GLASGOW'S new performance arena, the Hydro, opens tonight with a 12,000-strong full house for Rod Stewart.
As Glasgow City Council leader Gordon Matheson said at a preview: "On Monday it will be full of screaming, roaring, sweaty Glaswegians.
"But enough about my council colleagues."
What's in a name?
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THE eye-catching Hydro, beside the River Clyde, is named of course after the power company that sponsors it. That did not stop nightclub entrepreneur Donald Macleod of Glasgow's Garage and Tunnel fame from commenting for a promotional film about the venue: "I hope their cream scones are better than the ones served at the Hydro in Crieff, and less [sic] people pee in the pool than they do down in Seamill Hydro." Curiously, his comments didn't make the final cut.
Drifting the night away
TONIGHT'S appearance by Rod Stewart reminds us of the story Scots author William McIlvanney told of meeting actor Sean Connery at a Scotland match at Hampden. "I can't believe I'm here," Connery tells him. "I was sitting in Tramp's at two o'clock this morning when Rod Stewart walks in. He's chartered a private plane and why don't I come to the game. So here I am." Tramp's, of course, being a well-known London nightclub.
A policeman who was with McIlvanney chipped in: "It's a small world, big yin. Ah was in a house at Muirhead at two o'clock this mornin'. It was full o' tramps as well."
TALKING of McIlvanney, congratulations to him being presented with the Fletcher of Saltoun Award by the Saltire Society for his contribution to Scottish literature. His books about the Glasgow detective Laidlaw, which are streets ahead of most Glasgow detective literature, have just been republished by Canongate. As McIllvanney modestly put it recently: "What I don't know about Glasgow would fill several books. Some people might say it has."
Something fishy going on
AFTER our story of the Scottish hotel advertising for a "Sioux chef", Jim Timmons tells us: "Had lunch at Coulter's Mill Inn in Lanarkshire where 'dolphinoise' potatoes were on the blackboard menu. Food was great,though."
SWIMMING baths continued. A Strathblane reader recalls: "My son used to attend lifesaving classes at the old council-run baths near Glasgow's Victoria Park where the water heating system was notoriously inefficient. Back in the changing room after one particularly long and chilly session, he removed his trunks and commented, 'That must be why they call it the Whiteinch Baths.'"
Chatting folk up in Glasgow is tough. A Partick reader swears to us his pal went up to a woman in a west end bar and told her what he thought was a good line, showing his sensitive side: "You have a lost look in your eyes."
"Close," she replied. "You just missed out the word 'get'."
MANCHESTER United's Glasgow-born manager David Moyes is taking some stick over the club's poor run of form. A Manchester City fan phones to tell us: "Moyes spent 11 years trying to get Everton above Man United in the league and now he's finally achieved it."
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