As imagined by Brian Beacom

LOOK, just to make it clear. I’m not retiring, as some of you in the media seem to be saying, just because I said as much this week at my Fringe show.

Honestly, rabid, unalloyed cynics such as yourself will grab at any little crumb of information like a starving seagull on Troon beach spying a toddler’s tomato sauce sandwich.

The truth is I’m evolving. Like Serena. I’m evolving into someone who’s totally scunnered with the job, if you must know.

Here’s me battling for the cause, and the chance to become President Nicola and up comes Ukraine. Climate emergency. The price of energy. The tragedy of poverty. Who wants to hear about a tartan passport to Brigadoon.

So, can you blame me for mumping my gums a little?

Okay, you want to know why I’d hint of my exit stage left but not do it? Well, a person has to keep others on their toes, especially an alleged attention seeker like myself.

It doesn’t do the party faithful any harm to be reminded of the talent who lies under me. I’m not saying we have a party full of Diane Abbotts, but honestly. . . And yes, John Swinney is decent enough but he’s as dull as a wet weekend in Wishaw.

But you want to know ‘Why was your Edinburgh Fringe show audience this week as empty as Liz Truss’s heart?’

And if the audience size at my show was a metaphor for my exiting from the political stage?

Well, my Fringe show wasn’t empty. It was very nearly half full. Which is double the economic knowledge in the Foreign Secretary’s brain.

And I’m not sure I like your follow-up question. ‘Wasn’t it rather undignified to invoke a personal conversation you had with the Foreign Secretary, when she was speaking to you in an off-the-record basis?’

Yes, I did mention that Liz Truss – a woman who, quite frankly, gies me the dry boak – asked me during the climate conference how to get in Vogue, the magazine, not the fashionista state of being.

And we did chat about that in the Ladies.

And, yes, I revealed on stage that that the publishers of this glossy piece of nonsense did indeed capture me and my new heels on not one but two occasions, which seemed to result in Ms Truss bashing her head into the mirror like a demented budgie.

But how was I, a very astute lawyer, to guess that someone in this very tiny public audience, even though the hall was just half full, would relay the story on to the likes of yourself?

I don’t like your implication, frankly, that I have some sort of grudge to settle, that I am some Ayrshire Geronimo, just because she said I should be ignored, and that I was an inveterate attention seeker.

I ask you; does anyone who chooses to appear at the Fringe in front of a tiny, half-full audience really wish to seek attention?