Festivals, teachers, youngsters, politicians, and former heroes.

Last year during the Edinburgh Festival, I was sitting in the middle of Charlotte Square Gardens one afternoon, relishing the last of my holidays and taking in the hive of activity that is always the Book Festival. I was also musing, as is my annual preoccupation, on the insanity that sends Scotland’s young people backContinue reading “Festivals, teachers, youngsters, politicians, and former heroes.”


In estate of confusion

The link to County Leitrim’s local paper – The Leitrim Observer – stated: Abandoned estates haunt the county. It immediately set me thinking of times gone by. In the Plantation, even the remotest southern Ulster counties – Monaghan and Cavan, as well as the Connacht neighbours of Leitrim, Sligo and Roscommon, ‘benefited’ from the establishmentContinue reading “In estate of confusion”

Is Saturday night alright?

It used to be de rigeur, back in the sixties, for the Justiciary to show their independence by displaying ignorance, real or assumed, of anything remotely connected to popular culture. ‘What’s that?’ they would murmur looking dimly through the space between their wigs and their half moon glasses. Playing the game, the sparky young advocateContinue reading “Is Saturday night alright?”

A funny man from a different time

The death of comic actor Norman Wisdom, following on from the earlier loss of Tony Curtis, reminded us that, like the first World War, the great names who established the twentieth century entertainment industry will soon be confined to recorded history rather than the memories of those who were actually there. As a comic, andContinue reading “A funny man from a different time”