Whisky nose McCulloch was one of the most grating within the gammon brain clique from the local bowling club. He would sit with Bruce Campbell, and Arch Thomson on a Sunday afternoon.
Whisky nose was christened his label due to his red cricket ball nose. He had a resemblance to Sid James and consistently wore the same black shirt with small silver tassels on the collar, it reminded me of something that Johnny Cash would wear. His permanent tipple was the half-pint of McEwan’s Lager and a wee scotch chaser eventually resulting in his red nose.
Whisky nose had retired from bowling but would see himself as a fabric of the club and he could still drink with his loyal friends.
One Sunday afternoon myself and John Paul approached the bar in the bowling club, the bar was placed in the top corner which meant you had to walk past everyone to get there. The gammon clique were growling at us as we walked the gauntlet of bile. Then the obligatory verbal’s were dished out at us, “cunts” and “IRA bassas!” This was seen as banter by the committee of this fine upstanding establishment. “Awfy laddies” the bar staff responded to the gammons.
Before we could order a drink, Raymond the Barman informed us there had been a complaint lodged against us. With confusion, we asked what this was to be. The bowling clubs charge was: “smoking fuckin drugs and being obstructive in conversation to senior members”. When we asked for evidence and who the complainant was, Raymond replied: “Mr McCulloch seen yiz chewing gum and drinking coke”
So this implies we must be taking or smoking drugs as on certain days we were not drinking alcohol. And being obstructive in conversation was a metaphor for straighten out the gammons in any kind of debate. Meanwhile back on planet earth, Raymond informed us that the committee had considered banning us but if we were to become annual members of the club then that would be sufficient.
“We are a fair club, we believe in second chances and rehabilitation. Mr McCulloch and the others are fine men and fine members of this club as well as yersels if you sign up”, Raymond tells us.
He then politely appealed to us, “if you could also refrain from referring to him as whisky nose as he doesn’t like confrontation”. We’re assuming Raymondo must have had cloth in his ears when the gammons welcomed us into the club a few minutes before. As I and JP stood in amazement I could only think of a famous saying “confidence is silent, insecurities are loud”.
So, an eight-pound membership for the year was purchased and to be quite honest I think me and JP became members for laughter purposes. Whisky nose was the most bitter among his merry followers. Arch Thompson would load the gun for him and Bruce Campbell.
The gammons were getting intoxicated with McEwan’s lager and whisky as the night grew old. There were the favourite tunes coming on the jukebox. One of them being “Live is Life – Opus” and they all sing along in unison …
Then it’s life NA NA NA NA NA …
Live is life NA NA NA NA NA!!
As they all clapped and slapped the table. Even auld Dougie came over to join in the shenanigans clapping hands in time with the lyrics.
When we all give the power
We all give the best
Every minute of an hour
Don’t think about a rest
Then you all get the power
You all get the best
And everyone gives everything and every song
Everybody sings …
NA NA NA NA NA live is life!!
To be continued …