About A Boy?

1am and the film About A Boy has just finished on tv. 

I love that film, it’s well written thoughtful, humerous and poignant and based on one of Nick Hornsby’s best novels. 

As you’re probably aware the film features Hugh Grant as Will the cynical, selfish loner who is fortunate to have an income without working for a living and spends his day wasting time and coming up with schemes to meet single women including pretending he has a son. 

Through his scheming including inventing a son so that he can join a group of single parents, Will hooks up with Marcus, the 13 year old son of a depressed and detached hippy mother verging on suicide. 

Marcus ( Nicholas Hoult ) having been raised in such circumstances is socially awkward and bullied at school and uses Will as an out from his depressed mother. 

You’ve probably seen the film, so I won’t bore you with the detail.  The pic above is from one of the final sciences were Will joins Marcus on stage and saves him from social suicidee. 

The message of the film is that no man is an island that you can’t function on your own and we all need support from friends and family. 

But what surprised me watching for the umpteenth time tonight is that the boy of the title who is being saved isn’t Marcus but Will, who despite being the adult is really just an over-privileged child. 

I’m kicking myself for being so slow!

But with Christmas on its way,  that no man is an island message seems just a little more poignant. 

Christmas can be the most wonderful or depressing time of the year.   

Theres nothing like seeing the ads on tv full of people having a great time to highlight your personal lonlieness which is often worse if you’re in an unhappy relationship rather than on your own. 

Those ads and their perfect families are fake, Christmas can be a miserable time for lots of people and not because they are lonely, in unhappy relationships or feel pressurised into spending money they can ill afford. 

My daughters boyfriend was over for dinner tonight.  He’s a police officer and working nightshift on Christmas Eve, Christmas Night and Hogmanay. 
He told me a surprising fact that Christmas Day is the most violent day of their year,  people full of drink, drugs and family confined with people they possibly rather wouldn’t be with but circumstances force upon them. 

Whatever you’re doing, I hope you have a fantastic time and a house full of family and friends. 

I will and feel blessed about that,  but I’m thinking about a few single friends,  maybe they’ll already have plans , maybe they won’t but will be too proud to invite themselves.  

I wouldn’t. It would be an admission of lonlieness and people dont like to share their innermost feelings and vulnerabilities.   

It’s one thing feeling weak or depressed but another thing showing it and we all wear public faces. 

Maybe my single friends would prefer a night in their own, but maybe they’d rather be amongst friends or second hand friends to enjoy the occasion. 

It wouldn’t do any harm to ask and find out and let them have a choice. 

Maybe you should too.  Just ask, open the door and let them in.  

Madness, madness, they call it madness!

As a kid,  just started as an apprentice in the shipyards in the late 70s, music was changing from glam and prog rock,  to punk and the more commercial new wave.  

Forget the Sex Pistols as Punks,  that was a commercial operation.   They may have made punk popular but real punk happened in pubs and clubs with guys who could barely play. 

For a truer representation, compare The Exploited to The Stranglers,  Exploted were more local boys with songs of raw anger were the  Stranglers were already hardened musicians,  rockers who consciously associated themselves  with the popular punk derived themes of anarchy, apathy and rebellion but adding sexual themes and a groove rather than the raw anger of punk. 
Consequently The Stranglers enjoyed commercial success and gained a following including myself who still fill halls in Glasgow each year to tune in to the songs of our youth. 

Then along came Ska around 1979/80. . Well for the second time as it had originally arrived in the U.K. from Jamaica in the 60s but was not widely popular then. 

Certainly not in Glasgow which at the time wasn’t as culturally diverse as it is these days. 

The main two proponents of Ska were Madness and The Specials both in the Two Tone label with less popular bands including The Selector and Bad Manners. 

I loved Madness’ first two singles from 1979,  The Prince,  a homage to Prince Buster from the original Ska movement and One Step Beyond.     These were different to what was going on at the time,  more danceable than punk and less commercial than disco. 

At the same time The Specials released Gangsters and A Message To You Rudy following it up in 1980 with the more political Too Much Too Young. 

Compare that with with Madness 1980 releases of My Girl and Baggy Trousers, which although had a Ska rhythm were essentially pure pop. 

Being a young music-snob,  or arse,  I lost interest in them at that time. 

But you have to agree that Madness have lasted the distance, still touring and releasing albums.    

It was with some intrepidation that I agreed to go and see them with brother 2 at The Glasgow Hydro on Thursday night. 

He’s 2 years younger than me and didn’t mind when Ska became pop, 2 years is a long time when you’re a kid and developing your own style. 

But Madness are known for putting on a great gig and I was more than pleasantly surprised as the place was packed and jumping including Duncan and myself bouncing around to all the pop hits including my favourite Our House as it strikes a memory of how it was back then. 

Pop it might be,  but it has lasted the rest of time because the stories of the songs resonate in peoples life’s as they grew up and maybe became less of an arse along the way. 

Madness musically were terrific,    Monsier Barso on keyboard, Kix on saxophone and Suggs who can still hold a tune and an audience. 

These guys have been around a long time and are comfortable in their own skins and having fun on stage which transfers and encourages the audience who reflect it dancing and singing along with every tune. 

A real feel good gig and next the play Glasgow I’ll be getting the tickets early. 

Their new album is worth a listen, I particularly like Grand Slam, Herbert and Blackbird. 

Tinseltown In The Rain?

A fantastic version of one my favourite songs,  great tune,  wonderful lyrics and I don’t think I’d ever get fed up looking at Andrea Corr.  

Do I love you ? Yes I love you
Will we always be happy go lucky ?
Do I love you ? Yes I love you
But it’s easy come, and it’s easy go

All this talking is only bravado …

Isn’t it just!  ūüôā

Mind Games?

10pm and she’s on the phone.

I can tell she’s moody but have no idea why.

So I ask …

( I’m that kinda guy )

She says that she has something that she wants to talk to me about,   But she wants to do it face to face.

So I’m perplexed and bamboozled .. even more than usual when it comes to dealing with members of the fairer sex.

I ask her what it is, ¬†give me a clue, ¬†the bullet points, ¬†but she refuses.¬† Continue reading “Mind Games?”

The Games a Bogey! #CelticFC


A few months ago,  before this years Scottish Premier Football League started,  I blogged that Celtic were a sure thing to win the league and were worth investing in as at a win-ratio of 33% after tax were much better than money in the bank at 2%.before tax.


At that time,  the odds were 1 to 3 on .. ie put on £1000 and it gets you £333.

Our apparent nearest rival newco Rangers,  were best priced at 7/2.

A relative ten-fold difference and an indication of who the bookies thought would win the league even before a ball was kicked. Continue reading “The Games a Bogey! #CelticFC”

A small rock travelling through space ..


The sun setting over Loch Lomond


Yesterday, ¬†with holidays left to burn and no more Mondays at work this year, ¬†I’m up in the Loch Lomond area .. isn’t it gorgeous?

A walk from the car-park at Balmaha to the top of Conic Hill,  then back down again but taking the northern ridge which brings you out around half a mile further along the loch.

It’s my favourite place in the world. Continue reading “A small rock travelling through space ..”

Wolf – Preface


A tale of lust,  love and revenge.

A loose follow on to a few of the characters from The Platform Lovers.

Charles is the obvious bad guy,  serial shagger,  now caught and ejected from the family home,   but it has brought him a new found freedom.

But there are other characters who hold darker secrets.

I’ve never written anything really dark and I intend to with this. ¬† You see I don’t always believe that the good guy wins .. that’s not how things work in real life.

Here’s the thing, ¬†I can’t easily get my head around writing about revenge or murder, ¬† it means putting your head in that place, ¬†it’s not how I think.

But we all have a dark side .. right?

That little fascist conniving part of us who would exercise our right to correct any wrongs that have been done against us .. as long as there aren’t any consequences.

If someone seriously wronged you .. and you could kill them without any consequences.

Would you?

How serious would that wrong have to be?

  • Theft?
  • Assault?
  • Rape?
  • Child abuse?
  • The murder a family member?

I think that most people would say that if someone hurt their family,  then they would want to kill them .. but at which point does your NO.. become a YES?