I’ve always thought acting was quite a strange, precarious, but fun way to earn a living.
I mean, you train for three years in how to move across the floor like a cat, deliver fine words in Received Pronunciation, then take a job as a delivery driver.
Unless, of course, you have friends or family connections in high places to persuade producers to offer you a film or TV role, or perhaps one carrying a spear in a Royal Shakespeare Company play.
Work for actors is as rare as viewers of BBC Scotland’s The Nine, with unemployment running at around 94% at any given time.
Make that 99% these days in these troubled Covid times. Note to resting actors: The increase in online shopping means companies like Amazon and the courier companies that feed off it, are woefully short of people to put “I’m sorry we missed you” cards through letterboxes.
But, while compassion for out-of-work thespians will hardly register on the sympathy meter with the general public, it does highlight how the job centre figures will continue to soar as bars, restaurants, cinemas, hotels, football stadia and theatres, remain short of business or closed.
Should we be worried?
After all, the vaccine is coming to a venue near you, we know not when, but look how euphoric we were when Margaret Keenan, 91 next week, was numero uno to receive it, after which she declared one of the reasons she wanted it was that it was free.
And no, she is not an Aberdonian, but she looked happy to see a line-up of nurses and other medical staff leave their stations to applaud her all the way to the hospital exit.
Next up; William Shakespeare from, er, Warwickshire.
Not THAT William Shakespeare, also from Warwickshire, who wrote: “If you prick me, do we not bleed?”
No, but it was a decent second bite at the government’s PR cherry.
Happy days. Well, it is if you’re happy to still be wearing a mask well into next year, which is what a tearful Matt Hancock, the UK health secretary, tells us.
The virtual dole queue will continue to grow for the foreseeable future, we will have learned how to accommodate not going out so often – and save cash into the bargain – to prefer Netflix to the cinema and to recognise visiting the pub is no big deal.
As for football, well, if your team isn’t cutting the mustard by the time spectators are allowed back into grounds, you might not bother forking out for an overpriced ticket and continue to do the kind of things on a Saturday afternoon you’ve now become accustomed to.
Has Ross put the boot into Labour wannabes?
Has Douglas Ross scuppered the chances of wannabe MSPs and politicians from Labour’s Aberdeen coterie of members from achieving their aims of grabbing a seat in the Holyrood elections of next year and the local authority vote in 2022?
The Scottish Conservatives leader and part-time football linesman may just have flagged Labour offside by praising their rebel nine Aberdeen City councillors, suspended from their party until the year after next.
He held up the current council administration – co-led by Labour and the Tories – as the “perfect example” of how parties can work together.
What next? A plea to the Aberdeen Nine to “come join us, because there ain’t no future in politics for you otherwise? Or might the Nine hang up their red rosettes and form a new, local party?
How about scooping up those independents to form the Aberdeen Democratic Alliance? Or, the We Want to Stay in Politics Party?
How many of the Nine, however, will simply chuck local politics and move on and wonder, like the rest of us, how a new generation of Labour candidates will fare in May 2022, accused as they will be, of siding with the Tories?
Whatever happens, Ross has boxed them into a corner with his “we’re stronger together” comments. After all, what Labour supporter wants to hear that?
Skateboard stars on road to Tokyo
I can’t remember when I last watched the Olympic Games on TV.
So, it was a surprise to learn that softball and baseball were dropped from the event after Beijing in 2008; the surprise being that I wasn’t even aware they had been included in the growing list of “sports” on the Olympic agenda.
Because of Covid, Tokyo 2020 will be held next year when we’ll also see karate, sport climbing, surfing and skateboarding. So, when you hear someone clattering towards you from behind, move off the pavement.
They could be an Olympic skateboarder in the making.