The pups marched off to the kitchen. I slipped the bolts into place and two disgruntled thugs glared at me from inside their cages. As I turned to leave tin food bowls were dragged ominously along the bars. We were going out for the evening and the pups were not amused.
Stirling’s Albert Hall is the main venue for “Bloody Scotland”, Scotland’s International Crime Writing Festival. The photograph shows the queue for the on-stage performance of the double act of Christopher Brookmyre and Mark Billingham. Somebody’s overrunning and the queue is getting restless. The organisers are lucky it’s a dry night otherwise they’d find themselves the subject of next year’s best sellers.
On the front of the building (see photo) a ticker tape advertising display promotes forthcoming acts. A non-descript “Britain’s Got Talent” winner, T-Rex and Johnny Cash tribute acts and, quite amazingly, Herman’s Hermits! Stirling is most definitely the place to come to see the forgotten, the dead, the must be nearly dead and, counting this weekend’s festival, the horribly murdered!
Messrs Brookmyre and Billingham produced a riotous performance of smut and bad language. The discovery of a, still warm, take-away cooked chicken in the toilet of Border’s Bookshop in Glasgow’s Buchanan Street proved to be one of the more bizarre of the evening’s anecdotes, For the benefit of the more squeamish amongst us I will describe the chicken as having been “interfered with”. Mr Brookmyre’s description was rather more basic. But the crux of the story didn’t centre on the questionable habits of the chicken molester but rather on the fact that, in a bookshop stuffed full of celebrity cookery books, he had not seen fit to buy a raw chicken and cook it in the privacy of his own home for whatever purpose he had in mind. This, Mr Brookmyre deemed, was a rather sad reflection on Scotland’s woeful culinary habits,
You had to feel sorry for the poor sod who’s mobile phone went off during one of Brookmyre’s wee speeches. Nothing was said, the speaker continuing as if nothing had happened. A couple of minutes later The author was about to read out readers’ comments
“which” he muttered, “I’ll do once I shove that mobile phone up your arse!”
This was met with uproarious one-handed applause as a now fearful audience checked their own mobile phones with their other hand.