Saturday 28 July 2012

I blame that b*****d James Page !

If only he had stuck in at his studies he would probably have discovered some kind of miracle treatment that would allow me to do stuff like this again.

But, no. The little shit dropped out to study Music with Applied Pharmacy and Gynaecology. And what has he got to show for it ?

What a waste
(Obviously this is before Bob went off to edit the News of The World !)

Here's a clip I put on one of my first posts. Love the song and the video of the Pacific Coast Highway at dusk

Wednesday 18 July 2012

Goodbye old friend

It's been our turn for the floods, landslips etc. today.
Wednesday is now the day I am committed to two short walks (don't ask - you would just laugh if I told you), so I got drookit twice.

It looks like the end of the path for my Sprayway Taslan Goretex rainjacket (shell to you).
Twenty six years old – just getting into it's stride. We've been in some dodgy places over the years and it has protected me from wind, rain, sleet, snow and IPA. Good job it can't talk !

I tried to re-proof it with that Knickerwax in the washing machine, but I must have done something wrong. I know, difficult to believe, but there you go. So now its about as much use as Ann Frank's drum kit. Or, I suppose, Martin Banfield's sofa.

I've got one of these modern bum-freezer jobs, bit I'm not impressed. Perhaps I should get one of these Paramos that everyone seems to be raving about. Oh, wait....... that was last year. I must try to keep up

Tuesday 17 July 2012


Mindful that my bus pass might be beginning to rust up, I entrained ( enbussed ?) for the bewitching little village of Plean.

Plean is one of the so called Eastern Villages, along with Cowie and Fallin. For "Eastern" read "former mining".
Being on the main A9 between Falkirk and Stirling, Plean has not fared as badly as some of the isolated rural pit villages.

Once 90% cooncil hooses, there are now thriving pockets of "bott hooses" and the remaining municipal stock seems to be tidy and in good repair.

While most folk work away from the village, there is one major employer who seems to be doing well. Now on a large, well equipped site, they started up, ironically, in the disused former pit head buildings.

Tempting as it was to pop in for a spot of banter with Jack, Victor and Boabby, the barman, I set off at a brisk pace up the quaintly titled President Kennedy Drive. Well, when I say brisk, you know what I mean.

                                         My objective.

                                  Sic transit gloria mundi

                                 The wildflower meadow

                    Lots of these little Common Spotted chaps

    And lots of these little beauties - Greater Butterfly Orchids

The North bing. It didn't used to be here. It used to be about half a mile away, brooding and overhanging the A9 as you passed the pit entering the village from the Larbert direction. It was decided to move it back into the estate and spread it about and landscape it. And how did they move it ? They built a giant conveyer belt. Yes they did !. All the hardware is long gone, but I had hoped to find the remains of the track. Must have been looking in the wrong place.

All things considered, better than sitting on my arse waiting for God !

Monday 16 July 2012

Fox attacks wind farm

Good stuff. Sad but true that "household names" carry more clout with the public and politicians than faceless organisations like the MCoS.

Thursday 12 July 2012

Air Guitar

The new computer came with built in software which allows me to actually watch you as you read my blog, or indeed do anything at all in front of your computer screen.
Now I'm not going to go into detail - what goes on in the Blogosphere stays in the Blogosphere- but, dearie me ! The state of
some of you !!

However I have noted that a surprising number of you are quite adept at the old air guitar, and I have decide to hold an online master class for your benefit

So, to start with a bit of a warm up Plugged in? Amp switched on?
Then take it away, Francis

Well, that was pretty average. The footwork needs some work , though. Try this little set-piece

Much better. Now lets work on the sustain and finger vibrato. And of course a key element here is the appropriately tortured facial expression

If you are feeling confident, you can try this, but be careful if you have a bad back!

Right, you're on your own. Keep practicing and I'll see you next week for our advanced class.

Oh, and put some pants on, eh.

Thursday 5 July 2012

Walk up to your knees...

Just an advanced heads up for those interested in organised walking. There is a major (10,000 plus expected ) walk planned for my local Stirling area this Saturday.

Organised by the aptly titled LOO of Scotland with expected participation  from  ABOD, EDL/SDL, BNP and various English Premiership "casuals", the route is a mere three miles over paved surfaces with minimal inclines. Which is good if you are a sweaty fat bastard with a big bass drum.

While most of the route is through the the centre of the city in order to cause maximum disruption, it also takes an apparently illogical loop through what the BBC would call "the predominately Catholic Raploch area". Here you will have the opportunity to discuss late-17th century Irish military history with the locals, while asserting the ascendancy of the reformed church in Scottish society. There may be minor scuffles at this point, but one of the walk organisers will sort things out by greeting the police officer in charge with a hearty handshake.

Afterwards, there will be tea and scones ( well actually the local equivalent - Buckfast and kebabs) for the participants and the usual "tiny minority" will disgrace themselves.
And, as if this wasn't attractive enough, there will be music.

And one of the tunes you will hear will be Jock o' Hazeldean, which,I have to admit, can sound good even when played by a swaggering flute band.
But I prefer this version, by a man whose Irish immigrant roots and left-wing politics epitomises everything your fellow walkers abhor (fear?).

See you there, then. I'll be the one in the bowler hat with the rolled umbrella. Oh, and the sash.

Tuesday 3 July 2012

Another man done gone.

It's the sports jacket I remembered first - a dark green hairy effort worn with cavalry twills and a black droopy moustache set in a rather florid, moon face.
He was in the first tutorial group I attended, and  we went for coffee afterwards. We were never mates. Friends ? - maybe, or just fellow students. He was a leading light in the Conservative Society, which made him a bit of an endangered species in '60s student politics, and subject to a lot of ridicule and abuse which he bore with unfailing good humour.
Ken went on to become a TV reporter and then a big shot in BBC Scotland. Died today "after a long illness".
A  good man, I think.