A GLASGOW boy was part of a volunteer group in the US, helping clear up some of the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy.

President Barack Obama, visiting the site, overheard him talking. "Excuse me young fellah," he inquired, "where do you hail from?"

"Drumchapel, sir."

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"What state is that in?" asked Mr Obama.

"Pretty much the same state as here, sur," came the reply.

Blame Robin Gilmour for this one.

They're game

FURTHER proof that they do things differently in Fife.

Craig Stevenson and John Mackay were in the Railway Inn in Lower Largo, researching their latest bus travel and pub book, Goin' Roon the Edge, when two elderly regulars disclosed that one of their favourite pastimes on winter nights used to be strip dominoes.

John had been only half-listening, but the mention of such an unusual game grabbed his attention. What item of clothing would you have to remove if you got a double blank?

Craig, however, has the full story: the wily regulars only made up the strip dominoes to hoodwink a female tourist who had been pestering them.

A-plus answers

STILL with books, the prolific Ian Black (yesterday's Diary) is at it again. His absolutely latest book is F'Un Exams: The Best Funny Exam Answers in Scotland.

Sample question: write a sentence using the word "was" precisely. Answer: "Was is what holds up the roof ae oor hoose."

Another candidate wrote that "Socrates died from an overdose of wedlock", prompting his teacher to observe grimly, "I know how he felt."

Brothers in arms

Catalonia has, of course, just staged regional elections that the ruling party hoped would result in a mandate for a referendum on independence. Ross McKay reminds us the editor of the Catalan edition of the Spanish newspaper El Mundo is one ... Álex Sàlmon.

Been and gone and done it

ROBIN McCreadie spots a primary-school report in an Ayrshire paper: "In our Share with Parents session we should parents and carers the different types of spelling activities that we done."

Suggests Robin: "Now they've got the spelling sorted out, perhaps they should concentrate on grammar."

Businesses lose out

A NAKED man climbed a statue in Trafalgar Square and, according to an online BBC report, caused part of Whitehall to be cordoned off. A local trader said businesses had lost thousands of pounds in revenue as a result. Mused John Duffy: "I would have thought they could have cashed in."

Eoin Jenkins chipped in: "The man was later charged with possessing an offensive weapon. Obviously, he wasn't up to the standard of Eros."

Bird in the hand

AND finally ... we liked this joke, by comedian Milton Jones via Twitter: "Dear all, just to say I will be leaving my job in the genetic department of the RSPB. Sorry for the round robin."