Tag Archives: September

GaelicUSA’s Local Memory and Monuments Project

Scottish Gaelic Foundation of the U.S.A.

Road sign in Hillsborough, North Carolina, commemorating James Hogg who organized a failed migration of Highlanders. Road sign in Hillsborough, North Carolina, commemorating James Hogg who organized a failed migration of Highlanders.

Are Scottish Highland immigrants, communities and historical events remembered in your local area? How are they commemorated, situated and interpreted in your local landscape or built environment? With road signs, building plaques, statues, monuments or other kinds of memorials? Or are there gaping holes in the community memory of the Gaelic immigrant legacy?

Memorial for the Battle of Moore's Creek Bridge, North Carolina, fought during the American Revolutionary War. Memorial for the Battle of Moore’s Creek Bridge, North Carolina, fought during the American Revolutionary War.

GaelicUSA is initiating a “crowd-source” project to collect material from people around the United States about how the story of Scottish Gaels as an ethnic group and as individuals are memorialized in our communities. We will assemble a digital exhibition, available online, from these materials as they come in.

Here’s what we’ll need from you if you’d like to contribute to this initiative:

  1. The URL to an…

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The ‘Great British’ Haggis?


Great British Haggis

The latest addition to the Stahly haggis family is the Great British Haggis. Made, of course, with the finest traditional ingredients, this modern take on the original Scotch Haggis is dressed to appeal to a wider audience. In a smart new coat of red, white and blue with a subtle hint of tartan to retain its proud Scottish heritage, the new Great British Haggis is a very modern version of a very traditional product.

This company has decided to re-brand the traditional Scottish haggis as ‘British’ haggis, complete with Union Jack. If you would like to send them your feedback, here is their contact link.

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“Coco Chanel: The Legend and the Life”


Author: Justine Picardie
ASIN: B0045F8G4I

Why did I read it? I’ve always had a fascination with this self-made woman, and I remember reading a review of the paperback version of this book on a blog a few years back, and thinking I must read it. When I saw it was available in audio form, I took the opportunity to select it for my commute.

What’s it about? It’s a factual biography of Gabrielle Bonheur Chanel, better known as Coco Chanel, the orphaned girl who rose to be one of the most famous names in fashion, if not the most famous; credited for the creation of simple, elegant, comfortable designs, most notably the “little back dress” now considered an essential item in any wardrobe.

What did I like? It was a book focussed on revealing truth and facts. I did learn some things about Chanel I had not known before. There were attempts at avoiding speculation.  The audio version downloaded from Audible was clear, and without fault.

What didn’t I like about this book? Where to start? This audio book annoyed me immensely, and I think it may have started with the narrator, Cassandra Harwood, whose voice droned through each sentence making it hard to concentrate on the information being presented. I don’t speak French, but I can only hope the times she employed that language she did better than with the English, when words were mispronounced (e.g. subsidising, instead of subsiding) and there was no attempt at emphasis, or any kind of tonal variance in her speech. Had the text been more interesting, perhaps her voice might not have grated as much, alas …

The book was full of facts, but much of the book seemed to stray into the lives of those around Chanel. At one point, it seemed as those quite a few pages had been dedicated to the wife of a lover and, try as I might, I failed to grasp as to why this information had been necessary to the book, as it apparently had no bearing on Chanel’s life itself.

I think that was the focus of my dislike of the book: very little on the woman herself, with far too much about friends, family, business associates, and acquaintances. I felt the book really could have been a lot shorter, with the cutting of the extraneous information.

Would I recommend it? I wanted to enjoy this book, I really though I would, but I didn’t, and I feel any reader would think their time better spent on other books.

Rating:  ★★☆☆☆

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Common Space – Gary Elliot: The best way to support Gaelic is to learn it, and here’s how to do it

Scottish news and politics, analysis and opinion. Scotland’s political social media hub. CommonSpace columnist Gary Elliot says the best way to combat negativity around Gaelic is to learn it and cement its place in Scotland.

Source: Common Space – Gary Elliot: The best way to support Gaelic is to learn it, and here’s how to do it

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Glasgow Gaelic Learning Network

Glasgow Gaelic Learning Network

A new resource from Glasgow City Council showing all of the Gaelic learning opportunities in Glasgow.

Deagh ghoireas ùr bho Chomhairle Baile Ghlaschu a’ sealltainn na cothroman ionnsachaidh air feadh a’ bhaile.


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May I have some more, please?

If anyone is wondering why I went silent over the weekend, wonder no more.  I awoke around 15:00 Saturday afternoon, had something to eat, felt exhausted, and went back to bed for a quick nap.  I woke again at 20:30, and promptly fell back asleep again, waking some time just after midnight.  I got up, had something to eat, and went back to bed again.   Believe it or not, I slept through pretty much until Sunday afternoon.   I do remember fleeting consciousness several times during this epic rest, but mostly it was a deep sleep, with plenty of dreaming.

Now, a normal person would think I must have felt very rested on Sunday.  Alas, I did not.   Several weeks of attaining just a few hours of sleep a day has meant I am still in sleep deficit.   I was extremely tired when I woke on Sunday afternoon, without any semblance of energy, and I was tempted to have another nap, but I knew if I did I would not sleep before my tutorial this morning.   I stayed up until 3:00 a.m.   As it happens, I only managed 3 hours sleep before the tutorial, and two hours after.    I made it to work, but I feel utterly depleted of energy; it’s hard to keep my eyes open; and I am craving my bed.   I’ve had an espresso coffee to which I added (a lot of cold) milk so as not to alarm my digestive system in order to stay alert, but I hope the effects of the caffeine will wear off by the time I go to bed tomorrow.

I hope I am able to attain a good amount of sleep this week, as I don’t think I can keep going without adequate rest.  At some point, I feel I will just … well … collapse.

I hope my readers had a good weekend, too.

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Gabbin’ in Gaelic

We run Gaelic classes at Sgoil Ghaidhlig Ghlaschu (Glasgow Gaelic School) on Wednesday evenings and are keen for more students to come along. We run an intermediate level class and from the 1st of October an improvers/post-beginners level class. More details and contacts on our Facebook page.

Please pass on to anyone who may be interested.

Source:  Gabbin’ in Gaelic.

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