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The Joe Murphy Column 16-03-18

The Joe Murphy Column

What a time we have experienced with the poor weather over the first few days of March then heavy snow and wind; resulting in drifts of snow well over 4 feet in the front and back garden. Plus it was also bitter cold and I locked the window in the hut to keep the snow out and kept the birds in the loft as the bottom part of the aviary had about 2 foot of snow covering it. However yesterday Sunday 4th March I let the birds back out into the aviary as the ‘thaw’ was on and they lay about in the snow and were looking for a bath. However I could not get to the baths which are in my greenhouse as the snow was too deep to go there.  We managed to clear the driveway which allowed us to go to church and obtain some shopping on the way home. This was the first time we had been out since last Tuesday due to the weather conditions. The one good thing is we had each other for company and you have to feel sorry for people who live on their own at this time. They would have had no one to speak to during the day or night and stuck in watching TV; believe me it would have been a long time being on your own. Margaret enjoyed watching the athletics on the TV while I managed to catch up on studying the SNFC result for birds that I can highlight in my SNFC Good Birds feature; so I made good use of this spare time. As the schools were off and our daughters work was also closed during this time she looked after the kids however we kept in contact with them by mobile phone. My birds are now down on eggs and up to now everything seems to be going well except for a yearling cock that keeps going into the wrong box and sitting on the eggs after he has chased the pair out. He has done this to another yearling pair but would not have done it to one of the older pairs as they guard their boxes with their lives.


I received word that Brian Donnelly a good pigeon man from Dundee has now retired from his post as director of Rayno Roofing Limited. We wish Brian all the best for the future and now he will not have to get up so early to train his pigeons before going to work. I have heard the sound of his car horn when he has passed Kevin and me in the layby where we meet while training the birds for the nationals. Good Luck for the future Brain and all the very best for the 2018 season.

Good SNFC Birds

This week we start with a blue chequer hen Ayrshire bred SU16A 1346 raced by Wilf Flockhart of Tranent in East Lothian this hen won 114th section B 434th open from Bedhampton a distance of 361 miles. She was then sent to Ypres a distance of 426 miles and she won 43rd section B 125th open. Continuing with the Ayrshire theme we come to the loft of Robert Reed of Beith whose chequer hen SU14A 7319 won 1st section F 351st open from Littlehampton in 2016 flying 382 miles. Then in 2017 she was sent to the Buckingham national and won 2nd section R 61st open flying 298 miles; a good pigeon to win a 1st & 2nd section. Robert also has a red cock SU16R 1495 who won twice in 2017 being 2nd section F 328th open from Bedhampton a distance of 370 miles; he was then sent to Ypres a distance of 460 miles and he won 13th section F but no open diploma, still a very good pigeon to won 2 very good section prizes.  We now come to section E to the loft of E Porter of Airdrie whose chequer cock SU15L 15243 also won twice in 2017; He was 45th section E 280th open from Buckingham a distance of 293 miles he then went to Bedhampton and won 94th section flying a distance of 367 miles however he did not win an open position. Moving eastward we come to the loft of Jim & Gary Peggie of Methil whose chequer white flight hen SU15F 3837 won twice from inland nationals. As a yearling she won 53rd section C 165th open from Littlehampton a distance of 386 miles. Then in 2017 she competed from Buckingham and won 42nd section C 134th open flying 301 miles. To finish this week I cover the south section loft of John Hodgson & son of Annan who has 2 pigeons to compliment 4303 whom I wrote about a few weeks ago. John’s chequer hen SU15S 4361 won 18th section A 81st open from Bedhampton a distance of 301 miles and also won 15th section A 24th open Alencon. Another of John’s pigeons chequer cock SU15S 4285 won twice in 2017 being 11th section 52nd open Bedhampton and scored from Falaise a distance of 446 miles winning 63rd open. He had previously won 12th section A 110th open from Roye flying 444 miles.

This week’s Photographs

Jim Hannah has kindly forwarded some pictures of birds he took from the North section of the SNFC so this week I highlight Kirkhill Laddie raced by George Wetherly of Aberdeen.

The next pigeon is Alix’s Girl raced by Alex Rae of Aberdeen.


Joe’s Joke

Don't Mess with Senior’s

Last year I replaced all the windows in my house with those expensive, double-pane, energy-efficient kind; today, I got a call from Home Depot who installed them. The caller complained that the work had been completed a year ago and I still hadn't paid for them. Helloooo,........... Just because I'm a Senior Citizen doesn't mean that I am automatically mentally challenged. So, I told him just what his fast-talking sales guy told me last year --that these windows would pay for themselves in a year--- Hellooooo? It's been a year, so they're paid for, I told him. There was only silence at the other end of the line, so I finally hung up.

He never called back.  I bet he felt like an idiot.


At the checkout at the supermarket, the young cashier suggested to the much older woman, that she should bring her own grocery bags because Plastic bags weren't good for the environment. The woman apologised and explained, "We didn't have this 'green thing' back in my earlier days."

The young cashier responded, "That's our problem today your generation did not care enough to save our environment for future generations."
She was right -- our generation didn't have the 'green thing' in its day.
Back then, we returned milk bottles, lemonade bottles and beer bottles to the shop. The shop sent them back to the plant to be washed and sterilised and refilled, so it could use the same bottles over and over. So they really were recycled.
But we didn't have the "green thing" back in our day.

Grocery shops bagged our groceries in brown paper bags, that we re-used for numerous things, most memorable besides household bags for rubbish, was the use of brown paper bags as book covers for our schoolbooks. This was to ensure that public property (the books provided for our use by the school), was not defaced by our scribblings. Then we were able to personalise our books on the brown paper bags. But too bad we didn't do the "green thing" back then.

We walked up stairs, because we didn't have a lift in every supermarket, shop and office building. We walked to the local shop and didn't climb into a 300 horsepower machine every time we had to go half a mile.

But she was right. We didn't have the "green thing" in our day.

Back then, we washed the baby's Terry Towel nappies because we didn't have the throwaway kind. We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy-gobbling machine burning up 3 kilowatts wind and solar power really did dry our clothes back in our early days. Kids had hand-me-down clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing.

But that young lady is right; we didn't have the "green thing" back in our day.

Back then, we had one radio or TV in the house - not a TV in every room and the TV had a small screen the size of a big handkerchief (remember them?), not a screen the size of Scotland In the kitchen. We blended and stirred by hand because we didn't have electric machines to do everything for us. When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used wadded up old newspapers to cushion it, not Styrofoam or plastic bubble wrap. Back then, we didn't fire up an engine and burn petrol just to cut the lawn. We pushed the mower that ran on human power. We exercised by working so we didn't need to go to a health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity.

But she's right; we didn't have the "green thing" back then.

We drank from a tap or fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water. We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new pen, and we replaced the razor blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole razor just because the blade got dull.

But we didn't have the "green thing" back then.

Back then, people took the bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their Mums into a 24-hour taxi service in the family's £50,000 ‘People Carrier’ which cost the same as a whole house did before the "green thing." We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances and we didn't need a computerised gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 23,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest Pub! But isn't it sad that the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn't have the "green thing" back then?

Please forward this on to another selfish old person who needs a lesson in conservation from a smart arse young person... We don't like being old in the first place, so it doesn't take much to p…s us off...especially from a tattooed, multiple pierced smartarse who can't work out the change without the cash register telling them how much it is!

Here ended the lesson


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