Fighting talk

A BOOK about those ancient Greek hardmen, the Spartans, has been released. Rather appropriately, Andrew J Bayliss has given his tome an exceedingly spartan title. With a minimum of fanfare, though an abundance of accuracy, it’s titled… The Spartans.

The Diary would have probably gone for something slightly more elaborate. Big, Beefy, Bad-Ass Warrior Dudes Who Totally Loved A Scrap To The Death is kind of catchy.

We mention the Spartans not because we seek to emulate their repressive society and rigid rules that had to be obeyed on pain of death. Though we do love a toga, it has to be admitted.

In truth, the Diary offers up the opposite of bold Sparta. Our contributors are roguish rebels and raffish rascals, as these classic tales from our vault make clear. For instance, a cheeky chap once asked us what does acronym stand for?

Crime scene confusion

WHEN Taggart used to be filmed on the mean streets of Glasgow a woman once approached one of the many film people standing about with a walkie-talkie. “Whit is it ye’re daein, son?” she naturally inquired. “We’re filming an episode of Taggart,” he politely explained. “Oh, aye. Taggart, eh? Is it a repeat?” she asked.

Man and Machine

LISBON Lion Bobby Lennox was entertaining Durham Celtic Supporters Club. He told them how sophisticated the equipment in the present-day training room was. He added that the players eat a far healthier diet than in his day, and that there were machines that can tell you what you had to eat and drink the night before. “We had one too,” he explained. “It was called Jock Stein.”

The fame game

WE have often wondered if a certain former James Bond actor ever realised how famous he was at one point. For there was once a shop in Cambuslang’s main street which offered body piercing and sun beds. It was called Pierce Bronzin.

Love thy neighbour

A COUPLE were marching home in silence after being invited to the new neighbours’ for dinner. Unfortunately hubby had overdone the hospitality and made a spectacle of himself. Trying to alleviate the frostiness, he turned to his silent wife and said optimistically: “I think they’re inviting us back at Christmas.” Turning sharply on her heel, she spat back: “Whatever gave you that idea?”

“Well, I heard them saying it will be a cauld day before we’re invited back,” he murmured.

The bitter truth

A CARD assistant noticed a chap who had been lingering at the anniversary cards for some time, so she finally asked if there was a problem: “Yes,” he replied mournfully. “I can’t find one my wife will believe.”

Cop that

A FORMER serving police officer told us about a sergeant he worked with who was nicknamed "Signal". Apparently he was a tube with stripes.

Follicles of youth

A READER once mulled over how the thrills of being young compared to the angst of middle age. He described it thus…

Then: Long hair. Now: Longing for hair.