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The ego has landed

GOOD to see a politician with a sense of humour.

A reader was at a charity Burns supper in the west of Scotland where one of the speakers, an SNP MSP, got the biggest laugh when he told the audience he had just read party leader Alex Salmond's autobiography. It's entitled, he said, Famous People Who Have Met Me.

Manual review

ACCORDIONIST Phil Cunningham admitted at the opening concert of Celtic Connections, now under way in Glasgow, that he played before the Queen at Balmoral, and afterwards Her Majesty asked him how difficult it was to co-ordinate his hands while playing the accordion. Cunningham said he feels like an idiot when he recalls his reply: "Have you ever patted your head and rubbed your stomach at the same time?"

Fellow musician Aly Bain consoled Cunningham by telling him at least he didn't say "patted your crown".

Desperate measures

AS Scotsmen look out their kilts for the upcoming Burns suppers, many will feel sympathy with BBC presenter Mark Stephen, who compered the Celtic Connections opening concert while wearing his kilt. "It takes nine yards of material to make a kilt," he told the audience, "so how the hell can it be too tight?"

Stein language

SAD to hear of the death of Celtic's Sean Fallon, Jock Stein's right-hand man. We recall the story of Stein being seriously injured in a car crash, and Fallon taking charge of the team. He visited Stein in hospital where the great man could not speak. Instead Stein scribbled in a notepad asking how the team had performed.

Fallon wrote down a reply about the team doing well and handed back the pad. Stein scribbled furiously away and wrote, with a few expletives, that, while he couldn't speak, he could still hear perfectly well.

Yeasterday's man

WE ended our "change one letter in a TV programme" contest, but for pure nostalgia reasons we add the suggestion of Ronnie Cameron in Partick: Milanda, a comedy set in a Glasgow bakery.

International anthem

AND talking of nostalgia, apologies to Andy Cameron as John Duffy asks if the French Foreign Legion are now singing: "We're on the march wi' Mali's army."

Chore values

A LANARKSHIRE reader's teenage son announced he was contemplating joining the army when he left school. While his two older brothers ripped into him about how useless he would be either with a rifle or in close combat, the most devastating riposte came from his mother, who asked: "Do you really plan to make your own bed every morning?"

Fool on the till

DAFT gag of the weekend? The woman who went into the Glasgow furniture store and asked: "Is that an occasional table?"

"Naw," replied the young assistant, "it's always a table."

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