Britain’s got talent

Yes, I know, I should be reading Proust or old speeches by Churchill or the history of the Ming Dynasty or something similar, but this week I’ve watched quite a bit, but not all, of Britain’s Got Talent.

And, you know what, despite some of it being truly awful, it is actually a heartelt and great piece of TV.

This is what ITV is invented for and why it still exists.

Simon Cowall calms it down; Piers Morgan grows even more likeably into his public persona, free of the shackles of editorship, and Amanda Holden is just a genuinely nice person that usuallly reflects the mood of the public.

I like this programme.

A truly adorable young lad, bullied at school, and singing soprano won on Monday night and must be the favourite.

Tonight a 12 year old schoolgirl (also a soprano) won by miles. It has to be said she does not look or act like a 12 year old. 26? OK, I’ll buy that.

My money’s on the boy.

The Power of Dreams

10 minutes ago Honda aired the first ever, modern day, live TV ad on Channel 4.

It was brave. It was creative. It was kinda flawed, but in a good way.

A bunch of skydivers jumped out of two planes and joined up in formation to, letter by letter, spell out H, O, N, D , A.

The cynics will snipe. I thought it was great though.


Because it was all, ALL, about risk. Only risk-taking clients get risk-taking ads. Only risk-taking ads make you famous.

Risk-taking is difficult but as Honda says “Difficult is worth doing.”  It was.

Honda is famous and gets all the great ads, as a client, that it deserves.

That’s why it is the UK’s best client.

I salute you Honda.

The shame is that the ad said check it out at I did. It ain’t there. Or at least it ain’t very easy to find. Doh.

Happy Birthday Dad

Dad would have been 72 tomorrow, Friday.

It’s at times like this that it strikes you how much you miss him. He’d have been in his element at some point over the weekend as we held a BBQ for him.

Him, pretending he didn’t want to be the centre of attention and loving every minute of it.

Me, telling Big Gagy Morrison not to swear too much – they always fell out at his parties – the lovable rogues that they are.

At some point over the night he’d have pulled a face like this

It’s amazing how redolent this photo of him is. His character. His individuality. I’m feeling very sad now. I have to go.


So, we’ve had a lovely wee trip to the Suntrap Open Day in the beautiful May sunshine when on the way back, crossing over the A9 on the RBS Bridge we spot this little beauty.

“Let’s investigate.” I ventured, and so we did.

Having crossed a dried out mud patch, which it transpired is the first cut of the final leg of the tram track, we entered the grounds of a lovely wee churchyard which, it turns out, is the workshop of Chris Holmes a “maker-designer of furniture in native timbers”. And three other woodworkers, who, unfortunately weren’t present. In actual fact Chris is an artist of considerable talent.

As you can see here.

And here. (This is actually a plan chest with sculptings of hills in the Scottish borders which double up as the handles of the chest.)

Greeted by a vociferous but fairly numptyish black lab who’s bark surely was worse than its bite Chris came out of the church to find out what had stirred the old pooch into life. He welcomed us into his workshop and then spent a very pleasant 20 minutes or so talking about Burr Elm, showing us photos of his work and sharing tips on how to start a blog on WordPress.

The bottom line is, if you ever want beautiful crafted Scottish native wood furniture. Chris Holmes is yer men.

Here he is at work