I love Glasgow. Always have, and always will. Do I miss it? Sure. I especially miss friends and family. But I don’t lie awake at night, home sick, desperate to return. It is a great city, but it is in my past. However, media coverage – good and bad – about Glasgow still attracts my attention. The following extract, from a piece by Hattie Kennedy at the Book Riot site, is a good example:
Since moving to Glasgow ten years ago, one of my favourite things about living in this beautiful city has been exploring all of the exciting literary secrets the city has to offer. From beautiful libraries with astonishing carpets, to second-hand bookshops that would melt the hardest of bookish hearts, this city is a veritable wonderland for those of us with a literary bent.
Note the “beautiful city” description. I agree. It almost makes me want to jump on a plane and head back to the joys of the Clockwork Orange (the underground railway) and the stark pleasures of a West of Scotland winter. Almost, but not quite. Read the whole thing here.
Glasgow is the UK’s friendliest city, yet the most violent. It has the most unemployed families in the UK, but has the most shops anywhere outside of London. Only in Glasgow, eh?
Hmmm. You can check the list out here. It’s a set of stereotypes – often pretty insulting ones – as you can judge by some of the comments. It may have been a cack handed misguided attempt at humor, but it failed, miserably. Glasgow has so much more going for it, and its people are so much better than portrayed here. But bet some of the mud sticks.
For the record, I own up to drinking too much Irn Bru. Oh, and I’m still fiercely proud to be a Glaswegian. So I seem to be missing 23 of these signs.
‘This is Glesca,’ Moira told her. ‘Any time you’re confused, take a wee minute to remind yourself of that inescapable fact: this is Glesca. We don’t do subtle, we don’t do nuanced, we don’t do conspiracy. We do pish-heid bampot bludgeoning his girlfriend to death in a fit of paranoid range induced by forty-eight hours straight on the batter. We do coked-up neds jumping on a guy’s heid outside a nightclub because he looked at them funny. We do drug-dealing gangster rockets shooting other drug-dealing gangster rockets as comeback for something almost identical a fortnight ago. We do bam-on-bam. We do tit-for-tat, score-settling, feuds, jealousy, petty revenge. We do cannaemisswhodunnit. When you hear hoofbeats on Sauchielhall Street, it’s gaunny be a horse, no’ a zebra, because?’
‘This is Glesca,’ she answered.
In case you were wondering:
(1) “Glesca” is how some people pronounce “Glasgow” in the native dialect. (The emphasis is on “native”.)
(2) The passage is taken from Chris Brookmyre‘s wonderful Where the Bodies are Buried, reviewed by me, here.