Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

Instant karma – St Enoch Centre cyclist

Since I expect to be treated decently when I’m being a cyclist, I take a dim view of any cyclist whose behaviour means I might be assumed to be some sort of related moron.

I haven’t been in Glasgow’s St Enoch Centre for months, but decided to cut through it, just to get an idea of how it looks as I read changes may be on the way.

I’d gone to the upper floor to get a better look, and was looking at the ground floor layout when I was slightly surprised to see a guy on bike weaving through the shoppers on the ground floor – not the best of behaviour, and unlikely to help convince most people that cyclists are not arrogant morons.

Not much I could do from the floor above, I assumed he’d got away with it.


A few minutes later, I arrived on the ground floor and turned around after stepping off the escalator, to see…

Instant karma – cyclist on left, centre security on right.


Karma At St Enoch

Karma At St Enoch


Woman standing up to cyclist who smashed into her on Centennial Trail

The guy involved IS a moron:

“I think its a ruse to try to sue me,” Haller said. “Just because you have a nice bike doesn’t mean you have a million dollars.”

Haller said he calls it a good day when he makes it home without an accident. “I’ve broken 25 bones,” he said. “When I lived in LA, a doctor asked me if I was a stunt man.”

Imgur galleries won’t embed, so you’ll have to click the link:


October 9, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Doors Open Days

Since I’ve been tripping over painted pavement adverts, I thought I’d recall one from a few years back – when they were thankfully less numerous than they now seem to be becoming.

Not sure exactly when this was, but dates from 2015, spotted as I was leaving somewhere in the area of The Barras.

Really just an excuse to mention Doors Open Days

And of course, the Glasgow Doors Open Days Festival which they say is now in its 28th year.

Doors Open Day Pavement Paint

Doors Open Day Pavement Paint

September 11, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , | Leave a comment

Cats – still the same after 100 years. Mr Peebody is still on patrol

The pic below may be modern, only found online last night, but it seems the spirit of the message is unchanged, even after 100 years of inspiration in the east end of Glasgow.

In this case, the scene is my grandfather’s newsagent’s shop (long long gone, but was in Fielden Street).

Business is carrying on as usual, until…

There’s a SCREAM from one of the female shoppers!

Once again, Mr Peebody had struck silently… and accurately… as she removes her shoe and pours out the cat pee which has run down her ankle and into her shoe.

She gives my grandfather a ‘piece of her mind’, but he just shrugs his shoulders and points out that it’s not his cat (it’s too lazy, and just sleeps on the nice warm piles of newspapers), and just happened to wander into the shop to do… it’s ‘business’.

The attacks were deadly as the slightly warm stream was not noticed at first. Victims only became aware of events after it had evaporated a little and started to cool , By then, it was too late,

Mr Peebody was either finished and already heading out the door, or was about to run like hell as soon as the scream came.

Apparently he didn’t confine his fun to the shop, and it seems he knew that a group of gossiping women in London Road would be too busy to notice his arrival (until it was too late), so the scream was often heard there too.

Mr Peebody

Mr Peebody

It’s nice to know the old traditions are being upheld today, even with variations:

Peed On The Hamster

Peed On The Hamster

September 8, 2017 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

The secret hidden in Kelvingrove’s baluster

Having gone from days, to weeks, to years, and now (thankfully), at last, to mere months between visits to Kelvingrove, I’m slowly getting back into the habit of looking for things I’ve missed. Seriously – this is tough when you can’t simply drop in during any weekend.

Case in point – the balusters on the front and rear stairways between the floors. I can’t believe it has taken me so many years to remember to stop and look closely at these, such is my general haste to get between the floors these days.

But I did remember recently, and was well rewarded for my efforts.

I imagine few people stop to look at these, or even notice them.

Incidentally, for those unfamiliar, baluster is the name of the vertical spindle between the handrail and (in this case) the tread.

I noticed the top of each baluster was a carved figure, but never stopped long enough to see what they actually were.

As you will see from the pics below, they are taken from Glasgow’s coat of arms, depicting three of the four elements – I couldn’t find ‘The tree that never grew’, which seems to be missing for some reason, or is perhaps elsewhere. I might ask one day.

This is the view down one of the stairwells – not the most brightly lit of places, hence the less than perfect pics.

Kelvingrove Stairwell

Kelvingrove Stairwell

Definitely no tree there.

But here are details of the other three elements of our coat of arms:

The Bird That Never Flew

The Bird That Never Flew


The Bell That Never Rang

The Bell That Never Rang


The Fish That Never Swam

The Fish That Never Swam

In the Life of Saint Mungo, he performed four miracles in Glasgow. The following verse is used to remember Mungo’s four miracles:

Here is the bird that never flew
Here is the tree that never grew
Here is the bell that never rang
Here is the fish that never swam

The verses refer to the following:

  • The Bird — Mungo restored life to a robin, which had been tamed by St Serf, but had been killed by some of his classmates, jealous of Mungo as he was favoured by St Serf.
  • The Tree — Mungo had been left in charge of a fire in St Serf’s monastery, but he fell asleep and the fire went out. Taking a hazel branch, he prayed over it and restarted the fire.
  • The Bell — the bell is thought to have been brought by Mungo from Rome. It was said to have been used in services and to mourn the deceased. The original bell no longer exists, and a replacement, created in the 1640s, is now on display in Glasgow, in the People’s Palace on Glasgow Green. There was an earlier bell – in 1450, John Stewart, first Lord Provost of Glasgow, left an endowment for a “St Mungo’s Bell”, to be made and tolled throughout the city so that the citizens would pray for his soul. Still being rung in 1578, an entry in the City Treasurer’s accounts shows two shillings (10 p) “for one tong to St Mungowis Bell.”
  • The Fish — refers to the story about Queen Languoreth of Strathclyde who was suspected of infidelity by her husband. King Riderch demanded to see her ring, which he claimed she had given to her lover. In reality the King had thrown it into the River Clyde. Faced with execution she appealed for help to Mungo, who ordered a messenger to catch a fish in the river. On opening the fish, the ring was miraculously found inside, which allowed the Queen to clear her name.


September 6, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , | Leave a comment

Recalling the mural trail

I’d forgotten about a number of larger mural I happened to collect some time ago, and was diverted from before I had a chance to post them.

As the so-called ‘Mural Trail’ has become popular since I came across them, it seems a pity not to use those earlier pics, so I’ll be trawling the collection for those I’ve missed so far.

If I can get back into the city centre I might try to remember to visit some of the more obscure and hidden smaller murals that were added, as they can’t be seen so easily, or viewed directly (being narrow lanes). I rather like playing with perspective correction and like to see these as they would appear if they could be viewed by stepping back and taking a ‘proper’ look – impossible in the real world unless you can walk through walls and see through them.

No such problem with the large ones – they usually just need a little tweak to correct for converging verticals.

George Street Navigation Mural

George Street Navigation Mural

I’d completely forgotten about this one, only visible as you approach Glasgow along George Street from the east, just past the junction with High Street.

I had to dig a little to find out what it was based on, and it’s a bit of history:

Said to be inspired by a 1913 photograph, it tells the story of the Land-Ship, a mock navigation bridge built on the roof of the School of Navigation in the Royal College. That is now part of the University of Strathclyde, and the college building can be found a just along the road.

The Land-Ship was a revolving platform with carried a Kelvin compass mounted on top, and was used to teach students the principles of compass adjustment.

September 4, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

The day after they fixed the borked tidal weir on the River Clyde

Anyone looking in here over the years may have noted the odd burst of ‘excitement’ or near hysteria if I ever manage to catch some event as it happens. It’s pretty rare, blink and you’ll miss it – I’m more likely to be shot down in flames (by Murphy) if even try.

Case in point – the recent failure of the River Clyde Tidal Weir gate.

River Clyde banks show signs of collapse after weir fails

It could appear I’m handy for this, such is not the case, and any time I see it I’ll have been waddling the streets for at least couple hours, often more as I don’t just walk there directly.

However, after seeing the news about the problems with the gate being stuck open I did consider heading straight there, but the opportunity just didn’t arise.

I had thought about settling for second best since I’m east of the weir, and settling for a ‘historic’ pic of the river at its lowest lever, but that opportunity was kicked way from me too, and was particularly frustrating as I now cross the river fairly regularly to reach the shops.

I finally managed this last night but, of course, the offending gate has been fixed, even if only temporarily, so the river level has returned to normal, as can be seen below.

I’m fairly fortunate to have this spot to monitor the river at, as there is a non-conformity in the river bed, a sort of natural mini-weir the river flows over near the bank: normal level is represented by this view; if things are dry and the level has fallen, then I can see the river bed here, and the flow over the non-conformity is like a little waterfall; when the river is high, this feature is absent and can’t be seen (unless you know it’s there and where to look to spot the tiny turbulence over the feature).

I’m guessing the only evidence of the few days of extended low water is the slight break-up of the river bank, which can be seen just above the right of centre in this pic.

Guess I missed my chance.

Cambuslang Clydeford Day After Weir Fixed

Cambuslang Clydeford Day After Weir Fixed


September 3, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, photography | , , , , | Leave a comment

Yet another list – this time words you’ll hear in Glasgow (maybe)

I spotted yet another listing presented on the basis of helping visitors to Glasgow, and wasn’t really going to bother about, as the content is so ordinary for a local, or anyone who uses doesn’t actually need help with “23 words and phrases you need to learn quickly if you’re planning a trip to Glasgow”.

Then I noticed Number 13… ‘Yaldi’.

Where did that come from.

Been in Glasgow all my life, went to a number of schools too, yet have never heard this – EVER!

I though they meant ‘laldi’, meaning to sing or do proudly; with great gusto. As in ‘Gie it laldy (Give it laldy).

But no, they define it as something different.

Not sure if Number 16 works in my part of the east end either, but I may have heard (if not understood) it.

So these two might be ‘Glasgow’, but localised, and not common in all geographic areas.

Oh well, live (so far) and learn.

  1. Blether – To talk. Example: “I met your granny doon the street and we had a right good blether.”

  2. Wheesht – A call for silence. Example: “Will ye wheesht, you pair! Ma heid’s loupin.”

  3. Greet – To cry or weep, not to say hello. Example: “Stop greetin, it wasnae that sair.”

  4. Crabbit – Meaning grumpy and bad tempered. Example: “Yer a crabbit get, so ye are”.

  5. Eejit – An idiot, simpleton or one not possessed of all their mental faculties. Example: “Yer aff yer heid, ye eejit.”

  6. Mingin’ – Meaning gross or disgusting. Example: “He’s absolutely mingin’!”

  7. Swatch – Meaning to have a quick look at something. Example: “Gie us a swatch of yer paper.”

  8. Glaikit – Meaning stupid, foolish or not very bright. An insult, such as “Wid ye look at the glaikit look on his coupon (face).”

  9. Aye right – A phrase used when you don’t believe something that you are told. Example: “You’ve just won the lottery? Aye right!”

  10. Fouter – Somone who muddles through or a fiddly, tiresome job. Example: “This is a right fouter, this.”

  11. Peely wally – Meaning pale skinned due to lack of sunshine, something that applies to the majority of Scots, in Scotland.

  12. Clatty – Meaning dirty, not clean. Example: “Yer hoose is pure clatty.”

  13. Yaldi – An expression of excitement or joy. Example: “I just gubbed ye at FIFA. Yaldi!”

  14. Taps aff – To remove one’s shirt due to the slightest hint of sunshine. Example: “Sun’s oot, taps aff!”

  15. Hoachin’ – Meaning busy or heaving. Example: “The toon was hoachin’ the day.”

  16. Hacket – Used to describe an ugly person. Example: “That bird fae the other night was pure hacket!”

  17. Swally – Meaning an alcoholic beverage or slang version of “a swallow of.”

  18. Mad wae it – The art of being very drunk. Example: “Aw man, ah wis pure mad wae it last night!”

  19. Geein me the boak – When something makes you feel sick. Example: “That curry wis pure mingin’ man. It wis geein me the boak. “

  20. The dancin’ – A term for a nightclub. Example: “Ye goan to the dancin’ at the weekend?”

  21. Sound – Used to describe when something is cool, or that a person is okay. Example: “Did ye meet Wee Baz last night? He wis pretty sound.”

  22. Wean – The term for a child. Example: “How many weans huv ye got?”

  23. Skelped – To slap someone. Example: “If you don’t stop misbehavin’ wee man, then yer gettin’ skelped!”

August 26, 2017 Posted by | Civilian | , | Leave a comment

Relief model of Glasgow spotted at Kelvingrove

This was a bit of a recent surprise (for me at least) and was, unfortunately, tripped over in the midst of a rather wet day of heavy showers when I couldn’t dress appropriately for such things.

Spotting it depends on which road you take to Kelvingrove, and this is not my usual path, so I might never have seen it. Thanks to the weather, I couldn’t really stop for a closer look, so it was really just a case of grabbing some pics to make sure I remember it in future.

Glasgow Model Outside Kelvingrove

Glasgow Model Outside Kelvingrove

Thanks to the falling rain, I couldn’t make out the description on the plaque at the foot, and this also made pics almost unreadable too, so I’ll have to get back some day (or track it down online).

The actual features of the model are impossible to see in the above pic, so here’s a closer look at the top:

Glasgow Model Outside Kelvingrove Detail

Glasgow Model Outside Kelvingrove Detail

I hope it IS Glasgow, since I’ve just assumed this.

Given the sparse nature of the city, it has to be based on early maps, which I’d guess from around 1800 (very roughly) but would have to dig out some of my old history books to more certain or accurate about.

August 26, 2017 Posted by | Civilian, Maps, photography | , | Leave a comment

Fourth list found – this time Glasgow facts

Fourth day of our list themed lunchtime posts, and this time it is “12 interesting facts you probably don’t know about Glasgow”.

It’s always interesting to see what somebody else thinks is… interesting.

It’s certainly not my list or choice, so don’t expect much – it manages to range from “Good point” all the way down to “WHY?”

  1. We’re a flashy bunch
    Glasgow City Chambers has more marble than the Vatican, at least that’s the claim, but it has been used as movie stand-in more than once. Sad to say, it seems that few born and bred Glaswegians visit and take the daily tour of this magnificent building – and to this day I’m ashamed to say that I’m no exception to this rule. So, I haven’t actually heard this bonus fact first-hand, that it originally cost £578,232 to build back when, that would be £40 million today. Er…
    According to MY inflation calculator, £40 million from the build era of the City Chambers (which date from 1880) would be around £64 million today (2017). Still, what’s a mere £15 million?
  2. We invented the tikka masala
    Seriously? What it this list-makers obsession with curry? I STILL just think it looks like a pile of runny dog poo on a plate.
  3. Glasgow University packed up and moved
    I know this one is true, as I have some old pics of the place before it moved. Originally built at Glasgow Cross in 1451, the university moved west around 1870, and while the landmark Gothic building seen on the skyline today is new (as in 19th century new), the Lion and Unicorn staircase to its chapel is original, and was moved there brick by brick.
  4. Kelvingrove is the wrong way round
    I think this is my favourite myth about the story, and falls into the ‘I love to hate this story’ category. The story goes that the architect made a big mistake and leapt to his death from one of the gallery towers because the building was built ‘back to front’. Happily, neither of these mythical ‘facts’ is true. The building faces the way it was always meant to, and the architect went on to die in his bed, at home in West Hill, Highgate, Middlesex, on 30 March 1933 (he was born in 1858). As for the building, in reality, the museum was built and opened in 1901 to coincide with the Glasgow International Exhibition in the surrounding park – so it was designed to have its frontage facing the river. However, today, most people enter from Argyle Street.
  5. Sir Roger, a Glasgow boy stuffed in Kelvingrove
    Sir Roger is said to be one of Kelvingrove’s oldest and most popular exhibits – he’s an Asian elephant if you don’t know. Sir Roger came to a Glasgow zoo in the late 19th century, but by 1900 and aged 27 had become rather cranky and aggressive. It seems this is not unusual with such animals, too much testosterone and no mate. It was decided he would have to be put down. One morning the poor old man was given his breakfast to keep him busy, and his handlers shot him.
  6. We used to have a castle to rival Edinburgh
    The Bishop’s Castle once stood to the left of Glasgow Cathedral in the city’s medieval quarter. It’s the reason Castle Street got its name (surprise?). Sadly, all traces of it were destroyed in 1792, and today the site is occupied by Glasgow Royal Infirmary. All we can do now is imagine the grandeur of it all – and cry over the loss of one more opportunity to argue about which is best between Glasgow and Edinburgh. On the other hand, if we take account of the ruins of Crookston Castle on the south side, recently discovered remains of two castles in Partick, and others, it turns out we were once quite well provided for. It’s just a shame we seem to have lost them all.
  7. The real Stone of Destiny is here
    According to a claim made by The Arlington Bar. History records that four students from Glasgow University students tried to steal the stone from Westminster Abbey in 1950. However, the story is said to have a twist in the tale, in that the one they handed back was really a replica, and the real stone was hidden under a seat in the bar while they drank a toast to their day’s work. Well?
  8. It’s the real city of romance
    Forget Paris, Glasgow is the real city of romance, and it has the bones of the original St Valentine to prove it. The Church of Blessed St John Duns Scotus holds the relics. Find the church in Glasgow’s Ballater Street, where you can see a gold casket marked “Corpus Valentini Martyris” – the body of St Valentine, Martyr. The relics are permanently on display in the entrance to the church and as February 14 approaches the Friars decorate the area around the casket with flowers and a statue of St Valentine. On St Valentine’s Day special prayers are said for those in love and out of it – those “experiencing difficulties through separation or breakdown are also remembered”.
  9. There’s plenty to see
    Glasgow is home to some 20 museums and art galleries, and this is actually the largest civic arts collection in Europe, including stars such as Dali, Van Gogh, Degas, and Monet. Almost more significant and important than that is the fact that we don’t have to pay to see them, as our public galleries are free of charge (not counting that our taxes pay the bills). Seriously, as a Glaswegian who has enjoyed being able to drop in and see these collections as often as I like, and not had to dip into their pocket for some of the exorbitant admission charges encountered elsewhere, just get through some museum doors ONCE, this could almost be the best reason to live in Glasgow.
  10. So much, in fact, that we leave artwork out in the open
    The visual feast in not just restricted to our indoor collections. Take a moment to wander around Glasgow with your eyes OPEN, and don’t forget to look UP! The city is filled not only with many statues and ornate carving decorating many of its building, but it also hosts a number of installations in its parks and other open areas which have been provided by famous artists.
  11. It’s the home of international football
    The first official match was played in Partick in 1872, on the lawn of the West of Scotland Cricket Club between Scotland. The result was a draw, 0-0 (which I suspect the average Scot or Glaswegian will take as a win, on the basis of ‘We wuz robbed’).
  12. We gave the world Stan Laurel
    This is actually one of my favourite lesser known facts about Glasgow. Born in Ulverston, Cumbria, Laurel’s family moved north to Glasgow when he was still a boy.A month after his 16th birthday, Laurel persuaded the owner of Glasgow’s Britannia Panopticon to give him a slot during the music hall’s amateur night. It’s was notorious, and his song-and-gag routine got a mixed reception, but the experience clearly helped him on the road to stardom.The duo later visited Glasgow (twice) and stayed in the Central Hotel.

Another list ‘reviewed’ and I rather liked this one and the subject it mentioned (well, most of them).

It’s probably times like this that I really do miss having the sort of memory that conjure up such collections without stressing (I seem to ‘know’ about lots of features, and can waffle about them once prompted, but can I bring them to mind without being so prompted in some way? Nope!).

So, I guess I’ll just have to keep looking at other people’s lists, and suppress the feelings of envy.

August 24, 2017 Posted by | Civilian | , , | Leave a comment

Third list found – this time Glasgow inventions

Seems I have something of a ‘List Theme’ going on these days, and I have now found a third list for the third day, this time “11 Glasgow inventions that helped change the modern world”.

There are more, and this is, of course, not MY list, just one I spotted and thought I’d dig into a little, just for fun.

  1. The (improved) steam engine
    Good to see they credited this to James Watt, a scientific instrument maker in Glasgow University during the mid 1700s, who did not (as many still say) ‘Invent the steam engine’, but brought about a vast improvement in its efficiency by adding a separate condenser, and eliminated the highly wasteful steps of alternately heating and cooling the whole cylinder for each power stroke.
  2. Antiseptic
    Joseph Lister discovered the antiseptic effects of phenol (carbolic acid) while professor of surgery at Glasgow University in the late 1800s. This single discovery and it development must have saved millions of lives over the years since it was discovered.
  3. The cash machine/PIN
    I tend to avoid this subject, since TWO inventors have been credited, and even given OBEs.
    Today, Paisley-born inventor James Goodfellow, a development engineer working in Glasgow in the 1960s, has become generally accepted as the inventor, having been involved in a project to design a machine able to dispense money when banks were closed. His design featured a coded card and personal number to access the machines, and this is the security check we all recognise today. However, John Shephard-Barron (born in India of Scottish parents, died in Inverness) had his cash dispenser installed a month before Goodfellow’s, so has generally been credited with the invention over the years. But he had not employed a card and number security system, instead issuing special cheques to the account holder. These included a security number printed in (mildly) radioactive ink which the machine could read, then compare with the number entered by the user to confirm validity. It has been noted that the amount of carbon 14 in the print was such that some 136,000 cheques would have to have been eaten before the radiation level might be considered potentially harmful, but the hysteria always whipped up around the mere mention of ‘radiation’ by various Green Loonies probably means the idea would never have caught on.
  4. Waterproofs
    Where else but Scotland, and Glasgow in particular, would chemist Charles Macintosh have been born, and go on to patent the first ‘waterproof’ fabric in 1823? I can’t be too certain, but I suspect the Scottish weather just might have provided the tiniest piece of inspiration for this one.
  5. The fridge
    While not an actual fridge, it seems the history of artificial refrigeration can be traced back to 1755, when Scottish professor William Cullen (physician, chemist, and agriculturist) used a pump to create a partial vacuum over a container of diethyl ether, causing it to boil and absorb heat from its surroundings (even producing a little ice). Sadly, this had no practical application at the time, and some years passed before it was transformed into commercial refrigeration and used for preservation and ice-making. The latter being quite significant, since ice had to be collected and stored during winter (cut from frozen pools for example) for later use (so most of it melted even before summer arrived), or collected from places where it formed naturally (think mountain tops), and shipped where needed.
  6. Television
    There are endless arguments about ‘Who invented television’, but the truth is simply that over the years a number of people were working on the many principles it relies on, but John Logie Baird (from Helensburgh, who studied electrical engineering at the Royal Technical College in Glasgow and at the University of Glasgow) was really the first to bring them all together, and make them work successfully. He transmitted the world’s first long distance television signal from London to the Central Hotel at Glasgow Central Station in 1927. While a plaque in the hotel records this event, sadly, nobody knows or has ever been able to identify exactly where in the hotel this experiment took place.
  7. Beta blockers
    Born in Uddingston, Sir James Black established a Veterinary Physiology department at the University of Glasgow, and won the Nobel Prize for his work in medicine in 1988. His invention of beta blockers was seen as a great advance in clinical pharmacology, and has been described as one of the most important drug discoveries of the 20th century.
  8. The police
    In 1800, the authorities in Glasgow successfully petitioned the Government of the day to pass the Glasgow Police Act, creating the City of Glasgow Police, thought to be the world’s first modern type municipal police force. Note that the more well-known Robert Peel (and his Peelers) did not create the Metropolitan Police with his Act until 1829. The words ‘imitation’ and ‘flattery’ come to mind.
  9. Ultrasound
    Invented by Ian Donald, while professor of Midwifery at Glasgow University, the world’s first diagnostic ultrasound machine was inspired by the use of ultrasound used to detect flaws in metal, as seen in Glasgow’s shipyards, It seems he was the first person to realize its potential for use in medical diagnosis. His original machine was on show in Glasgow’s Hunterian Museum last time I managed to fall in the doors, and may still be (not sure if it was a permanent exhibit). It really was huge, and probably scared the life out of any non-tech ordinary person it was used in its day, unlike the elegant designs such devices have evolved into.
  10. Glasgow Coma Scale
    The Glasgow Coma Scale was created by Sir Graeme Treasdale and Brian Jennet while they were working at the Institute of Neurological Sciences in Glasgow. It is now used worldwide as a means of reliably measuring the conscious state of a patient. I even came across it use, after being involved in an assault case in Glasgow, where it seems it is frequently referred to in courts due to the nature of many assaults – apparently it is quite common for a victim to lose consciousness, maybe only momentarily, after an initial blow the head, and while this is not ideal, it is not necessarily serious in itself. The problem is that the now unconscious  and limp victim is unable to break their fall in any way, so will collapse uncontrollably. This is the real problem and where serious injury can result, should they fall backwards the back of their head can strike the ground (pavement) with the equivalent impact/force of a fall from 2 metres. This can cause fractures and/or internal bleeding of the brain, not only serious, but potentially life-threatening.
  11. Chicken tikka masala
    I’m told legend has it that the chicken tikka masala was invented after a Glasgow bus driver complained that his tikka dish was too dry. I can’t really comment, I think all curry is disgusting, and go with the history that says curry is as Indian as London is Scottish, and that curry is actually a British invention created in the days of colonisation when the troops sent to India had to find some way to disguise the revolting meat they were given, so doused it with all the spices and flavouring they could find so they could down it without throwing up as they ate.

So, as is often said, Glasgow (and as a result Scotland) does quite well in the invention stakes.

One day it might learn how to cash in on them too, instead of turning them over to others to profit from them.

August 23, 2017 Posted by | Civilian | , | 6 Comments

It looks as if I did actually grow up in Glasgow – at least according to this list

Big Light

After yesterday’s post about “15 foods you’ll definitely have eaten if you’re from Glasgow”, where I seemed to rather unfortunately prove I’m apparently not from Glasgow (but I am, which either reveals something about me, or the creator of that list of 15 foods), I found another list, this time “14 things you’ll remember if you grew up in Glasgow”.

Well, I know I grew up in Glasgow, and it was the east end, not the posh west end, so let’s see if I do any better with this one.

  1. The Big Light
    No problem with this one, ‘The Big Light’ only went on when it was really needed, for jobs like sewing, or reading small print.
  2. Blackpool Illuminations
    The natural consequence of using ‘The Big Light’ and leaving it on when not considered necessary: “It’s like Blackpool Illumination in here!”
  3. The messages
    Spent my life going for ‘The Messages’ and being dragged around every grocer’s in the east end every week, since this refers to the shopping, now all collected from the supermarket, and no healthy walk around all those little shops.
  4. A skelp
    No more skelps these days, unless you want to get locked up for hitting a child and being accused of child abuse. Thankfully one I tended to avoid, coming from a family that couldn’t see the logic of parents who slap their kids around while shouting “Stop crying or you’ll get another skelp!”
  5. Square sausage: the only sausage
    Well – see yesterday’s post about growing up in Glasgow for more on square sausage.
  6. Saturday trips to the Barras
    Sadly, this is now a thing of the past, as the Barras are a sad shadow of what they once were, a veritable ghost area compared to the shoulder to shoulder sardine crush of not that long ago. I’m glad I was around for the real thing.
  7. Wedding scrambles
    Usually arrived too late, I don’t remember every getting as much as a penny, in the scramble that tool place at the end of a wedding, when the bride and groom threw a handful of coins for the kids to fight over. Probably no longer happens as the insurance premium is too high!
  8. Aunties galore
    It was quite a while before I realised all those ‘aunties’ (and ‘uncles’ to be accurate) were not actually relatives, but were a close-knit clique of very close and trusted friends. I was actually quite pleased to learn this, as I had one old ‘auntie’ who the family looked after, and had to go for ECT (twice if I remember correctly). Interestingly, there’s a vintage ECT machine in the People’s Palace, probably dates from her day!
  9. Taking your pieces to school
    Another one partly covered in yesterday’s post, pieces are what we have here, not sandwiches!
  10. Saving your gingy bottles
    There was a time when ginger, or fizzy drink (glass) bottles included a refundable charge, so enterprising kids would collect empties and cart them back to the shop. Did it a few times, but if I recall my news stories correctly, I think this has now come to an end.
    Incidentally, I did some work in the new Barr’s plant when it opened in Cumbernauld some years back, and it seems that the recycling of refundable lass bottles actually works out MORE expensive in energy terms that making new glass bottles or using plastic. The problem apparently comes from the additional energy taken to melt the reclaimed glass, as opposed to making new glass from fresh ingredients, with no reclaimed glass (cullet) added.
  11. Dogging it
    Proper term for not going to school when you were supposed to. This one I didn’t try – my schools weren’t so bad, plus, from what I saw, nobody ever got away with it and the hassle seemed to far outweigh any fun.
  12. This genius philosophy
    “What’s fur ye’ll no go by ye” – heard that more than once.
  13. Ur ye dancin?
    Guess I moved in the wrong circles – although I do wonder if this more of an anecdotal phrase used by Glasgow comics to raise a laugh, as opposed to hopefuls looking for a dance.
  14. Dancing 500 Miles
    GOD NO! Apparently ‘The Proclaimers’ are still around and were, or are, serious. All I can say about this is that I have never heard more that the first few bars, having always managed to kill any radio that dared to play this anywhere near me.

That was almost fun…

At least it was – until 14 arrived and spoiled it all.

August 22, 2017 Posted by | Civilian | , | 3 Comments

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