John Reid’s Back Yard

Old Firm FansI woke up feeling very satisfied this morning, but with no sense of loss that I usually get after completing the first draft of a significant piece of work. I think it’s because I rolled straight into another and never allowed myself time to think about it being the end. I can’t remember who said it, but it’s the best advice when you complete a novel is to start the next one immediately after. That way you are always involved and always thinking. Always writing.

So I moved straight back into the reworking of Stella, which has stalled over the last couple of weeks while I completed GitG (which by the way, I think I will keep as the title because it works really well). There’s only two days left of September, so I want to get through as much on my GDR list as possible now that the novella is complete.

I got stuck on the school bus again this morning with all the brats. I lay and watched Memoirs of a Geisha last night and it was late before it finished, which is a waste because I didn’t really enjoy it. It was a beautiful film; wonderfully acted with a compelling story, but I just didn’t enjoy it. It was too slow and too lacking in anything I could engage with, and by half way through I wanted it to be over. I’m not sure if this reaction was caused by finishing GitG prior to watching it, but I just couldn’t get into it.

I have almost finished re-drafting my synopsis for Slick, and also today I managed to complete the first draft of the remainder of my Scotland’s Treasure column, which is due in imminently. I also started preparing October’s issue of The Patter – if you want to read it when it’s published, enter your email in the wee box over to the left of this page. I also began writing up this month’s review, next month’s plan, and my quarterly GDR review – just to see how things are shaping up.

The forms containing all my details for this Sunday’s dramatic leap from the top of the Forth Rail Bridge arrived today. Suddenly, I am getting nervous about this. I shall take spirit from the fact I shall be able to look down onto the Hawes Inn at South Queensferry, which was one of Robert Louis Stevenson’s favourite places,, and also where he penned Kidnapped.

I’m going to get the event photographed, but I’ll also try for video if at all possible and post it here afterwards.

I see Celtic Chairman, John Reid, has complained that a Rangers song about the Irish famine is racist, and that racism should be “condemn(ed) without fear or favour wherever they arise.”

Shouldn’t he start the search for bigots in his own back yard? Apparently the song includes the line: “The famine’s over, why don’t you go home.” This lyric not only shows the pathetic level of ignorance of Rangers fans on the matter, given that all faiths in Ireland were affected by the famine and that most of them sing about Ireland on a weekly basis, wave Ulster flags, and don’t even know which side of the Irish Sea they belong half the time. Same goes for the Celtic fans, who couldn’t even tell you where Botany Bay is let alone Athenry.

The Rangers Supporters Trust defended the chant by saying it wasn’t racist, and no worse than any other football song. Obviously from that statement the Rangers Supporters Trust is full of arseholes that actually enjoy being bigoted racists. I doubt Ireland would even want that lot on their shores.

Reid also said: “Celtic supporters have received well-earned international plaudits in recent years for the way in which they conduct themselves at home and abroad.” He should look again. On the trips I went on that wasn’t the case, and it’s the main reasons why I stopped going to Celtic Park in the first place. And I’m not the only one. Peter Broughan, the esteemed Scottish film producer, wrote publicly in The Herald a few years ago after the disgusting pro-IRA songs being sung by Celtic fans on a European trip, which came only a week or two after the Omagh bombings. He vowed never go to another away match again.

If you listen in to the songs that get sung during live televised matches, you’ll notice the problem hasn’t gone away, it’s only becoming more embarrassing to do it in public, so Celtic and Rangers fans alike mostly keep their bigoted crap to when they get into the pubs later on. “But we are not complacent,” continued Reid. “I would again condemn, without equivocation, the use of any chants or songs which can be interpreted as support for religious or ethnic hatred, or for acts of violence. The assistance of true Celtic supporters in weeding out the minority who persist in that behaviour, usually at away games, is greatly appreciated and results in stringent action.”

Talk is easy. The truth is, Celtic and Rangers will never get rid of the religious problem and nor would they want to. It’s the hatred between this small minded section of our society, of side-lined Protestants and Roman Catholics, that keeps these two famous football clubs coffers overflowing with cash. Without racism, Celtic and Rangers will just be average clubs, and the bigots and thugs won’t have a venue to unleash their warped beliefs. Hey, maybe that’s not such a bad idea!

Stella (Re-Working)
Stella (Re-Working)

PLEASE DONATE – For full details of my Abseil off the Forth Rail Bridge in October for the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland, please go here:

The Ranfurly Review – Out Now!

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About Colin Galbraith

Keen runner, thriller author, Madness fan, Mets fan, St Mirren fan/owner, rabbit tamer, outstanding fake faller. Loves cannolis & espressos. #LFGM
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