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.

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……..


2 Responses to “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.”

  1. Kev Says:

    Vodka Wodka for the leaving night you say? Did I ever tell you that I seem to have some sort of evil deathly reaction to vodka? Just enough to wet my lips has me running for the nearest receptacle big enough to hold the accrued contents of stomach for that day. Seriously. It’s not pretty.

    I remember the day I discovered it. I’d had ‘a few pints’ already and put it down to over-indulgence. So the next time, I started on the vodka….my evening was over in under 2 minutes.

    There have been times after that when it’s happened by accident – I’ve been drinking Coke and mistakenly lifted somebody’s vodka and coke. It’s just as unpleasant but in those circumstances I can see the humour.

    Anyway…Vodka Wodka is a definite no no.

  2. johnt850 Says:

    Sorry, did I say Vodka Wodka’s? I meant Bar Brel. It’s the spelling. They’re so similar by the tenth virgin mary!!!!!!

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