Browned off

JANUARY can be exhausting, with the realisation that we have to struggle through almost an entire year till Christmas again… then (ugh!) yet another January. However, Scottish actress Rebecca Elise says: “You’ll never be as tired as me.”

The exhausted thespian was munching chocolates and saw what she assumed was a chunk that had dropped on the carpet.

It wasn’t.

Instead, it was the sort of brownish stuff that tends to arrive from the nether regions of her 14-month-old son.

“Only realised when it was practically touching my lips and I was overwhelmed by the stench,” she shudders.

Posh bird?

OVER the last few weeks reader David Donaldson has noticed an unusual sound in Glasgow’s Hyndland – the hooting of an owl.

“You can tell it’s not a native of the West End,” he says, “because it goes 'To-who' instead of 'To-whom'.”

The vulgar tongue

WITH Burns night a week away, many of our readers will no doubt be marvelling over the innate lyricism of the Scottish people.

Gordon McRae agrees that we Scots have great linguistic prowess, though he is more intrigued by the profane than the poetical, and has been musing over all the wonderful ways we have devised to denigrate and dismiss our friends and neighbours.

His particular favourites include: “You've a heid fu' o' broken biscuits” and the triumphantly tart “If you had another brain it would be lonely.”

Collective wisdom

SCHOLARLY reader Larry Cheyne is on a mission to discover little known collective nouns. One he recently came across is: “A cameraderie of photographers.”

Hot property

A DIARY yarn about the ladies who once worked on our transport systems reminds Ritchie Young of his local village station mistress, back in the 1960s. A large, formidable woman, she would shout as trains arrived at the platform: "A' youse in there for here get oot."

Well liked by the engine drivers, they often gave her coal for her home fire, which she carried in a large shopping bag.

When she worked late in winter, the village bobby escorted her home in the dark, not realising his companion concealed ‘hot’ British Rail coal in her bag.

The name game

YESTERDAY we discussed a medic with a most curious name. Inspired by this tale, Bob Jamieson tells us that many years ago he got a vasectomy from a surgeon whose name was… Dr Coxon.

Rampaging return

QUERY of the day from reader Ted Parks, who says: “If a Viking is reincarnated, is he Bjorn again?”

Read more: Why an Edinburgh cat loved to hear champagne corks popping