Questionable question

BEING a conscientious and approachable politics lecturer at Edinburgh University, Patrick Theiner messaged his students to say: “Please contact me with any questions. Always happy to discuss.”

One of his students, no doubt equally conscientious, and exhibiting an insatiable curiosity about the subject being studied, responded: “Hi Patrick, I know this isn’t your top priority right now, and if you haven’t got time to reply I totally understand. We (me and my friends) would just like to know if you think Machiavelli would order a Filet-O-Fish from McDonald’s?”

Clearly the scholarly community continues to ask those impenetrable questions that less educated mortals can never hope to comprehend…

Gunning for glory

CONTINUING with the subject of history, reader Jason Brown says: “I only realised recently that Karl Marx’s sister Onya invented the starter pistol.”

Manchester not united

GREATER Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham’s unfruitful negotiations with the PM over Tier 3 financial compensation leads reader Tom Simmons to muse: “Wouldn’t it be ironic if Manchester achieved independence before Scotland? We certainly seem to be heading for a no-deal Manxit.”

Food for thought

OUR run of bar-based anecdotes continues. Comedian Andy Cameron tells us of a wee Glesga fella who saunters into a pub and nods at the chalk board advertising a pie, a pint and a kind word for £1.

“Ah’ll hiv that,” says the fella to the vivacious barmaid. (Who is doing a shift as relief from her day job as a shipyard riveter.)

The barmaid plonks a pie and pint on the bar and grabs the pound.

As she’s walking away the fella yells: “Hey, hen. Whit about the kind word?”

So she calls back over her shoulder: “Don’t eat the pie.”

Puzzling title

A FRUSTRATED Ian Noble from Carstairs Village wonders if anyone else attempting the Herald Sudoku studies the one categorised "Easy" and thinks: “I’ll be the judge of that.”

(We hesitate before revealing the original intention of labelling it as "Easy-Peasy".)

Chickening out

WE’VE been devising Halloween costumes for Boris Johnson. Reader Melissa Stanway believes we should also find a suitable disguise for the First Minister of Scotland, suggesting Nicola Sturgeon dress as KFC founder Colonel Sanders. Though after a moment’s reflection she changes her mind.

“I’m getting confused,” she says. “Nicola doesn’t care about finger licking. She’s all about the finger wagging.”

Handling the situation

RELAXING in a cafe, reader Robert Dorlan started to suspect everyone entering the place was hatching an evil plot against him. Then he realised they were using the alcohol hand gel.

Read more: Those were the days