Monday, December 26, 2016

Murray's Law

Newton's third law states that when one body exerts a force on a second body, the second body simultaneously exerts a force equal in magnitude and opposite in direction on the first body. I'm not sure if David Murray knew of this when he sold Rangers (IL) to Craig Whyte then helped Whyte guide the club to liquidation but I am going to hazard a guess that the second Whyte pleaded not guilty in court last week that, David Murray felt that equal force hit him back.

It wasn't meant to be like this.

Murray's plan was to ease Whyte in so he could be the liquidation fall guy and he(Murray) could wash his hands of the whole fiasco that was entirely his doing. The media of course lapped up Whyte initially and then were happy to bury him on the instructions of their old master. The one thing that they did not factor on was the colossal cojones of our dear Craigy boy. See, despite the thug life ramblings of a few bigots outside of court in Glasgow, don't think for one second that Craig Whyte has been bothered by any of this. Indeed, after the shit hit the fan at Ibrox, you may well think wee Craig headed for a bunker akin to Hitler's one in Berlin.

Not so.

He did spend a bit more time in Monaco and some in Costa Rica but for the main he set up camp in London's Mayfair district and pretty much did what he wanted. He met Prince at a London gig and also signed up to an exclusive "Sugar Daddy" website that saw him take out and bed scores of young, beautiful women. For a hefty fee of course.

Even going through a divorce, Whyte would state to his ex wife's lawyer that he would have "No qualms whatsoever" about taking his children for a walk through the streets of Glasgow (Not quite the same views as Cairngorms Park that they previously had the run of)

Where am I going with this?

Well, no one thought Craig Whyte would plead not guilty and open up the very real possibility that David Murray will have to appear in court. Murray spent a lifetime cultivating contacts among the Edinburgh Establishment to avoid things like that and believe me he is worried.

I'm not sure what well happen next, a lot of this has a whiff of Paul Burrell about it who famously didn't have to go to court after The Queen suddenly remembered the conversation he claimed they had had all along.

So potentially we are a few months away from that one glorious morning that will see David Murray having to talk in court about his part in Rangers liquidation.

The question in the meantime is, what force awaits Craig Whyte?

Monday, December 19, 2016

ABC shuts down for 2016

The tour that is, Bobby Madden showed on Saturday that the mentality is still alive and well.

Philadelphia kicked off the north American leg of the tour and huge props to the Philly No1 CSC who put on a gig despite circumstances that would test the patience of Pope Francis. Firstly, they had two venues cancel on them, one the day before the gig, so to still get it to go ahead, and be such a great night, is kudos to them. They also dealt with a strange apathy from the new club in the city which I personally have dealt with before in a few places. For whatever reason, you sometimes get people who just won't have anything to do with an event because it is being organised by someone else. An utterly bizarre attitude towards a Celtic event but there you go. It happens all over the world but that doesn't make it any more mind-boggling when people put personal politics before Celtic. With this in mind, I can't thank Mike, Tom and Jim for rising above all this and showing what Celtic is all about and making me feel so welcome.

Special shout out to my main man Scott Richards who came out and renewed my belief that we are brothers from different mothers.

The next morning, it was off to The Big Apple. The Megabus sheltered us from extreme brass monkey type cold and the free wifi helped the journey pass like Tom Rogic. I was staying on 1st Avenue and 12th St in an apartment that was owned by a guy called Bruce "You can call me Angel" with a twirly mustache. (Sorry Bruce, I don't call any guy "Angel") and was all good. It was a quick freshen up and off to Demseys. Now, there had been a quandary bout this gig, it was the same day as "Santacon" in the city and this meant a million morons in Santa outfits would be marauding round the city. We decided to go ahead anyway and the fact it was a success is all down to Big Tommy from the NY Fenian Bhoys, the sort of guy wouldn't stand beside you in the trenches, he would stand in front of you.

Special shout out to Steven Wright, an old friend, who came and out and strolled down memory lane with me, it was bliss.

Sunday morning, up with the lark and it was Megabus time again, this time to Boston. Arriving there it was cold, I mean rip the face off you type cold. We were met pre gig by James Gillen and it took about 45 seconds to realise he was sound as a pound and before long we were being Ubered to the gig. It was good to see Billy Ramsey again and good to meet his son Conor who is already an encyclopedia of Celtic. The gig was absolutely fantastic and it really was one of those nights that make all the bullshit worthwhile.

Special shout out to the owner of the pub who told me 'I'd love to see the movie but I've been on the rip three days solid"

Then back to NYC for a few days before heading out to California. Getting up at 6am for a 925am flight to San Francisco, I took the L Train, E Train and Air Train to JFK. No issues and on the plane, ready to go, when the pilot announces we are now leaving at 1210pm and need to get off the plane. Worse things happen at sea though and we did leave at 1210pm for a seven hour bumpy flight into the face of a 110 mph wind. This obviously meant a major delay getting in and made a hour journey from the airport take three hours due to rush hour traffic we now had to encounter.

Next day it was off top Sonoma County and a gig there the day after on the Saturday. I love the guys in that CSC. Peter, Jimmy and Isaac aren't just friends, they are like a crew. I had a great time and laughed my ass off for most of it.

Special shout out to Rachel who is like my life coach and had me on the the right track in no time at all. Thank you.

So the tour goes into hibernation until January 13th. It's been great for the most part but equally draining. I have to remind you that everything we do is independent. We don't hate the media but take their publicity, we just hate the media. I pay my own way everything except for my hotel in Philadelphia(Philly CSC) and my flight to California (Sonoma County CSC). It is not a money making operation nor is it the means to a career, writing books and making films is my career. That is why I am immensely grateful for every share, every like, every retweet, every heart, for everyone who books me, who comes out to a gig and who buys a book. Also, for those who take time to send a message of support, it is massively appreciated and acts as my jet fuel.

As for the knockers and begrdugers? Pogue Mahone.

See you in January.

Friday, December 9, 2016

ABC hits Philadelphia

Today is the North American premiere of 'Anyone but Celtic' and, like The Asterisk Years, it is in Philadelphia. The venue is Smith's bar and restaurant on 39 S19th st. 19103 from 5 pm.

People often ask me why certain places are picked and the answer is they aren't, at least not by me. I go where I am invited and that is it in a nutshell. I am always honoured to be asked to come anywhere and the hospitality I have been shown by the Philadelphia CSC has been fantastic.  We are all Celtic.

The city of brotherly love.

There are plenty brothers in ABC but I can assure you none of them love you.

I love the ability to take what I do around the world and tell the stories of what I found out through sources and research with no small amount investigative journalism although the latter is not something I trumpet, there are plenty other card carriers to do that. The story is all that matters.

This isn't "new media" it is just "media" but it requires constant promotion. A lot of folk still don't understand this and it bursts my head as well to be honest (I'd love nothing more than to live in a world where I just focus on the work and someone else did the promotion) but that is the reality for now.  That is why I appreciate every like, every share, every retweet.

They are what get me to the likes of Philadelphia and I hope as many of you as possible can join me today.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Scotland the what?

Can it really just be over two years ago that almost half this country took Scotland to the brink of independence? I remember the vibe well, the country was electric with politics with younger people in particular energised in a way I'd never seen before in my life. I was at Edinburgh College then and it was literally all folk spoke about from the return in August right up until September 18th. Indeed I witnessed two lecturers going at it hammer and tongs after a debate in the college when Tommy Sheridan, among others, spoke. I'll never forget one lecturer shouting way louder than I had ever heard him before "Margaret Thatcher ruined my life!!!!" and I could sense the awakening all around me.

So what happened?

Two years on and Scotland seems to be sleepwalking back to the bad old days where its protest peaked with a letter to the Radio Times complaining that another Scot had been portrayed as a drunken brawler on the BBC.  As England lurches further and further to the right, what are people here watching? Latest polls, whilst completely unreliable I know, put support for independence at 38%. 38%? That suggests 7% of the folk who voted yes two years ago now would vote no.

What are they seeing that I am not?

We are now in a situation in Scotland where perennial losers like Ruth Davidson and Murdo Fraser are given platforms to condition the populous to believe they are worthless. Weekly, Question Time works my blood pressure harder than sodium yet this is not being reflected by the general public. The ease at which the British Government can find money to upgrade palaces whilst a lot of our people don't know if they will eat today should make your blood curdle.

Yet, for most, it doesn't.

It may be that the country I see every day is not the country I see reflected on TV. From The Great British Bake Off to The One Show, I feel like a guy I once read about who went to prison in London in 1962 and came out in 1977 and the first thing he saw were two guys with punk hairstyles and he genuinely thought we had been invaded by aliens. I've become so tetchy to what is happening in England that I don't even watch the EPL any more. That might sound daft but once you realise it is nothing more than a roulette wheel designed to keep you paying then you see it in a whole new light.

I feel like we are in limbo in Scotland right now, desperate for leadership and a specific way ahead. Forget the dominion status independence that was on the table two years ago, hang your balls and vaginas out there and fucking go for it.

Cause I can't take much more of Mary Berry.