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The old white goods are awaiting their replacement – a lovely new frost-free fridge-freezer. If only the one that came today hadn’t been scratched and dented, they be off to the recycling plant by now. Oh well. Tomorrow’s delivery might be better !

J & I saw this when we went to see Wall-E a few weeks back. As Spongebob fans who regularly sing over the Pearl & Dean music, this new ad really ticked us pink !

Spongebob Pearl & Dean.

BBC NEWS | Health | Singles ‘face Alzheimer’s risk’.

Look this smug to stay sane

Look this smug to stay sane

Oh bugger. As a divorced man, happily living alone, I’m worried.

This might explain why I talk to the cat and often find myself taking all night to hang the washing up to dry because I keep getting distracted and leaving the room – and then going back an hour later and thinking, “THE WASHING !!! That’s what I was doing !”. And then getting distracted again. And going back again. Repeat this for the whole night and you can understand my fears.

Now, where do I work again ?

There’s really nothing like the first cycle commute after recovering from a heavy cold. I really must urge you (if you’re suffering from congested sinuses) to get the old bike out, make sure the tyres are inflated and the chain’s not rusted solid if it’s been a few years since your arse was planted atop a saddle, and ride like the clappers. The combination of the cold morning air, the body heating up and the resultant dilation of the nasal passages is a sure fire way to loosen the snot and enable you to blow snot-rockets and howk up sizeable pavement oysters with reckless abandon.

But one quick tip – always check there’s no-one sitting on your tail as you fire one off to the side. The unexpected gift of an ’emerald necklace’ isn’t always appreciated by your followers.

I like my bike. I think it looks good. But this is just going too far

If only he’d been “two tyred” to give it a good pumping, or had taken a ‘brake’.


This is apparently genuine email correspondence between a disgruntled citizen of Leith and the local police. Whether it’s true or not, it’s still very funny indeed and – from personal experience – true to life when dealing with the local constabulary:

Dear Sir/madam/automated telephone answering service

Having spent the past twenty minutes waiting for someone at Leith police station to pick up a telephone I have decided to abandon the idea and try e-mailing you instead. Perhaps you would be so kind as to pass this message on to your colleagues in Leith by means of smoke signal, carrier pigeon or ouji board.
As I’m writing this e-mail there are eleven failed medical experiments(I think you call them youths) in West Cromwell Street which is just off Commercial Street in Leith. Six of them seem happy enough to play a game which involves kicking a football against an iron gate with the force of a meteorite. This causes an earth shattering CLANG! which rings throughout the entire building. This game is now in it’s third week and as I am unsure how the scoring system works, I have no idea if it will end any time soon.

The remaining five walking abortions are happily rummaging through
several bags of rubbish and items of furniture that someone has so
thoughtfully dumped beside the wheelie bins. One of them has found a saw and is setting about a discarded chair like a beaver on speed. I fear that it’s only a matter of time before they turn their limited attention to the bottle of calor gas that is lying on it’s side between the two bins. If they could be relied on to only blow their own arms and legs off then I would happily leave them to it. I would even go so far as to lend them the matches. Unfortunately they are far more likely to blow up half the street with them and I’ve just finished decorating the kitchen.

What I suggest is this. after replying to this e-mail with worthless
assurances that the matter is being looked into and will be dealt with, why not leave it until the one night of the year (probably bath night) when there are no mutants around then drive up the street in a panda car before doing a three point turn and disappearing again. This will of course serve no other purpose than to remind us what policemen actually look like.

I trust that when I take a clawhammer to the skull of one of these
throwbacks you’ll do me the same courtesy of giving me a four month head start before coming to arrest me.

I remain sir, your obedient servant

Mr ??????,

I have read your e-mail and understand you frustration at the problems caused by youth playing in the area and the problems you have encountered in trying to contact the police.
As the Community Beat Officer for your street I would like to extend an offer of discussing the matter fully with you.
Should you wish to discuss the matter, please provide contact details
address / telephone number) and when may be suitable.

PC ???
Community Beat Officer

Dear PC ?????

First of all I would like to thank you for the speedy response to my
original e-mail. 16 hours and 38 minutes must be a personal record for Leith Police station and rest assured that I will forward these details to Norris McWhirter for inclusion in his next book.

Secondly I was delighted to hear that our street has it’s own community beat officer. May I be the first to congratulate you on your covert skills. In the five or so years I have lived in West Cromwell Street, I have never seen you. Do you hide up a tree or have you gone deep undercover and infiltrated the gang itself? Are you the one with the acne and the moustache on his forehead or the one with a chin like a wash hand basin? It’s surely only a matter of time before you are headhunted by MI5.

Whilst I realise that there may be far more serious crimes taking place in Leith such as smoking in a public place or being Muslim without due care and attention, is it too much to ask for a policeman to explain (using words of no more than two syllables at a time) to these t***s that they might want to play their strange football game elsewhere. The pitch behind the Citadel or the one at DKs are both within spitting distance as is the bottom of the Leith Dock.
Should you wish to discuss these matters further you should feel free to contact me on ??? ????. If after 25 minutes I have still failed to answer, I’ll buy you a large one in the Compass Bar.


P.S If you think that this is sarcasm, think yourself lucky that you
don’t work for the cleansing department.

It’s been far too long. Despite a few gentle nags from Croila, I never quite managed to get around to posting anything; until now, that is. I read this posting by a musician I know called Roy Henderson, and it really does give a flavour of the atmosphere you can get in some of the more ‘local’ bars in Leith. My guess is that this is a well-known bar at the bottom of Leith Walk, which still attracts the good citizens of Leith who wouldn’t seem out of place in a sequel to Trainspotting. Anyway, it made me smile as I’ve seen these types stagger from the doors of the establishment many a time. Take it away, Roy:

Being a gigging musician is never dull. On Friday night I was delighted to play the Mercat with a number of myspace chums. There was some very fine music, an appreciative and supportive audience, friendly banter and much laughter. Ok, there was also a quantity of alcohol involved, and while some of us (me especially) slightly overdid the falling-down water, there was not a hint of malice, jealousy or danger. I came home a very drunk but satisfied, content and thankful guy.

On Saturday I played at my regular “songs for cash” gig. There was also some very fine music but there was also beer glasses being hurled across the bar smashing off walls showering the place (and me) in glass, pissed up women approaching in a “Leith version of sexy way”, grabbing me and saying “Hi doll” then demanding I play “Layla”, toothless junkies off their faces standing 4 feet from my microphone shouting for “Wish you were here” or “somethin’ fae Boab Marley”, and several threatening, heavy looking guys with number 1 crops staring malevolently, offering me a litre bottle of Vodka for a fiver, then frowning when I declined. Then they starting talking about “square go’s” outside.

When the gig was over (our last song was, appropriately, by Crowded House) a member of the “audience” stood up, walked to the door and promptly fell face down and the loud crack which we heard is still resonating in my head today. Cue copious amounts of blood, me trying to put the unconscious guy into the recovery position while trying to avoid coming into contact with his life-juice, and calls to 999. To make matters worse, a local gentleman grabs me and screams in my face, “Did you fucking do this? Did Ye? Did Ye?” “No, mate”, I replied, “He fell down”. “Naw he didny. You fucking did this, or it was one o’ they junkies – fuckin’ tell me NOW”

“No, mate he really did just fall down, he’s a bit pissed” I replied.

And with that he starts shaking the barely conscious guy (causing blood to fly everywhere) “Haw man….tell me who did this tae ye” while glaring at me threatengly,

I decide that, with a paramedic arriving on the scene, I should exit the situation when a guy taps me on the shoulder and says, “Cheers man you played some fucking great music tonight”

Enough. I got my blood money, accepted a free double Jack on ice from the nice bar lady, and a taxi home.

Thu 03/05/2007 08:24 I’m so tired that I’m seeing cows on my desk… I think I’m hallucinating. Moo.

Humax PVR

I don’t know how I lived without this incredible box of tricks. It was invited into my life when my video recorder died just before Christmas after over a decade of providing televisual entertainment. Though expensive, it’s the business ! I can pause, rewind and move around in live TV; record two programs whilst watching a third; start watching a program that’s recording before it’s finished; one-press recording programming.. the list goes on. I can even download the recordings via USB to the PC and run a conversion utility to burn them to DVD.

It does everything bar make the tea, and when I need to do that I simply press pause and it’s ready to play when I get back – and not a second missed.

It’s not just junk food, fizzy drinks and expensive toys that we need to worry about them targetting kids with in TV adverts.

Just last week I was explaining to J that I was always skint because I was paying off debts, but that hopefully by April this year I’ll have paid them all off. “Have you ever considered consolidating all of your existing debts into one easy monthly payment ?” came the sage advice from this savvy six year-old. My jaw dropped. “Or you could get a One Card and reduce the payments on your mortgage,” she continued.

I dropped her bedtime storybook and nearly fell off her bed. “Where”, I sputtered, “did you hear THAT ?”

“It’s on Nick Jr all the time when I watch it at Mum’s”.

For once I’m glad I only have terrestrial telly ; if they’re manipulating the minds of kids so that they grow up believing that debts are nothing to worry about , then the future generations are going to be in hock forever.

Pity your poor kids in their middle-age.

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