Thursday 1 August 2013

Hobbit Headlines

Hi Folks.

Sorry, no Hootsmon Headlines today.

I'm going to write about something serious (well, as much as I can).

For many, many years people have took comfort in the Bible when faced with loss, aided and abetted by clergy of various hues.

That fantasy book doesn't do it for me at all.

So I'm going to read  'The Hobbit' tonight, just as I did when my great grandmother died.

Much better.

Goodbye Bessie.


  1. Conan I have had the honour to bury my Father, Mother and my younger Sister over a relatively short period. I say honour because I paid for all three; it was the least I could do for those who were still alive and distraught, so distraught that they would have been easy pickings for the funereal cartel and I had enough self control to make sure that I did not have my pockets filched.

    My Dad's funeral was a traditional one in that it was moderated by a Minister, but one he knew personally and liked. The feeling was apparently mutual and on hearing of my Dad's death voluteered to do the necessaries. He refused all recompense, even for his petrol. As my Dad was still in harness, 64 and 2 weeks to retirement there were a lot of work colleagues so in a way I gave into the easiest route.

    My Mum was more problematic as he circle of family, friends and colleagues was quite much smaller than my Dad. I chose the local Minister and he did it, even injecting some nuance of familiarity with her into the proceedings. He trousered the necessaries and disappeared into the mists of my mind. The flowers were sent to and old folks' home, with the condolence cards removed.

    For my Sister it was much simpler. I had a friend from work who on retirement had become a humanist celebrant. He agreed to do the necessaries and again refused to take any money but,I gave him a case of wine later. He actually sat for 5 hours in two sessions to get to know her two kids (both over 21) and also my sister. His was a much more personal service and all of us, who knew her spoke to the children at the Crematorium about little memories of Mother; memories that would otherwise have died without being said at that time. Nice touch and very helpful to them with some jokes being included. We were celebrating the life of someone and what she had contributed in her passage to everyone around her. Simples?

    Both my daughters chose the humanist route for their marriages, one in England to an Englishman and the other in Scotland to her school sweatheart.

    Organised religion is very much on the way out and its lobotomised litany and rituals too, thank goodness.

    Just relive her in your mind and try not to let how much she meant to you be lost. It is the best way of honouring someone I can think about.


    I have been trying to find your e-mail address since my computer burned out and the hard disk fried.

    I was on to Tris seeking to find it and if you go there you will see my post looking for yoyu.

    I will be back in Scotland late on the 21st August to the morning of the 28th for a family wedding. It is my nephew's wedding, my Sister's boy and again he has chosen a humanist service on a Sunday. A two fingered salute to organised religion and a testimony that life goes on, black clothed purveyors or doom, gloom and happy-clappy present or not.

    So, how do you fancy a swally in Glasgow on Saturday afternoon, after a spot of lunch?

    It might be theraputic for ye?


    Bugger (the Panda)
    Wolfie and a few others

    All the best

    James McLaren

  2. Condolences Conan. Thinking about you.

    Get in touch with James... I can't make a meet, but I'm sure it will be a good one.

  3. Sean, old friend and someone who lightened my life when I was sorely in need of it. Apart from that, old friend, I really do not know what to say except to offer you my friendship along with that of many others, I'm sure, and hope that will be of some comfort.

    God bless,


  4. From a Wee Free Buddhist, that means a lot John.

    Omn thingy paddy om.

    But not on a Sunday.

  5. Maddo on Newsnicht tonight. He sounds a bit like John Major----

    But probably more to the right of the grey man.

    "Oh you can't help not hating John Major, you have to agree he is a very nice bloke" as the Spitting Image song went.

    Not sure if the Ravenscraig workers would agree--

    The Aberdonian