not. So, I won’t.

And thanks to Jill L who sent me a Facebook glass of wine……and she does know……so I thought that was really nice. I tried to do the same to some of my Facebook  friends. I think I failed miserably. I don’t do tekkie.

Sometimes I think some people (round about my birth certificate age) are still quite protective towards me, which is also nice, but I like pubs, I pay my way and I can be the driver. I just don’t get tempted. And, yes, I did look enviously as the first whiskies arrived tonight, but that’s as close…….

So the reason I didn’t have to choose between Craig Charles on BBC Radio 6 (with whom I once spent a very interesting afternoon at the Edin Fringe), and my mate, Northern Soul Dave on radio six international, both on radio tonight? I was in the pub.

And can I take this opportunity, good idea rainforestriverman, to stress to new listeners of whom there are a few, there are three main aims to this blog; to occasionally remind me that I am a (recovering) alcoholic; to allow me to flirt openly and honestly, without fear or flavour; and always to have a serious cancerly message.

So good luck to Real Radio deejay Paul Harper who plans to announce the result of his tests for testicular cancer on air, but please don’t make too big a thing of it. We’ve moved on from the days when diagnosis of cancer was a death sentence. Don’t put people off being tested.

My mum accepted her cancer diagnosis with quiet dignity – she’d be perplexed at much of the above – but with a smile. Y’see it wasn’t lung cancer, so it meant she could keep smoking. How cool was that? Menthol cool.

It’s good when your mum has a sense of humour. She’s needed it with me the last few years, hasn’t she?


Johnt850, who was delighted to be told by the good looking current academic earlier this week that his musical tastes resembled those of an angst driven fourteen year old. I am so young. I have lots to learn. Go Tara, go!