Uncle Tom

THERE is a vast store of pawky humour, ready wit and kindly common sense to be found in the everyday conversation of the average Scotsman.

This is especially true among the humbler homes of our industrial population, where plain-speaking finds expression in words and phrases that are often described as vulgar. Indeed they may be vulgar in the sense that a vulgar language is the language of the great majority of any community. But such vulgarity is not incompatible with an alert sense of humour, a power to express, in appropriate and pithy sentences, and without any ambiguity, the meaning which the speaker wishes to convey.

Some of the remarks represented as having been made at "Mrs Goudie's Tea-Pairty" may appear to be overdrawn, if not quite incredible, but generally speaking they have been founded on fact.

The writer is indebted to Sir Robert Bruce, C.B., LL.D., D.L., Editor of The Glasgow Herald, for kindly allowing to be reproduced a short sketch formerly contributed during the early years of the Great War.

"Tommy's Birthday" has been repreduced among the following pages, but under the sub-title of "The Patience o' Mistress Blane."

This little volume has been written with the object of preserving a record of some typical conversations and quaintly ludicrous incidents, the recollection of which has been a constant tonic during the course of a moderately long life.

If the narrative of "Mrs Goudie's Tea-Pairty" affords any degree of pleasure to the reader it will be a great source of satisfaction to


9th October 1934.