Tag Archives: Scotland

50/50 share in proceeds for Northern lass and Southern lad able to match mouth noises to written symbols

Red Roger Red Hat's White House
The colour of Roger Red-hat’s hat is not a trick question but with no mention of his face, I coloured that red too – thinking outside the box, you see, means sometimes colouring outside the lines. On the next page, my teacher used my pencil to write in large letters that Roger lives in a white house then watched as I traced over each letter with my red felt-tip pen. Pleased, she moved on to another child in the class and left me to draw Roger’s house. Once satisfied, I put down my pencil and picked up my red crayon. As Pollock described it, ‘When I am in my painting, I’m not aware of what I’m doing.’ There is no hesitation in those crayon strokes, just the determination of a willful boy with none of the doubt that would come to define him as a man. While I am incredibly fortunate to have this piece as a testament to an innocence once truly free, there does remain, however, one nagging concern with regard to the difficulty Red headed Roger Red-hat’s wife would have faced whenever looking for him in that red house. In retrospect, my mother clearly wasn’t hitting me hard or often enough.

How’s your reading? Does it give you headaches? Perhaps you need glasses. Do your lips move? Doesn’t matter, because I need a couple of people who can match the noises coming out of their mouths with the corresponding symbols on the pages of a book, just like back when books were thrilling accounts of all manner of adventures  which people in coloured hats were having. Continue reading 50/50 share in proceeds for Northern lass and Southern lad able to match mouth noises to written symbols

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Scottish Defence League march on Parliament


You wait ages for a racist then 50 turn up all at once; well it looked like 50 to me but the Police estimate 150 so what do I know? There were more people filming them though, that’s for sure – it’s the festival after all – and although the Police also put the counter-protest at 350, by far the greatest number of boots on the ground belonged to the Old Bill. Continue reading Scottish Defence League march on Parliament

A rambling thesis on the sexual nature of the Danish, masquerading as a review of a Viking exhibition in Edinburgh

Mum at the Viking Ship Museum, Roskilde, Denmark, 2008. Red haired like Boudicca - perhaps from Celt ancestry, or a contribution from the strapping Norse rapists of more than a millennia ago
Mum at the Viking Ship Museum, Roskilde, Denmark, 2008. Red haired like Boudicca – a sign of Celt ancestry or a genetic contribution from the strapping Norse rapists of more than a millennia ago?

Vikings! is at the National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh until the 12th May, 2013. £9 for adults and less if you’re not one of them; free for members or those that cannily held on to the tickets my ex left behind.

There is an Anglo-Saxon grave marker at a Christian Monastery on the island of Lindisfarne, North East England. It depicts warriors who were undoubtedly Viking raiders carrying out their first recorded raid on our green and pleasant land in AD 793. The following year is recorded in the Annals of Ulster as: “a laying waste by the heathen of all the islands of Britain.” Continue reading A rambling thesis on the sexual nature of the Danish, masquerading as a review of a Viking exhibition in Edinburgh

Dear John, Alfie the dog and Big Mama Thornton

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Big Mama Thornton and Alfie:

‘Hound Dog’ stuck on a loop in my head the other day, playing with Alfie – my Mum’s Cocker Spaniel. Turns out that although Elvis has the best known version, the song was first recorded by one Big Mama Thornton. I realise it was stars like Elvis that took the African-American blues to the cracker masses but until recently getting into Lightin’ Hopkins was as far as I crawled out of my lily-white honky box; and I’ve been missing out on so much. Continue reading Dear John, Alfie the dog and Big Mama Thornton

The squirrels of the fourteen b’ak’tun

14th b'ak'tun squirrel
14th b’ak’tun squirrel

If you’d told me five years ago I’d be spending the last day of planet earth in Gosport I’d have laughed in your face. I’d planned to play it safe and ride out 21st Dec 2012 somewhere up a mountain with a hunting rifle, caring Scandinavian wife and waterfall caves of tinned food. I came to my senses; but when 11.11am passed without global incident I shrugged like everybody else.

Still, there’s always the Rapture to look forward to. That and any number of asteroids. And the whole global warming thing. Another end of the world is always just around the corner, friend. Continue reading The squirrels of the fourteen b’ak’tun