Phoney fella

TRAINS are an amorous mode of transportation, often appearing as the backdrop to love affairs in movies such as Brief Encounter and Murder on the Orient Express.

No, wait. That second flick may have been about another favourite human pastime… but you get our point. Trains are romance on rails.

Which brings us to reader Elizabeth Williamson, who was on a Neilston train into Glasgow when she overheard two teenage lovebirds whispering to each other.

Said the female, sweetly, to the fella: “You know, you always told me you were intelligent.”

“I am,” said the young chap, with bold conviction.

“But look,” said the girl, fluttering her eyelashes and showing him her phone. “This is the last text you sent me. And you spelled ‘once’ as w-o-n-s-e.”

The poor bloke was so taken aback he didn’t speak for the rest of the journey, not even wonse.

Pale imitation

ACADEMICALLY inclined reader Gordon McRae is devising alternative definitions for "ologies" that you can study at our leading varsities.

For example, he believes palaeontology should involve scholars peering through magnifying glasses at fences to examine the more intricate details of the palings.

Carnal knowledge

MORE from the rarefied world of academia. Reader John Cochrane has an acquaintance whose son has been accepted to attend university in Paris.

“Does this mean he’ll have French letters after his name?” wonders John.

Sporty specialist

INTERVIEWING for apprentices can be challenging, says Malcolm Boyd from Milngavie. He recalls interrogating one chap whose application form listed an impressive range of sporting hobbies, including athletics, golf, swimming, football and rugby.

“What was your best time at the 100 metres?” asked Malcolm.

“Oh, I don’t do them,” came the reply. “I watch them on the telly.”

Fighting talk

EAGER to enlighten our readers, the Diary recently opened a book nook, where we recommend great works of literature. Tom Bain from Uddingston reminds us that reference manuals can be as worthy of study as novels, and entreats us to flick through Solving Stramashes by Sheikh Mahon.

Load of balls

WIMBLEDON is back, where the endless to-and-fro of fuzzy ball over wilting net will send all but the most ardent of tennis fans into a fitful slumber.

Ian Noble from Carstairs Village says hopefully: “I think these matches should be the best of five tie-breaks. That way Wimbledon would be over in two days.”

Slippery celebration

“DOES anyone know if Marks & Spencer sell fishcakes?” asks reader June Hearn. “I need to know because it’s my goldfish’s birthday on Friday.”

Read more: The statue of no limitations