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Last 10 Posts [ In reverse order ]
peter.howden Posted Today, 04:42pm
  Hector, Tub’s, Richard and Billy Park(1/ 2)

Throughout his immature youth, and a few times while growing up, Hector has been struck with a fist, kicked, or thumped with something else , so many times it’s impossible to count, although it should be remembered, several youngster of his generation, admit they were bullied, though , never admit to being the bully. The term “growing up” deceives all, also good to remember there is a bully in us all, for while one may be bullied, then in turn they will do the very same to someone else, verbal, or physical, both intimidating, perhaps its self-survival. There is an old saying “there is a lot of good in the bad”, should also say “there’s a lot of bad in the good!”

Sometime before seeing the film, ‘West Side Story’, Hector and a couple of pals, Tub’s (not politically correct now) and Richard, of the 45th B.B company, Regwood Church just off Deanston Drive. They thought they were the bees knees ,strutting to the hall. One twilight evening along the drive, two local wee boys demanding to handle their shiny belts. Refusing to oblige, with a tad ruthlessness, the younger boys were not happy, so much so, threatened the three musketeers, with their uncle, Billy Park.

The huffed kids disappeared up some close, as the pals swaggered down the well kent road ,until forced to halt by one big bloke blocking the pavement, turned out to be Billy Park. Now, over a long period, we are all prone to exaggeration of actual measurements, while status can vary quite a bit. Taking this into the equation…he was a huge bastard. Hector turned to his cronies, to stand steady…where, or how they went will never be known to him, but they were not there. Now he was turning pale looking at this problematic brute, who walked towards him, seemingly no to happy, or content. Hector could not say with any honesty he was brave, certainly no Spartacus.

He had no choice, but to backstep away, until a stationary car halted his retreat. It turned out Billy Park was of few words, believing actions spoke louder, and who the hell was Hector to argue. Billy asked if they had been mucking about his wee fella’s, while Hector was trying to think of an answer. Billy Park grabbed Hector’s collar, then gave him an instant Glasgow kiss. His head moved away from the surprise head butt, but unfortunately, hitting the back of his skull on the rim of the standing car’s roof. It was hard to tell which hurt the most, as it all happened in a split second with a rat tee tat.

Tears trickled down from his eyes, but somehow didn’t t wish to be seen in that state, as he automatically switched into a weird defence mould. Needs are must, so here he was, his only thought was to ride this without being hurt too much…so, let out an over embellished laugh
peter.howden Posted Today, 12:04pm
  A single Thought

I pondered while walking along the road, watching a single plane up in the clear clean air skies…if somehow, nature itself imposed the naughty virus upon the humans of the world…simply to give landscape, a short spell to recuperate after the population of earth carelessly, willfully continued to knocked the living daylights out of the environment
peter.howden Posted 23rd Oct 2020, 07:22pm
  Hector Meets Alice;

During the beginning of his virginal teens, Hector’s limited mind regarding boy meets girl thing, was rather vague to say the least , though bursting with weird surging tensions, but minus experience. In the movies, boy meets girl, girl allows boy a kiss, then they are married, or she’s off to a nunnery or something. Of course, he had known girls before that holiday, although without anything really stirring or indeed coming to a head. Right from the start of the B.B summer camp, he instantly was drawn towards a girl, grasping at mysterious deep emotions, way out of his depth or fathom

Hector entered a fairy-tale meeting captivated by Alice, the first day in Dunbar and boy did it stir for a long, long time after that. . Adolescents they may have been, however at sudden notice they were joined by the hip. Long walks holding hands, followed by knowing glances while in company. One evening Hector volunteered to take the captain’s stroppy 10-year-old son Gordan, to the local cinema to see the western ‘Flaming Star’. Of course, Hector’s alterative motive was to be with Alice. Before going in, he bought the boy lots of sweets, a bribe, so not to tell his dad. Alice and Hector just made eyes as the wee annoying lad walked a few steps in front, with Hector almost tempted to boot him in the arse, more than once on the way back to camp.

The following day, sitting on the ridge overlooking the wide bay, continuous white seahorse waves surged forward against the rocks. Just then, as if magic moved their lips forwards, they kissed a kiss, causing firstly a warm sensation, then bursting mind-blowing reactions choiring lingering overtures, rolling in another existence where time not only stood still, but waited for Hector to catch up. Maybe feart to be captivated, he was absolutely chuffed to be so full of daydreaming of days before, and days to come, as he walked back to the canvas camp.

The next day as the boys cleaned up for tent inspection, Hector was busy walloping down the ground pegs of the tent, when smug Graham(Cliff Richard lookalike) strolled by, making a passing loud derogative remark about Alice’s virtue. Without thinking, or warning, Hector instantaneously turned with the wooden mallet in his hand, threw it with all his might towards Graham’s head. By good fortune, the hard missile just missed its intended target by a hairsbreadth , …but Graham turned white as a sheet. The captain’s boy Gordon witnessed the pure lunatic behaviour of Hector…yet didn’t report the affair to his father. Neither did the unnerved Graham, who… for some reason chose not to say another word to Hector during the rest of the holiday.

As all fairy tales end, so Alice and Hector tearfully, and painfully, took separate roads, and her precious address scribbled down on a piece of paper ,was lost for eternity, due to the depress Hector, unwittingly, hastily packing his kitbag. It is said, to this present day, Hector can recall the memory of the special kiss…lingering still!
peter.howden Posted 19th Oct 2020, 10:09am
Out in the Cold

It was a grimy lit industrial estate where the remains of several condemned commercial buildings stood, surround by a mouldy stone wall. Behind the furthest frozen corner lay hidden from anyone passing by, a crouched tragedy, hunched against the bitter wind, was a breathing heap, poorly disguised as almost human, but… a lost creature. Old leaky worn leather boots, shapeless melton breeks, a mockit shirt owning more holes than ac actual fabric, cover over by a smelly old-fashioned coat which long ago seen better days. The exhausted dosser didn’t dauner there, just went where his ice frozen feet took him. Why he arrived at this unused location is unknown, however this was the worst winter ever recorded, he had little choice to be alone, as his appearance was not of a amiable nature…weans avoided him, but so did everyone else

His last hot meal was beyond memory, cast as a lost legend while he had scrambled through middens behind restaurants and cafes, before being chased by somebody. His lug was frozen as was his neb, little or no feeling in wrinkled fingers. his thin physique was devoid of feeling… just bloody numb. He kept a two pence coin in his pocket, held safe in a manky hanky, which was really a piece of stripped shirt material. Inside the clabber of clothing was one treasured picture, he never brought out into daylight, but treasured a few secret glances late of an evening. Isolation wasn’t an attitude, simply endured, permanently

Wishing only if he could be warm, laying unable to move in the rubbish the vicious wind collected in the obscure corner, his mind launched into a state of hallucination. Wafting in and out of nothing and everything, cloaked in ambiguity until it settled clearly on a single auld fashioned box of matches, once known as Lucifer sticks. As if by magic, but in his reality, a match left the box, glided unaided towards the stone wall, and struck hard. The head burst alight, so incredibly bright, it hurt his eyes, as it’s enchanting warmth gathered around him. After a undetermined time passed but before it started to fade, another match appeared out of the box and repeated the actions with light and lifesaving heat.

Per chance, early the following morning, someone using the estate as a shortcut, slipped, then stumble almost falling onto the built-up snow, discovered the wanderer still crouched in the corner with no sign of life. Although already late, phoned the police, then with a spark of decency, the instant good Samaritan waited until they arrived. The body was turned to the amazement of the medical officer present, witnessed an elderly man’s face beaming, the body temperature unbelievably normal under such critically harsh cold surroundings. Carefully checking inside the drifter's manky clothing , to find no pulse…although discovering an old photograph in the interior of the coat pocket. When opening the folded photo…he swore blind afterwards…there was a faded portrait of someone…but it disintegrated instantly , either by age ...or the arctic weather. All that was left was… a tatty blank photographic glossy card.
peter.howden Posted 16th Oct 2020, 07:49am
  The Owl and the Pussycat

The Owl and the Pussycat
High up in a tree,
Musing affairs of the day
As if we are totally free
Said the Owl to the Pussycat
Abusing earths precious asset,
Animals losing their home
Worms decline without a fret
Nowhere left to roam,
Said Pussycat to the Owl
Why move in a ruckus
With such an irate foul
The regime always F…us!

With these words said
The Pussycat eyes froze
And as if in a bed
Purred into a doze
peter.howden Posted 15th Oct 2020, 07:21pm
  Hector and the A.B.C.

Hector often heard this quote; “Would you return to your youth, knowing what you know now?”, as if it would help to bring better results, or turning the clock back for everlasting youth. He would say no to all three. To miss the pleasure, and the pain making all mistakes in search of basic understanding, is the essence for all animal forms within this world…not to be naive would kill the joy of discovery. We humans are privileged, simply because we can record our local and global history, in hope we learn from it, however… we rarely do.

Still the era when cinema played a major part in almost everyone’s lives as Hector reached his teens. The A.B.C. minors, Waverley cinema held every Saturday morning, a club for all kids, and incredibly he became a monitor. There was no wages involved, but the peach remuneration was the ability, any time during the week with a free pass into adult movies. On the magic screen was a range of commercial films flirting in a Cinderella manner around the physical attractions between the sexes. All Hector gained with certainly, Doris Day did not fart any bodily noises, or smells. Mostly seen in a near perfect state, Doris Day was just perfume itself. Hector looked around, not spying any Doris Day girls anywhere, in or out of the cinema.

After a while, the staff just let Hector in with just a nod, including the Schoolboy notorious holy grail of thee; ‘X’ films. He believed he was smart on the subject of sex , as His brother had given proper instruction about sexual characteristics and all the technical words, although in reality, Hector was baffled as to the reality of sexual intercourse.

The hoped-for sex therapy was hugely overrated, as these X movies, mainly French along with non-apparel subtitles). A severely disappointed Hector, who was expecting to see nudes all over the place, because this was the hype around the school yard, however they never lived up to the expectations of the spotty Herbert, left being no further on in cardinal knowledge, and a unqualified dander’ inflamed. One film showed a French guy, slowly drawing on a cigarette hanging from his mouth, as he was surrounded by hoodlums. The surprise for the heidbanger leader of the gang… the fella blew the glowing fag into the Frenchie moron’s face, giving him time to run. Bizarrely, this came in handy for Hector, some years later

As with many people, Hector began to learn personally, there were certain moments within life’s pattern that changed him forever, or at least until the next turning point came around. His enigma now is, when young, old age was far away, virtually beyond imagination or dreams, however, now his youth appears almost touchable. The strange thing about life is it happens whether you try or not, although you have self-illusion of standing still, or repeating the exact same actions day in, day out , communicating into years, you are changing out of sight every second breathing.
peter.howden Posted 11th Oct 2020, 06:48pm

Entering our town by train or bus, then taking transport towards a certain outer scheme which represents the centre of a close community, an instant numbness catches the breath. Without even trying, it’s obvious something disturbing and bizarre about a house with the bright yellow door, the eye-splitting obvious red painted windows, situated just at the far end on the right. It had been the scene of absolute madness beyond a man-made hell of any society

Somewhere in the recent murky past, setting up home together were two young people who only fell deeply in love, craving intensely to live together, behind their individually decorated buttery door, but the supposed pious neighborhood were horrified at any such behavior and just could not let it be. The young blameless couple’s fundamental sin was, not only to openly dare treasure the forbidden passion, ‘ love we dare not speak its name’, but both born of mixed race and creed.

Without warning, almost instantaneously, groups of protesting cliques congregated at the doorway of their home, chanting curses and taunting the frightened pair. In such a short space of time, the factions formed an ugly hypocritical mob, set on destroying any trace of this abomination. With half-hearted motions the police department of the town managed to hold the hordes back. The law enforcement superintendents and the council, feared the situation was becoming uncontrollable, called for the pillars of separate spiritual houses of worship, to deal with this now unholy affair

They nervously came with feeble attempts trying to appease the now hostile throng, with no success… then each in turn quoted chosen verses from their Bible; Koran; Torah; Tripitaka and ‘Guru Granth Sahib’ quotes to no avail, for all theoretical ears and minds only set this outrage to be, against man’s divinity laws.

What happened during this appalling cursed night was beyond redemption, for once daylight broke, the utter ignominy awkwardly befell the authors of such horrendous actions. No decent human alive would dare tell without burning shame buried within, which would remain a personal infamy nightmare, amongst those who acted, and gave birth to the infinite stain on the city’s history.

Will it happen again? I personally have no reason, or justification to ask, as I’m an atheist without protection of faith in a deity…. But my eternal disgrace …. I threw the first stone….
peter.howden Posted 8th Oct 2020, 06:55pm
  Tales of Hector and the Bullies

From the very start, going back home from Shawlands Academy Hector faced an inevitable dilemma, regardless the route taken, the reason being three constant aggressors, making sure no witnesses to their physical incidents. during School, they made endless mocking ,or mimic his obvious Cerebral Palsy. He felt locked inside an invisible goldfish bowl, spinning trough raw virgin emotions, unable to change his seemingly ugly predicament taking place outside the bowl.

For some time, having noticed attempted hidden bruises and cuts, his mother bought sessions of judo classes, but this did not help, because of limited physical ability to what he could achieve. After World War Two, in the mid-50s, individual leather schoolbags were in short supply. Khaki military haversacks bought from army and navy stores was commonly used to carry School books.
One afternoon, while returning home alone, he entered the wally close, to be confronted inside by his three nemesis.

Out of the blue, in his head came the quote from Mr Swan; ‘Don’t let anyone use you… stand straight, then dance to you own tune’. He lashed out instantly with uncontrollable pent-up rage, swinging his haversack, stuffed full of books as his main weapon. the confinement of the stairs and close was to Hector’s advantage .

The horror came to light that evening when the mothers of the injured antagonists came to Hector’s door, claiming he was a savage. The very next morning arriving at the school, each bitterly complaining to the headmaster. Mr Bell, informed them, during the last six months, several teachers had raised concerns about Hector, being persecuted outside school, by the mothers sons. No further action was taken, for it was out of his jurisdiction, but the parents were warned.

Hector concluded his body-language had to change, improve to confidently proud, doing his best to avoid conflict. Ran through quite a few severe knocks and scrapes, unfortunately, the die cast was a gunge-ho attitude, but as far as he knew, no one had the intention to bully . One thing was obvious, Eric did not have any more harassment

From then on, Hector attempted to live by Mr Swan final quote... if you can get through life without deliberately hurting someone else, then you’ll do all right…but it was… and is…bloody hard.

Regrettably sometimes there is no way out…as with Big Billy Park?
peter.howden Posted 6th Oct 2020, 05:18pm
  Tales of Hector and Eric

During the mid-50s, It wasn’t that long after of the world conflict, Hector switch from the easy Cuthbertson Street School, for Shawlands Primary. Miss Helen McGregor, a real beauty, a stoater of near perfection. ‘Helen, with a tartan-skirt sat at the top of the class. The clan’s motto, ‘Royal is my race’, and every day Hector took small glances, captivated with her smile, he was so totally smitten, he would dance in innocent rhythmic going home. Within the mind-boggling Greek mythology, Helen of Troy, launched a thousand ships? Believed to be rare beauty, though the lady must have possessed a lot of bottle to achieve such a deed.

Hector wanted to be Clark kent, changing into superman, wheech the damsel from wee eek’s bothering her. The truth most likely was, he was probably the wee eek. Shawlands Primary playground was more boisterous, as a few lads out of sight, would harass and stalk him, he endured in silence. He could just about hold his own with other boys, but with girls; this was taboo. The other side of the coin, girls were not all sugar and sweetness, so Helen would stick up for Hector, against the wee biddies in the class

One cold day, in the playground, Hector met Eric, compared to him, a giant of a lad, yet, Eric was plagued by the aggressors more regularly than Hector. Eric was a red headed freckled face Jewish boy, solid appearance, but he nourished a very gentle nature, who stayed in Titwood Rd, just past Westclyffe St where Hector lived. From then on, they kept company going home, looking like a passive, David, and Goliath.

One day strolling home as boys do, Hector asked Eric why he did not fight back, as he had he obvious strength and ability, plus towered over is antagonists. His simple but solemn answer was, “I’m afraid I would hurt them…and others would come to take my family!”

When Hector left the primary to attend Shawlands Academy, he was heartbroken, as Helen tiptoed out of his life, to a private fee-paying school. however, if now he was being candour, he reckoned she did not even really notice him.
peter.howden Posted 4th Oct 2020, 11:20am
  My Chronicles 04/10/2020
There is little we can say about how Aunt Becky is since the last severe lock-down rules have been in place. We have been reassured by the carers when I phone, Becky is O.K but needing extra watching, in case of falls. There were some problems, attempting to send monies through the Royal Bank of Scotland. My account being personal and the Home’s checking account business. With the kind help from Fergus(our Computer Guru) all info is in place and her wee account for her knick-knacks, is once again filled.

There is a strangeness around homelife, as we at times feel being the last hope stop, as the world passes by…not so much as before. Now we must focus on our goals, and limitations to survive mentally. One thing is inescapable in question, my sharp recall memory. Yesterday morning, as I entered our boudoir, with the toast and tea, ‘She who must be obeyed’ awoke with a rather hazy but touching sincerity, smiled, and said, ‘Happy 51st Wedding Anniversary’. Astonished by this bombshell, for I had not at all thought, that this day was the 3rd of October. Swift as a hell of a slow flash, I replied, ‘Happy Anniversary’, promptly followed by how much I was sorry for forgetting. Was it the lock-down, or proving I’m losing my marbles?

Since the necessary restrictions, we have attempted, with varies degrees of success, to cut down on the lovely extras, such as butter and sugar, which viciously piles on the unwanted weight, and produces extended love handles. But, because I prepare the breakfast toast, once finished buttering two pieces for Rebecca, I furtively lick the knife, absolutely clean of this forbidden heavenly taste. When trusted to brew tea alone, my habit of pondering over the sugar bowl, the wee devil urges me to adding a tad more than the elected one teaspoonful. Inwardly entice a mutter, ‘get thee behind me Satan’, but not before escaping from a forced regime by adding a sprinkle more of mere sugar cane.
Over the last 12 odd days, my music has forgone the Stones, Bix Beiderbecke, Cat Stevens, John Mayall & the Blues Breakers…Slade, and the whole diversity of the ‘Blues’, instead, playing continuously, and listening to Classical Music on my IPod. There is no clue as to the endless hours spent hearing numerous pieces from the orchestras, or Opera, but surprisingly… I knew most of them. I recalled some years ago we arrived at the Glasgow Halls, to see and hear the Royal Scottish National Orchestra…pure dead brilliant. However, an extra kick came from the exaggerated performance of the conductor. A couple of years later, in Barlanark Centre, the amazing performance from a traveling quartet, gave us a delightful presentation.

Trying to improve both the garden, and our restrained protection from the naughty virus, by painting the huge boulders gathered through the ages, surrounding the hedges , tarmac and grass areas, and attempting to empty the now debunk coffin(wooden trough with railway sleepers base) which once housed growing tubers. Drifting over the hedge, I listen to three infants noisily and sheer delightful innocence, greeting each other, plus showing off their latest toys. The ambiance was so similar as to many years ago, our own children perhaps at Christmas time…pure magic.
A couple of days ago, spying a single beautifully pattern vivid butterfly, rarely seen these days, just blew my mind away, with a whole spectrum of nature, allowing me for quite a while, to be glad being alive….No matter the lock-down
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