Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

When getting a row is a GOOD thing

I do wonder what prompts some people’s response to cyclists (well, I don’t really, I’m just be charitable to some people on bikes).

There’s petrified, who freeze and stand still as soon as they see you, even if you are passing metres away.

And the apologetic, who insist on saying “Sorry” when you pass them on a path, even if you are passing through a great big gap to their side.

I find it a little embarrassing, especially as I normally approach slow and wide.

Then there’s the grumpy minority, or maybe they just don’t have a clue.

One of my routes through a park involves a steep incline from the normal path, down to a burn that flows through the park, and a matching incline back up to the path, the height change is at least 10 m over about 15-20 m horizontally, each way, at a guess.

Given the steepness (it is seriously steep) I generally try to maintain speed downhill, it barely carries on as far as halfway up the other side, and stay as far from anyone on foot as possible.

I’ve done this for months with no hassle.

Today, same as usual, but for one thing.

A woman shouted at me as I crossed the bridge over the burn “SLOW DOWN WILL YOU!”

But for having to heave myself up the steep incline, I might have gone back and told her I couldn’t do much else.

On the other hand, I was smiling, that someone thought I was going fast enough to be told to slow down.

How I actually feel…

How I must look…

Speedy Cyclist

I bet she would have been fuming if she knew her verbal assault had actually made me smile 🙂


There were NO cats in the Purrple Cat Cafe’s windows tonight – they were all on the seats or floor inside.

That’s why I grab those shots when I can.

21/11/2018 Posted by | Transport, Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

I just bought WHAT!?

The balance of my mind must have been upset by something (I did just make three bike trips to Glasgow City Centre, in the dark, so I must be mad), as I only read the label on the packaging AFTER I got home and looked.

An impromptu wander into Argyle Street’s Poundland (be careful folks, just because most of their stuff’s ÂŁ1 doesn’t mean they’re the cheapest) while I was there found a handy back scratcher (I thought) on offer, so I grabbed one. I’ve collected a few of these this year, mainly because they are telescopic, and have a metal ‘scratchy bit’ that can be bent or drilled to hold remote tools. I added this one as it looked a bit more robust, and was larger than the others already in the collection.

After pulling it from the packaging, I noticed what Poundland were selling it as, a…

Back, Sack & Crack Scratcher for the man who needs a helping hand!“.

22″ reach!

Scratch & Sniff!


Now I’m wondering if they are tested in the factory prior to despatch, and if they are given a splash of disinfectant afterwards.

Back Sack Crack Scratcher

Back Sack Crack Scratcher

I’m never going to be able to pass a Poundland without flashbacks.

21/11/2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment

New training video released for Glasgow Coma Scale

If you STILL haven’t come across the Glasgow Coma Scale (guess why it was developed in Glasgow), read this…

Glasgow Coma Scale

I was gifted this video clip link – pretty sure she’s a good candidate for the scale.

That look like some WHACK she gets on the back of her head – typically the source of the problem in Glasgow, when someone gets belted from the front and falls backward, semi-conscious or unconscious, and can’t to anything to prevent themselves from hitting the pavement with the back of their head.

Joking aside, it’s a serious thing, and I’ve seen victims of this in court months later, still suffering the effects, and being treated for brain damage.

I’m not sure how this sort of injury to the head can be detected in blondes though. Can they tell if there is any difference after the event?

I do know there was a later update, and it claimed she actually broke her ankle, and I think the video has a hint of this being true, just before the clip ends.

21/11/2018 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment

Purrple cat naps

I make no apology for more Purrple cats.

The window is often empty when I pass, so when I do catch them, they’re going to feature on those lucky occasions.

I was exactly ONE SECOND too late in hitting the shutter, otherwise this one would have been “Get your damned foot out of my face!

As it was, that single white paw had moved by the time the shutter fired, and was no longer in the tabby’s eye.

Purrple Cat Foot

Purrple Cat Foot

I was slightly alarmed when a giant pair of green eyes appeared in the viewfinder (remember, colours are weird here because of the purple window lighting).

Thankfully, just a rather realistic cushion landing on a seat.

Giant Cat Cushion

Giant Cat Cushion

And finally…



Purrple Cat Sleep

Purrple Cat Sleep

21/11/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | | Leave a comment

Why I hate graffiti vandals

While I have nothing but admiration for the folk who have created the various murals, large and small, that Glasgow is becoming famous for with its Mural Trail, I have nothing but contempt and disgust for the vandals who think they are being clever by trying to emulate them. They’re really just pathetic failures.

While our murals are installed with permission and are generally enjoyed by many, the graffiti vandals don’t care who they upset or inconvenience, what they destroy, damage, or deface, or what it costs to clean up after them.

In fact, I don’t really mind the small pieces of fun some of them dot around the city, usually in places where they are not ‘In your face’, and almost hidden if you don’t know they’re there.

But many others, even if small, ruin people’s property, and they end up out of pocket fixing the damage.

The same goes for ‘Taggers’ who think any clean space is a spot ‘their’ tag has to places, often ruining council street furniture, meaning our taxes are wasted dealing with the vandals ‘work’.

Admiring some buildings in Sauchiehall Street recently, I was sad to reflect that there had been no past story in the news about a vandal being scraped off the road, and taken away in bags.

Those knowledgeable in Glasgow tales will know the building featured was once a piano showroom, and has a bust of Beethoven over the rear entrance in Renfrew Street. It later became a cinema, seating 400 to more than 600 at one time, which lasted until 1984. Its past is too long to detail here, but it’s an interesting building.

It’s neighbour to the Royal Highland Fusiliers Museum, I mentioned recently.

No idea about its current appearance – it gives a Facecrook link (which I will not touch) and the web page is dead, so it might be too (it looks it).

So, this was the first I saw of the problem.

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism

Now that I’m getting better at it, I like to play with perspective correction, and got a chance with the front view.

Spotted the problem yet?

Glasgow Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Perspective Play

Glasgow Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Perspective Play

Last clue – and why I was sad there was no media coverage of a Sauchiehall Street high fall splat.

If the courts can’t deal with this rubbish effectively, surely Darwin could remove them from the gene pool.

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Even Closer

Sauchiehall Street Vandalism Even Closer


Thanks for the anon pointer to this.

Lovely way to end a high fall.

Graffiti Killer

Graffiti Killer

21/11/2018 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , | Leave a comment

The illegals – D3 MLN

It took me a moment to realise this 2006 Ford Focus was actually one of the illegals, and doesn’t really seem to be worth the risk of that potential ÂŁ1,000 fine for having illegal character spacing on the plate.

Quite what ‘D3M LN’ represents isn’t obvious (to me at least, and the plates themselves have no clues added.

I thought it might even have been a mistake (on the plate) but they’re same front and back.

2006 Ford Focus Front [D3 MLN]

2006 Ford Focus Front [D3 MLN]

2006 Ford Focus [D3M LN]

2006 Ford Focus [D3M LN]

Weird pics too.

Not sure if this was my own fault though, or the wet, but I couldn’t get a what I would call a proper ‘low light’ pic.

I must have hit a setting and upset if from my usual preference, as these pics were WAY slow with exposures in the order of 5 seconds.

Usually I can convince things to happen in less than a second provided the scene is under street lights, but this just stayed as a ‘dark’ shot, and had to be lifted with post-processing.

Whatever I did must have been a temporary change – I couldn’t find any setting I suspected, and the next outing provides pics as usual.

The plethora of menus and settings may be nice to have, but can be a pain. While I’d like a ‘pro’ camera as it comes with lots of knobs and extra displays, these come at a price, and I don’t just mean the cost (my eyes still start watering when I see new ones that cost as much as a decent second-hand car). They’re also considerably larger and heavier than their non-pro cousins.

21/11/2018 Posted by | photography, Transport | , , | Leave a comment

Cat stickers on a tree


I saw the light mark on the tree from a distance, and went over to see what the mark was.

Whatever I expected to find, little cat pic stickers was the last thing I had in mind.

Had they been a couple of feet (sorry, less than a metre) from the ground, then I would not have been surprised, as some kid might have decided to decorate the tree.

But these were more like six feet (sorry, over two metres) from the ground, so whoever stuck them here was not a ‘tiny person’.

Maybe I just missed the local ‘Crazy Cat Lady’!

I had a look around, but unless I missed any others, this was all that was there – unless any others had been lost to the weather.

Cat Stickers

Cat Stickers

21/11/2018 Posted by | photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Today is World Television Day

21 November is World Television Day.

This one gets a mention because it’s NOT what might be expected from the name.

World Television Day is not dedicated to the electronic tool itself, but rather of the philosophy it represents.

This started back in December 1996 when the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed the 21 November World Television Day. This was the same year the first World Television Forum was held. According to the United Nations, this decision was taken in order to give recognition of the increasing impact television was having on decision-making by bringing various conflicts and threats to peace and security to the world’s attention, as well as its coverage of other major matters, such as economic and social issues.

The first World Television Forum was staged by the United Nations in the mid 1990s, and it was out of this event that World Television Day was born. The forum brought together leading figures from the media industry to analyse the growing impact television was having on decision-making and public opinion when it came to issues of peace and security around the planet.

It should be a philosophy of openness and transparency of world issues, to represent communication and globalization in the contemporary world, but not all government representatives present saw matters quite that way.

The delegation from Germany said, “Television is only one means of information and an information medium to which a considerable majority of the world population has no access… That vast majority could easily look at World Television Day as a rich man’s day. They do not have access to television. There are more important information media and here I would mention radio in particular.”

I’m guessing they still hadn’t come up to speed regarding the new kid on the block, The Internet, and where it would go.

There’s maybe not a lot of point to it nowadays, as a stand-alone medium because of that.

But you can see what they’re doing about it here:

World Television Day


There’s a patron saint of television!?

Saint Clare Patron Saint Of Television

Saint Clare Patron Saint Of Television


The Venerable Pope Pius XII declared Saint Clare of Assisi as patroness of television in 1958 when televisions were becoming universally common.

21/11/2018 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment


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