WHO would keep a diary? I kept one in my youth and am about to burn 12 volumes of it. Nothing but moanin’ and greetin’. Is that how I strike you? Someone who moans and greets all the time?

I’m not hearing a response. Lot of shuffling. I’ll take that as a “no” then. Thanks.

Sasha Swire kept a diary but, instead of burning it, is publishing it. Big mistake, though she’ll doubtless make money out of it. I’m sure with my indiscretions about fancying various lassies, and daily measurements of my Johnson ("drat, same as yesterday; perhaps try heavier weights”), I could have made money from mine too.

But my life wouldn’t be worth living. As for La Swire, she doesn’t seem thin-skinned, so she’ll survive and make enough money to get the Tennent’s in.

She’s married to Sir Hugo, a former Tory Government minister who comes across as a complete and utter buttock. We learn that he joked at a Tory fundraiser about people on benefits and “bunked off” parliament to do battle with the mighty grouse.

Mrs Swire describes Boris Johnson’s burd Carrie as a “hot young vixen” and talks risibly of Michael Gove’s bidie-in baking fish pie. David Cameron, apparently, wanted to take the author into the bushes to show her his unweighted private parts, though the most appalling revelation about the former Tory Prime Minister came from the pie-maker, who claimed this week that he loved The Clash, which is taking postmodern irony by the throat and drowning it in a puddle of meaningless tears

It’s fair to say the other toffs and chancers in the Swires’ slimy bubble aren’t happy. How awful they all sound. How cunning. How uncomfortable with each other. Always manoeuvring, always thinking about shagging each other’s spouses.

They come across as tribal savages. If you were robbing one of their houses, you’d find primitive drawings on the wall of stick people throwing spears at bison with the words “high office” or “Bunty’s arse” written on them.

That’s what got me: the world these people live in. It is alien. It reminds me of the worst event I ever attended in my life: an outdoor rally by the Countryside Alliance. Oh my Christ, they were horrible. The waxed jackets (uniform of these sinister misfits), the hounds, the posh accents.

Listen: it’s wrong to be prejudiced. It really is. At best, it’s debatable. OK, perhaps you could make a hypothetical case for it. It might even match up to the reality of encountering a group of people that made a tsunami of vomit storm your oesophagus. Arguably, it’s understandable to be prejudiced. It’s natural. It’s right

But, for the record, let me say: being prejudiced is wrong. And, if I’m laughing, it must be at a joke I’ve just remembered. Seriously, I get antsy when people say they “hate the Tories”. Although communistic on many issues myself, I appreciate that other people have different outlooks.

It’s not the points of view of the Swires, Camerons, Goves and Johnsons that make me uncomfortable. It’s them. It’s the fact that, while the rest of us, the vast majority, rub along more or less equally (OK, bit of a stretch), they exist as a separate, privileged class with their own morés. And this news just in: their interests just aren’t ours.

Secretly, they don’t like us. And, openly, we don’t like them. But, still, my Lidl pitchfork-and-burning brand gift set remains unused in the attic. At heart, I don’t really dislike anyone beyond people who hurt children and wee animals.

One of my mates recently pointed out to me that he is bald, sports a waxed jacket, cycles and wears shorts, yet I don’t hate him. Mind you, that’s only because he supports Hibs. I bet you a pound that if you look up the index in Swire’s book, you’ll find nothing about Hibs.

The purr blind

TALKING of small animals, why do we tolerate cat owners? We should be hounding these emotional inadequates out of every neighbourhood.

Some irresponsible resident buys a cat and, next thing, everybody else finds their flower beds full of ordure and their birdlife mangled and tortured. It’s ridiculous.

Cat owners are perplexing. Many consider themselves wildlife lovers, which pretence serves only to reveal something deeply disturbing in the human psyche.

The capacity to turn a blind eye to the atrocities committed by their substitute bairns or teddy bears has uncomfortable implications for their attitudes to wider human affairs.

Separate surveys have found that between 77 and 82 per cent of wildlife mangled by cats isn’t brought home proudly to the owners, meaning that the tortured robin found expiring in the hall is only the tip of the iceberg.

You say: “Whit aboot dug owners? They’re also rubbish, ken?” Well, yes, I ken. Though not as bad, they’re also inadequates. Nowadays, I seem the only person who climbs a hill or enjoys nature without the ulterior motive of dumping canine turds.

Enough pets. Jehovah the Merciless created life to be stark. You undermine His good work with your “fur babies” (boak) and their lavatorial excesses.

No strings attached

HERE’S something that baffles me: brilliant amateur guitar players on yonder YouTube who play faster, more mellifluously and more accurately than the masters they emulate.

And there’s the rub: they emulate. They’re copyists, right down to incidental noises and bum notes. Odder still: some live guitar playing by 70s and 80s rock stars of their own material is embarrassing bad.

These amateur guys do it better. They’re not signed to any label. Most don’t make albums. Many teach.

But they seem unable to do anything original. Maybe they’re like these keepy-uppy ball-juggling artists in the half-time entertainment at professional football matches. Brilliant at what they do but lacking something that would get them a game.

Guitar playing is funny. Professionals often boast of going back to basics, listing the six special effects they deploy to get a “clean” tone free of enhancements.

In the 80s and 90s, reacting against virtuoso playing, guitar magazines praised tasteful performances where the guitar could barely be heard. I considered sending in a demo with no guitar on it, fully expecting them to praise its minimalist subtlety.

Some of my best playing wasn’t on that tape.

Meet is murder

ONE thing the beleaguered BBC might be about to get right is an end to “meetings culture”.

All meetings, without exception, are a waste of time. They encourage decisiveness, which is always a mistake and the reason for most of the world’s wrongs, including the many wars.

You say: “That’s mince, ken? Meetings ensure nothing gets done.” That’s a good point well made. And I agree that doing things only causes trouble.

All the same, meetings are dominated by folk who talk a good game, rather than decent ratepayers who can never think of anything to say due to a lack of interest.

Disliking confrontation, and rarely having ideas of my own, I just agree with everybody in the hope of ending proceedings quickly and returning to real life, ignoring whatever bilge wasn’t decided upon.

That said, if you don’t count court appearances, disciplinary hearings and residents’ association protests about me, I haven’t been to a meeting for years.

As for virtual gatherings, I micturate on your Zoom. Behold, in the right-hand corner, an image of my bare buttocks smoking a cigar and still puffing out more sense than anyone else “present”.

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