THE 50th anniversary of the demise of Glasgow trams reminds former Labour MP Maria Fyfe of her father James O'Neill being a tram driver for 20 years.

During the war his conductress retrained as a driver. Says Maria: “During her training there was a horse and cart plodding along in front of her, so the inspector told her to ‘bell’ them.

“She placed her foot on the warning pedal so gently it could hardly be heard. ‘Do it again,’ he said. She tapped the pedal a bit harder, but still not loudly enough. ‘Oh, hit the bloody thing,’ the inspector said with some impatience. So she drove forward and rammed the tram into the back of the cart.”

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Pooch and go

AND of course David Yule in Bellshill reminds us of the yarn about the chap with two greyhounds near the White City dog track trying to board a car but being refused by the conductress, who stood by the rule of only one dug being allowed aboard. As the tram moved off, the dog owner in frustration shouted: “Ye ken whit ye can dae wi’ yer tramcaur!”

The conductress leaned out on the platform and yelled back: “Aye! An’ if ye had done that wi’ wan o’ yer dugs, ye wid hae been oan it!”

No danger

READER Andy Wilson tells us about a chap buying a cup of coffee on the train who told the woman pouring it not to bother with a lid. She replied she had to fit a lid for safety reasons. “I’ve just come back from Afghanistan, I’ll risk it,” the chap batted back.

Enough is enough

WE said men shouldn’t go shopping. Marilyn Brown in Prestwick confirms this: “I sent my husband shopping for a few items, including bananas. When I got home from work I noticed he had only bought two. When I queried the small number, he said the only choice he had was the pair, or a bunch of eight, which he thought was too many.”

Life’s a gas

Alastair Macpherson in Alford, Aberdeenshire, sees the news story about two thieves who stole a canister of nitrous oxide from Albyn Hospital in Aberdeen, and wonders if they did it for a laugh.

Mean streets

AH, the Glasgow patter merchants. A woman in a west end bar was going on at length about the beautiful flat she had bought in Hyndland, when a chap listening to her interjected: “I once had a flat in George Square beside the City Chambers.”

After the woman expressed surprise at such a prestigious location, he added: “Aye, Ah eventually had to get a new inner tube.”

What goes around

TALKING of Hyndland, west end dentist Philip Friel had a competition among patients to name his surgery’s new clinic car. The winning name was McCavity, an apt sobriquet given that Philip was nicknamed Phil McCavity as a dental student.