RETIRED Glasgow Sheriff J Irvine Smith has often featured in the Diary, so we are pleased to discover in his just-published autobiography, Law, Life and Laughter, that he did indeed once tell a felon, when finding him guilty, that he was a "fecund liar".
The good sheriff had misgivings that the chap did not understand him, but his solicitor reassured Irvine afterwards that while his client did not know the word “fecund” he knew one which sounded remarkably similar, and had told his solicitor that it was the first time in his criminal career that he had heard the bench using language which he could really understand.
INCIDENTALLY, Sheriff Smith also recalls that a chap he found guilty had to return later for sentencing, but the case was taken by Sheriff Laura Smith, who had just been appointed to the Glasgow bench. The aggrieved accused, after receiving a tough sentence, told the officer taking him to the cells: “It was supposed to be Irvine Smith who was to come in the day, but he couldnae come, so he sent his wife!”
ALREADY the cold, no doubt spurred by the wet weather, is taking its toll among the Glasgow populace. A reader on the 44 bus into Glasgow last week heard one chap, under the weather, tell his pal: “Ah’m taking so many antibiotics that if Ah sneezed on someone I’d cure them.”
Worthy of applause?
OUR mention of odd newspaper headlines reminds Norman McLean in Ayr of seeing a picture in a newspaper of the new Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland descending the steps of the Assembly Hall while flanked by applauding ministers. The picture was captioned “New Moderator clapped out”.
Tablet of wisdom
I M Scott in Singapore, like any decent ex pat, was looking forward to the home-made tablet his wife was bringing back from Scotland. He gave some to his uninitiated American boss who, once he had tried it, remarked it was Scotland’s version of crack cocaine, as you could become totally addicted, and it makes all your teeth fall out.
Reeling them in
THE hero of the All Blacks in the World Cup final was goal-kicker Stephen Donald who was recalled to the team from a fishing trip. As Stephen declared in yesterday’s sports pages: “Most people know when you get whitebaiting, you take a few beers with you too, so the fitness probably wasn’t what it could be.”
As a Glasgow philosopher once put it: “Fishing rods -- allowing folk to drink beer on canal banks without looking like a jaikie.”
Any more drinking and fishing stories, please let us know.
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