Rearguard action

WE’RE discussing a once-ubiquitous toilet paper that was so scritchy-scratchy it turned one’s posterior into a post-mortem.

Hang your head in shame if you thought we were referring to the relatively amiable Andrex.

If you groaned knowingly, then muttered: “IZAL”… congrats. Gold stars will be handed out at the bottom of this column.

And speaking of bottoms, let’s return to the thorny subject of IZAL.

David Waters from Kirkmuirhill tells us that for the last 20 years he has kept a couple of rolls of the brutish bog roll hanging from a string in his toilet, and they are only to be grabbed in the case of an emergency.

Thankfully no such emergency has arisen.

“So,” adds David, “for more than two decades they’ve hung there for posteriority.”

Food for thought

THE Diary has been reporting on the nation’s financial situation, which is currently more precarious than a blindfolded elephant attempting to cross a tightrope on a skateboard.

Thinking much the same thing, Martin Morrison from Lochinver says: “I bought a loaf of bread yesterday and the price was a bit scary.”

Our reader adds: “A few feet away, in the same shop, were cakes on offer for slightly less. Perhaps it's time we reviewed history's opinion of Marie Antoinette's housekeeping advice…”

Fruity faux pas

EDUCATIONALLY-MINDED reader Hazel Colgan recalls one of her former English teachers who told her not to worry too much about her struggles with spelling as in the future most of her work would most likely be executed on a laptop with autocorrect.

“And for that I am eternally grapefruit,” says Hazel.

Read more Diary entries: For a comedian, it's all in the delivery

Edinburgh’s rubbish

YET again the Diary has freed the culture vulture we keep in a gilded cage in the office, thus allowing it to fly to Edinburgh to enjoy the Festival.

(Full disclosure. The Diary doesn’t really own a culture vulture. It’s a culture budgie, which is cheaper to feed and less likely to peck your eyes out.)

Also enjoying the Festival is music-loving Stevie Campbell from Hamilton, who says: “Is it true that the final act at this year's Edinburgh Festival will be Garbage?”

Telly talk

WHILE watching television, the suspicious-minded teenage daughter of reader Gillian Miller turned to mum and said: “How come you never see adverts on TV about the companies who make adverts on TV?”

Allium anecdote

REMINISCING reader Adam Turner gets in touch to say: “My ancestors were garlic traders. They came to this country with nothing but the cloves on their backs.”