Tag Archives: scotland

The Scottish Referendum

The rest of the world is tired of Americans telling them what to do, so I am not expressing an opinion on this vote. This is easier since in fact I am not sure what I think about this. However, I can enjoy the humor, the existence of which is very reassuring however the vote goes.

This Is What It Will Be Like If Scotland Votes For Independence

As a long-time fan of fantasy I am pleased to see Game of Thrones and Harry Potter appear in this discussion.

From our side of the pond, there is nothing like the Colbert Report.

Piping in D-Day

Bill Millin, piper at the D-Day landings, died on August 17th, aged 88

ANY reasonable observer might have thought Bill Millin was unarmed as he jumped off the landing ramp at Sword Beach, in Normandy, on June 6th 1944. Unlike his colleagues, the pale 21-year-old held no rifle in his hands. Of course, in full Highland rig as he was, he had his trusty skean dhu, his little dirk, tucked in his right sock. But that was soon under three feet of water as he waded ashore, a weary soldier still smelling his own vomit from a night in a close boat on a choppy sea, and whose kilt in the freezing water was floating prettily round him like a ballerina’s skirt.

But Mr Millin was not unarmed; far from it. He held his pipes, high over his head at first to keep them from the wet (for while whisky was said to be good for the bag, salt water wasn’t), then cradled in his arms to play. And bagpipes, by long tradition, counted as instruments of war. An English judge had said so after the Scots’ great defeat at Culloden in 1746; a piper was a fighter like the rest, and his music was his weapon.