169 thoughts on “ALL OUR YESTERDAYS”

    1. There was a joke that linked Sammy Davis Jnr. to the aviators on the first non-stop transatlantic flight. It’s rude so I can’t repeat it here.

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          1. Freeman shock waves spread to Bulgaria. Rude humour fault-line threatens peak pique across Europe. Aid agencies from UN Relief (Laugh Department) to Guffaws Sans Frontieres appeal to Munguin to drop embargo.

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                1. Perhaps non-stop atlantic flight might push you in the right direction.

                  The joke was rude (and non PC probably). Sammy Davis was a member of the rat pack and there are stories of a lewd nature …

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                  1. I suppose there would be… what with Sinatra being in that Rat Pack. I read that Deano was far nicer and really never was actually drunk at all.

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            1. Indeed, John! Once our American friends have finished their grits, coffee, OJ and maple syrup pancakes and got[ten] down to the important business of reading the MNR blog, I am sure we will find that the shock waves have reached the Western Hemisphere, a bit like those tsunami thingies in the Pacific Ocean!

              Though possibly less destructive.

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              1. Munguin doesn’t like the idea of being thought of in the same bracket as a tsunami.

                He gives permission for suitable hints to be given in order that peerless googling can take place.

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              2. The only Sammy Davis joke I know (not rude) was that he was playing golf and someone asked him what his handicap was. He replied that he’s a black, one-eyed jew.
                As for Dean Martin, he could easily have been driven to drink by the years he worked as a team with Jerry Lewis.

                The Rat Pack in front of the old Sands sign on the Las Vegas Strip. Neither the sign nor the Sands itself is there anymore.

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    2. DonDon: Sammy Davis Jr, it was.

      Remember when Bruce Forsythe died they called him Britain’s Sammy Davis…? How we smiled.

      Dave will have to confirm No.6.

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  1. Pic 15: Far be it from me to trespass on Roddy’s territory, but I’ll hazard a guess: the two double-deckers (is that the technical term?) are in the Isle of Man.

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      1. Interesting, but what I want to know is, who is Douglas? He undoubtedly possesses a very fine pair of preserved AEC Regents.
        No. 64 is a 1949 Regent III (with Northern Counties body) while lurking behind is No. 15, a 1968 Regent V with Willowbrook body.
        According to buslistsontheweb.co.uk. the Regent V (410LMN) is the very last Regent ever built.

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    1. Very decorative, those Goss brothers, about whom I knew nothing as I was out of the UK during their glory years of fame and success. However, a spot of peerless googling tells me that their beautiful, matching blond hair colour was – gasp! – out of a bottle! Here’s an “after” picture.

      Can it be that appearances can be deceiving? Say it ain’t so, Joe, say it ain’t so!

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            1. Unlikely that he would be able to understand those Ancient Greeks, Tris, because I very much doubt that they pronounced their Ancient Greek like English Old Etonian toffs and Bullingdon Boys do. And ditto vice versa, so to speak.

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      1. There’s a documentary film about Bros called After the Screaming Stops. It contains many unintentionally funny moments but it’s also a genuinely sad tale about the pressures of fame.

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        1. It was a very successful film too…

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bros:_After_the_Screaming_Stops

          Life in show business isn’t just the glamorous bits. There is a lot of hard work that goes in to getting what you see or hear to the standard where you’d want to see or hear it again.

          Unless you are utterly dedicated (on top of being talented) and have a thick skin and a backbone of steel, you won’t make it fr long.

          Then I suppose the public is fickle and there’s always something new coming along to take your place in their affections.

          Part of the skill of being a consummate performer involves making it look effortless…

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    1. I’ve never been close up to the BBC centre, so I don’t know, Andi. I hope they’ve replaced these windows though. Half the licence fee would go on painting them.

      Luke Goss is in his 50s now…

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      1. Tris….As I understand it, you got them by shopping at various retail stores….like grocery stores for example…….based on how much you spent. Then you pasted the stamps in books which you could use at S&H redemption centers……or from the S&H redemption catalog…….to get all sorts of merchandise. Like luggage, housewares, appliances, sports equipment……all sorts of things.

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        1. Good idea, rather like the loyalty points you get here with some supermarkets, which can be cashed in as a discount at the end of a specific period, or in some cases, when you have built up sufficient points.

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          1. Tris……Yes, that’s the idea. Apparently green stamps were very popular as late as the 1960’s-1970’s. I think that some automobile dealerships even gave green stamps. You could save up your green stamp books to redeem a big high-cost item, or more frequently to get smaller items.

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            1. Danny, I remember petrol (gas) stations gave stamps, back in the days when Esso advertized with the slogan “Put a Tiger in Your Tank”.
              Although I have never filled a tank with petrol in my entire life.

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                1. I will always associate tigers with Esso and Kellogg’s Sugar Frosties. The power of advertizing,

                  Somehow or other, I have avoided putting anything in a petrol tank, ever.

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                    1. Danny (and Jon from Chicago and all others in the American League of Munguinites), just FYI, the ratio between Imperial and US gallons is (almost exactly) 1.2:1.0. This will not help you at all if your divisor is zero, of course. Mathematics is funny that way.

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                    2. Good to know that ratio Ed. But as for mpg, I’m thinking that DonDon must use other forms of transpiration. I’m told that there are many people who live in New York City who have no need for a car. Whenever I’ve visited NYC, I park the car and use public transportation. Garage space is costly and parking spots are hard to find in the city of course.

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                    3. The other thing NYC has in abundance, Danny, is fire hydrants – I think you call them fire plugs – which, although they may have been out of service for decades, still carry with them the ban on parking alongside them, and will still result in the City towing them to the pound.

                      I sometimes wondered if it was a good way to get rid of old junkers – park your dead car alongside a dead fire plug, remove the licence plates, and let the City deal with it…

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                    4. Ed….I guess that the prohibition against parking by a fire plug is almost universal….well, at least in the States. What an ingenious way to get rid of an old junker car…….especially in the big city where towing and disposal charges are surely quite costly! 😉

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              1. DonDon……Gas (Petrol) stations would be perfect places to attract customers with stamps. The “Put a Tiger in your Tank” ad slogan was big in the states too.

                The Esso brand of the ExxonMobil corporation is still used in many countries, whereas in the USA, the name Exxon is now commonly used. Esso, Exxon, etc, are trademarks of a company that originated as “Standard Oil of New Jersey,” one of the companies that were formed when John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil trust was broken up. Esso is the phonetic pronunciation of the initials ‘S’ and ‘O’ in Standard Oil.

                “Tony the Tiger” was their advertising mascot.

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        2. Back in the days when I still had hair, spots, and a certain dewy-eyed and charming naïveté, my mother once acquired a Kenwood mixer using Green Stamps, themselves acquired by a number of methods including the normal purchases of goods, buying them off other people, and outright theft. I kept track of this, but when I pointed out that she would have been cheaper just buying the thing, my protest fell on deaf ears. Or rather, it would have done except she’d walked away from me by then, which was her usual response when I said anything.

          Of course, my mother never used the thing as she considered herself far above such menial tasks as cooking for the rest of us, so I did.

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          1. Ed…..I once saw one of the redemption books where you pasted the stamps. You would wet the adhesive back of the stamps and paste them on the blank pages. Seems tiresome, but doing the wetting, and pressing them neatly on the pages was part of the fun I guess.

            These days, customer appreciation points, which the computer keeps track of when they scan the item at checkout, are better I think. I never actually keep track of the running total, then it’s a nice surprise when the clerk asks me if I want to redeem points. I usually wait until it gets to the $5 level. A nice discount on your purchase.

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            1. We have the same sorts of loyalty programmes here too – IT has taken over from the days of sticking stamps in books.

              The Co-Op – a chain, or a number of chains, of cooperatively owned grocery stores – used to give out stamps too; that was the method they used to pay their members their dividend from the enterprise. If I remember correctly, they used to be called “divi stamps”. If you’re interested, Danny, here’s an article on the subject from the UK Guardian some years back: https://archive.vn/EFyvv.

              The cooperative movement was associated with the Labour movement in the early days, for obvious reasons. I’m kinda surprised the Co-Op hasn’t been privatized, actually; most of the other remnants of the movement – building societies (mortgage lenders) among them – have been bought out, and the employees rewarded with shares, or given the opportunity to buy them at a discount / set price / face value. [Note to self: save any peerless googling for later, if anyone asks, because you have been overtaken by sloth, accidie, khalatnost, somnolence and lethargy.]

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              1. Ed……Interesting history about “divi stamps” and a system that originated father back, into the 1840’s, at a time when fewer people had bank accounts. I do prefer the IT-based customer loyalty systems, where there’s no need to wet and paste adhesive stamps, and you get a nice cash refund surprise every now and then. No need to even keep track of the points, unless you want to.

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                1. Yeah. I hate licking stamps with a purple passion. All my postage stamps are the self-adhesive kind, and all my envelopes are self-sealing, for that reason. I suppose the adhesive in the other kind isn’t made from rendered horse carcases any more, but still…

                  When my dear mother sent off for her Kenwood mixer from the catalogue, I’m sure you’ll never guess who got the job of pasting all those bloody green shield stamps into the booklets. I’m not going to give you a clue – let it remain a mystery for all time…

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                  1. I agree Ed. I consider the self-adhesive postage stamp and envelope to be among the greatest inventions in human history. (I always had to get a wet sponge to use them, because I think that licking stamps and envelopes with one’s tongue is surely unhygienic.)

                    Another form of postage stamp that’s among mankind’s greatest inventions is the “Forever” stamp of the United States Postal Service. There was a time that whenever basic first class postage increased by a few cents, you had to go to the post office to buy small denomination postage stamps to use with the previous stamps denominated at the old rate. This was really annoying, especially if you had a large supply of the old stamps. Today, the postal service sells “Forever” stamps carrying no monetary denomination at all. You simply buy them at the current postage rate, and then they are good at whatever postage rate applies on the date they are used in the future. They are literally the correct postage FOREVER.

                    So the self adhesive Forever postage stamp incorporates two life changing technologies in a single stamp design.

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                    1. We have Forever stamps here too, Danny. I bought a whole load of them that fell off the back of a lorry about four or five years ago, and haven’t bought any stamps since.

                      As you say, a life-changing technology.

                      Actually, I’ve had them so long that the adhesive has got[ten] a bit dry, so I have to use a Pritt stick to get them to stay on, but I consider that particular fly in the ointment a small sacrifice, an insignificant thread in the Great Tapestry of Life.

                      In the face of such sheer bloody-mindedness on the part of an uncaring Universe, I find my philosophical approach helps preserve my sangfroid so that I can deal with more pressing matters, such as which T-shirt to wear today, or whether to wax my knuckles.

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                    2. No wonder there are times when you no longer have the energy to perform your peerless Googling skills, Ed. Decisions, decisions. Is there never a break?

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                    3. For normal letter postage here, Danny, in a typically British way, you have first and second class stamps, which are the same as your forever stamps.

                      I came upon some Christmas stamps from years ago in my mother’s possessions and was surprised how much pleasure it gave me to use them, knowing that I was doing the now-privatised Royal Mail out of money quite legally.

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                    4. Tris……American has Christmas stamps now too, although there was for some years concerns about constitutional church-state separation issues.

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                    1. True, but the preparation of damp sponges requires preparation, forethought, patience, and a suitable sponge. Most spongiform thingmies are NBG for the purpose, and patience and forethought are often sadly lacking.

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            2. Yes, you’re right, Danny.

              One of the British supermarkets, Morrisons, gives you a coupon for £5 when you have built up that much in credit on your purchases.

              Tesco builds up your points all year and gives you a bonus at Christmas in the form of vouchers.

              With Boots you just build up the points on your card and you can use the points at any time to pay for your purchases.

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              1. Tris, Tesco give out vouchers for your points a bit more often than once a year at Christmas – I think it may even be up to once a month, depending on how many points you have. If you order on line, they’re plugged into your account and the vouchers which are valid on your current order show up as you check out.

                Maybe you’re thinking of the Christmas saving thingmie run by Iceland – you buy stamps for £1 or £5, something like that, stick them in your savings book, and trade them in at Christmas for goods to the same value plus a bonus (not forgetting that Iceland have had the use of your money for however long in the meantime). I don’t like the idea; too much like being obliged to buy from the company store.

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                1. It’ll be becasue I buy almost nothing from Tesco, Ed. My proffered shops being Aldi and Lidl. I’m lucky if a get a couple of quid once a year from Tesco.

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              2. Tris….We buy a lot of stuff from a large drug store (a pharmacy with general merchandise including some food items.) Periodically the check out clerk will just ask if we want to redeem so many dollars on a current purchase. We usually end up redeeming a $5 credit.

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  2. Pic 17 is of one of the projected new post-Brexit tankers to be used for the international transport of Marmite to our trading partners. The fleet (of five) will, of course be powered by British coal. Only this prototype has been built so far as the production line has currently broken down and won’t restart until the necessary spare parts are imported from Germany and France.

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    1. That would be British coal from Poland, I expect, andimac, now that the half dozen or so collieries left in the Ukay are not producing enough of a surplus to meet any additional demand, as I understand it. Still, nothing to stop us sticking Union flags on it – there’s never been one of those blasted Dénomination d’Origine Contrôlée abominations from Europe applied to coal! Ah yes … the Coal and Steel Community … that’s where the Eurorot started, though plucky little Britain stood aloof…

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  3. What a joy to see Moira Anderson’s beloved number 36 bus there in picture 15. After her traumatic journey via Blackpool, Moira was suffering so much from stress that she was in no position to drive the Daimler. But the problem was solved when Stewart discovered that the 36 (which he wittily called in the All Saints express) served a route passing exactly where Moira longed to sojourn. Her glee was unbounded. at least twice a day she would leap on board, greet the conductor with a “Fair morrow, my fine yeoman” and run upstairs, always sitting on the pavement side if the aisle. Drinking in the magnificence of her surroundings, Moira’s memory would flit back to those happy days of youth when she and other performers at the King’s Theatre in Glasgow would between performances buy half a dozen eggs and travel around Central Glasgow in a corporation team occasionally dropping an egg on to the passers-by as the trudged along the pavements below. I believe I am permitted to reveal that Moira once or twice relived those golden moments by “egging” pedestrians on the streets of Douglas from the upper deck of the 36. That ended after the Chief Constable had a quiet word with Stewart and the GP.

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    1. Before the lockdown I was waiting for a bus and was told by a very elderly stranger also waiting for a bus that Jimmy Shand did things during WW2 that no-one knows about. Apparently Jimmy Shand was recruited by S.O.E. in 1940 to do some secret war work. From 1942 to August 1944 he played his accordion on Radio Londres. Not your usual dance music but music that contained hidden messages for the French Resistance. When I asked how can hidden messages be heard on Scottish dance music he clamped up saying it was a state secret with a 150 year closure on it. I would have liked to have heard more.

      I have looked on YouTube for evidence but not found anything. I did find the messages that were played to the French Resistance on the eve of D-Day. The noise on the recording is jamming of the radio frequency by the Germans.

      and on the day of the invasion.

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      1. I heard that during WW2, enemy soldiers used to torture Scottish prisoners of war by nailing their feet to the floor and putting a Jimmy Shand record on.🥴

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      2. Actually that may not be as far fetched as it seems. Petula Clark has often said that she though that some of the scripts she was given to read as a small child on the BBC Forces Service (now world service) contained messages.

        I’ve nevefr really given it much credence.

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      3. Actually that may not be as far fetched as it seems. Petula Clark has often said that she though that some of the scripts she was given to read as a small child on the BBC Forces Service (now world service) contained messages.

        I’ve never really given it much credence.

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      4. Wow, that is amazing to hear.
        The powers that be just cyber attack anything they see as a threat or even an asset to their enemies.

        Did you know that SEPA has suffered a serious cyber attack past few days? I wonder what’s next.
        https://www.energyvoice.com/oilandgas/291754/sepa-cyber-attack-likely-to-be-by-international-organised-cyber-crime-groups/

        Blame it on the fuffiners! Who could possible want to attack Scotland’s environmental protection agency, hmmm? Our energy supplier, a Scottish and Scotland based company, was cyber attacked recently too…

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      1. I can understand and sympathise with Moira having also undergone the hell of spending over two hours in Blackpool. I required a series of sedatives to get me over that nightmarish experience.

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        1. …and then for poor Moira to have to endure travelling incognita on the Isle of Man packet to avoid the hordes of paparazzi and agents of unfriendly Powers! Sheer hell, especially during that episode of explosive cyclogenesis which decimated the Icelandic cod fishing fleet!

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                1. Indeed, Tris. Highly literate, highly civilized, rational, and democratic, but unfortunately they’ll never be a success because they don’t have a proper country like England to tell them how to run things, which is why their schools are in such a mess.

                  And that’s just the cod. The people are nice too, and have a fine line in knitwear.

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                2. The Cod Wars of the Seventies. I would be surprized if MI6 didn’t re-activated their sleeping asset for that one.
                  Did she not sing “For These are Oor Ain Cod”, or somthing along those lines?

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                    1. I think you’ve nailed it, DonDon – your memory is obviously better than mine!

                      Call me Ed, please, DonDon, I think I’m going to have to do something about my handle as it’s alright for a username but not for a nickname, unlike yours.

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          1. Moira was particularly upset by a leaflet thrust into her hand by a Blackpool street urchin as she huddled for safety on the back seat of the Daimler shielding her eyes and nostrils from the hell that is Blackpool. The leaflet read: Free Cup of Tea while you play Prize Bingo and was aimed at people attending the AGM of the George Formby Fan Club. I rest my case.

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            1. Of the other leaflets that were thrust into her hand at the same time, Beauregard, although between the invitation to a meeting of the Gamblers Anonymous 12-step programme and the one for the Samaritans it was a toss-up as to which had the worst effect on our beloved chanteuse’s mood, personally I think it was the Farmfoods discount vouchers that nearly did for her – because one of them was for BOGOF Scottish tinned mackerel, which filled Moira with an overwhelming feeling of saudade for her ain folk.

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  4. 9 – I have seen some hair colour disasters on others over the years. One thing I didn’t do. I have spent a lifetime getting my hair its present colour.

    14 – The bars were a wee bit smaller than others.

    16 – Dora Bryan

    19 – Hairdryer, not exactly portable.

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  5. Few bells rung today, but the Leslie Crowther pic reminds me of an episode of Crackerjack in which he asked a quiz contestant what currency was used in what sounded like « Ayr » before telling bemused contestant that it was the punt, i.e. the currency used in Eire, as it was then known.

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    1. To digress on a specific point from my last post, I always wondered why AYR was always given in block capitals in results and league tables in L’Equipe, until my friendly paper man asked what the letters in AYR stood for. Missed opportunity to invent something but it wouldn’t have meant anything in French.

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    1. Derek: All, I know is what John told me about it in his email:

      “The car is still futuristic looking, but was designed as a ‘future concept’ for the 1951 Festival of Britain. Gas-turbine powered. Never did make it, and I suppose gas-turbine now would be no more eco-friendly than a dodgy emissions stats diesel.”

      Maybe he will elaborate…

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      1. I’ve seen a Renault 4CV – based car (at Retromobile) that had very similar proportions, hence my rear-engined guess. I’ve never seen that one before. Gas turbines are unsuited to road cars due to the throttle lag . Oh aye, and the jet of heat…

        Graham Hill drove the gas turbine Rover at Le Mans and was interviewed about it; I can’t remember if it was print or audio.

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      2. I’d have thought gas turbines would be pretty efficient, but very heavy and dealing with an exhaust of many hundreds of degrees would be interesting. A Slightly scary fact is that the first few (maybe only the first) stage of the turbine blades in an aircraft engine would melt if there weren’t cooling air pumped around them.

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    2. American? Pah! This one’s for the glory days Brexiteers, when Great Britain had a car industry to match. It was presented as a 3/8th scale-model ‘car of the future’ – rear-mounted gas-turbine engine – for the 1951 Festival of Britain. Wonder how that would go down today as eco-friendly low-emission power source? Found the pic in a 1957 Observer’s Book of Automobiles when it was still relatively modern. Must say, it’s aged reasonably well and still has a bit of a futuristic look.

      No particular make, but design credits go to GM Wilkes, HG Poole, and PL Ashmore – all MSLA after names. Member Society of Locomotive Architects? Scottish Limousine Association? Had to look that one up but still at a loss. Peerless Ed to the rescue?

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      1. Minimum School Leaving Age, of course, John! It’s their highest educational qualification.

        It could mean something else, one supposes, but even the most peerless googling can sometimes fail to roll back the mists of time into the pre-digital dark age[Yeah yeah yeah yadda yadda yadda, you mean you couldn’t find it, twerp, the people can see right through you in less than two shakes of a leopard’s tail so why not just admit it-Ed.]s.

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        1. True. Umpteen Google pages failed to come up with anything remotely feasible. Inspiration! Maybe MS is not Member,Society of but Motoring Society of… Loch Awe, London Aldershot, Limited Ability?

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    1. The picture shows Aberdeen and Chelsea footballers on the occasion of their ‘Battle of Britain’ fixture in September 1955. Aberdeen were Scottish Champions for the first time in 1954/55 season while Chelsea were champions of England.
      Both should have been competing in the inaugural European Cup, but due to (typical) SFA chicanery Hibs were the allocated Scottish representatives.
      (coincidentally, SFA president Harry Swan was also chairman of Hibernian).
      Aberdeen made clear who should be representing Scotland in Europe in 1955 when Hibs came north in the opening league game of the following league season, hammering Hibs 6-2.
      Anyway, as consolation the clubs (Aberdeen and Chelsea) met at Pittodrie for the ‘Battle of Britain’ fixture in September 1955, the mighty reds triumphing 4-3 courtesy of a Paddy Buckley hat-trick.
      I believe this photo was taken at a post-fixture ceremonial dinner at Muchall’s golf club.

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        1. I’ve always been led to believe that the SFA rejected participation in this new-fangled furrin competition, but Hibs – being of more visionary inclination – decided to go it alone. This may well have been a cover story. I was a wee boy then and my antennae for official finagling still innocent and untroubled. Why would anybody lie to me? (I used to be dragged off to church then as well.)

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  6. Pic 1 shows a Bean motor-car. Judging by the colour it’s a chocolate Bean. If the darker car to its right is also a Bean, I guess it would be a coffee Bean.

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  7. Pic 8 – wild guess – is a factory, but what are they making?

    I like the idea of the Word Chart in Pic 3. I can see how a Scottish version could e.g. give a range of words for ‘intoxicated’ –
    steamin, guttered, pished, blootered, legless, fu, wrecked, wellied, mingin, miroculous, blitzed.

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    1. It’s an ad from the 1963 Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook, Andi. Presumably saved you the hassle of having to look up Roget and his complicated index system. (Though still not as eccentric as Fowler.) Would seem that with one of these, all you need do is dial the words and ideas and out pops a story outline. I think Jeffrey Archer is still using his.

      Would love to lay hands on one though, if only t see how it works. Reminds me of the early pilots’ ‘computers’ we’ve seen here before.

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    2. I was serving on a jury once.
      The defence lawyer was at great pains to impress upon the court that any and all present at the scene of incident where a crime was alleged were under the influence of alcohol. Every witness he produced or cross-examined was subject to an enquiry as to what, how much and over what period of time they had been drinking. In time the Sheriff wearied of this , and helpfully suggested to the lawyer that he had quite established this point to the satisfaction of court. The defence lawyer acknowledged this advice with an ” I’m obliged, ma’am” and then tried valiantly to find some other, any other line of questioning and enquiry which might assist his client. Where this wee tale has any relevance at all is in relation to Andimac’s observation about the colourful and extensive vocabulary we employ to describe states of intoxication. In the court, just prior to the Sheriff helpfully refocusing the defence lawyer on matters of pertinent and significant fact, there had been some testimony from a witness which made it clear that using one term rather than the other isn’t arbitrary but that they express in some measure degrees of intoxication. This was made quite clear to this poor lawyer when he was indigently told by a witness that a third party might well have been steamin’ but they wurnae blootered and he was quite wrong to imply that their version of events was quite so unreliable.

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