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Week 266 – Eleven Stages Of Being (A Marshmallow), Respect Due To Connie Francis And Hooch Makes A Cracking Shandy.

Here we are once again guys.

I was wondering about our physical development time line. I think it went something like:

Baby. Toddler. Kid. Teenager. Adult.

Now-a-days we have:

Baby. Toddler. Pre-School. Young child. Older child. Pre-Teen. Young teenager. Teenager. Older teenager. Young adult. Adult.

This is very apparent in attitudes, as in, it takes the fuckers a helluva lot longer to grow up.

In the olden days when you left school and went out to work, you had about a day to adapt. If you didn’t you’d have been crucified. I’m not just talking about physical bullying, I’m talking about things that would now make our Snowflake Generation be running (Sorry – Getting a taxi) to their Mummies / Daddies / Counsellors / Facebook / Twitter / Doctor / Psychiatrists / Psychologists and anyone else who would listen.

It was brutal but I’m glad that I experienced it. Learning from those first few days at work in a very unsympathetic adult environment enabled me to spot all types of people and be able to handle many a situation.

I was a wreck as a kid and had managed to sort myself out as a teen and in a way that helped – Not the sorting myself but remembering the wreck, I knew I couldn’t go down that road again so I simply had to look after myself.

My ‘official’ working career began at sixteen in a Sawmill. I worked amongst around thirty hairy-arsed tradesmen, labourers and truck drivers. The first day I was there I had my sausage roll squashed, (That isn’t a euphemism…It could have been though) I was asked if I was virgin, was assumed that I was a virgin and hereafter was referred to as: ‘HAW! YOU! FUCKING VIRGIN!

There were enquiries about whether or not my sister or mother would ‘do a turn’ and everyone stated that I’d been caught with ‘My hand in the cheese’.

I had to do something about this. There was no Hollywood idea of facing up to them and beating the shit out of them. Any one of them would have killed me! And that included ‘Haunless’ the blind in one eye, patch on the other cross-cut saw operator and the wee old woman who cleaned the toilets.

So when we were on a tea-break I asked the gaffer of the warehouse if he liked music. He said he did. I was instigating conversation and they were all curious about this. Not because they were interested but because they wanted to find some more ammunition to rip the pish.

I asked him if he had a five pound note, he did. I told him that if he knew about music he could see the three songs that were on the note. He looked at it and pointed out the image of Britannia – ‘Rule Britannia’

He saw the inscription and pointed out ‘God Save The Queen’.

He studied it for a few minutes and shook his head.

I held out my hand and he gave me the note. I nodded as I agreed with his two conclusions. I waited until he asked, ‘So what the fuck is the third song?’

I ripped it in half, and said, ‘Who’s Sorry Now’. For a second I thought he was going to kill me but he started laughing and said, ‘You better have some Sellotape on you, you wee prick!’

After that, I was called by my name and even got the odd coffee bought for me.

If we take that same initial scenario in these days, The Young Adult would be stressed to the hilt. They would need to see their doctor. They would insist that they had PTSD and a Personality Disorder which was affecting their mental health. They would be looking for months of therapy and an intervention in their workplace with them, their mother, all workmates who were involved, The Personnel Department and an interview with some Day-Time TV show.

My point is there was very little transition period and no-one to fall back on. And that in a weird way got me wondering:

Did we always have Young Adult Fiction?

I think I did read what would be classed as Young Adult now-a-days for our immature delicates even though I reckon it was still a kids book. It was ‘The Clue Of The Screeching Owl’ by Franklin W. Dixon (I also got a copy of this for my fortieth birthday.)

I moved on from that to Lee Chang’s ‘Year Of The…’ series and there was no way that they could have been classed as kids books. For me they were adult, brutal and very informative sex manuals!

Basically, we went from Enid Blyton to Stephen King.

But now we have these transition books. I don’t know if they are healthy.

If, as an adult, you make a mistake and start reading one, they ruin your happiness and make you swear a lot.

To all teenagers and older children, grow a set of balls and read a real book which looks at more than your age groups perspective. In life, your problems will all arise from how you perceive and live with others point of view. So get ahead of the game and start dealing with what you will inevitably have to.

OK, onto this week’s stories.

We had two new writers, a third timer, an enigmatic lady who is heading towards another milestone and me.

Our topics this week include; Turnip, cultural appropriation, audience participation, Tarbolton and avocado toast.

As always our initial comments follow.


I was first up on Monday with ‘Soup‘.

This was all about one of those daft arguments that escalate.

It is always worrying when two brothers or in this case two best pals fall out – Someone will always be seriously hurt.

Thanks as always to Nik and Diane for their help and encouragement.


On Tuesday, we had a newcomer.

We welcome both our new writers, hope they have fun on the site and have a long association with us.

Steve DuBois first story for us was ‘Appropriate.’

‘There’s some originality here and a whole heap of dark humour.’

‘The Science Fiction part was logical and believable.’

‘A clever comment on where things are going.’


The site wouldn’t be the same without our next writer.

It is a delight to work with Leila Allison.

She comments, she keeps the Sunday Re-Run running and she is an astounding writer.

I think probably the longest title we’ve had, ‘Advice From The Other Side: Hoe To Avoid Literary Success In Life And Be Considered A Genius In Death By The Late Judge Jasper P. Montague, Quillemender‘ was Leila’s sixtieth story for us was next up on Wednesday.


‘What imagination, inventiveness and memory!’

‘I love these fable / reality / writer involvement stories from Leila.’


Next up we had Matthew Richardson with his third story.

The Ragged Frenchman‘ was published on Thursday.

‘I’m not a fan of this structure but I thought this was excellent.’

‘I was drawn into this.’

‘Even though the reveal of the temptation has been done many times, Matthew did a cracking job with this.’


On Friday we had another new writer.

We extend the same welcome.

Thao Nguyen’s ‘Of Empty And Sliding‘ finished off the week.

‘This was a strange story of things mattering but what we do regarding them not mattering.’

‘The tone was very good and I enjoyed this.’

‘Bleak, depressing and the questions it raises aren’t comforting or inspiring – I like that!’


That’s us for another week.

The usual reminders.

Keep the comments coming. I can’t tell you what a difference they make.

And why not have a go at the Sunday Re-Run. Leila has been all by herself for a while now.

Pick an older story that you’ve enjoyed, write a spiel or an introduction throw in a few questions for the writer. We’ll publish exactly what you have sent us.

(Hello!! Is anyone reading this???)


Last thing about transition from one thing to another.

Kids went from drinking fizzy drinks to the bitterness of lager. It took you a wee while to get accustomed. (I was a bit different, I went straight from Red Cola to the Carlsberg Specials and loved them until they made me very sick. When I think on it, that answers so many questions.)

The first alcopop we had here was ‘Hooch’ which was an alcoholic lemonade. I didn’t think that was a good idea as kids didn’t need to get used to anything, they now had alcohol in the drinks that they had always been used to.

Scottish people only use alcopops as mixers or for putting their toddlers to sleep.

It’s the same with all those weird flavour Vaping thingys. Cherry Tunes and Blackjack flavour doesn’t deter the same way the lung-burning of a pack of Camels did!

The difference of then and now is:

Reading ‘Deathday’ where the world is fucked, smoking an unfiltered Capstan Full Strength and drinking a Guinness.

Compared to:

Reading a mindful teenage angst story which explores your feelings, sexual / gender identity and anxieties whilst vaping on ‘Angel Unicorn Breath’ and drinking a Bacardi Breezer.

‘Snowflake’ is much too rugged a term for them!



…But when I think on it, should I be so hard on our pussybawz youngsters for them being that way? Or should I despise their parents for enabling them??

4 thoughts on “Week 266 – Eleven Stages Of Being (A Marshmallow), Respect Due To Connie Francis And Hooch Makes A Cracking Shandy.”

  1. The world is becoming like that in Vonnegut’s Harrison Bergeron. Since you cannot make dumb people smart you’ve gotta make the smart people dumb, so everyone can be equal. That is why there is no such thing as a lazy ass bum anymore. It has all kinds of social disorders and nothing is its fault. (No more, him or her and never they for me. It is the perfect pronoun to use when writing about fucked up people in these fucked up times.)
    I know how this sounds, but damn it, grown ups don’t “tell Mom” when people hurt their feelings. I like the five pound note thing you did. Still, I’m a little surprised that you have lived as long as you have, all things considered.
    Take care,


    1. Hi Leila,
      Love your line about grown ups!
      What really rips ma knittin’ is that no-one is willing to take responsibility for their own actions. And from there, as you say, there is a distribution of blame.
      I worry about the mental health overkill as this is watering down the help for those who genuinely need it. Every court report I am reading in my local paper starts with ‘My client has a personality disorder.’
      We all do, some are manageable like a cold, others are killers like cancer but we are bending over for the ones with a cold!
      Thanks as always, a Saturday would be a lonely place without you!


    1. Hi Doug,
      Thanks so much for you reading and commenting in such a thought provoking way.
      If I’m honest, this is not so much thought provoking for me, more reference checking!
      But I love a comment that makes me curious!!
      All the very best my friend, it’s great to see you around the site.


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