Friday, November 6, 2020

4 Good Men Down?


There is a big question hanging about nowadays, I suppose because of social media when everything is an open book, and we know so much about the person behind public persona, an unguarded tweet   that the publicist didn’t manage to edit before it was let loose on the world. And the question is how do we deal with the fact that while we may admire the person for their art and craft, for the product of their creative brain, we might detest everything that they might stand for in their life.

Can we separate those two things, or does the latter taint the former?

 It has come into close question recently with JK Rowling and her stance on trans gender issues.  Although I didn’t get very far into that argument before I lost the ability to understand it.  Neither do either of my trans friends who have the view that anything a writer says does not affect their existence in any way whatsoever.

Also it seemed a  shades of grey as to being offended by what she said as a human being ( one issue) but then being  ready to be offended again by the contents of her fiction work (  another issue all together )

I  might have mentioned that the  Hate Speech Bill going through the Scottish Parliament  was recalled to be reworded as it meant that being a Scot and  writing, say ‘The  Silence Of The Lambs’  could land you in jail as you would be causing offence by the way you portrayed a cross dressing character. Thankfully Val McDermid, amongst many others,   stated publicly that the bill was a very bad idea, badly worded, and it was sent back to be rethought.


                                                      Nobby, with teeth.....

And so we come to four famous people who died this week. One that may have passed you by was Nobby Styles, (famously rhyming slang for haemorrhoids among; Nobby Styles= piles). He was a stalwart  of the famous  1966 English World Cup squad , a team that are slowly slipping away from us as the fearless young men  of  the triumphant team succumb to anno domini. He had a good life, well lived. He was known, in his day, as the toothless dancer, the destroyer of that German team. I guess for him, it is truly ‘all over’.  


                                               Without Teeth!

  It was also the week that Sean Connery died.  It was headline news all over the world of course, for many he was the only Bond worth having. I think it’s fair to say he was a complex man.  I read a neat little by line, ‘he was one of the most famous Scots, but maybe not the one we should be most proud of.’  I have asked every single patient in this week, (a good diversion from us talking about the election over the pond) what their feelings were and the answers were uniform.  Great actor - well great at Sean Connery acting, but probably not a very nice man.  He is on record as saying that he approved of hitting women (not in the same way he’d hit a man but still!) And it’s reported, I don’t know of it’s true or not, that he wasn’t always very nice to the dogs and cats he owned when he lived in Marbella and have to leave for an extended period for a film.  Plus the tax fraud court cases.


                                               Yes, you can see the tattoo!!

And there’s a huge personal gripe- don’t interfere in the politics of a country if you live elsewhere and don’t pay any taxes.   No matter what his tattoo says; Scotland Forever? It should read ‘Scotland Forever until I’m rich enough to escape the bloody weather.’

  But does that take away from his steely gaze in The Hunt for Red October?  Does it distract from that twinkle in his eye when he called Harrison Ford ‘junior’?  All rules were played with a twist on a Scottish accent; he always kept that tattoo covered.

There’s no doubt, that he came from nothing and made a very good career for himself. No doubt he was a tough man, he had to be.

Have a little giggle with the video at the end.


                                                   Bobby Ball

 Bobby Ball (born Robert Harper) a much loved comedian also died, age 77 of covid this week. He was part of the Cannon and Ball double act. He was the wee short one with the twinkle in his eye, he just made people laugh; when he walked on stage, the audience laughed. He just had that ‘thing’.

Bobby Ball- Rock On Tommy

 He was a very good comedy actor, never sticking to the lines, sending the rest of the cast into hysterics. He seemed to have grown up until he was 8 years old, then  he thought adulthood wasn’t for him, so retracted  back to that age and stayed there.

 He had a famous catch phrase, ‘Rock on tommy,’ often said while pinging his braces. When he died the famous Blackpool Tower was illuminated with the words ‘Rock on Bobby.’  His wife and kids adored him, spending a life of wondering what Dad was going to get up to next. His humour was never cruel, never cutting, He was just funny.


                                In his youth, John Session was a marvellous impersonator.

   And then John Sessions passed away as well. A highly intellectual man, a great impersonator, and a fabulous actor when he put his mind to it. He was a Largs boy, a local boy. A general good egg.


                                                                   John in his later years, a well known face

 I suppose a way of looking at it is, which one would you invite back from the Endless Sleep for a coffee, a cake and a good natter?  

For me, it wouldn’t be Sean. But you can't take away from the man what he achieved ; and if you  want a laugh, just watch this;


  1. Very nice. And the clip is very funny. I'll admit some slight confusion when they cut back to him on stage. Standing under that mask, I thought he was going to do a scene from Zardoz. Which film was unaccountably left out of the retrospective!

  2. Jasper Fforde tells some amazing stories about Sean's penny pinching antics on film sets. The actor was also not one to suffer fools who failed to do their job properly. Regardless of that, Sean was a great film star, the best Bond and a Scotsman through and through. I'm glad he kept his dementia condition private so we can remember him for his performances and not how he died.

  3. An American Reality TV star also passed on this week...he just doesn't know it yet.