Rough Scan

          WAS juist gaen oot at the back door on Wednesday nicht last week when 
          I hears some crackin’ gaen on i’ the washin’-hoose, an’ I lookit in 
          to see wha was there.
          that’s juist the very dollop,” says Sandy, as I lifted the sneck.
          Kenawee an’ Bandy Wobster an’ him were stravagin’ roond aboot the place 
          wi’ a fitrool an’ a bawbee can’le, an’ I saw immidintly that there was 
          something i’ the wind.  I was 
          juist clearin’ my throat to lat them ken there was to be nae mair o’ 
          their conspiracies in my washin’-hoose, when Dauvid slippit in his wird 
          afore me.
        awa, Bawbie,” he says, says he, in his uswal quiet wey.  “We were juist seein’ aboot whuther we micht 
          hae a bit magic lantern exhibition here on Setarday nicht.  I have a class at the Mission Sabbath Schule, 
          ye see, an’ I was genna has them at a cup o’ tea on Setarday, an’ I 
          thocht o’ gien them a bit glisk o’ the magic lantern.  Robbie Boath, the joiner, has a lantern he’s genna gie’s the len’ 
          o’, an’ Sandy here thinks he can wirk the concern a’ richt.”
          nae objection to onything o’ that kind, whaur gude’s genna be done,” 
          says I.  “But it’s no’ nane o’ 
          your electric oxey hydropathic kind o’ bisnesses, is’t?  
          I winna lippen Sandy wi’ onything o’ that kind, for I tell ye-“
          you bather yoursel, Bawbie,” brook in Sandy.  
        “This is a parafin lantern; juist as easy wrocht as your washin’ 
          machine there.”
        weel, Sandy,” says I, “gin ye get on wi’ your magic lantern as weel’s 
          ye generally manish wi’ the washin’ machine, when I’m needin’ a hand 
          o’ ye, I’ll swag Dauvid’s bairns ‘ill no’ be lang keepit.”
        Bawbie, you’re aye takin’ fowk aff wi’ your impidence,” says Sandy, 
          gey ill-natured like.
          Dauvid an’ Bandy juist took a bit lauch at him.
          than, to mak’ a lang story short, Setarday nicht cam’, and the magic 
          lantern wi’t.  Dod, but Sandy 
          had a gey efternune o’t.  He 
          was steerin’ aboot, carryin’ in soap boxes for seats to the bairns, 
          an’ learnin’ up his leed aboot the pictures, an’ orderin’ aboot Nathan; 
          ye never heard the like!  I heard him yatterin’ awa’ till himsel’ i’ 
          the back shop, “The great battle o’ Waterloo was fochen in echteen fifteen 
          atween the English an’ the French, an’ Bloocher landit on the scene 
          juist as Wellinton was gien the order— 
        Tuts, ye stupid blockheid, Nathan, that saft-soap barrel disna 
          gae there— ’Up gairds an’ at them.’” 
        He gaed on like this for the feck o’ the efternune, an’ even 
          in the middle o’ his tea, when I speered if it was het eneuch, he lookit 
          at me akinda ravelled like, and says, “Although ye was startin’ for 
          that star the day you was born, stride-legs on a cannon ball, ye wudna 
          be there till ye was mair than ninety ‘ear auld.”
          speakin’ aboot stars?” says I; “I’m speerin’ if your tea’s het
          ay, yes, I daursay; it’s a’ richt,” says Sandy.  “I was mindin’ aboot Sirias, the nearest fixed star, ye ken.  I winder what it’s fixed wi’?”
          o’clock cam’ roond, an’ Dauvid’e bairns gaed throo oor entry like’s 
          they’d startit for Sandy’s fixed star.  
          They wudda gane through the washin’-hoose door if it hadna happened 
          to be open.  I had forgotten aboot them at the time; but, 
          keep me, when they cam’ oot o’ Dauvid’a efter their tea, I floo to the 
          door.  I thocht it was somebody 
          run ower.
          had on his sirtoo an’ his lum gin this time, an’ he was gaen about makin’ 
          a terriple noise, blawin’ his nose in his Sabbath hankie, an’ lookin’, 
          haud your tongue, juist as big’s bull beef.  
          He gaed into the washin’-hoose to cowshin the laddies, for they 
          were makin’ a terriple din.
          boys an’ loons—an’ lassies, I mean,” says Sandy, “there must be total 
          nae noise ava, or the magic lantern ‘ill no wirk.”
        “Hooreh!  Time’s up!” roared a’ the laddies
          an’ they whistled, an’ kickit wi’ their feet till you wudda thocht they 
          wud haen my gude soap boxes ca’d a’ to crockineeshin.
          appeared to tak’ the whole thing as a maitter o’ coorse, an’ when I 
          speered if this was juist their uswal, “Tuts ay,” says he, “it’s juist 
          the loons in tbe exoobrians o’ their speerits, d’ye know, d’ye see.”
          I to mysel’, thinks I, I wud tak’ some o’ that exoobrians oot o’ them, 
          gin I had a fortnicht o’ them.  A 
          Sabbath class!  It was mair like 
          a half-timers’ fitba’ club.  But, 
          of coorse, it’s no’ ilka day they see a magic lantern.
        Kenawee, an’ Mistress Mollison an’ her man, the Gairner, an’ the Smith, 
          an’ I cudna tell ye hoo mony mair, had gotten wind o’t, an’ the washin’-hoose 
          was as foo as cud cram.  There 
          was a terriple stramush amon’ the laddies when the can’le was blawn
        oot, an’ syne Sandy strak a spunk an’ lichtit his lantern, an’, efter 
          a fell lot o’ fykin’, he got her into order.
          gae a keckle o’ a host, an’ syne he says, “Now, boys an’ girls an’ people, 
          the first picture I’m genna show you is Danyil in the den o’ lions.  There he is sae!” an’ he shot in the picture.
          was an awfu’ queer-like picture.  I 
          cud nether mak’ heid nor tail o’t.  
          It was a’ juiet akinda greenichy-yallichy like, like’s somebody 
          had skelt a pottal o’ green-kail or something on the sheet whaur the 
          picture was.
          dootin’ there’s something wrang wi’ the fokis,” says Bandy
          you look efter your ain fokis, Bandy,” says Sandy, gey peppery weys, 
          “an’ lat ither fowk’s fokises aleen.”
          ye shure you’re micht wi’ the picture?” Dauvid Kenawee speered.
          naethiug wrang wi’ the picture,” says Sandy.  
        “Ye see that kind o’ a broon bit doon at the fit there?  That’s ane o’ Danyil’s feet.”
          the number o’ the slide, Sandy,” said Bandy, “an’ mak’ shure you’re 
          richt.  They’re mibby oot o’ order.”
          oot o’ order,” said Sandy, as angry as a wasp.  
        “Haud that lum hat, Bawbie!” he says; an’ he oot wi’ the picture, 
          an’ roars oot— ”Number 2217! Look up 2217, Nathan, i’ the book there, 
          an’ see what it says.”
          kirnin’ aboot amon’ the leaves o’ his book for a meenit or twa, Nathan 
          got up his nose to the moo o’ the lantern an’ read oot— ”A slice o’ 
          a drunkard’s liver.”
          d’ye say?” says Sandy.  “Lat’s 
          slice a’ a drunkard’s liver,” says Nathan again.
          grippit the book, an’ efter a meenit, he says, “Ay, man; so you’re richt.  There’s been some mixin’ amon’ the pictures.  
          This is a slice or section o’ a drunkard’s liver,” he continued, 
          “showin’ the effeks o’ alcohol.”
          laddies hurraed the drunkard’s liver like onythiug, an’ this gae Sandy 
          time to get his breath, an’ to dicht the sweit aff his face.
          the kind o’ a liver ye’ll get if you’re drunkards,” said Sandy.  “The action o’ the alcohol dejinerates the 
          tishie until the liver becomes akwilly ransed, an’ the neebriate becomes 
          a total wreck.”  At this the 
          laddies an’ lassies clappit their hands like a’ that.
          that ye never get a drunkard’s liver,” said Sandy in a solemn voice; 
          an’ ane o’ Dauvid’s laddies says, “By golly, I wudna like a sowser o’ 
          a liver like that, onywey,” an’ set a’ the rest a-lauchin’.
          shouted Dauvid till his class; an’ Bandy Wobster—wha was busy glowerin’ 
          at the drunkard’s liver, an’ windrin’ what like his ain was, nae doot—strak 
          in, without kennin’, wi’ “Shoulder arms!” an’ the laddies roared an’ 
          leuch till you wud actually thocht they wudda wranged themsel’s.  Gin they stoppit, Sandy had fa’in’ in wi’ Danyil, an’ there he was, 
          glowerin’ at’s a’, life-size, an’ twenty lions wirrin’ a’ roond aboot 
          tell’d the story aboot Danyil, an’ hoo he was flung in amon’ the lions 
          for no’ bein’ a vegabon’; an’ faigs, mind ye, Sandy got on winderfu’.  The laddies paid fine attention, an’ ye cudda 
          heard a preen fa’in’ when Sandy was speakin’.
          no’ nae lions’ dens nooadays, ye see,” says Sandy, to feenish up wi’.  “What is’t they do wi’ creeminals or notorious 
          fowk noo?”
          them on for Toon Cooncillers,” said ane o’ the biggest o’ Dauvid’s
          an’ Bandy Wobstem lut oot a great hallach o’ a lauch, an’ roared at 
          the pitch o’ his voice— ”Confoond it!  
          Feech!  I’ve swallowed a bit tobacco!”
          there were pictures o’ Joseph an’ Moses an’ a great lot mair Bible characters, 
          the loons roarin’ oot the names generally afore the pictures were half 
          in sicht.  They were raid loons, 
          an’ nae mistak’, but I can tell ye they had the Bible at their finger 
          nebs.  Dauvid was as prood’s Loocifer aboot the laddies 
          answerin’ so smert; but Sandy hardly liked it.
          had a’ the Bible stories as clare’s clare cud be, an’ whenever any picture 
          appeared they had a’ the story roared to ane anither afore Sandy got 
          his fokis putten into order.  Bible 
          knowledge is a grand thing, nae doot; but the laddies fair took Sandy’s 
          job ower his heid; an’ he hardly liked it, as ye’ll readily understan’.
          the local characters gae Sandy a better chance, an’, I ashure you, he 
          took full advantage o’t.  He 
          gae a lang laberlethan aboot some o’ the pictures—keep me, if he’d carried 
          on like yon at ilky picture, he wudna been dune when the forenune bells 
          wudda been ringin’ for the kirk next day.
          have noo some kapital pictures o’ auld Arbroathians to show you,” said 
          Sandy to the bairns “the reg’lar rale Reed Lichties.  
          An’ I howp the laddies here ‘ill tak’ a lesson frae them, an’ 
          stick in an’ get their pictures in magic lanterns efter they’re deid 
          too, an’ get great big mossyleeums—that’s thae great muckle sowsers 
          o’ gravesteens, juist like mill stalks, ye ken—oat in the Warddykes 
          Cemetery, wi’ their names chiseled oa them in gold letters.”
          loons riffed an’ clappit their hands at this like’s they were a‘ wishin’ 
          they were deid an’ buried ablo a big gravesteen.
          a lot o’ palaver, Sandy shot in his first local picture.
          is Provost- What was his name again?  
          He was wint to be a great lad at— 
        Man, what’s his name again, Bandy?” says he.
          dinna ken, Sandy,” said Bandy; “but it strik’s me you have him into 
          the lantern upside doon.  He’s 
          stanin’ on his heid.”
          was a gey upside-doon character, at ony rate,” said the Smith.  “He was juist aboot as muckle use the tae wey 
          as the tither.”
          got his Provost putten richt; but some o’ the rest o’ his notables were 
          juist as pranky.  They cam’ in 
          backside-foremost, upside-doon, lying alang the floor—ye never saw the 
          like—until Sandy was near-hand at the swearin’.  “Confoond thae Provosts and Bailies,” says he, “I never saw sic 
          a set.”
          ow, Sandy,” says I, “ye needna get angry at thae bodies; they’re a’ 
          weel, we’ll hae a whup at some o’ the livin’ anes,” says Sandy.  “Gie me up some o’ thae slides in the green 
          box,” he cries to Nathan.  “Whaur 
          hae ye putten the Pmovosts an’ the Bailies?”
          have them a’ in my breeks’ pooch,” says Nathan.  “They’re a’ richt.”
          whaur’s the drunkard’s liver?”
          I laid it on the boiler-heid, alang wi’ Danyil an’ some mair.”
          an’ no’ be mixin’ them than,” said Sandy, shovin’ in another slide.  “This, as you’ll easily recognise, is Bailie 
          laddies gae the Bailie a roond o’ applause, an’ Bandy Wobster says, 
          “Man, but he’s awfu’ indistink, Sandy.  
          Ye can hardly mak’ him oot.”
          no’ to be windered at,” says Sandy.  
        “I never fell in wi’ onybody that cud mak’ him oot.  Ye canna expeck a magic lantern to do what ye canna do yersel’.  
          It’ll be a bad job for the Bailie, I can tell you, when fowk 
          begin to mak’ him oot.  The next picture is Cooncillor Spinaway.”
          I’ll go doon the yaird an’ hae a reek,” says Bandy, gettin up frae his 
          seat, an’ settin’ a’ the loons a-lauchin’.
          needna gae awa’ i’ the noo,” says Dauvid.  
        “Wait till you see the rest o’ the pictures.”
          mistak’ yersel’,” says Bandy in laich, “when that cove’s gotten on his 
          feet he’ll no’ sit doon for half an ‘oor.  
          I never saw him get up yet but he gae a’body mair than their 
          sairin’ o’ sooage, an’ main-drains, an’ gas-warks, an’ so on afore he 
          feenisht.  Wait till you see.”
          your haiverin’ tongue,” said Sandy.  
        “Bliss your heart, he’s in the magic lantern.  He canna speak there.”
          daursay you’re richt,” says Bandy, clawin’ his heid.  “Weel, the Provost shud juist keep a magic lantern handy, an’ gar 
          him bide in’t.  That wud keep 
          him quiet at the meetin’s.”
          lat ye see a picture o’ the whole Toon Cooncil, noo,” said Sandy; an’ 
          in cam’ the picture.  “There’s 
          been some mair mixin’ again,” said Sandy, gey kankered like.  
        “That’s shurely no’ the Toon Cooncil.  
          What’s number eehteen, Nathan?”
          pleg o’ locusts in Egypt,” says Nathan.
          that gotten in there, ava?” says Sandy.
          they’d juist putten’t amon’ the ither plegs,” brook in Bandy Wobster.
          a very interestin’ slide,” says Sandy, as he put in the next picture.  “This is a picture o’ the deputation that waited 
          on some o’ the members o’ the Toon Cooncil at lest election an’ priggit 
          wi’ them to bide in, altho’ they were awfu’ anxious to hae dune wi’t.”
          like a picture o’ a bunghole withoot a barrel roond it,” said ane o’ 
          Dauvid’s laddies.
          naebody there, Sandy,” said Bandy Wobster.
          but that’s the deputation tho’,” said Sandy.  
        “They’re mibby inveesible, but that’s them for a’ that.  The name’s on the picture.  You can look yersel’, if you dinna believe 
          Pepper’s Ghost!” roars oot the Smith.  
        “He waits on lots o’ fowk aboot election times.  He’s juist a perfeck scunner, nominatin’ fowk 
          against their will, an’ draggin’ them into publicity when they wud far 
          raither be kickin’ up some ither kind o’ a row.”
          an awfu’ haiverin’ body the Smith sometimes.  
          When he’s sensible, he’s juist akinda ridic’lously sensible; 
          an’ when he’s no’, he’s juist as far the ither wey.
          is aye anonimous,” says Sandy.  “They 
          aye turn up wi’ a nomdy plum.  It’s 
          juist the men’s modesty that keeps them oot o’ sicht.  They pey a’ their veesits throo the nicht, an’ fient a cratur kens 
          eechie or ochie aboot them.  Man, 
          I like modesty.  I’ve a great 
          respeck for a deputation that keeps out o’ sicht.”
          wi’ some mair pictures,” roared some o’ the iaddies, an’ Sandy’s grand 
          perrygrinashin ended a’ o’ a sudden.
          next picture is a very interestin’ ane,” said Sandy, efter he’d gotten 
          a breath.  “This is ane o’ the 
          famous meal mobs.  You see the 
          crood o’ men, sae, they’re a’ roarin’ thegither.  
          There’s neen o’ you loons ‘ill mind o’ the meal mobs,” said Sandy, 
          “but I mind o’ them fine.  A 
          gey toon it was i’ thae days.  You’ll notice the auld Toon-Clark i’ the middle 
          there, wi’ his hands up, threatenin’ to send for the pileece, an’ a’ 
          the crood yalpin’ at him like as many dogs.  
          I can tell you loons, ye may thank your stars that you wasna 
          born when wey-o’-doin’s like that was carried on i’ the toon.  You dinna ken naethin’ aboot it.  
          There’s been naethin’ like it i’ the toon o’ Arbroath sin’-“
          on, Sandy,” roared Nathan; “that’s the wrang picture you have in again; 
          here’s the meal mob here.  Look 
          an’ see what’s on that ane.”
          Presbitree Meetin’!” read oot Sandy; an’ you wudda thocht the Smith 
          an’ Bandy Webster were genna ding doon the hoose wi’ their noise an 
          roarin’ an’ lauchin’.
          thocht they were gey biack-lookin’ gentry for a meal mob,” says the 
          Smith; an’ Bandy nodded his heid an’ leuch, an’ says, “Man, Sandy’s 
          a perfeck genius as fac’s ocht, I hinna heard onything like him.
          hinna time to tell you aboot a’ the rest o’ thc exhibition.  It was a treat in mair weys than ane.  Sandy lut’s see a lot o’ notables like Mester 
          Gladstone, an’ Blind Hewie, an’ Steeple Jeck, an’ the Prince o’ Wales, 
          an’ Burke an’ Hair, an’ the Jook o’ Argile, an’ Dykin Elshinder.  But the crooner o’ them a’ cam’ when Sandy 
          says— ”Noo, here’s Snakimupo, the famous king o’ the Cannibal Islands, 
          an’ his favourite squaw, that eats missionaries, an’ Bibles, an’ poopits 
          whenever they can get a haud o’ them“— an’ in he shot—wha d’ye think?  Juist Sandy an’ me oorsels, life-size—ay, an’ 
          golly midgins!“ says ane o’ Dauvid’s lassies, wi’ her hands up, an’ 
          her moo an’ her een wide open.
          never heard sic a riffin’ as there was, the laddies a’ roarin’ “The 
          King o’ the Cannibal Islands,” an’ Sandy wirrin’ like a perfeck terrier.
          some o’ Robbie Boath’s wark,” he says in laich till himsel’, wi’ an 
          awfu’ girn on his face.  “He 
          gae me that picture special, an tell’d me the name o’t, an’ said to 
          feenish wi’t.  But gin be disna get a stane o’ diseased pitatties 
          frae me the morn that’ll mak’ him onweel for a fortnicht, my name’s 
          no Si Bowden.”  Syne be added 
          heich oot, “Noo, loons and lassockies, that’s a’.  
          It’s aboot time you was toddlin’ awa’ hame noo; an’ I howp you’ve 
          a’ enjoyed it.”
          proposed a vote o’ thanks to Sandy, an’ you  
          wudda thocht the steam-engines atween this an’ Glesca had gotten 
          into oor washin’-hoose, wi’ their whistles on full-cock.  The noise was something terriple.  I had to pet my fingers in my lugs, an’ rin.