Posts Tagged ‘life’

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Taking stock

In Friends,Lessons,Life,Work on August 21, 2014 by kiltforhire Tagged: , ,

It’s been a while since I’ve posted on here. Terribly sorry. I didn’t really feel like I had too much to say as life whizzed by and over took me.

I guess I missed the words which has brought me back here.

However, normally when I come here I come to rant or slam something or to talk about something personal. Today? Nah. Too much has happened in the past year for me to even put down on digital ink and commit to cyberspace.

Today though. Today is about the future. It’s about the lessons learned from the past in work, in relationships and in life.

It’s about the years of journalism experience that has fueled my core and allowed me to dive into the world of public relations and social media. That skill set has stood me in good stead as I furthered my career by cutting my teeth in digital and marketing. Taking the time to move career and focus on new areas has allowed me to retain my core skills but build around them so I can work across the majority of promotional aspects for any business.

I was really lucky to have worked for over two years at NBN Co driving digital communications for them and building the brand from something small to the company it is today. I like to think I made a difference to how people saw the company which is no bad thing.

Confidence is important in a workplace and I realised that I’d lost some of my confidence while working on a start-up. It’s a different beast and it doesn’t allow you to use your main abilities but instead teaches you a whole new skill set but sometimes that comes at the detriment to your older skills.

I also realised that my connection with my homeland felt further away than ever. A recent visit back home changed that. Seeing my friends and family from Scotland reminded me how far I’ve come and how my life has changed in the past ten years.

Seeing my dad also made me realise the abilities he passed down to me and how they have kept me going. His constant socialising, joking and ability to woo a crowd with anecdotes and joy never failed to amaze me and I feel privileged to have been given 10% of his skills. He is the single most charismatic man I’ve met in my life and a damned skilled footballer – sadly a skill set I didn’t get.

I also realised how lucky I am to have a wonderful group of friends across the globe. Friends who are always there for me and who offer unconditional support no matter what is happening in my life.

Sometimes you have to take stock of your life and as I creep ever closer to forty I guess now is that time. So here I am taking stock. Feeling incredibly lucky to have my health, my family, my friends while living in a beautiful city.

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Articles

My Cinema Rules

In Friends,Lessons,Life,Movies on February 9, 2013 by kiltforhire Tagged: , , , , , , ,

I love this cinema. I love sitting down in a big cinema packed with people all enjoying the same flick. When I was a young lad my dad used to take me to the local ‘flea pit’ cinema in Dennistoun just outside of Glasgow city centre. The floor was sticky with the residue of sweet popcorn and the gloop of spilled Cola.

As I got older myself and my mates would go to the cinema every single Saturday morning and see two movies. We had a special P days.

Pictures, pool, pizza, pissed. I miss the P days.

But we always had our rules for the cinema. So here to continue my long, dull list of life rules are my cinema rules.

1. Stay away from the aisles, stay as close to the centre as is possible and keep the hell away from the first three rows – only people with extreme short sightedness should go there.

2. Food should be silent. Tacos? out! Crisps? out! (well unless you open the pack, silently retrieve one and then place it on your tongue to melt. Soft drinks are fine but never slurp that last little bit. The slurping is bad. This will take people out of the movie and into the bottom of your cup.

3. I tend to always book my tickets well in advance. Too many times in my life have I turned up at the cinema only to see that SOLD OUT flashing on the screen.

4. When I’m choosing my cinema I try to stay away from the beaten track and head on nights where I believe it will be quiet. Mondays, Wednesday and Sundays are my favourite nights. Friday is couple night and canoodling is rife and Saturday is date night where new relationships are formed by talking…in the cinema.

5. Which is where the next rule comes in. Talking. Shush. I believe you can talk during trailers and adverts. Hell talk as much as you want during the adverts mainly to sit there and go ‘I miss the Bacardi ad’ (the Scottish version but couldn’t find it). But as soon as that movie begins then its shush time. But I believe when that film starts I always shut up and enjoy.

6. Phones are similar to talking. I have no problems with checking Facebook or Twitter before the movie starts during trailers and ads but again don’t check it till the movie finishes. I hate seeing that flash of light when someone takes their phone out during the film.

7. Arrive on time – especially if it is pre-booked seating with allocated numbers. Look I get that people can be late but I always get there on time and get seated before the movie starts. I hate it when people stamp all over you to get to their seat after the film has started.

8. If I’m meeting my friends at the cinema and they have been kind enough to book tickets then I always get there with plenty of time. It’s pretty rude to turn up one minute to the movie starting leaving all your friends waiting on you and not in their seats. It’s even worse if the tickets don’t have allocated seating.

8. I always hit the gents before the movie and empty the old (and getting older) bladder. That way I don’t miss any of the movie and I also don’t annoy people by stepping over people.

9. I hate it when people kick the chair in front of them. It’s not nice on a plane and it’s not nice in the cinema. So don’t. Seriously. Just don’t do it.

Well there you have it My Cinema Rules for a pleasant, enjoyable night at the movies without irritating or annoying anyone around you and if we all follow these rules then everyone will have a very pleasant time at the pics.

The End

Articles

The story of Jack

In Friends,Lessons,Life on June 3, 2012 by kiltforhire Tagged: , , , , ,

I guess this is a simple blog post about love. Love of family and love of a pet.

You see my cat Jack died yesterday. He was at my parents house back in Scotland and my mum phoned to tell me and I’ve been a bit of a mess this weekend because of it.

Never mind me though let me tell you his story…

24 years ago when I was in my teens my mum came home with her green cardigan in her hands.

It turned out my mum spotted something moving in the snow when she was out for a walk one day. A tiny little black and white ball of fluff. It was meowing quietly and lying next to his dead mother. She had been hit by a car and there he was lying next to her.

My mum took off her green cardigan and wrapped the little guy up in it.

She named him Jack after Jack Frost cause he was found in the snow.

We took great care in feeding and caring for him because he was so small. The vet gave us special stuff to give him to help him grow.
Our Springer Spaniel Cara was a loving dog and looked after the wee guy. She was incredibly gentle with him even when he was clawing and biting her.

Jack grew up into a chilled out, pretty lazy cat. He ate, he wandered and he slept. In his youth he would wander but never too far. Sometimes we’d see him a few streets away and occasionally in the field across the main road but he was a survivor. He was never hurt. He never cried and he always came home.

He was smart and gentle and nice to the other neighbour’s cats. Even the nasty ones. Two of the neighbour’s cats would sometimes come in and eat his food. He didn’t care. He didn’t complain. He just lay against the radiator cosy in the heat letting the world go by.

But the thing that made him the happiest was the green cardigan. He would walk around the house with the cardigan in his teeth dragging the rest of it between his legs. He went everywhere with it. He slept on it every night. Carried it around during the day. Ate his food with it in his eyesight.

He loved that green cardigan.

We always felt that he thought it was his mum. It was always with him and I guess it loved him unconditionally. That love plus the way we looked after him probably helped him reach the right old age of 24!

However, a blood clot on his spine meant a visit to the vet to be put down. The vet said the blood clot could happen at any age and apart from that he was in great health. He could have kept going if it wasn’t for that clot.

Poor wee old guy.

I’ll miss him.

Here he is getting his tummy rubbed by my big sister:

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My eyebrows are a fascist regime

In Life on October 9, 2011 by kiltforhire Tagged: , , ,

In the last year my eyebrows have taken on a life of their own.

They grew in size.

They started going in all different directions.

And now they are starting to occupy nearby territories.

My eyebrows have become Nazi Germany and the area around them seems to be Europe.

I have no doubt they will invade my ears next. They will start growing there and suddenly start sprouting outwards so it makes me look like I’m thinking about becoming a cat.

And at the same time the damned fascist regime is secretly stealing hair from my head. Every year it seems like I have less there and the bastards have done some kind of chemical warfare on me which seems to be making my hair grey.

I’ve been trying to battle them for a while now but it’s so damn hard. My body seems to be in cahoots with them. I’m hurting more after football. I wake up with a twinge in my shoulder and they have developed some new sonic weapon that kicks in at night and wakes the neighbours up – SN0R-3-000 I believe it’s called.

What’s even more annoying is that I watched a show the other day that said your cells can only replicate 50 times and that’s it…click…click…click…then that’s it. Game over. They also said that after 35 your body starts to deteriorate.

Great.

I’m 36 at the moment and the great fascist horde gave me one year before they decided to invade and attack.

I’m trying to figure if I should contact the United Nations and ask them to get involved. Maybe they can loan me one of those blue berets, some scissors and some of that hair re-growth stuff.

I don’t think I’ll ever dye my hair though. I don’t think anything will combat the nasty chem warfare stuff they have pulled on me – not to mention the fact that everyone I know will suddenly realize that I’m being attacked when they see the grey turn back to brown.

So yeah, if you have any advice for me to fight the attacking hordes feel free to let me know 😉

Articles

A good friend is hard to find

In Friends,Lessons,Life on May 16, 2011 by kiltforhire Tagged: , , , ,

When I left Scotland I left behind a whole bunch of amazing people. I left behind a group of guys who I would gladly give my life so any one of them could live. The last time I was in Scotland (about three years ago) I dropped in on my mate Stew and although we hadn’t seen each other in three years we had a beer, sat on the sofa and spoke and laughed and ripped the piss out of each other as if we had only been hanging about the day before.

Frienship is a very rare gift. They are the people who are there for you when you are down and who make you smile and laugh. They give you advice. They help you through your life and without them your life is not near as full as it should be.

There are times in life when I have pissed off or upset my friends. There are times when I have probably driven them to tearing their hair out. And there are times when I have been on the verge of losing friends.

I feel like right now that is happening.

There is one friend out there who I hold in an incredibly high-regard.

He is incredibly intelligent and great fun to talk to but on the flip side he a worrier and sometimes far too deadly serious for his own good. He is a lovely person and has helped me through a lot while living in Australia and I like to think that if we had met in another country we would still be friends.

I have, I’m afraid to say, been sadly missing as a friend lately and I’m gonna change that. I’ve already emailed him to say that I’ve been a crap friend lately and that I intend to change that.

Hopefully he understands and accepts the olive branch/white flag/big bit of haggis I’m putting out there.

The richest person in the world is the person who is surrounded by good friends…

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What the hell does UnAustralian mean?

In Lessons,Life on April 15, 2011 by kiltforhire Tagged: , , ,

I noticed my friend Jaya Myler (@jayamyler) on Twitter saying she thinks the term UnAustralian is being bandied around too much this week.

In fact this ad came out this week:

And it made me realise that having lived in Australia for the last seven years I have no idea what UnAustralian means.

It only seems to be used by people who want to have a go at other people when they have no basis for attacking them or when they don’t want to be as honest as they should.

People have tried to explain UnAustralian as being all about mateship, a bond between people etc etc and yet I don’t see that happening a lot. At least no more than in any other country I have been in.

Now I realise this blog post may upset some of my Australian friends but to be honest I don’t think I’ve heard any of them ever utter the phrase except in jest – the problem is that politicians, advertisers and a whole bunch of others seem to use it as a way of getting at people they don’t like or don’t agree with and I personally think that’s damned rude. If you have something to say to someone then say it and don’t hide behind a phrase that doesn’t seem to exist in modern day.

Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m UnAustralian for writing this blog post but to be honest the bond I have with my friends in the UK is the same bond I have with my friends in Australia.

I’m proud of my Scottish heritage. I swell with pride when I hear the Flower of Scotland sung and I have no doubt Australians do exactly the same when they hear someone sing their national anthem.

So yeah I guess I’m calling out the phrase UnAustralian. Maybe I just don’t understand it but then I guess I’d like to ask people…do you understand it?

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Family…

In Life on April 3, 2011 by kiltforhire Tagged: , , , ,

I live on the other side of the world from my parents but manage to speak to them at lest three times a week. I love my parents not only cause they are my parents but because they are two of the best people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing in the world.

They are very different people but both have incredibly strong core values that they passed down to me and my sister.

My mum is a worrier and very emotional. She has been through a lot in her life but like the majority of Glaswegian women she has a fight in her that astounds me. She would stand up to a giant to fight for what is right.

She was a nurse before she retired. She worked in an elderly ward and looking after the sick. She is wonderfully compassionate but didn’t take any crap when at work. How she coped with people dying around her I’ll never know because I don’t believe it is anything I could ever do.

Mum also has a great sense of humour and an infectious laugh. Whenever I picture her I always see her laughing and smiling. I’m a mummy’s boy at heart simply because she helped mould me. She taught me to stand up for what is right, to believe in people and to look after the little guys who have no fight left in them. She would have made an amazing politician. I love talking to her on the phone and hopefully this week she actually buys a computer so I can video call her!

Oh one last thing about my mum she calls Jesus the first socialist. Which I think is pretty damned cool. I’m an atheist but I like the thought of some guy going around 2,000 years ago just trying to make people more equal.

My dad is something else. He’s my humour. My wit. My charisma. He taught me the craft of telling a good story and gave me a huge part of my personality.

I should point out that I have about a tenth of my dad’s charisma. He has so many friends that I lose count. He tells stories that can last for an hour and have everyone in the pub putting their beer aside just to hear the tale.

He’s an engineer to trade. Spent his life fixing trains for British Rail before being made redundant and then worked for a number of different firms including Weir Pumps.

Everytime we would walk through Glasgow people would stop and shout “Bert’ and have a wee blether to him before heading off. His sense of humour is brilliant and terrible at the same time. One of the best jokes he ever told me is this:

“Two zombies eating a clown and one turns to the other and says ‘does he taste funny?'” Brilliant!

He played football (soccer) all his life up until about three years ago (he’s 65 now) and was a superb player. Again I have little of his talent which is a shame.

My parents met when my dad was an apprentice at British Rail and my grandfather met him and introduced him to my mother. They married at 21.

I love them both to bits and couldn’t wish for better people in my life. They have supported every single decision I have ever made and always give me wonderful advice – even though I don’t always take it.

There are other family members that I want to talk about but I’m going to leave that for another blog post…