Place yourself in the middle of the stream of power and wisdom which animates all whom it floats, and you are without effort impelled to truth, to right and a perfect containment. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

And so dear listener, a few weeks ago I was locked in a car – not my car and not my decision – just me and a baby so I did what you always do in these circumstances. I looked around for something to read and found a copy of David Mitchell’s autobiography. It’s quite clever in that he takes a walk through a part of London well-known to him and he uses the streets and parks and places to jog his memory and create chapters for him. I had thought to use his technique one day but a wander (omg I’m using his style) through Maryhill and the West End of Glasgow brought up some memories I do not want to recall publicly. ‘Did I really?’ and ‘Just the once, surely’ and ‘What did I think I was doing?’ (and as for Frampton’s!) ….a lot of people were unaware of the Maryhill side of things during a certain period seeing me as a BBC man and reasonably good dad….it was an interesting period…. I think.

So I decided to try it in Glasgow City Centre one day – surely the memories would be gentler?

Where the hell did all these American sweetie shops come from?

I mean I do have some stories attached to the Pound shops; the Wetherstones; and the charity shops but these sweetie shops have taken over – like taking over things (Skippy we need a word to describe ‘taking over things’) and, yes, I have been in and they seem very expensive….I was thrown. Not out. Just thrown.

So instead I watched some strange TV this week…well MasterChef and some snooker. Like the entire world I was rooting for Natalie but loved one piece of commentary when the voice over said, ‘Larkin has neglected his parmesan chips.’ I thought, you bastard, Larkin, how could you?

But the ultimate was a classic piece of Dennis Taylor which deserves a massive audience;
‘I don’t know if I’ve ever seen Neil Robertson tied up by the balls before. Have you Terry?…(silence)…Terry?’

Better than ‘the batsman’s Holding. The bowler’s Willey’. I often tell people whose work I edit, to read it out loud. Hear what it really sounds like. Do it for both those.

I speak as someone who, in an e-mail this week told a lady friend that it was ‘getting harder so I was using cream’. This, of course , referred to a surfeit of cake in my house. What else, dear listener, what else?

And the frenzy that is the preparation for this, the wedding of this and any other century continues. The gentlemen of the wedding party (how many styles of writing am I going through today?) retired to a Bearsden Golf Club on Friday night. I had been given dress code and I stuck to it, although the clean shoes proved difficult. The clubhouse was quiet and we ate and drank overlooking the first tea, sorry tee. It had been raining and I was told the ladies event had been cancelled. I didn’t ask; just conjectured. I’d have to say there was an element of the last days of the Raj about it (not that I remember the last days, etc, etc…..) except we ended up watching rugby from Scotstoun Showground in Glasgow with the commentary half in Gaelic and half in Engish, which was awfully nice. Fewer than two months to go and I’ve been told how to tie my brogues.

And finally, the arrogance and ignorance of the SPL never ceases to amaze me. Peter Lawwell of Celtic stands up and says we should be able to buy booze in football grounds and everyone goes Wow – let’s discuss it totally unaware of the fact that many SFL clubs already do. Partick Thistle legally run a match day bar on well, match days, and there has been no trouble this year until…… until Celtic and Rangers fans come to watch an Under 17s match there. The result….seats and flares thrown onto the pitch and people arrested……Any comment, Peter?

Cya, keep(ing) it fun and still wearing that badge? Aye but it couldn’t help but do with some fresh air and the hills.

Johnt850, with very tired eyes from transcribing what I still call tapes.

So a final word about Partick Thistle but it’s about the part they, and some fans, have played in my recovery over the last four years.

After the cancer and the cold turkey I was sitting in on Saturday and Sunday afternoons. I’d been a Clydebank fan but for a range of reasons I’d stopped going a long time previously. PT play not far from me so it made sense to go there. I contacted BBC Steve who said you’re more than welcome but we do drink before and after; it’s okay says I. I just want out on a Saturday afternoon but after a few weeks I talked about going to the pub with them so John-Paul was designated to take me, separately to another bar to see how I coped.

I passed the test and I became a Doublet drinker and I went to away matches on trains where carry-oots were shared except where I was concerned. The can was passed past me but I stood my round in various bars in various parts of Scotland. And then I became a student and I started going with some folk by car but meeting the others there and someone lovely came into my life and went out again but that kinda affected my attendance as has a lot of the editing and homeless housing shifts that I now do but it’s the same crowd of guys.

No stigma; no discrimination and the only labelling? The Harry Wraggness of us all… Looking forward to next season already. Are you?

This is for they. Profanity Alert.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: