Check it out

STILL a few folk vying to become Tory Party leader before the list gets gradually whittled down. As Karl Minns rather neatly, but harshly, summed it up: "This is like the first round of TV's X Factor where all the deluded, talentless numpties take the afternoon off from collecting supermarket trollies to pretend they're Beyonce."

Storm brewing

WE know it's a bit of a first world problem, but we did like TV presenter Storm Huntley's social media confession yesterday: "Rushed home through central London to make sure I got there for my Tesco delivery... only to discover I sent it to my old address – in Glasgow!" Bet she's not the first person to mess up their supermarket delivery. Any other tales?

Presentation skills

TALKING of TV presenters, congratulations to Shereen Nanjiani being made an MBE in the latest honours' list for services to broadcasting. We always liked her explanation of how she moved from being a reporter at STV to presenting the main nightly news programme. Our old chum David Scott was head of news at the time, and as Shereen once recalled: "David, a very gruff news boss, called me in and said, 'Right, you're reading the news tonight.' I was aghast and immediately said I couldn't possibly do it. I'd had no training. He said, 'Don't worry, if you f*** it up you won't be doing it again'."

Close, but

OUR tales of getting directions in America remind Peter Sommerville in Greenock: "A few years ago I was in a Manhattan hotel meeting up with friends when I was presented with a large cigar. Aware of the very strict no-smoking policy in New York I asked a member of the hotel staff the nearest place I could smoke it. 'Connecticut, Sir' was the response."

Skirting the issue

MARGARET Thatcher's old press secretary Sir Bernard Ingham is publishing his diaries this week. We attended one of his book signings in Glasgow's Theatre Royal when he explained that he had been at a formal dinner in Aberdeen when a kilted diner complained to him about Mrs Thatcher. Sir Bernard told us: "'I find it difficult to accept that the only country in the United Kingdom where men can wear skirts, is the only country that could not accept a prime minister in a skirt.''

Incidentally we would be interested in Sir Bernard's view on all this drug-taking that the Tory candidates admit to. In Sir Bernard's day folk generally reached for the alcohol, and he confided that Mrs T's husband Denis had his own secret language for what size of gin he wanted poured which went from a brightener to a breeze, to a lifter, then a snifter, a snorter and finally a snorterino which came close to emptying the bottle in one go.


OUR mention of pithy graces remind retired teacher Frances Woodward in Yorkshire: "I learned one from a colleague who taught her charges when she was a nanny, 'Rub a dub dub, here comes the grub, Yeah Lord'."

Over the sea

FINALLY on politics, if you think things are not going well on Brexit you may want to check in with Irish bookmakers Paddy Power where you can place a bet on what the UK Government will ration first if we leave the EU. Fuel is favourite at 4 to 1 while avocados are a more fanciful 13 to 1. But we think they are just taking the mickey when you can also place a bet at a rather more generous 80 to 1 that The Queen will eventually take up residence in Ireland if Brexit doesn't go too well.

Read more: 1954: Laurel and Hardy make their final visit to Glasgow