The Retour O The Grey Airmy

Wi the ongaun dwaiblin, dwynin and dowffsome discombobulation o the aince thrang Labour Pairty (The commoner Ruid Tory: Blairius Scunneris) attour the face o Scotia, a flegsome, byordinair and hithertae unthocht o prospect has nou kythit: the Conservative and Unionist Pairty (The Blae Tory: Greedius Pauchleris Maximus) micht end up the secont pairty and therefore the offiecial opposition tae the SNP Government efter the May Scottish Perliement Election. Boffin gadgies wi white lab coats hae delvit weill intil it and came up wi this: gin the Ruid Tories’ share faas doun til aboot 20% and the Blae Tories heeze theirsels up til aroond 21% syne thir unnaitral and wanchany state o affairs afore noo will kittle itsel intae polietical reality – an unco thocht, I’m shuir ye’ll agree. In proponing this ootcome, appairently, they didnae fash theirsels by luikan at the daeins o the Yellae Tory: Bufonidae Carmichaelus since this breed is no likely tae hae mair whummle than a flee landing on a giant elk’s erse (though wi less moral wecht). Mair anent elks anon.

Cleirly, tae aa straucht thinkan fowk like oorsels there’s something nae richt wi aa this. Whaur I bide in Fife, the worst epithet tae fling fae your mooth is tae caa a cheil a Tory. In thir PC days aiblins they’ll bring oot a polietical hate crime law gin ye yuiss the word in a public airt sic as a dug track or the pitch and toss skail. In Lochgelly there’s a wheen o fowk dinnae even believe Tories exist. They jalouse they’re fabulous craturs oot o fiction like Gollum, The Grinch and Michael Gove.

But I ken fine that the baisties are oot thonder, shooting grouse on the hills, buying up fantoosh hooses in Stockbridge and Milgavie, sending their bairns tae Snobworts, brekkin the tax laws tae mak a midden o siller oot o their usurious travails. Tae be honest, the thocht o them raxin and lowpan aboot in ilka neuk and crannie scares the shite oot o me. They’re no a native indigenous species and gin we dinnae tak tent o them they’ll wrocht a gey sair onding. Oor fragile and bruckle eco system’ll ging the crawroad ower the heid o their selfou norraes. Gin we lat them haud swey we’re juist steekin up hertrug for oorsels in the future. Sae whit’s tae be duin? In a word: wolves.

Bide wi me whiles I explain this: research (by ither brainy gadgies fae Amerikay) has shawn that wolfish ongauns in Yellaestane Perk in California has brocht naething but guid and brawsome ootcomes. Yellaestane Perk is kind o like Dunfermline Glen anely a tad bigger. Wolves were huntit and aa wede awaa thonder in the thirties but the Heidyins waled tae fetch them hame in the nineteen sievinties.

Ye see, aince there were nae packs o wolves schauchlin aroond the place the muckle fat lazy elk could dae whit they liked. They had the run o the place. But gien the walin tae dae whit ye like is nae ayeweys a guid thing. The sonsy middens waled nae tae dae muckle ataa. They perked their erses in the ae place and sat aboot aa day wiring in tae young willow, aspen and cottonweed. This wrocht an awfou dounturn in Yellaestane’s eco system. Naebody’s brave eneuch tae airgie bairgie wi a herd o elk an tell them tae shift their beilan bahoukey’s. The puir beaver population was maist sairly afflictit. The wee craturs like tae redd up the young willow tae hae tae their supper. Afore lang the perk had turned intil a richt cowp.

But since the retour o the grey airmy (Canus vulpis) it’s cheynged days: lend a lug tae this:
Yogi Hughes, a biology professor at Montana University says “Elk have proven to be pretty adaptable, when wolves are around, they’re more vigilant and do less foraging.”

Dr. Walter Smith, an expert on animal behaviour observed, “As the beavers spread and built new dams and ponds, the cascade effect continued, beaver dams have multiple effects on stream hydrology. They even out the seasonal pulses of runoff; store water for recharging the water table; and provide cold, shaded water for fish, while the now robust willow stands provide habitat for songbirds.”

Aye, the elks hae tae be on their taes these days. The wolves are aye thrang, nippin at their cooties and moving them aroond the perk. Haudin the elk population doun keeps the beavers joco as they maun ging aboot biggin their dams by the dizzen. Bringing the wolves hames has wrocht a mair trig and canty landscape and even shiftit the airt some o the tirlan burns and rivers flaw tae.

Sae hou no gie it a bit shottie in Scotland? Alack! The hindermaist Scottish wolf got himsel shot by ane o Cumberland’s ruidcoats ootby Inverness in 1746. Truth tae tell hooiver, the number o Scottish wolves had been drappin bigstyle since 1707. By fetching the wolves hame nou tae places sic like St Andraes or the Deuk o Buccleuch’s estate whaur Tories are weill kent tae coagulate muckle guid wark micht be accomplisht. By thirlin the wolves wi radio collars aroond their thrapples their kills and joukan and jinkan micht be tracked and recordit. By this means the Blae Tory population micht be haudit doun ablaw 20%.

But whit gin the wolves, wha, though sleekit and canny gaun craturs are yet no expectit tae hae human sense and raison, micht , by mistake, tak a lowp at and a bite oot o a innocent gangrel juist gaun aboot his daily business? This is no that likely an ootcome gin the wolves are gien scowff tae pad aboot in the directit areas. Efter aa, five hunner Tories are aucht hauf the land in Scotland. The anes that roost on their muckle estates arenae that fond o allooin fremmit species tae breinge ower their acres o heather and birks. Even in places like Sooth Kelty whaur the odd Tory is forced tae cohabitate, cheek by jowel wi the great unwashed, they tend tae lippent tae theirsels by means o accent, claethes, education, condescension and impeccable manners. Though wolves hinnae been blessit wi oor harns they’re no sae glaickit either. They micht easily be lairned by circus trainers tae spot whase tae be gien a guid grallochin and whase tae be left on his leasome. In this wey, the urban and rural prospects o noble Scotia micht heeze tae a consiederable and commensurate betterment and brawment as the bruckle balance atween the baists o Scotland and the Tory is puitten back tae its ancient and naitrel foundiment.

Though it wad be faur better gin the wolves ate aa the blae scunners.

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  1. Neil Reid says:

    A joy to read on several levels. 🙂

  2. Gordie says:

    Touch o genius aboot this, laughing away in the hoose to this man’s patter

  3. Gordie says:

    Oh aye, and fine wi the wolf as well

  4. ramstam says:

    Aw Wullie whit a braw read, an ye dinna miss the blae Tories wi yer feckfu comments.
    But whit aboot the rid Tories?
    Thae rogues yit haud sway in ower mony cooncils an they ken thairsels thair days are nummered. Efter BBC QT ye can see thair ploy o gangin up wi thair BT pals agin the SNP is doomed tae fail.
    Awfy guid tae watch tho,ken!

  5. ramstam says:

    Sorry, ma “I’s” seem tae hae
    Disappeared!!

  6. w.b.robertson says:

    As a Fifer, long exiled in Glesga, I`m delighted to know that Tory is still a dirty word back home. My granny used to get really mad when her man rose and spat in the fire at the mere mention of someone called Churchill. It made a terrible mess of her fireside.

  7. Billy Kay says:

    Braw scrievin fae a fine makar. In ma traivels I aince heard a pack o wolves howlin their herts wae on an island aff British Columbia – the nearest I got tae thaim. I did though aince share a roonaboot near Banff in the Rockies wi an Elk, an wes affie happy when a Scots Canadian picked this kiltit hitch hiker up! Ye dinnae want tae argie bargie wi an Elk! Also aince shared a purlin burn in Yellaestane wi a Cougar – I wes sittin on a muckle stane there readin letters fae hame when I luikit up tae see a Cougar takin watter fae the burn….we gliskit an ane anither for a split saicont…an again I wes gey glaid when it ran awa wi alacrity. Can I say though that Elks, Cougars an Wolves are aw doucer tae dael wi than Tories.

    1. Chic McGregor says:

      Guid screivin Billy, it pit me in mine o an auld ‘class’ joke,

      Ye micht, prabably dae, ken it yersel, bit here’tis onywie:

      A fine-claethed gadgie wis pittin a haun doon intil a burn, whiles tae tak some watter tae slake aes drooth.
      A local buddy cried oot “Dinna gae takin watter oota yon burn, its fu of coos keech.”
      The gadgie stoppit and said “I’m sorry old chap, I don’t speak Gaelic. Could you repeat that in English please.”
      The buddy respondit “Certaintly sir. I said, use both hands, you get more that way”.

  8. Billy Kay says:

    Apologies for the bizarre wey ma writin abuin haes been distorted – some gremlin in the system

  9. John Page says:

    Really brilliant, thank you, Neil!
    And thank you so much to Billy Kay whose The Mither Tongue I have just enjoyed immensely.
    John Page

    1. John Page says:

      ………Thank you, William

  10. Grace Ferguson says:

    Great article x

  11. tam Mcgarvey says:

    Dinna fash Billy, there’s no mony wid ken onywey, them no haein a scooby whit wir scrievin is aboot. Here, this is pretty liberatin’, ah feel exclusive, ah keep furgettin ahm multi lingual (though a wee smidgin’ oot o’ practice). Ye wir richt a’ alang Billy.
    Mibbe ye’ve shortbreid crumbs under yir keyboard! Get yirsel wan o thon wee stoor sookers.

    Aye, ah wis in Canada last winter masel. Staunin’ oot in the boreal forest, snaw blawin doon the sheugh o’ ma erse thinkin’ “ahd raither get be scoffed wi’ real wolves than dee on a drip in the new hoaspital in Govan (Sweaty Betty’s thur cryin it!).

    Aye, richt enough, bring back the wild craturs, canne be ony worse than Blair, Cameron nor Osborne.

  12. tam Mcgarvey says:

    Here, the same’s happent wi me. Must be you Bella, or wordpress. Check yir technowheecherie.
    The letter “i” is oot on strike. (ur should ah say “eye” as its gubbed?) Ur the establishment attackin wir mither tongue again?

  13. James McDonald says:

    Real braw style an humour. Aw the commentators’s haen the same vouel taen awa somehou. A’ll no test masel, thoch 😉

  14. Alf Baird says:

    Aye, w1 ken f1ne thon Tor1es are wolves r1cht eneuch, but wh1t does thon mak us Scots? Pu1r wee lamms led tae the slauchter?

    Whaur are Salmond’s “56 ra1r1n l1ons”? Awfu douce l1ons, maun be fed gu1d an weel. R1n awa tae b1de in Lund1n toon, tak1n the un1on1st sh1ll1n?

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