Date line: 2020. Buchanan Street, Glasgow. Crowds gather, the media hastily set up.
It's the unveiling of the Avenue of the Leaders, Valley of the Kings, the Boulevard of the Bams, the New York or Hollywood-style street celebration to all of Scotland's First Ministers.
The statues have all been commissioned to the country's best sculptors. Their brief; to capture what each FM is remembered for. This being Glasgow and the subject of statues there is an air of anticipation over how far the artists will take it in terms of fun, cheek and a slight comedy tweak.
Loading article content
First up the inaugural First Minister's minor operation is revealed, the Donald Dewar statue has had laser eye surgery and his famous glasses are gone. Dewar, famous for his ferocious appetite at many a conference buffet and nicknamed 'The Gannet' is scoffing a fish supper. The year like his eye sight, now 2020.
We await the reveal of Henry McLeish. He is multi-tasking, heading an old Mitre football as every time his name was mentioned we were told he was once a professional footballer.
He's holding a huge set of keys and a microphone in his left hand. The keys representing Officegate, the microphone for the remarks made to Helen Liddell describing John Reid as a patronising bar steward and Brian Wilson as a liability. In his right hand he holds a bottle of Buckfast. Yes you read that right, he's a consultant with J Chandler and Co the makers of the tonic. Cursing, football-mad, Buckie drinking Rigsby. I'd have voted for him!
Next we have Lord McConnell. He is resplendently dapper (camp) wearing a lovely pleated leather kilt. A few of the old dears are trying to look up and see if he is a true Scotsman. They're curious as he seems very bronzed, tanned and closer inspection reveals he's carrying books about fixing tanks stuck in reverse and how to speak Italian. Clearly he's planning a return to the Wark's Tuscan hideaway.
Alex Salmond's is a particularly popular one. He's whipping out a Saltire, holding both hands showing five and two fingers. In his pocket he has a Bikini and a Beyonce CD clearly not a football score line then but a reference to his 5 2 diet.
Of course there is excitement when another smaller statue is revealed and no one knows who it is. Could it be the present incumbent in her full Mini the Minx outfit? Some in the crowd think from the smaller size it may the current FM Nicola Sturgeon sporting her full Minnie the Minx look. Of course to reach the lofty heights of a pigeon target on First Minister Way you have to be an ex FM. No, the older members of the crowd nod, that's Jim Wallace who was acting FM on two occasions so therefore worthy of a smaller wee cheeky statue at the top of Buchanan Street.
On the subject of former FMs, Wee Jack - Lord McConnell - was all over the media this week. He seemed especially worried and deeply concerned that the Glasgow Commonwealth Games might be overshadowed by the shenanigans of the Scottish independence referendum. He wants a truce. (Political translation: coming out of the woodwork to comment on a high profile issue to let people know he's still around and available for work and quite fancies a return to politics).
He's not everyone's cup of coco but I'd think McConnell had at least some kind of presence and charisma and boy do Labour in Scotland need some kind of oomph.
As for wanting a truce? A tad heavy with the drama Jack - we're hardly on the West Bank, Syria or South Sudan. A truce from the relentless bombardment and onslaught of pamphlet paper cuts perhaps? Maybe they should have a truce on late trains during the Games? The last train to and from Glasgow to Edinburgh can get quite explosive.
Sometimes when I'm listening to wee Johann (lamentable) Lamont I think she's just so unhappy. Come on Little Miss Ray of Sunshine, cheer up! Come on, showbiz! (Like Donald O'Connor in 'Singing in the Rain') 'Make em laugh! Make em laugh!'
She always seems to give the impression that she'd rather just be millions of miles away. Just like that wee cool bird, the tiny wader, the red necked phalarope which flies off to Peru from Shetland on an epic migration. They had a tracking device the size of paperclip attached showing their voyage, out West across the Atlantic via Iceland and Greenland, down the Eastern Seaboard of the US and into Peru.
Of course trips to Peru don't always work out too well for all wee cool birds from Scotland…I'm surprised a Scottish bird leaving Peru carrying something suspicious got through customs. Huhum (coughs) I thank you. I'm here all week.
Speaking of the characters, where's Big Hen Broon? AKA The Sweeny AKA The keeper of the country's stag night bar tab and drinks list been hiding? Maybe in the basement of Bute House counting up the glass cheques to see if the figures work and the budget can have fireworks and a sausage roll and or a one-way-ticket to the Dignitas Clinic on September 19.
The First Minister will be interviewed by James Naughtie in a Q&A at the Mitchell Theatre this Thursday. Readers of the Herald will get a chance to ask the leader a question via the comments section of the Herald online.
Nice of Jimmy to eat into his busy Thursday curry night out in Glasgow to chat with the FM. He's chatting with Alistair Darling in February. I hope Jim Naughtie but nice will be as nasty to Darling as he will be to Salmond. This is the same smooth unbiased professional who referred to Labour as 'we' when interviewing Ed Balls-Up. My question to Alex Salmond would be why the diet? Is it true there were problems getting your message online because of insufficient broadband width?