Bluff their call

ANENT strategies for dealing with cold callers, Eric Arbuckle, in Largs, prefers a more spiritual approach: “In a soft, grave tone ask: ‘Tell me, young man/woman, is your life yet dedicated to the service of our lord Jesus Christ? If not, can we talk about how you can rectify this omission?’”

Call of the riled

ON the same subject, Kilbirnie reader Russell Smith tells the other side of the story: “When my friend expressed his irritation at a teatime cold call he got the response, ‘You’re just a grumpy old b******!’, and the caller hung up on him.”

Butt head

OUR tales of unexpected encounters abroad inspire Bill Eadie to recall a guided group tour of the Colosseum in Rome, where a “Centurion” introduced himself and went around group members asking where were from. He’d then name something famous from their city. So, says Bill: “Londoners got Tower of London, Parisians the Eiffel Tower, and so on. He came to us and, in response to our naming Glasgow, thought for brief moment and replied, ‘The Glasgow Kiss’, before demonstrating a head-butting motion.”

Small world

EVERYBODY abroad takes a healthy interest in Glasgow. Reader Brian Crystal recalls being in an Italian restaurant in New York in the 1990s. Says Brian: “The manager was circulating, chatting up the diners, and stopped at our table. Noticing the name on his badge was an un-Italian Eitan, I asked if he was originally from Israel. Yes, he said, and where did we come from? We told him. ‘Enjoy your dinner,’ he said. ‘And, by the way, what do you think about that Berkowitz at Celtic?’”

Saving face-palm

THE vexed subject of giving up smoking prompts Cumbernauld reader Hugh Steele to recall an exchange in the works canteen one January, where one lass proudly announced she’d packed in the weed. Furthermore, with the savings made, she’d have enough by June or July to have a package holiday abroad. Recounts Hugh: “One of the other girls sighed: ‘I wish I smoked so that I could give up and save all that money.’”

Vested interest

THE quip we featured from Viz magazine about a yellow vest being a fat lot of good in a custard factory prompts Stirling reader Sandy Green to recall being on holiday in the USA, doing a tour of National Parks. “We made one stop In Utah, and rafted on the Colorado. Got a t-shirt with an orange life-jacket motif on the front and text on the back saying: ‘The orange vest doesn't make you safer – just easier to find.’ Not reassuring given some of the rougher sections of the river!”

A match for her

READER James McGovern is also a breath of fresh air on the subject, recalling: “I stopped smoking in 1994. March 1994. 8th March 1994. That’s 25 years and 162 days, but who’s counting? Anyway, when I was still a smoker my choice was Embassy Filter, but not King Size. I was working in Montrose and went into a shop and said to the lady serving, ‘Twenty Embassy tipped please. Just the wee ones.’ She said: ‘Ha! Ha! Wee fags for a wee man.’ I said: ‘Get yourself a fat cigar while you’re at it.’ For some reason she didn’t see the funny side.”