Monday, November 24, 2008


Friday evening 21 11 08 - to the Beechwood Centre in Shortroods for a ‘wee night’ to celebrate the contributions made by local volunteers to the running of the centre and it’s many clubs and activities, the hall looked fine in the half light with little coloured bulbs around the edge of the walls. A lonely apprehensive man stood in front of the stage with a keyboard in front of him, he was the cabaret, at this point he looked more like the buffet but it was early yet. In the time honoured Shortroods tradition it was a “bring yer ain bottle” night, this arrangement saves money on a bar and also means that you can’t get refused another swallie on the grounds that you’ve had enough by the barman, because of course you are the barman/woman.

The lonely ‘one man band’ struck up at 7.15 pm and by 7.20 the floor was heaving, have you ever noticed that it is mainly women who take the floor, it’s a Scottish male thing I think, the wee musician knew his audience and any flagging in the dancing was sorted out by another “line dance” an incomprehensible affair which they all seem to do as if hypnotised but good fun for all that, here is where you learn that “the way to Amarrilo” is a bloody serious business. At one point I realized that it was not just the case that mainly women took the floor but quite alarmingly it dawned on me that, if you excluded the hall keeper who was dragged up to dance, and the band who, talented as he was could not cope with playing and dancing, there were only 3 men there, me, Cllr. Tommy Williams and Cllr. Kenny McLaren, armed as always with pens and small note pads to cope with those who see any meeting with a councillor as an impromptu surgery. There were about one hundred women and by now, three rather nervous men. Group jeopardy bonded us despite political differences as we were persuaded to dance by an assortment of partners of all ages, I know it isn’t a pleasant thought, me and the other two on a dance floor but refusing was not an option. By this time, many revellers were thinking that they had been drinking invisible ink and no one could see the antics of them, dozens of mobile phone cameras were no deterrent.

We survived to cope with the magnificent buffet and the inevitable ‘Bingo’ we three councillors gave out certificates of merit to the worthy volunteers and a great night was had by all, I could probably do it all again, once I get the stitches out that is. By the time the ‘band’ was playing “auld land syne” he could have been wearing boxing gloves and no one would have noticed.

The ‘Beechwood’ is a constant in the lives of the people of the area and as such is a fine example of community spirit and commitment. Renfrewshire Council supports them and it is well worth the effort, I love going down there, I remember many great nights and the enjoyment my family had there years ago, my children were involved in everything that went on, we will I’m sure continue to provide this support and I’m sure the centre will continue to thrive, well done to all of them and best wishes for the future.


Anonymous said...

'armed as always with pens and small note pads'! I had to read that twice just to make sure I got it right!
Glad you had a good night!

Anonymous said...

Hi, Terry,

I am sure you had a lovely evening, did anyone actually recognise, wee Kenny McLaren from Ralston, could the ladies even make out his posh accent.

In other matters have you seen this new web-site, I think you have had a mention.

Aye yours
Wee Malkie Brown

P.p.s I heard that wee kenny approached one of the older dears sitting in the corner of the hall, wee kenny walks up " Are you Comfay" Old dear "aye just roon the corner".

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 15:12
I have lived in the area for 30 years and Tommy Williams has been the councillor for the area for 18 years so we are well known faces.
As for recognition of Cllr. Mc Laren I can tell you that I was asked quite a few times who he was, not surprising really.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(somegirlswanderbymistake) 25/11/08
I’m glad that you’re glad.

Anonymous said...

Sarcasm is not a mature, but ,unfortunately, typically male, response to things men are just not quite bright enough to get their heads around.

Macnasty said...

'We (you and Cllr Williams) are well known faces.'

Well, yes,you're clearly better known than Cllr McLaren.

For starters,he hasn't made the headlines in the PDX nearly as often as you two muppets has he?

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Macnasty) 26/11/08
Is there a point of any kind to this abuse, it is becoming tiresome, can you not find anything that is worth saying?

Macnasty said...

'Can you not find anything worth saying'?

Frequently, Councillor, but when I do, you follow the pattern of despots everywhere and refuse to print it.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Macnasty) 13:52
I refuse to print certain filth and poison which you regularly stoop to but, this is two in a row with nothing to say, you better buck up your ideas.

Cllr Terry Kelly said...

(Anonymous) 26/11/08
If I accept that you are clever and witty will you give me a clue what you are on about ? BTW is it sexist to say that women are smarter than men ?