Archive | December, 2016

#LISSEN. Beware Monsters.

7 Dec


Beware Lurking Monsters if you accidentally blunder up one of life’s Shit Creeks.

The following is an extract from my book, My Early Daze by Andrew Wishart. This is a wry memoir book describing my growing up years during the 1940’s in wartime Scotland food rationing when there were no sweets or candies available. We had seen pictures of exotic foreign fruits like bananas and pineapples, but that was as close as we could get. There was a war on.

‘There was a disaster one afternoon when, owing to time lost on our shopping expedition hoping to locate some apples rumoured to be for sale at the local greengrocers. We arrived back at the movie theatre or, The Picture Hoose, as we called it, when most of the other kids had already been admitted to the Saturday matinee. We had to sit in the only unfilled seats immediately behind the front row of ‘one penny scratchers’ where the dreaded Murphy brothers were always seated.

The house lights were already dimmed when the usher Frank Foley barked at us to hurry up, indicating with his bright flashlight the only available seats still vacant. The four of us tumbled gratefully into the seats located very close to the big screen and prepared to watch the already running Gaumont British Newsreel which was not exactly filled with patriotic news of British military victories at this stage of World War 2. in 1943.

We rubbed our apples on our sleeves to cleanse them of any possible germs then sank our young teeth gratefully into the fruit which resulted in a bright crunching noise. In front of us, in the dark, four closely and badly cropped heads swiveled round, in unison we heard,”Giez yer runt!”

It was the dreaded four Murphy brothers. Their mother always cut their hair, even in the dark their skulls stood out in menacing silhouette against the big film screen. Our pleasure of eating the apples was immediately postponed. The Murphy’s were requesting that we should hand over our apple cores when we had finished eating. God help us if we handed over any apple without leaving a generous amount of fruit still on the apple.

We had never actually seen the Murphy’s beating anybody up but their reputation was enough for us. The four of us each took a small perfunctory bite from our apples before handing them over virtually untouched to the ruffians in the row in front.

I guess we were looking at our almost untouched apples as a kind of insurance payment against any violence in the future. We did a wee bit of rebellious muttering about Frank Foley who had ushered us into this scary seat situation in the first place but we knew when we were beat’.

The moral of this wee story is Be Prepared. Of course we could have avoided blundering up yet another one of life’s Shit Creek accidents if we had the foresight to eat our precious apples before we reached The Picture Hoose and would not have had our unfortunate brush with the dreaded Murphy brothers. Perhaps the loss of our precious and scarce apples would teach us a lesson but we were only six years old at that time.

More details of my books and video can be seen at the links below;

Andy Wishart. (Made in Scotland).


Series of interesting wry Daze memoirs from Scotland. YouTube link ;


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