Archive for April, 2011

When all your good days keep getting shorter, count on me. When you’re ’bout 20 cents shy of a quarter, count on me. When you just need a place to hide out for a while, I’ll help you hide the bodies in a little while……….I will be your saving grace.

April 30, 2011

As ever, when I open with a lyric like that, it is meant for a number of folk out there and you know who you are…….. But it also includes my old mate, Kate (Middleton). Just as I’m saying to the others, Kate, by mail/message, if you want to meet up for a chat or whatever, then you know where to find me. Except with the football season finishing it won’t be upstairs in the Doublet on a Saturday. Try the Aragon a wee bit earlier in the day. Or the Rock. I was there for the first time for ages, the other night. It seems pretty ‘clean and clear’ these days as well.

I enjoyed the wedding. It brought back memories of my own. Paisley Registry office and the Brabloch Hotel afterwards. The rainforestriverman was my best man and we did in a half bottle of Black Label beforehand. I can’t remember who the band was but they came highly recommended. From the CIBA-Geigy Works Club in Renfrew.

D’you think at a Royal Wedding someone goes round halfway through with a list to see who wants to sing a special song? And the Queen was leaving the house for the night so the young ones could have a good time. I know that ‘cos I saw it on Facebook so me and the others went round later and crashed and trashed. Good night.

Apparently, they were having a ‘disco’ with ‘glitterballs’. I wondered where all the gear from the old Clatty Pat’s had gone. And who snuck in the half bottle of voddie, I wonder.

And no-one from Bahrain, Libya or Syria made it to mine either. But there was a couple from Motherwell. The Airbles Road. Wonder if they were invited. No. No reason.

The honeymoon? Arran, but we’d packed for bad weather so had to come home a day early cos the weather was good. Downhill after that, I suppose. Glasgow celebrated the separation with a Year of Culture. Two years later Alien Wars opened at the Arches in Glasgow.

Moving on to other matters.

First, a quick word with the gorgeous W, if that’s okay;


I should have thought at the time. Sorry. What? Talking Japanese. ‘Cos I said so.

And to anyone who escaped the proceedings by going to the Baby Show at the SECC…..did you, really?

And Happy Birthday to K T. xx I would have been down Byres Road tonight but Son Brian warned me off. No. No reason.

Incidentally, I have a cutting here that says ‘Memory lapse studied’…but I can’t remember why.

So, the work side of thing has kinda slowed down but there’s enough still there to bring in some money and I’ve a couple of meetings and I’ve fallen out with someone over non-payment, but I don’t like that sort of thing. I’m creative.  And kindly. And gentle. FFS.

So the intention, this week is to do a wee bit of planning and catch up with people. Some initials and soubriquets have been missing recently and rather than put their names and faces on milk bottles there are pints of heavy, bottles of Miller, glasses of red wine or coffee waiting. Legitimate business expense? I’ll see what my accountant says. After all she was there at Paisley Registry Office, the Brabloch Hotel and Arran as well. 

And finally, Lorraine Kelly is not my favest presenter. She has euphemisms for euphemisms. I don’t think she’d recognise an innuendo if it came up behind her. I suspect that, to her, Essex girls are not vajazzled, but rather they indulge in exotic topiary.

However, brilliant pics in the Record of Daily this week of her. To quote top journo Keith McLeod, ‘she looked a decade younger when she left the Daybreak studios……..rolling back the years.’ Well done, Lorraine. I suspect different diet from the one I adopted, ‘tho, but it does happen. I am living proof.  😀  They are really good pics and I’m beginning to rate her up there with top presenters like Michelle ‘cheese’n’wine’ McManus…… that is a diet. I miss 😦 But I’m beginning to enjoy the orange juice. If not the cod liver oil.

What’s that Skippy? Vajazzling? Now what possible interest could that be to a bush kangaroo?

cya, keep(ing) it fun and still wearing that badge? Yup, except I lent it to Kate for the day. No, you wouldn’t have seen it. Not where she was wearing it.

Johnt850, desparately trying to find a list of runners and riders for the Tour de France….just in case….when is it anyway? What? July? Jeez…………..That’s a full month after this year’s Greyhound Derby.

Recently, I explained why I describe myself as a ‘recovered’ and not ‘recovering’ alcoholic. And I appreciate that not everyone is as fortunate as me. This week, however, I took some stick from a couple of people who took exception to the quote in the Record where I said I’d beaten cancer.

I was asked, by the journalist, if I felt I’d beaten cancer, to which I said yes, ‘but with the help of so many people’….so it became too long a quote. In a few months time, I, like so many students I know over the last few weeks, will have to choose a resarch topic for a dissertation but this won’t be it, but, maybe, just maybe, I might find some time to do it.

I would love to write something about the language we use when we’re talking about alcoholism and cancer and drugs and maybe other addictions/illnesses that I know nothing about. Our language is often pejorative, judgemental and archaic at times and sees many people speaking on matters they know little about but won’t ask questions about, but then as I used to say in the early days of this blog, WTF do I know?

Sometimes more than I’m given credit for. Self-deprecation ain’t to be recommended.

And the band at the start? Drive By Truckers, so this is Janis Joplin with another of the same.

Blue canary in the outlet by the light switch Who watches over you? Make a little birdhouse in your soul Not to put too fine a point on it Say I’m the only bee in your bonnet Make a little birdhouse in your soul

April 23, 2011

The band is They Might Be Giants and they’re kinda booked to play at my final ever appearance -well their CD is but not that track – and they’re only there cos I decided not to open with that quote from the Daily Record piece about me/my alter ego (there’s a mask going to slip this week and this week only) cos very often the first few minutes of the show are the bits that make it onto Google and Facebook.

So after a wait of a couple of weeks me and my prostate made it into the pages of the Daily Record and I would like to thank the gorgeous W* for pointing out how adoringly Kate Middleton is looking at me in that spread. But, no, Kate Middleton is not for me. Naomi Campbell….you have my number.

*Nice horse tip, btw 😀 Ta. Nice name 😀

Anyway, the interview was carried out by phone and I’d gone through all the tests including  the one technically known as a Digital Rectal Examination. Then the reporter asked the question, ‘and at what stage did alarm bells ring?’ to which I could only reply, ‘well when the nurse put her finger up my bum, I knew things were not going too well for me’……..hence the quote attributed to me which I feel is journalistically accurate.

The sentence after that involved the words ‘Clatty Pat’s’ and ‘nurses’. Maybe it’s better that quote was not used.

And I’m really looking forward to tagging tonight’s show – words like ‘menopause’, ‘Viagra’, ‘sex drive’ and ‘erectile dysfunction’ (temporary) should attract some interesting spam.

Incidentally Erik the Floodstalker, not all the feature was published online. Which means that there is still a place for real newspapers to be read by real people, including journo students like Kerry D (star of the Clydebank Post x). Which is why all over the West of Scotland (Byres Road Waitrose, tbh) women were reading the Record without actually buying it. Or relying on me sending jpgs.

But all in all, a good feature.

The rainforestriverman asked a very incisive question; ‘why did they call you ‘Dad John’ in the headline?’

I explained that I’m a father and my name is John. Doh!

But I’m afraid he’s fallen on hard times. I met him in Great Western Road on Tuesday and he was asking for some loose change from me. And then I’d to stand him the price of a cup of coffee. Shame, really. And there’s a lot more I know about Rod Stewart but I’m saving my powder. 😉

Incidentally am I the only one to note coded drugs references in the more recent Thomas the Tank Engine books? Cocaine, to be specific? No. No reason.

And with no quantum leap to matters more social if not necessarily more sociable can I just make mention of on Sunday, 1st May.

Cos the workload is now diminishing and I want to get back out there(ish) and if we haven’t met up for some time then I will be in touch and if we have met up at all recently I will be in touch again, cos there’s no-one out there I do not enjoy being with; maybe some more than others but, hey…….and young AJ was looking good the other day as he mosh dived into a bed of tulips at Glasgow University.

But those of you a wee bit worried last week that I was casting my eye in search of alcohol can be  assured. I was in three pubs in three nights over five days and felt the better for it.

Thursday night in a large emporium in Glasgow’s Argyle Street named after the hero of Corunna – ‘ ‘Not a drum was heard, not a funeral note’ – was awfully pleasant (Hi Gills and hi Gary – it’s that kinda name check blog). A few drinks then home via the gents toilets in Central Station where one of the cleaners was doing really well in ejecting a drunk from an ‘out of order’ cubicle and then a slight wait at Queen Street Station where the British Transport Police had to arrest someone off the Summerston train before I was allowed on it. Gosh. Glasgow knows how to celebrate Maundy Thursday, doesn’t it?

And finally, my thanks to the Herald of Glasgow for drawing attention to this site which is basically cakes that go badly wrong in decoration. Apart from Cocaine Bunny (I’m seeing it everywhere) I think my fave really is the three tier cake with small zombie figures and a bride and groom holding a chainsaw and a chocolate-flavoured grenade launcher. But why?

cya, keep(ing) it fun, and still wearing that badge? Yes, and I’m getting one made that says ‘as featured in the Daily Record’ to go below it.

Johnt850, veritably a media tartlet

So nothing cancerly or alcoholically below the line this week as I think the Record said more than enough.

Instead to the two young guys in Bearsden who couldn’t understand why an old (this week and this week only) guy like me was playing The Killers’ Somebody Told Me as remixed by Mylo in what I understand more and more is a bit of a boyracer Clio………

a) I have actually worked with Mylo, and

b) it is more and more the music which is playing when I work.

Armin Van Buuren is playing Braehead this weekend. I’d love to have gone. 😦 But being sensible (this week and this week only) I know what side of the decks I’d want to be. This is he.

(Note to self whilst i remember……why the chainsaw?…….have i ended up unwittingly aiding and abetting?…….but the address did exist?………what if it’s meant for me?……..for asking too many questions?………..will I be here next week?…… ferret racing the future?………what does kate middleton see in the future king of britain anyway?……..he is sooo bald………oh, and farewell Sarah Jane (63) xxx)

Give me one more minute of danger some bad medicine I’ll waste it on an hour in hell tonite to get to heaven on adrenaline feel the rush

April 16, 2011

Yes it is Alabama 3 but regular listeners need not worry. I’m having no crises of angst or addiction. The last major one was just over a year ago when the blogmeister was but a boy and enjoyed rock’n’roll birthdays. Now it’s slippers and a pipe for him. And then there was that wee problem involving the YMCA in Bellshill in September last year but that was totally different from the problem in the Gents toilet in Falkirk all those years ago. And anyway, it all seems kinda settled.

Naw. It’s been one of those weeks when being a recovered (but not recovering) alcoholic has been a real pain. I would have liked some alcohol this week. Sometimes the virgin, Mary, is not enough; the orange juice in the Arches is overwhelming; and the bottle of flavoured water whilst being my entry to social circles just doesn’t cut the mustard (No I have no idea what that means either)

It’s this typewriter (what’s that Skippy?). It’s this computer. I have been stuck at it, profitably, for about twelve hours a day for the last few weeks but it doesn’t feel right. I have no crutch (sp?). I was talking to a former student of mine – Oonagh – who doesn’t get mentioned often but well done and keep me posted late May – and I think that is lacking from modern day journalism. I need a glass of whisky sitting beside me to help me concentrate. (Obvioulsy, I don’t but I would like one). I don’t need to drink it.

I worked for many years with a smashing broadcaster called Colin Bell who would come in in the morning, put a slice of paper in the typewriter (manual), type out the words ‘Hello I’m Colin Bell…..’ take a slug from his coffee cup which some wench (often me) had placed beside him and light his first cigarette of the day.

Ha! Whaur’s your journalism schools now? The earliest drink I ever had with Colin was at ten o’clock in the morning at a Tory Party conference in Perth after another death-defying programme. The problem is, I’m not too sure when we finished the night before. That was the night when a then well known Herald journalist called a taxi and asked to be taken to Perth’s red light district. He got driven to Dundee.

And the other time I could have done with a drink this week was following the great Spyware debacle of Monday night. When my machine got attacked. Now I wasn’t watching anything dodgy. Debbie does Dallas does me. And don’t tell me how it ends. I’ve never got that far.

In the middle of doing work for people strange things started being offered to me. And I wasn’t in the Wyndford. So I switched off and knew that the next morning I would be outside my IT department, Resolve, in the Dalsetter Business Park, Drumchapel. But this is half past nine. In the evening. And I am frazzled. I could have murdered a large fifty year old Highland Park or an Asda own label. But I couldn’t, could I? One drink is too many, twelve is way too few.

So I did what I did when I was very young and wanted the next morning to come sooner. I just went to bed. And slept. And woke up at 5.30 and sent mails to very patient people. This week’s Francis Gay Award for Patience goes to the gorgeous W and the rainforestriverman. And a big thanks to Simon and David at Resolve for doing what they did. Without commenting on my browser history.

No. No reason for this slightly serious note this week but I was explaining to someone that I don’t do stereotypes. I have not decided to be specifically something and one of the reasons I decided to do that was when I returned to the College I was teaching at after I’d cold turkeyed I was met with animosity and antagonism by two members of management; one of whom is still there. The one who isn’t was the one who kept saying I would relapse and alkies couldn’t be trusted; the one who is still there called alkies ‘scum.’

No. I never intend to drink again. I’m sure they never intend to apologise. They may take the view that they will only know that I never relapsed until after my death. Bum deal, that. 😦 Mind you, I’ve got all my hair. I’ll move myself on, shall I? Swiftly.

And finally, I love it when people send me mails and they have certain rude words in them but there’s an asterix replacing one of the letters. Recently I got one that (in context)referred to a good sh*g. I assume the word is shag. Now to me, one shag is very much the same as another but then I never was the world’s greatest ornithologist. Don’t be ashamed of spelling the word if you’re with friends!

Cya, keep(ing) it fun and still wearing that badge? With pride, World, with pride. 😀

Johnt850, who still gazes fondly into Oddbins.

Or maybe I was just a crap teacher. Maybe they didn’t like my general knowledge quiz based on Britain’s Got Talent; or me taking an NQ class to a lifelong learning event designed for staff just before Christmas and the students took all the pens for Chrissie pressies; or me getting journo students lost between the Scottish Parliament and the Dead Earth place in Edinburgh; or my two fave days when two NQ classes doing Public Relations raised hundreds of pounds for charity and increased my sexual awareness.

Yeah. I was a crap teacher. 😀

This badly shot video is the world’s greatest ‘m***********g’ acid house rock  band, Alabama 3 (Parental Guidance, etc) They also do gigs for the Miscarriages of Justice Organisation ( and bear an amazing resemblance to millions of Ronnie Corbetts when seen as my screensaver; him of the Two Ronnies fame and smashing autobiography.

or if you actually want to hear the words

I like the way you put your hands up in the air, I like the way you shake your hair, I like the way you like to touch, I like the way you stare so much, but most of all, yeah, most of all…..I like the way you move

April 9, 2011

No. It’s not dedicated to anyone. Honest. But it is a brilliant piece of music. Nor is it a sign that my alter ego has a lot of living to do before he collects his bus pass. If indeed he does. (Note to self……add student railcard to list). No. These are busy times in the world of and its dissertation editing and I seem to have created a playlist that is purely dance music (with the very poor latest album by the Kills thrown in) and it’s brilliant cos it just keeps going (obvious innuendo avoided) but it also soooooo helps me with my power walking – of which more later.

I told the rainforestriverman what I was playing this week and he asked if it was the version by  Body Rockers or Outkast. Sometimes I do wonder if he realises how much of my music collection he sold to me. With no discount. Body Rockers – rock da house mix was his guess and he guessed right.

No. This has been a busy time for students and me but it’s been good fun as well ‘cos with some I’ve been able to get quite involved with more than just checking spilling and grandma but always within the rules. Honest, Professor. And to those who paid me more than I asked? Thanks.

But thoughts are turning towards to my own student daze. And with that in mind I watched a prog called ‘Campus’ on Channel 4 overDose. (What?) Sorry. Channel 4 onDemand. Suddenly I am excited. Paisley, or wherever, seems closer.

Campus’s main baddy Jonty de Wolfe makes Slough based David Brent seem like a pussycat. And I had two fave scenes. One where the man-hating woman with long hair eats the fag…..and the scene with the banana. No. Lots of serious sociologial intercourse there. It is based on fact, isn’t it?

And I joined Glasgow Uny Library. Yes. I know about reciprocity but I’d like to do some reading in advance. It seems to be open until 2 in the morning but without drinks licence. Yes, I know that doesn’t directly concern me (I can’t even remember how long I’ve been ‘clean and clear’ ) but, hey, I might meet someone. Actually……….but that was before CCTV was so common.

So I turned up, paid my Monet, got my pic taken (I look so Jung), got my card and got told I could take out up to thirty books. Amazed, I turned to the young female-under graduate behind me and said, ‘thirty?’ – to which she replied, ‘No. Twenty-one, you old Kant and slapped me across the face.

And that dear listener is the first ever ageist story I’ve ever told against myself. No. No reason 😦

btw, blogmeister, Arlene Russo, 37, of Uddingston, Lanarkshire was in the papers this week trying to copyright the phrase ‘Bite Me’. Good luck, but maybe I should ensure she never meets the Vampire Slayer. Oh, and hope the house decorating went well.

So, what has the still gorgeous W done for me this week you ask? In a word – pedometer and the Good Run Guide (Oke. Six words). I walk a lot, as does W (except she also runs) as does e (likewise) so I thought I should discipline myself more (Don’t even think it!) and have stepped out to measure miles. Proudly. Its first real test was Wendysday (I can post a typo form smiles away) and I did seven miles in an hour and three quarters (15 min mile average – which I think is okay) but over a wide range of terrains including two of the parks in the area, a visit behind a wall for a pee and the canal bank – a favourite old haunt of mine.

At this point I would like to thank the members of the Forth and Clyde Canal Fine Wine Appreciation Society (Lock Twenty-Four Branch) for the sip from the half bottle of fortified tonic wine I was offered. Mmmmmm… Volvic water with strawberry is just as good. 😦 Who am I kidding, but………..?

Actually The Last Goodbye from The Kills’ new album is amazing and Pots and Pans.

And I’ve discovered that walking within the extremes of the graveyard (as we call it locally) is 3.9 miles. The dance music does help me power it and, yes, occasionally, I do a kind of dance step loosely based on Michael Jackson’s Thriller and I can sing along cos it’s quiet there, isn’t it?

No, jt850. Graveyards is for burying people. The family was not well amused, bro’.

Maybe I should plan my routes more carefully. Which is where the Good Run Guide comes in. It allows you to plan and measure a route by a drag-the-cursor method. But my first atempt saw me going through the combination-locked back door of  the Asda and along the railway line to Maryhill Railway Station. Not good.

And, finally, wine gums do have gelatine (bovine) as well and The Future Starts Slow by The Kills is pretty good as is Satellite. Music to chill by amidst the dance.

cya, keep(ing) it fun and still wearing that badge? Yes, but if I wear it with the showerproof then the jaggy bit will stop it being showerproof.

Johnt850, the thinking woman’s Robert de Niro but much younger.

So nothing serious below the line tonight.Nothing cancerly or alcoholically related.  Altho’ I’ve been working most of today, it’s a good bunch of students I’m working with – no ethical problems. I know all my former FE colleagues get the same satisfaction on a daily basis. In fact, it’s been an interesting week with a good finish, so I don’t want to push it.

Had a good punt on the National but none of the choices by We3 actually won (did you see what I did there……….?) but I’ve just always hated the man on a Monday morning who says ‘I knew Ballabriggs would win’ but never put any monet on it. If you don’t gamble, you don’t win.

And on that enigmatic note, here’s a woman singing about stripping off. No. No reason.  There’s a banana in this video. Enjoy. 🙂 It’s Ida Marie.

The highway is your girlfriend as you go by quick Suburban trees, suburban speed And it smells like heaven (thunder) And I say roadrunner once roadrunner twice I’m in love with rock & roll and I’ll be out all night. Roadrunner. That’s right.

April 2, 2011

Okay, there is a chase to be cut to. I was going to mention Andrew Lloyd Webber’s forthcoming appearance on the Piers Morgan show in which he apparently talks about losing his sex drive after surgery for prostate cancer and his disgust at the ‘equipment’ available to help as being ‘too gruesome to contemplate’ and how I do hope the actual interview is much more positive but I do get f**king pissed off every time I hear a high profile person being quoted about the downsides of prostate cancer treatment in general when I am living proof that you can emerge with everything in working order. 

I was going to but I may not have to. The Daily Record got in touch so my views and experiences may be featured in their health pages this Monday, 4th April. I make no comment on what I said but I am old enough (42) and ugly enough* to know what I’m saying when I talk to a reporter. Some of you can expect mails and txts from the all-night garage up the road early Monday.

*If they do use the pic then you can see just how ‘fit’ I am these days and how good I look in anyone’s company, if short (height-wise) altho’ I have now seen high-heeled boots to compare with those of The Vampire Slayer. I would like to point out that the interior decoration (in the pic) was carried out by Jed of Thornwood Decorators and the colour chosen by Angela across the road. Yes. Even choosing a paint colour I can’t do on my own. But it was fun showing her my colour codes….. lol!

So that kinda screws up the plan, Skippy, for this week. But the opening track was from Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers (I like to do mainline now and againand was to celebrate the fun I’m having with my new car. The registration number even says NU, so that people know it’s new. Kwl, eh? And it’s got a computer thing that tells me how many miles I do to the gallon. But why?

(Ha! I can put petrol in myself! Ha! But, agreed….. I do pay the AA to do the rest.)

I even drove into the Argyle Street area of Glasgow the other night and parked in Robertson Street. Halfway down…… omg, will anyone out there in cyberspace understand that reference?

Mainstream! I meant mainstream!

Y’see the newspapers have been full of discussion about what constitutes Scots in that question from the census about understanding it. Now, I should stress that I took filling out my census form seriously even if the firm looking after it is in the arms trade. That night Charlie Sheen, Naomi Campbell and Rihanna really did stay at my house.

No. Me and the gorgeous W went to see The Wee Man whose patter is Glasgow/Lanarkshire ned with a few expletives thrown in quite liberally and is incredibly unstructured but is really good. But is he featured in discussion on the Scots language: does Billy Kay make programmes about him; why are the neds in Maryhill wearing all-in-one colour Nike cotton tracksuits; why does one of the bars in The Arches give such big measures in drinks? That was the largest orange juice I’ve ever had in my life AND it was my third of the night.  

Star of the night tho’ was Kenny from the audience who beat-boxed and body-popped like a pro.

So I’d like to say a massif Summerston well done to the gorgeous W for not only finishing her PhD but getting it bound hence the celebration. 😀 And I think that goes for a number of students who I’m helping/have been helping (for money) with dissertations and similar. It fills me with a certain amount of dread for my own forthcoming stint in academia, and I also need to start thinking about paying for it all as well. 😦

(Why have I just Googled ‘Rihanna plus bondage’? Oh, yes I remember now. What a lot of listings. And such interesting views)

And finally, I thought the downside to pescetarianism was the smell of strange fish in the kitchen – cobblers and pollacks. No. It’s true. I did.

But one of my more veggie inclined guides and mentors has pointed out another drawback. I eat a lot of mint sweets – it’s  a hangover from the alcoholic daze – and had recently discovered amazing mints with a hint of chilli in them. And had been told of a dealer. BUT they have gelatine (bovine) in them. This is harder than I thought. But then that seems to be the theme of today’s show.

Cya, keep(ing it fun) and still wearing that badge? Yes, and she noticed. 

Johnt850, Love, Sex, Intelligence personified.

I don’t want to say too much about the Record reporter on the basis that I don’t know if it’s going to be in until it’s in. (I know that sounds rude but it’s not meant to be but is strangely appropriate) but I was talking through the symptoms, diagnosis et al, including the world famous Digital Rectal Examination – twenty seconds of discomfort but it could save your life.

About a minute after this she then asked, ‘at what did time did you feel that things were serious?’

to which I could only reply, ‘When the nurse stuck her finger up my bum, I thought something is not looking too good here.’

So at what point did I realise my own Erectile Dysfunction was only temporary? Well, I started my sandblasting exactly three years ago and the treatment lasted daily for two months. Not long after it finished, Missie K and my gd frnd clr were running to raise funds for cancer research in the Race for Life. That afternoon, the Vampire Slayer sent me this link. It helped. No. No reason.