Scotsman fantasy golf


I must admit I had a laugh applying for the latest round of fantasy golf. Having come 97th out of 11,000 in the last competition (a rousing late flourish thanks partly to Angel Cabrera’s US Open Victory) I wanted to capitalise by entering more than one team.

Having filled in a photocopy of the form, from Saturday’s Scotsman, I realised that you’re not allowed to enter with photocopied forms.

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So, under my pseudonym (Marecello Santos Gaspotchoanteremidos – or something like that) I penned the following letter.

Wish me luck..

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Glastonbury


Thank you BBC for a fine Friday evening’s TV.

Bjork was stunning.

Arctic Monkeys were awesome.

Amy Winehouse was sultry.

But Arcade Fire stole the show with a performance that defied description.

It’s too early to show some of it but here’s a sample of them live anyway.

My old mates at 1576


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1576, the company I co-founded in 1993 with my pals then, and now, David Reid and Adrian Jeffery, is going through a difficult metamorphosis just now.

There’s a lot of people-changing going on (and at a very senior level). So much so that it has prompted a number of people to suggest that I might feel a bit of Schadenfreude.

Now, is that not a great word?

The taking of joy in others’ misfortune. There is no equivelant in English – other than gloating and that’s not the same.

For the record; far from feeling schadenfreudish, I feel quite sad actually.

But businesses are living organisms. They ebb and flow. They have mood swings. Good days and bad days. OK, so 1576 is having a bad day, a negative mood and they’re ebbing rather than flowing right now. But believe me, I’ve been there more than once.

Ebbs turn into flows. Negative turns into positive. Bad days into good.

So, it’s all to play for…

Schadenfreude my arse!

Dad


That’s my dad at the right of this photo.

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He’s looking good, but underneath the surface he is very unwell. I was at a meeting with his Oncologist and my mum today that fairly starkly set out the reality of his situation.

For now we can look on the positive side of things but the medium term prognosis is not good.

I’d like to thank all of you who have posted messages of support in the last few days. It’s really appreciated.

Whilst my frequency of posting might drop you can be sure I will retain a keen eye for a rant, a gag and a bit of light relief. God knows, we might need it!

Who’s the soor faced, unshaven lout in the centre of the picture?

Oh shit. It’s me!

Dawkins’ thought raiser


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This is a very challenging book to read, particularly considering my father’s current state of health.

As a practicing Catholic it strikes right into the centre of my faith. But it is an extremely articulately argued polemic on the existance (not, in Dawkins’ case) of a god (or gods).

I have to say I am finding it very stimulating reading and is making me consider many facets of my belief. But, strangely, I don’t find it either disconcerting or negative.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of it so far (I’m half way through) is the extreme prejudice faced by atheists in the USA and the power of the mainly Christian (fundamentalist?) mainstream.

I find that quite disgusting I have to say.

It’s not exactly Mills and Boon, but there is no question it is a book that any intelligent human being should read. If you think it’s a lot of shit, you can tell Mr Dawkins on his own website/blog.

It’s very active!

On balance, although he is very persuasive, I find his arguments distancing and actually slightly rhetorical in a way. He’s almost so convincing that he makes you want to fight back.

Smugness is not an emotion he is unfamiliar with.

One should read this book.

Club Champions. Not!


Both Tom and I were well chuffed at the weekend when we qualified for the quarter finals of the club championship, as the photo below amply demonstrates.

 

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I lost 6 and 5

Tom Lost 9 and 7.

I smashed up my Taylormade Rescue wood as a result.

Both of our opponents put in the rounds of their lives; while both Tom and I played reasonably well.

This is how we feel.

 

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Life in South Africa


My sister is currently in South Africa, hand rearing Cheetah cubs. So for the “aaaw shucks” lot of you out there here’s a couple of “aaaw shucks” moments; courtesy of Emily.

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Aaaw shucks!

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And if you’re a pure sucker for this sort of thing have a look at this.

Officially the worst blog in the world but constantly WordPress’ number one because idiots like me keep sending you there. It’s nearly so bad that it’s good.

Nearly.

Recent listening – Candie Payne


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Now this girl is rather good.

Hailing from Liverpool she has a bit of a musical tradition as she has two briothers in the business too.

I think one of them is in The Zutons.

A touch of the Morcheebas about them and certainly a nod of respect in the direction of 60’s British chanteusses like Dusty Springfield. The band acquitted themselves well on Jools Holland a few weeks ago and the YouTube video gives you a nice taster.

Very enjoyable indeed.

Recommended.

Goodbye Mercedes


We had a right good send of for the car on Saturday morning. It scrubbed up well and really looked the part as a rally car.

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Sponsorship was good too.

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The babes draped the bonnet perfectly.

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Jeana liked it so much she had a go herself

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When her gardening career finishes she’s thinking of taking up modelling.

Clay modelling!

Military Precision – By Jeana


 

For all of you out there who think that gardening is a very haphazard pastime I’m here to prove otherwise.

I’m sure most of the time Mark wonders what I get up to. He comes through the front door and it looks exactly the same as it did when he went out in the morning.

“But Jeana the kids are at school all day, what have you been doing?”

Well, here’s the answer.

I spend a lot of time with Greenferry, the voluntary organisation which is involved with all “green” things in South Queensferry. I’ve been busy designing and organising the planting schemes for our High Street; hanging baskets, barrels and containers – all 104 of them.

 

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This morning was our big day. So with a large folder with a map of the High Street and a planting guide for every container I went off to the Police Station to meet all our keen volunteers.

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We had a good family morning – Mark turned up but we were nearly finished.

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There were 36 of us in total; many who hadn’t planted before, and it was a very relaxing and enjoyable morning.

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Now I just have to wait for them to flower and I can sit out with a very large glass of wine and admire all our hardwork.