Good luck to Glasgow against Ulster today. It will

be a fine battle. And welcome to their fans.

But, I got my pension statement through the other day. There was an opening balance, I had paid stacks in during the year, and the closing balance was less than the opening one. I nearly fell of my chair, but it got me thinking: there are all these useless idiots in investment houses being paid six, or seven-figure salaries to talk nonsense, admire each others' braces, and watch as our investments go down, but still charge us for their hopelessness in rip-off-Scotland.

I am actually being charged for someone losing me money. This is

a good business. Why am I not an investment guru? Or, more succinctly, why do they get away with it?

Or there's Thornwood Park in Glasgow's West End, which is one of the last few bits of green that kids can play football on, but now the greedy sods in Glasgow City Council are selling it off for yet more private housing because they want the rates.

Soon, you will look out your window and all you will see is a block of flats. No wonder our kids can't kick a football. Why do we let the city council get away with it?

Then there's the South African rugby team which, despite its protestations, besmirched the game of rugby on Saturday by doing what many pathetic teams do: they tried to look tough to each other and their fans while losing badly.

This isn't a new phenomenon, as poor rugby teams all over the world start the silly stuff when they are points down and unable to win.

''At least we took a few bodies'' is the smug and deluded post-match analysis among players. They get away with it.

Or, and I completely agree with David Campese on this one, how can England possibly be top of the world rankings when all of the victories that took them there were at home?

Very odd. I think England are in for a fright at the World Cup.

And, having watched Fiji, who are in our group in the World Cup, remember, I think that will be a tough one in the November Aussie heat. Not to mention the post-match drinking sessions, although, if you go through the tape, you will see exactly why Jason White was concussed [a swinging arm and late tackle] and how Raiwalui tried to nobble Simon Taylor very, very late as well.

But those little things aren't the main thrust of this article. The main thrust is: Where were the South Africans? Were they in Scotland? Did anybody see them?

I find it sad that tours have gone. Time was when the All Blacks would come to Scotland and you would hear stories of them guddling for fish up the rivers with the Borders players after the game the week before the Test match. They trained at Kelvinside Academy in Glasgow and you could go and see them.

The Australians would visit schools and take sessions with the kids, or they would book a squash court or two at your local club.

I remember Glasgow High being converted to this little paradise, with stands on four sides, for an

All Black visit and a game against Scotland A.

At university, I sneaked out of classes to go home and watch the All Blacks take on the North and Midlands live on TV. I remember in 1994 watching the Springboks, stand and sign autographs for Heriot's children at Goldenacre for what seemed like ages. Nobody knew at the time that these were the men who would win the 1995 World Cup.

Nowadays? Well, maybe the truth is that there is only one team who can give any incoming tourists a game - Scotland - but it seems they parachute in, play a game, and then fly away again.

Gone are the tours where the incoming players felt like legends, and appeared in your newspapers in the weeks leading up to the international.

Gone are the times when thousands would hang off the trees at Hughenden for a glimpse of the Aussies. We will only see these teams again at Murrayfield.

Tours are dead.

In their place are games like today's Glasgow v Ulster tussle. This will be magical, and anyone who has doubts that two fine and fiery teams will serve up a treat is merely suffering from self-delusion.

It's the most important game in Glasgow's rugby history and, while Ulster have won a European Cup before, Glasgow have yet to progress to great things.

I expect it to be packed, and I expect it to be tight and hard. It sure as hell takes your mind off your pension scheme, the city council's vandalism of public parks, England's World Cup ranking . . . and the fact that you'll never see the Springboks on this pitch ever again.