Strictly Come Dancing is returning for another waltz round the ballroom floor, with most of the celebrities already drenched in sequins. Rather than watch on telly, Margaret Portis, from East Kilbride, prefers getting in the groove herself – though she tells us her husband wasn’t impressed when she signed up for a line dancing night, along with a group of boisterous female buddies.

Hubby insisted there was to be no female-to-male fraternising at the bar on the big night out. “Line dancing’s one thing,” he told Margaret. “But let’s not have any crossing-the-line dancing.”

Cutting comment

As reported in yesterday’s Herald, the school exam results are in, and we extend a hand of sympathy to students who didn’t make the grade. (Or get the grades.) It is, however, possible to see the funny side during this testing time. We recall the (perhaps apocryphal) story of a boy completing a history essay who confused "circumnavigated" with a similar sounding word… with eye-watering results. “Columbus circumcised the globe with a two-hundred-foot clipper,” wrote the lexically-lax lad.

Basil faulty

Our story about Basil Brush proving more popular at the Edinburgh Festival than homegrown funny man Sanjeev Kohli has Motherwell reader Alec Wheen questioning the fop fox’s bankability in these enlightened times. Alec admits he was a fan of Basil in his 1970s pomp, but adds: “Being a fox, he must be partial to nibbling slow-footed bunnies that cross his path.

“Don’t you have to be a vegan to get a prime-time telly slot, nowadays?”

Paradise postponed

Linda Barr, from Ibrox, agrees with yesterday’s tongue-in-cheek tale about the catastrophic results of the influx of painted lady butterflies to Scotland. She made the fatal error of pausing at a tenement corner, after spotting a tree coated in butterflies. Revelling in the scene of pastoral bliss, she was startled to notice, beyond the tree, a chap in string vest glaring at her through his tenement window, apparently under the impression Linda was peeking at him.

Et in arcadia ego, as the Greeks were apt to say. Or, to translate into the modern idiom: “Y’ cannae hae a bit o’ summer fun wi’ oot some gurny bam flashin’ ye the pure evils.”

Bird box

On social media, Glasgow broadcaster Aasmah Mir reveals she’s no fan of the Twirlywoos. (No, that isn’t a medical condition brought on by imbibing too many gin and tonics. The Twirlywoos are puppets, avian in nature, and huge with the preschool crowd.) Spotting flyers advertising a Twirlywoos live performance, including private booths at £92 a pop, Aasmah fumes: “Private booth? For some birdy puppet things? This VIP rubbish starts young.”

Bummer Summer

This being summer, it’s umbrella season. (Umbrella season being the official title for the meteorological period that commences early January and concludes late December.) Duncan Shaw, from Kilwinning, believes climate change makes the weather even wetter. He sees no end in sight, after a drookit newspaper was delivered through his door. “It took about 20 minutes to iron dry enough for it to be fit to be handled and read,” he reports. “Which created an increase in electrical consumption, which in turn, in its own small way, added to further global warming. You can’t win.”

Undone by London

Edinburgh-raised but London-based comedian, Iain Stirling, has finally sussed how to survive in the English capital. “I’ve done yoga now. And I don’t talk to anyone,” he reveals.

“You’ve got to be bendy and rude.”

Read more: 1960: “For this job, you’ve just got to be waterproof”