Monday, 6 January 2014


Gerald bought himself a new pair of dancing shoes yesterday.   Believe it or not, at the fanciful age of 87 years.    We were with a crowd of young and older members of the family at a hotel in Inverness for dinner, and to bring in the New Year.   There were thirteen of us and he was frustrated when the dancing started and he couldn’t dance properly.   His shoes were too heavy.   So while we were at the Sales yesterday he saw this pair of shiny, lightweight, black shoes, size 10, tried them on and bought them.   We have two weddings of grandchildren coming off in 2014, and he wants to cut a dash I suppose.   Can’t wait for these two dates, ‘Deo Volente’ as my old uncle used to say, or my old aunt, ‘If God spares me!’   Funny sayings some people have.   A colleague in teaching I used to know would sometimes say, “I was born a lady, but I wasn’t needed!”

Did you know that an awful lot of your health depends on your gut?”   I quote from an article in the New Statesman appearing over Christmas, by Michael Brooks, called “The benefits of eating bacteria.”   In it he says, “….your large intestine is host to roughly a hundred trillion bacteria, weighing kilos, and they can have a surprising effect on your health, and maybe even your behaviour.”   This is a massive area of research at the California Institute of Technology.  It seems that “mice demonstrating abnormal social interactions, obsessive behaviour and intestinal problems – all traits associated with autism in human beings – CAN BE CURED if they ingest the right type of bacteria”.   So there you go!   Now you know!   Watch your guts!   It is even suggested that mulled wine could be so toxic, for instance, that it kills bacteria that would otherwise keep you SLIM over the holidays.   Thank goodness I don’t care for mulled wine.   Still, what does a pink gin or more than one do to your constitution?   Pour me a whisky Gerald, while I think about it.

Anyway, this Sunday morning, Andrew Marr on his 9 a.m. Sunday Show announced, among other things that he was going to have a DRY January.   Well. Bully for him!   Marr, the Brilliant.   But it’s OK for him, he’s got a lot of other things going for him.   For a start he’s under 60 years old, he’s thin, and has probably got plenty of the old Kelly Boe, or Shekels, or stacks of dough, no doubt at all.

He spoke to David Cameron, or as I call our prime minister, Slick Dick.   There is no question on earth that you can ask the man that he does not come with a wonderful answer that somehow compliments his political party, his astute self, number one, the shining saint.   Any troubles the Conservative Party have got have been caused by the previous government.   He turns his defeats into triumphs, like wanting to go to war with Syria because of the use of chemical weapons.   When he was voted down in parliament, he made out somehow that it was his good-thinking that stopped the further use of chemical weapons and the threat of military action, of which we were all scared to hell.   And as for the administration preceding his coalition government, they’re responsible for everything that is wrong with Britain, and with France, Germany and all the struggling countries like Spain, Portugal, Italy, Greece and even the USA.   There was no Global Financial Crisis affecting their Economies.   No, Stupid!    According Conservative spokespersons, it was the Labour Government of Great Britain that caused the world recession, don’t you know?

Today’s Sunday Observer’s leading article suggests that arguing about the economy between Labour and Tories is not what should be solely occupying the politicians.   What is really important is, first the care of the NHS which has been subjected to botched policies and fudges, totally against the tide of expert medical opinion.   Secondly, the newspaper states that a further overwhelming problem for leaders is going to be the care of the elderly in today’s world of long-living Homo sapiens.   The third grand puzzle for our intellectuals, the movers and shakers, is quoted as follows:  “What is the purpose of our universities and how they are to be funded.    Do we have to have our young people loaded with large debt for a lifetime?”

An American ragtime pianist, on reaching the age of 100, when interviewed, is quoted as saying “If I had known I was going to live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself”.   So say all of us.  

I love the resurrection of an old tune, you’ll find it on YouTube. 

     “Are you havin’ any fun?
      What’y gettin’ out of life?
      What good is what you’ve got
       If you’re not    Getting’ any fun!

      Are you getting any laughs?
      Are you getting’ any lovin’?
      If other people do,
      So can you, have a little fun.

Happy New Year Everybody!   Have Fun!