Tuesday, July 28, 2015 Today's Featured Post

When courtesy works both ways

This is a story of two customers. Both were airline passengers. Both were due to fly with British Airways from London Heathrow to Aberdeen last Friday afternoon. Both turned up [...]
Be careful what you wish for

Be careful what you wish for

  Many years ago — it might have been in the late 1980s, but don’t hold me to that — the state television service in New Zealand, TVNZ, changed the way it was funded. It moved away from the BBC licence-fee model. New Zealand had too small a population to finance a full national broadcast […]

Spik Doric : Lesson 83

Spik Doric : Lesson 83

Lirks. Concrete noun, plural. Folds of midriff fat. Pronounced as it looks. They would be known as muffin tops these days; those rolls of midriff fat that spill over the tops of trousers and skirts. Older non-Doric generations know them as middle-age spread. To Doric-speakers, they are simply “lirks”, and they are becoming more common as Western […]

All in the delivery

All in the delivery

I was chatting with an accomplished reciter of poetry last weekend. Frank is the go-to man if you need a poem delivered by a pro, but we had a minor difference of opinion on the performance of one of my favourite Doric poems: Bennachie, by Charles Murray. Frank subscribes to the view that it’s a stirring […]

Sickened by a festival of cruelty

Sickened by a festival of cruelty

I have tried hard not to be sickened by the stories and pictures coming from the infamous Yulin Dog Meat Festival in China. The Chinese see this as just another part of how their people express themselves and their tastes. I have tried, but it’s not easy when the images involve dogs being skinned alive, or strapped down, muzzled […]

Spik Doric : Lesson 82

Spik Doric : Lesson 82

Fin/Fan? Interrogative adverb / conjunction. When. Pronounced exactly as they look. There is an infallible way to tell quickly how good a Doric writer is: see if he or she knows the difference between fin and fan. Both mean “when” and both sound identical when spoken in broad dialect, but they have two distinct usages. […]

Humour in the courtroom

Humour in the courtroom

Former barrister and politician Sir Malcolm Rifkind has retained his sense of humour. He has been telling a tale of life in Edinburgh legal circles in the 1950s. Apparently a bailie had convicted someone of a petty offence and was peering sternly at the miscreant. “I am going to fine you £50,” he said, “and let […]

Dig beneath a celeb's public image

Dig beneath a celeb’s public image

Fashion model Kate Moss has landed in hot water once again, this time escorted off a plane for drunken and abusive behaviour towards cabin crew. It astonishes me that people in the public eye should make such high-profile backsides of themselves when otherwise they have spent so much time and money creating a polished public […]

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