Tag Archives: writing

…the Big Bid for Infant Freedom… and the dire consequences lurking thereby…

…from the outset, this ol’ Jurassic would like to make it clear that I’m not a strong advocate for needless wholesale corporate punishment… but there are times when the  administration of… of… well… just read on… it’s almost a ‘once-upon-a-time’ true story… over 60 years ago, when Master Gallacher was possessed of all the WURLD-ly knowledge available to a wee five-year-old lad from Dockland Govan in Glasgow… my even wee-er sister was all of three-and-a-half, going on forty… with money always scarce, Mam and Da rarely went out on a date together back then, but on one such blue-moon event, they went off to the cinema (I think it was after the silent movies era, but I couldn’t swear to it)… a very, very, very much older girl of around fourteen or fifteen was detailed to babysit the pair of us… the trouble started the minute the door closed on our parents’ over-the shoulder ‘goodbye…see yeez later’… it was only about 5 p.m., and we generally didn’t go to bed until at least 8 or 9 o’clock… we wanted to build a cardboard box fort around the legs of our tiny dining table… the sitter, Helen Foster by name, resisted all our efforts to construct our castle… we squealed, we screeched, we screamed… proper little brats, truth be known… eventually, when Ms Foster’s back was turned, we made it… the Big Bid for Freedom

kids

…hand-in-hand, this infant Govan version of Bonnie and Clyde bolted through the door and off down the street… the budding Evil Mastermind in me had a plan… about four streets away the River Clyde presented a playground universe… particularly in the form of the free ferries that crossed from the Govan side across to the Partick side of Glasgow… the service shuttled forth and back every 8 minutes… a passengers-only fleet, and more attractive, the vehicular ferry

car ferry

…this was the craft of kids’ dreams… ‘coz it had an upstairs deck with railings from which to scan the length of the Govan shipyards… magic land indeed… we scampered aboard the big boat and stayed there for what seemed like hours, heedless of the panic we’d left behind with the Forlorn Foster Witch… about ten o’clock, we docked on the Govan side for the umpteenth time, and there waiting for us were Mam and Da, and the tearful Ms Foster… the editor should prob’ly draw a curtain over the punishment proceedings when we arrived home… suffice to say, my sister and I had hardly any skin left on our respective criminal backsides when we went to bed…

spank

…did we suffer mental anguish for the rest of our lives from that?… not a bit of it!… if it had happened in these modern times, with all the P.C. nonsense that swills around, we could prob’ly have had Mam and Da locked up in jail for centuries… I reckon I’m the better respecter of proper authority nowadays… but I’m still a bit leary of boats… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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…Happy 1,293rd Birthday, George, the piano-player!…

…this ol’ Jurassic is an absolute adoree of human ingenuity… and the simpler it’s manifested, the better… about thirty-plus years ago, when I lived in Hong Kong in the Far East, I did what tons of yer fellow expatriates did around holiday break time… headed off for the (then) relatively unknown Thai beach resort of Pattaya… only to find that all the people yeez were trying to have a vacation away from were billeted in the same Hotel as yerself… the particular place chosen to cradle my head each evening was the Royal Cliff Hotel… much activity back then spun around the absorption of impossibly-named cocktails and gallons of Tom Yum soup… I’ve never figured out which is more deadly to yer intestinal nethers… I have no idea whether or not the Hotel still exists, but we holiday-seekers used to ponder if the location on the cliff, a hundred metres above the beach, was  there to allow the German tourists (those muscle-ripped beach Adones…plural of ’Adonis’, Mabel) to throw their towels from their bedroom windows onto the reservable deck chairs below before any of the rest of yeez could get down there each morning… but back to the human ingenuity… most evenings, the entertainment consisted of continued imbibement, and perhaps a snack of scampi, in the Hotel’s lounge and piano-bar area… one of the fixtures was a wonderfully gregarious supper-lounge piano player from the Philippines… George

piano

…an accomplished musician with funny lines of patter in between the tunes, some of which he played on request… these requests normally came with free drinks accompaniments from the Requestees… on the Wednesday evening, George told us he was gonna play ‘Happy Birthday’ for himselftoday was his birthday!… of course much applause and raucous joining in was de rigueur… and needless to say, a plentiful further supply of free drinks for George… as it turned out, my stay stretched into a second week at the Royal Cliff… most other folks usually only stayed there for a week… and it also coincided with my presence at the lounge bar the next Wednesday evening…. behold and lo, about ten o’clock, George announced that he was going to play ‘Happy Birthday’for himself!… I nearly choked on my plate of scampi and fell off my seat laughing… George noticed me and realised that I knew, that he knew, that I knew… a conspiratorial wink and another room full of patrons lifting the roof to my rapidly-ageing, ivories-tinkling friend saw the predictable pipeline of drinks ferried toward the piano top… so this coming Wednesday, please join me in a raised glass and a toast… Happy 1,293rd Birthday, George, the piano-player!…

cake

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…(yet another) daft Amazon anti-Authors ROOL, #127(d), (amended)…

…this ol’ Jurassic may not be blessed with the monopoly of wee grey braincells in the publishing industry…. but I’ll bet yeez a pound to a penny my cranium houses more than the collective intelligence of the whizz-kid geniuses in the Amazon ROOLS and reg’lations division… fr’instance, about a year or so ago I threw some Collections of my Blogposts on to the Kindle wagon, and they attracted some pleasing downloads… until I received notice from Aunty Amazon’s legal beagles demanding their immediate withdrawal… the grounds?… some of the stuff in these publications was already in the public domain… well, of course they were, as each item in the collection had appeared at one time or another on my webpage as a blog post! duh!!… oh, that wasn’t so much the issue… more germane to their demand was that as these were already in the public domain, they constituted ‘free copies’‘so what?’ I hear yeez ask… their reply was the ‘so what’ constituted a price offering ‘elsewhere’ at lower than the cost of the collections, and Aunty Amazon would have to match that lower cost… i.e. zero!… following me so far?… plus, if I didn’t withdraw the collections, any royalties earned to date would be forfeited… and my entire Author relationship account could also be revoked!… needless to say, rather than go through the back-and-forth-debate on the subject, after about four exchanges to explain that it was all my own stuff, I reluctantly took the collections off the lists… never to be allowed to have them back on there again… daft, huh?… the reason for telling yeez this today is that it occurred to me earlier that it might be a neat idea to serialise little slices of my SELF-PUBLISHING STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL SALES as blog posts… huge no-no!… same deal… ‘freely available elsewhere on the web’… and here was me thinking that Amazon was in business to try to make money for itself and its Authors… silly Seumas!… maybe I’m missing sum’thing, sum’where, in all this… solutions please on the back of a hundred dollar bill to my usual address will suffice… meantime, the non-serialised version is available here (but yeez’ll have to  fork out a King’s Ransom price of around the cost of a Starbucks to download it)… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

cover2

 

UK: http://amzn.to/Qq2c3y

US: http://amzn.to/1lt6bcv

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…eat yer heart out, Mel Gibson… yer Braveheart’s got NUTHIN on Master Gallacher for courage…

kilt 2

 

 

mel…I’m not usually prone to broadcasting the various deeds of valour undertaken by this ol’ Jurassic… but sum’times, yeez just have to tell the WURLD… else, how would they know?… the historians will show a catalogue of episodes, the publication of which, until now, my Scottish modesty has forbidden (what are yeez laughing at, Mabel?)…  unnoted has gone the reckless risk to life and limb as a twelve-year-old regularly walking through Docklands Govan in Glasgow with my school orchestra violin case… equally unchronicled in my late twenties having my hair curly-permed, hanging down to just above my shoulders, sporting simultaneously a Zapata moustache that would have made Pancho Gonzales jealous— and all that while working in the London Branch of a Scottish bank in Lombard Street… (I’m sure it had nowt to do with non career-promotion for the years I was there)… add to those derring-do-isms turning up at an all-ladies gathering to give a speech, wearing my kilt… the editor will no doubt purge the paragraph of commentary attaching to that little outing… but recently, the Daddy-Of-‘Em-All occurred… having wandered around the planet over the last several decades, I’ve lived in some climates that produce insects so big yeez could almost make pets out of them… well, I have a healthy disdain for anything scuttling along the floorboards which looks big enough to carry a chest of drawers on its back… okay, p’raps carrying a matchbox… oh, alright, anything bigger than a quarter of an inch… and for ‘healthy disdain’ read ‘absolute bluudy terror’… I spotted one such creature skulking in the living room yesterday… crouching down behind the sofa… doubtless waiting its malevolent opportunity to strike when my back was turned…

bug

…in truth, I did not shout, nor did I yell… I screamed at the top of my lungs… the Glasgow accent has always been known as the nearest thing to a war-cry… armed with only a rolled-up newspaper, I flailed and swatted and swiped… nailed that sucker, I did… smack! smack! smack!… and prob’ly about another coupla dozen smacks… yeez can never be too careful with these bluudy things… and hey presto… it transpires that I had bludgeoned to death… a raisin… hey, it was a pretty mean looking raisin… so, eat yer heart out, Mel Gibson… yer Braveheart’s got NUTHIN on Master Gallacher for courage… see yeez later, gotta go re-load my Daily Telegraph… LUV YEEZ!

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…Written Acts of Kindness Award (Part 2)… Authoress Olga Nunez Miret…

olga Nunez Miret

…I often drop wee supposed pearls of wisdom into my blogs (at least, that’s what I call them), one of my favourites being, ‘…to keep it yeez have to give it away’… and we’re not talking money here (Scottish, me, remember?)… the generosity and sheer warm-heartedness of so many Lads and Lassies of Blog Land out there, simply giving of themselves, is unbounded… that’s another reason why this particular Written Acts of Kindness Award appeals to my sense of balance…

kindness

…there are too many to name them all in one post, but I have a list as long as yer arm, from which, from time to time, I will single out another recipient… today, I’m pleased to present to yeez, a wonderful pal, Authoress, Olga Nunez Miret, writer, translator, forensic psychiatrist from Barcelona now gracing the UK with her presence… but these labels don’t properly show the unstinting support she gives to tons of other indie quill-scrapers on here… they say it costs little to help others, but there are times when people do go that extra mile for others… Olga does it continually… this ol’ Jurassic, along with many others I know,  has been grateful for her comments and ‘likes’ for a long time now across a few of the SOSYAL NETWURK channels… Champion Lady… you could all do yersels a favour by following her thus :

…on Twitter                                                      :  @OlgaNM7

…on her Blog (in English and Spanish!)     :   OlgaNM.com

 

…Olga, the rules for passing this Award on are very simple:

  1. You are welcome to give it out as many times as you like, but it is only to be given to a maximum of one person per blog post. If you wish to give multiple rewards, please space the blog posts so the sincerity is maintained.
  2. Introduce the person; say how they encourage, help or inspire you; then link to their work and/or social media profiles. There may be a specific post you wish to link to which helped you. It’s up to you.
  3. Please publicise your award post to Twitter or Google Plus using the hashtag #writtenkindness so that others can find and follow the award winners.

This award is open to anyone to use. You don’t have to receive it, in order to be able to give it. Once you have received it, it isn’t obligatory that you must pass it on.

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…I’ll keep an eye open for yeez…

glasses

…there are people who reach the age of about a hundred and ninety and never ever have the need for assistance for their eyesight … 20/20 vision when they were born, and 20/20 vision forever and ever… this ol’ Jurassic is not one of them… I recall just after my fourth birthday going to the eye-doctor clinic to get government prescription glasses… part of the ocular examination involved putting drops into my eyes and being told to ‘keep them shut for the next twenty minutes’… of course, I promptly disregarded the instruction, believing with all my life’s knowledge to that date that this was a ploy to render me unconscious, preparatory to inflicting Gawd-Only-Knows-What to my peepers… regardless of my squinting through the liquid for the allotted time back then, a pair of wee John Lennon-lookalike specs and their successors adorned my face for the following twenty-five years or so…

boy

…along came the innovation of contact lenses… a marvellous invention for letting yeez see clearly for about three days per week, the other four days spent attempting to get the entrapped dust particles and other debris from under yer eyelids… and try waking up with a Honolulu of a hangover (who? Moi? yes, Mabel, once upon a time) and swallowing a drink from the water glass on yer side table, to realise, too late, that it held yer contact lenses from last night… gulp!…

contacts

…mercifully, the diet of pop-in lenses was taken off the morning menu with the advent of laser treatment surgery… this undertaking, about twenty years ago, was NUTHIN short of miraculous… and from one day to the next, my take on the WURLD around me moved from hardly able to see the back of my hand without man-made assistance, to having the ability unaided to sight a golf ball at two hundred yards distance (okay, relax,Tiger Woods, —I only hit it about 180 yards on a good day, but my playing partners hit theirs 200+)… and one thing I have learned… in the Land of the Blind, the One-Eyed Man gets 50% off at Specsavers… see(!!!) yeez later… LUV YEEZ!
lenses

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…not for the faint-hearted… Death by Eye-Kee-Ah…

furniture

…there’s sum’thing robustly fair in being ‘ungifted’ in certain things… this ol’ Jurassic prides himself in a proficiency in cerebral pursuits… splendidly superb at Sudoko… craftily creative with crosswords… magically meticulous in mental ‘rithmetic… persuasively polished in poetry… the activity for ‘that’ side of the brain is factory-ish… but, the beautiful balance in all things that is the universe, disallows me any talent whatsoever in mechanical, gadgetry, computery or constructive stuff requiring the co-ordination of my hands with the brainbox… hence when faced with the reality that any household furniture buying is limited by a wallet and bank account that do not stretch to the purchase of Chesterfield Living Room sets, or Chippendale chairs and the like, resort has to be made to that deathly ‘you-are-never-to-go-there-Simba’, kinda place, ‘eye-kee-ah (‘IKEA’ to the rest of the civilised WURLD)… now, I don’t know about the rest of yeez… but I prefer my Swedes with mashed potatoes and mince… not pre-packed household items of the devil for the engineeringly-challenged… first of all, have yeez ever tried going into an eye-kee-ah store and get out again within an hour and a half?… yeez are obliged to undertake a labyrinthian maze through department after department of goods with names spelled backwards, sidewards, upwards… any way except understandable-wards… eventually, yer plastic gets waved through the credit-card system and yeez are the proud owner of stuff with names like ZtysGfed, Koshuienwwwl, and Podddkkyilt… we used to know these as ‘tables’ and ‘chairs’ and ‘wardrobes’

table

…during the attempts to figure out how to assemble these bluudy Satanic machinations in the peaceful bosoms of yer own homes, they may take on other more Anglo-Saxon names beginning with ‘F’, ‘C’ and ‘B’, (whatever they may mean, Mabel)… it can lead, of course, to a home full of ‘eclectic’ shapes and appearance… wardrobes with handles back to front… chairs with back-strats at varying angles to each other… and my piece de resistance, a table with an upside-down top…

death-cartoon

…I think I’ll stick to solving rubic cubes and re-writing War and Peace backwards in Sanskrit … meantime, if emb’dy needs a pile of left-over chair-legs, and cupboard glass frontages, let me know… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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