Former vet college
In the world:  March 22. Brussels Airport and Metro carnage.

The Barbarians have struck again. Lives of at least 10 different nationalities cut short. For what?

32 DEAD!       What sort of God in whose name was this done?

I couldn’t write about it closer to the time. It would have come out as a total rant.

I am only realising that most, if not all of the world conflicts that my baby boomer generation have grown up with, have happened because of people wanting to assert a) their national identity ( usually to the detriment of another)  b) their political ideology  and/or c)  their religious belief on others by force, the last of which is most prominent in this day and age and has come to be called terrorism and not only so in liberal democracies.  A toxic mix.  It’s sort of like the Crusades in reverse. ( that would be sedasurC. Ed. )    Pope Urban 2 has a lot to answer for.

Forgive me if you thought that that idea was a given, but I’m just discovering that until you mull over what you believe to be facts, plough through your prejudices then try to concisely get them down on paper then any conclusions that you may come to will not stand the time of test!

Anyway I have decided that on my own I can do little to change the world for the better ( my type of better ) and if Mr Robert Allen Zimmerman couldn’t change the world with Blowin’ in the Wind then what hope for My Back Pages.       –     ( Ah, but see below! )

What are some of the major changes that are happening due to the advent of the World Wide Web?  Now there’s a topic for a thesis!   Here’s a couple for starters.

First:    The gradual demise of the newspaper. A dying breed for sure. What has brought this about?  Diminishing revenue from advertising and circulation. Availability of latest breaking news 24/7 on TVs, tablets, etc. The Independent is only now available online and a while back the Guardian took the King’s shilling from Shell – sad day that. This weekend my preferred Sunday read was wrapped front and back with car advert promotions. Drive you to distraction.

I would have thought that if you make your living from journalism then love and respect for language wouldn’t be too much to expect, but that does not seem to apply to Scotland’s so called national paper which is riddled with errors daily.

On first day of this fourth month, but no deliberate April fool intended, a picture in the back of the paper with the caption “Twins Alex and Ben Toolis ( both 24 ).

There’s more. Yesterday to accompany a picture of Reagan and Carter before 1980 election we get “Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan debate each other. No they effin don’t! Then they tell us ” from separate podiums” I can ( expletive deleted) see that with my own eyes thank you very much.

Don’t you just love the English language? With my own eyes is a great expression. You don’t say I heard it with my own ears ( ok maybe you would if you like playing with words)  I can see things through your eyes, not literally obviously but metaphorically, and if we all were better at doing that then maybe we could foster a more tolerant society.

Couple of thoughts on the back of the hatred and intolerance that is forever in our faces thes days.

Asad Shah, by all accounts a gentle and well liked Glasgow Muslim shopkeeper was killed for “disrespecting Mohammed” by another Muslim who tells us through his lawyer that he loves and respects Jesus Christ. When you were growing up you may remember the admonition Thou shalt not kill?   Where do you start to try and make any sense of it all?

I read an article in Acoustic Guitar featuring Lucinda Williams. Her poet dad Miller ( he read “Of History and Hope” at Clinton’s second inauguration) was quoted as saying

” have compassion for everyone you meet even if they don’t want it” It’s a good line but I must admit there are times when I can’t pull that off.

The parents of a 20 y.o. Belgian student murdered in the Brussels attacks have given permission for his organs to be used for transplants. That is humbling and uplifting.

Second: ( back to www changes, sorry for diversion!). It is the rise of the campaigning websites. There is no doubt that the peasants are revolting and here in the UK the one that I often support is very effective.  By chance I have recently come across a far bigger world wide site called Avaaz. I recently signed a petition on it to say how much I support Donald Trumpet’s inclusive, compassionate political philosophy.

Happy Days!      Mosack Fonseca.  11 million documents leaked. The raptors are already in for the kill and the vultures will be picking over this carcass for a long long time. Can you just imagine the sweating, squirming funk that that release has released?   Makes me feel “Glad All Over” Dave.

Oh how I question myself when the enticing stink of schadenfreude wafts up my nostrils!

Serendipitously there seems to be two Dave C’s in the tail of this tale! You may need to be about my age to get the Glad All Over reference!

You will be aware of what is happening in Iceland because of the Panama Papers.  The Prime Minister has “stepped aside for a period of time ” so looks like an election will be called. The Pirate Party has 3 MPs and currently around 37% support. Should be interesting to see what results.

I admired the Icelanders attempt to hold the bankers involved in the 2008 crash to account. Though don’t think anyone has been successfully prosecuted as yet!    Lawyers.

What I found wonderful about the story so far is that the Pirate Party are pushing for more transparency and they are up in arms (!) about offshore deals. One of their MPs is quoted as saying that it is a liquid situation. Pirates, Offshore and Liquid? – fathom that confluence of association!

I think a lot of people may have to walk the plank before this settles down.

And finally the pub!  Summerhall is in the former world renowned Royal Dick Veterinary College. The building is now an important Fringe venue and houses performance spaces, cafe and shop. More importantly from a bevvier’s perspective it has a distillery on site. There’s not many pubs where you get your gin ( look out for lemongrass, blood orange or grapefruit garnish!) poured out of a miniature copper still right in front of your

own eyes

They also have a brewery and they produce several styles of Barney’s Beer.

The kitchen is only recently reopened so haven’t sampled what seems an interesting menu with some unusual combinations.

The best bit about the place though is the clientele. Every time we go we see some strange / interesting looking folk. Sample a Pickerings gin and/or  a Barney’s Beer and do a bit of people watching. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

By tamtennis

Retired. Working life split first in molecular biology then as pro tennis coach.
Hobbies: playing guitar, cooking, spending time with friends, eating out, attending concerts.
Interests: The world all around us- where it's been and where it's going.