Tag Archives: glasgow

I never said why exactly.

I would like to point out that, due to its northern location, Glasgow is considerably colder than the likes of sunny Warwickshire.  Bone chilling.

More importantly though, I want to share a revelation. Something of a biggie if you ask me. A monster.

I am no longer a Sainsbury’s boy

I realise many of you will stumble as you read that but my time there is done.  I blame my recent revelations around the price of McVities Chocolate digestives and their pricing strategies.  So I have switched.  I now plan to head to Asda.  I like their no bullshit approach of no loyalty programs, no money off vouchers, no nonsense , just low prices.

A couple of chums have mentioned the likes of Lidl but I say to those people ‘slow down a little’ just one step at a time if you please. And remember, Asda always have lower fuel prices than Sainsbury and Tesco, Lidl don’t sell fuel.

I have long been concerned at the way things are marketed at us, a good time to look back a few pages and see my rant about stupid people.  Seems though, it is a world wide phenomenon. Try booking a one way flight to America say.  I promise it will be more expensive than booking a return.  And not just by a few quid either – it will be a significant difference.  I just got the train to Glasgow Central. A one way ticket was £1.90 but a return, just £1.70.  How can that be?  Someone please explain that one to me. Even harder to grasp, the cheaper ticket option also produced 3 paper tickets from the machine whereas the one way option would only have ejected 2. So for the cheaper ticket, the train company has used more ink and more ticket blanks.  Let me summarise that to remove any doubt – more product for less money !

If you are as confused as me, raise your hand.

On a lighter note – I have just finished my third trip to school this year.  Back in January I became qualified to handle refrigerant gases – important that one as they are ozone depleting substances – or ODS as I can now call them.  Last week, an Applied Marine Engineering exam was devoured in Liverpool and this week in Glasgow I have been covering HELM(M). HELM stands for something about human element blah blah blah – one of those ‘keep ’em well cuddled’ attendance only courses that generally don’t achieve much other than making your wallet a grand lighter. Thankfully – that one is a one off and not one of those ‘re-validate every 5 years’ things that the MCA like quite a lot. A bit like the diving instructor licence that I have with PADI.  That must be paid every year if you want to stay valid. Nothing stops me from never teaching but keep paying the fees but they don’t care.  See officially PADI stands for Professional Association of Dive Instructors but those of us in the know, have its true meaning etched in our minds – Put Another Dollar In.

So, back to school.  Been at a Maritime School in Glasgow this week and noticed something with the fire extinguishers.  I reported the issue but I bet nothing gets done – can you spot it?




Was chatting with the squeeze last night on text message. Chatting about a few things that are not suitable to be published here but there were two words that came in to conversation.  Two of my favourite words in the english language as it happens, Melancholy and at the other end of the spectrum, Kaleidoscope. Now, I will fully understand if you need to consult your dictionary for those words.

Melancholy I find mesmerisingly beautiful because of its contradiction. When you read it, or speak it – it most definitely has a happy, jovial, spring blossoms flowering for the first time feel about it.  Reality is the opposite – a heavy, deep sadness.  If a person were described to you as melancholy – you might imagine they were a happy, light hearted fun person to be around. Not so!

Kaleidoscope on the other hand, has no double meaning for me.  What it does represent is a scene of ever changing happy colours, an endless churn of goodness and mood lifting pleasantness.  Visually, I find it weirdly pleasing – the irony of that choice of word is about to be explained.

Kaleidoscope – not many words start with a K in English – even fewer sequence the E & I that way, weird huh ???? It looks different, non conformist, not following the crowd – I like that.

I had a couple of favourite words in Portuguese too – portanto and Foguetão – they just sounded really sexy – don’t forget to roll your R’s.

Anyway, that’ll do for now, I just paid £6.75 for a single glass of red wine in Glasgow Central and now have a dilemma.  That was more than I would normally pay for a bottle – but it was tasty.  I have 3½ hours before my train and could easily do another one.

The Double Whopper with Bacon & Cheese is long gone, as are the cheesy bacon bites.





Belgian Chuggers

Just realised that the missing McCoy may well be off giving birth so may have her hands full at the moment – I would imagine her fanny might be pretty full too !

I think it is Belgian ‘bob-a-job’ week here this week.  There are plagues of scouts and guides on the square trying to sell cakes to raise cash.  Someone should have told them to spread out a little though, it’s almost like bashing through a crowded tube station full of them.  I must have had my best ‘feck off’ frown on because not one of them bothered me.  One downside with Belgians is they all speak so many languages.  If they approach you in french, you could blag that you only speak Flemish but chances are, they speak both.  You could also say you are english but damn sure they will know that one, my only other options are Spanish and Portuguese.

My more avid readers (like that one Musher?) will know my views on charity in the street but for those ‘part timers’ let me refresh you.  I do give to charities but only charities I like.  I don’t like to feel obliged by someone cornering me and trying to harass me on the street – these people, although only doing a job, are likely to get a very uncomfortable response from me.

Think back to a time in Mallorca when one rainy day steeped in self-pity, I realised that my life wasn’t so bad walking to work in the rain and passing a tramp (I am assuming that word is still OK with the PC brigade).  The tramp had clearly been out all night in the same rain.  That night, I bought a flask and some soup, some bread and delivered it to the tramp the next morning.  Long story short, the tramp, although in Mallorca, turned out to be from Glasgow and his name was Brian.  Brian had managed to lose the flask in the first day so I couldn’t refill it for him.  On telling the story to a new girlfriend who worked as a landscape gardener, we went and found Brian.  She cleaned him up and gave him a job working with her.

He lasted a week – or should I say, he lasted until he had some cash in his pocket and immediately went out on the piss for 5 days and back to his park bench, never to return to the attractive german girl who had given him a golden chance (and a shower too but not a golden one).

Why am I telling you all of this?  Well (takes a deep breath as this really did take the piss), yesterday afternoon when I left the local store, the guy that is always outside on his knees, cap in hand was there again.  He is there a lot.  I have on several occasions given him some change until one time not too long ago I saw him with another trampy friend, cap in hand, on his knees, half cut on the Belgian equivalent of ‘Special Brew’.  At that point, I decided I was not going to fuel his alcohol habit.  If a man is hungry – buy him a sandwich!

Against my better judgement, and again, feeling sorry for the poor fella, I decided to drop my loose change from the shop keeper in his hat yesterday.  This is where it all went so badly wrong from the tramps perspective.  My spend in the shop had been somewhat guarded and I used change rather than notes.  This meant that I only had a few coppers to give.  I actually felt bad about this – I was about to make a gift to a man in need and I was worried that it was not enough. Think about that as a society for a moment.  In the act of giving, we chastise ourselves over the value of the gift – why do we feel this bad about not giving enough? I’ll tell you why.

That cheeky bastard – I dropped the change into the hat, he immediately looked in the hat to see what I had dropped in, making no effort to disguise his head and eye movement – THEN, the fucker, looked back at me with sad eyes and disappointment on his face making me feel like some kind of clueless twat for offering a little help.  So fuck him from now on, I will never feel guilty again as I walk past him – in fact, I can go one better.  Next time I am walking down the street and make eye contact with him, I will obviously and deliberately cross the street, while maintaining eye contact, pass further along before returning to the original side of the street – all of the time, never taking my eyes off him.  If at any time he looks like he might look away from me, I will change my direction back towards him and slide my hand in my pocket until I can see his sad teary eyes light up and then, with full eye contact, I will pull my hand out of my pocket, flick him the bird and return to the clean side of the street. Mother fuckers !!!

But it doesn’t stop there.  In the UK on Saturday morning with Bill from Ohio, USA, I stopped and bought a ‘Big Issue’ from a vendor.  I used to buy the Big Issue a lot, in fact, I can clearly remember when it was only a pound.  I had explained the way the big issue works to Bill for homeless people and suggested that it actually is a good read (I sincerely mean that folks – don’t be put off by these guys appearance).  The Big Issue is now two pounds and fifty pence – a hefty increase.  So hefty in fact that I stopped buying it for fear of becoming bankrupt myself due to their ever-increasing costs.  So , I approach the vendor, start rummaging through my change laden pocket for some dosh and pulled out 3 pounds.  Have a guess what that cheeky bastard said to me?

‘Do you want the change?’

For fucks sake – it seems the gift of giving is no longer enough.  I wanted to say ‘of course I do you cheeky cunt’ but clearly english wasn’t his first language and my rant would have been wasted on him.

Now that you know all of that, you might forgive me for never giving to charity again – but – when we get our hearts broken, do we stop chasing pussy ?  Of course not.  I still give to charity.  Poppy Appeal always gets a tenner in the pot – most of the old boys say ‘that’s a lot of money’ when they see me dropping it in – I always respond with a smile as I say ‘A small price to pay for freedom’ as I take my poppy.  RNLI always gets a donation, not just because I work at sea but many years ago I used to surf a lot in England.  I never needed them, but they were always there if I did. Lastly ‘Battle of Britain Fighter Pilots’ always used to get a tenner from me.  They were a rarity years ago but now they are nearly all gone.  I did see a collection at Clacket Lane Services around two years ago and gave generously and took my sticker.


Now, moving on, I am about to head into the forest on my bike for a couple of hours.  My T-shirt fits and looks great, it’s about now that yours will be dropping through your door if you were a winner (Lex, yours may take up to 7 days).  Remember, the next competition is open to T-shirt winners only and requires  a minimum of three photos (there can be more) of you wearing your shirt, and one of those must be wet.  Not being sexist in any way – the boys must also comply.  Entry into the next competition is automatic and for this round, the judge with be the public at large so wear it well.


Congratulations to Amy Cooper for getting hacked



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