Archive for August, 2010

Dog end


Despite my son collecting GCSE results like a super luxury hotel trying to be first in the yellow pages listing, the summer holidays drag on. Boredom drives my youngest daughter to clear out broken and unwanted toys from her room. Into the black bin liner alongside various pieces of shattered plastic and torn cardboard goes […]

Glass aware


As a family we don’t often eat in McDonalds, but this summer we have managed to collect no less than six free Coke glasses when “going large”. This is because all our journeys so far have taken us north, where a convenient two hour leg-stretch moment coincides with the golden arches. And at least one […]

…thunka thunka thunka thunkA THUNKA THUNKA THUNKA THUNKA THUNKa thunka thunka thunka thunk thun thun thun thu… A helicopter passed alarmingly low over the house.  I rushed out of the garage to look up and shake my fist. The helicopter ignored me. I went back inside to get the lawnmower. …thunka thunka thunka thunkA THUNKA […]

Mature student


It’s nice to be home again. Last week I was sleeping in Napier University flats in Edinburgh. I suppose it is good for me to stay in student accommodation from time to time. All that encrusted dirt must boost my immune system, but I hate getting out of the shower to stand on a bathroom […]

As a foreigner I am excited by the variety of Scottish banknotes. They are much more interesting than Sterling or Euros. When you go to a cash machine you have no idea what will emerge. This has led my son to form the plausible theory that the ATM simply contains a laser printer and a […]

On the streets of Edinburgh during the festival it is sometimes hard to distinguish art from real life. Yesterday morning as I strolled along the Royal Mile thronged with Fringe performers touting their shows, a small crowd watched expectantly as a black clad local hard man punched a student dressed as a nineteenth century fop. […]

Stepping down


Cordless telephones are probably responsible for a lot of accidents.  I wonder if anyone records the statistics? I was looking for the phone. Being cordless it had been moved. I suspected it might be upstairs in a child’s bedroom. At the foot of the stairs I removed my flip flops, because they are a bit […]

See food again


Mrs R told me it was a mistake to eat crab when I was more than 10 miles from Cromer. But I did and that is why I spent last night in a London hotel bathroom driving the porcelain bus. I knew that the hotel room was ill-starred when I arrived. It was stiflingly hot […]



“CARD NOT ACCEPTED” bellowed the machine, spitting out my credit card. “CARD NOT ACCEPTED” it shouted again as I tried my debit card. In the queue behind me people were craning their necks to see the miserable bankrupt who was unable to pay for his paltry basket of shopping. Blushing, I fished in my wallet […]

Eye say


“Have you seen Dad’s new iPad?” My son asked his grandmother. She looked at me curiously. “It’s this month’s new gadget,” I explained. “I’ll show you. It can do everything that you do on a laptop and it’s really handy.” She looked even more mystified and peered at my face. “Eye pad?” She asked. “What […]