Issue 203
May/June 2018

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May 24, 2018
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    Maxwell Macleod's Cauld Blast

    A farewell to Derek Kidd and – if he's not careful – to America's greatest President ever. Maxwell is scheming to get The Donald thrown out of the Clan Macleod. Heaven forbid!

    A.A.GILL, whose former wife was so disgracefully bullied from her job as Home Secretary the other day, once remarked:

    "The interesting adults are always the school failures, the weirdies, the losers, the malcontents."

    Which is probably why Derek Kidd, who has died aged 73, was so fascinating. And to some extent worth his rations.

    Derek was a story teller, possibly to excess, and nobody knows how many of his stories about himself were true.

    Did he really take a job in a noisy pub as editor of Poetry magazine only to discover that he was in fact to be employed as editor of Poultry magazine?

    Did his stepfather really pay him five thousand dollars a year to keep out of Canada? Did his pub owning grandmother and guardian really feed him nothing but attention and stout when he was a child leading to his life long addiction to both?

    And exactly how often did he, whilst dancing, take his socks off, dip them in crè me de menthe, set them alight and wave them around his head?

    We will now never know. But he did make us laugh, and think about who we were and even if he was as reliable as a Colonsay summer and had a career that was more of a verb than a noun, at least he fearlessly broke the mould.

    AA Gill again; "Facts are what the unimaginative have instead of ideas?"

    Derek had no wife, but may well have had other peoples', and perhaps even brought a little joy into their excruciatingly dull lives.

    I wish there were a dozen more Derek Kidds alive today, though God, forbid, in the same room.

    I'M HORRIFIED to hear that that the proposal to turn Edinburgh's exquisite Royal High School into a ghastly hotel with Micky Mouse shaped multi storey extensions is back once again before the planners.

    I urge you to protest. Yes, I know it will be a nuisance and may take up several minutes of your time, but just imagine how you will feel if it goes ahead and you hadn't been bothered?

    Where is the ever amiable Murray Grigor and his excellent plan to turn it into a music school? I understand that he has the funds as well as the dream. Raise your banner Murray, we are ready to follow.

    TALKING OF misuse of major buildings in Edinburgh, you may remember that in the last edition we heard of how Edinburgh's Tron Kirk was to close as a market place, throwing dozens of young crafts people onto the street. Well, it happened, and now the place lies empty in the epi-centre of Scotland's busiest tourist street, The Royal Mile.

    My understanding is that there are various half baked plans to spend millions on it to turn it into some kind of heritage centre, but that the money and the fully developed plans are not yet in place.

    It's easy enough to be a romantic socialist, but why is it that whenever people don't have their own money at risk, or as the Australians put it, a dog in the fight, that we so often we see nothing but lethargy and inertia?

    If the planners were personally losing a couple of hundred quid a week for every week that the place wasn't being used (as the impoverished crafts people now are) I am sure they wouldn't have chucked them before they were ready to act.

    The overall scheme may well be laudable but wouldn't it have been better to have got everything ready to go before chucking the crafters out in the street?

    WE REALLY have to do something about Donald Trump. That he should now be claiming he is a peace maker in Korea is as ludicrous as Vladimir Putin now offering to be an adjudicator in Syria when he himself has been in the instigator of so much slaughter.

    Here's an idea for a starter.

    Trump's Mother was a MacLeod and this summer sees the bi-annual Clan MacLeod Parliament. Might it not be idea to propose a motion at the Parliament that he be expelled from the Clan?

    Any Macleod who wants to back the idea is very welcome to contact me here at ArtWork.

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