Thursday 2 April 2015

Week 35 - More words from our founder

Stewart was an amazing person -  A wonderful husband, a fantastic brother, a loving son and an adored uncle.  He was also a brilliant friend and colleague and is missed by so many people. His family are determined that his death will never be in vain and are doing their part to beat bowel cancer for good.  We are fundraising for the Bobby Moore Fund which is part of Cancer Research UK and specialises in research into bowel cancer.  If you wish to donate to the fund, you can via .


If you haven’t already done so, please read the article which appeared in the Daily Record and learn from Stewart’s story that you must never be complacent.  It makes grim reading for us, his family, even though we were beside him throughout his ordeal, or battle; call it what you will.


He began writing The Grambler when he was between procedures and hoping for some form of recovery.  He loved all aspects of football and was a lifelong Motherwell supporter.  His wish was that The Grambler should continue after his death and I have been happy to oblige.  Welcome to The Grambler, the most ill-informed blog you are ever likely to see. Read on and enjoy…


It is a very special week this week.  It would have been the 30th birthday of Stewart, the founder of this wonderful blog, this Saturday, April 4th.  With that in mind, I will scoot through the grambling for this week and save the teaser answer until next week.

What happened to our bets for last weekend?  They lost.

And now, this week’s selections…


Game – Result – Odds

Swansea vs Hull – Prediction Home win – 10/11

Hibernian vs Queen of the South – Prediction Home win – 8/13

Stenhousemuir vs Forfar – Prediction Away win – 10/11

Stranraer vs Ayr – Prediction Home win – 4/7

Arbroath vs Annan Athletic – Prediction Home win – 5/6




As well as there being no teaser, there will be no other birthday references or any gramblerised tune.  This week is a tribute to Stewart and includes much of the material he put on line via b3ta and tumblr.  Please appreciate the wit and humour of Stewart…

First, an article from from 10th August 2012.

When I had just started high school, science lessons were awesome. For the first time, we had classes that involved fire and chemicals and gases and explosions and stuff!

One of the first experiments I can remember being shown was a simple 'un - Stick a bit of magnesium ribbon over a Bunsen burner and watch it go up in flames with a magnificent flash! Like any eager young scientist, I had to replicate this. So at the end of our lesson, I stuck a handful of the stuff into my pocket to take home.

That night when my folks were out, I pinched my brother’s lighter and attempted to create science... Clearly the flame wasn't powerful enough. Nothing happened.

Ah-ha, thinks I, the cooker is basically a giant Bunsen burner! So off I go to the kitchen and recreate the class with the help of some barbecue tongs. After having much fun (I was 12, it was fun, honestly!) I went back to playing Championship Manager or watching Robot Wars or something else that I did in the nineties.

An hour or so later, and I am startled by my screaming mother:


I had forgotten to clean the white powdery residue from the kitchen worktops. Obviously the only possibility was that a twelve year old had access to cocaine, could afford cocaine and was snorting cocaine from the kitchen worktop on a Tuesday night.

I'm still not convinced she believed my excuse.




Now a Christmas gag from

Marley was dead: to begin with…




And now another item; this time from 8th April 2010.

This has been annoying me for some time now. The Watergate scandal was generally referred to as 'Watergate' as it occurred at the Watergate. I'm not sure if it is just lazy journalism, but suddenly anything remotely scandalous becomes a -gate.

Take for example 'Pizzagate.' For anyone who does not remember this scandal, a football player threw a bit of pizza at a manager. Suddenly it's an outrageous incident known as 'Pizzagate.'

Now, I may be wrong but a) Pizza has nothing to with gates and b) One man throwing a bit of dough at another man bears very little comparison to an act of deceit and corruption exposing criminal activity within one of the most powerful governments on the planet.

On a similar note, alcoholics are called alcoholics as they have a fondness for alcohol. I am not aware of any such thing as 'chocohol', 'shopahol', 'workahol' or 'sexahol' (I'm slightly surprised at the latter, it could easily be some kind of bright, diabetes inducing, WKD style chav-drink).

Anyway, enough ranting for me. I'm becoming a rantoholic...




And finally, from Stewart at least, a favourite of mine from one of his posts on this very blog.

Q: Why was Cinderella rubbish at football?

A: Because she had no formal training.  From a young age, her sisters coerced her into doing all of the housekeeping meaning that she never even got the chance to try out for her school football team.  Besides, back in those un-PC days, the school team probably wouldn't have selected a girl.  There was also a lack of interest in the sport on her part; she often heard people making remarks about her 'running away from the ball' and thought to herself "when you put that into context, it really makes no sense as I have no interest and/or involvement in football and/or any other sport."  It wasn't until she found her prince that she took a mild interest in the game, following her new husband’s favourite team -
Coventry City.  And then the French paparazzi took long distance photos of her topless...

Thank you, Stewart.



You perhaps thought there would be no input from me this week.  Sorry to disappoint you, but there is.  It is relevent though.

Three years ago when Stewart was out of hospital after a lengthy stay in the local intensive care unit, much of which was spent in a coma, he was struggling to regain his mobility.  It doesn’t really happen the way they show it in the films, by the way.  You know, that bit in a film when somebody who has been in a coma for weeks comes round and gets out of bed and can walk as well as they ever could?  Afraid not.  The muscles in the legs become so wasted that the person has to be given intensive physiotherapy to learn how to walk again.  It took Stewart weeks using walking frames, then crutches, to get back some strength in his legs.  Any road up, he figured that what might have helped him at this time was a blue badge (a parking permit for people who cannot walk distances) so that, when he needed to go anywhere, the car he was in could be parked in a disabled parking bay; thus reducing any distance he had to walk to a minimum.  He applied for a ‘temporary’ blue badge, figuring that, once he was able to walk again, he wouldn’t need the concession.  He was told by those that issue the parking permits that a person was only eligible for a temporary blue badge six months after making the application.  Naturally, Stewart pointed out that he needed the concession now, not six months hence.  Six months on, he explained, he hoped he wouldn’t need a badge.  Sorry, said the jobsworth he spoke to, rules is rules.

He decided to write to his local MP to point out this anomaly in the system and, in his letter, he suggested that, for people in his situation, a doctor should be allowed to ‘fast track’ the issue of a disabled parking permit.

The MP did reply.  Sort of.  His letter basically told Stewart that he was too busy to be concerned with such matters; he didn’t even refer to Stewart’s condition and his only reference to the parking concession was to reiterate what Stewart had already been told about what ‘temporary’ meant.  For a member of parliament who is supposed to represent his constituents, it was rude in its abruptness; callous, even.  Stewart was so miffed, he wrote to the local paper to complain about the lack of interest shown by his elected member of parliament.

Why am I telling you this?  It’s election time.  In a little over a month Britain goes to the polls to decide who will govern our country.  If you read this blog regularly, you will be aware that Stewart died in August 2013.  Well, this very week, the said elected member of parliament sent a letter to Stewart; a good 18 months after he died.  In it, he asked if Stewart wanted him to keep his correspondence on file!  What?  You weren’t interested in Stewart’s letter three years ago, but you are interested in it now!  Oh, I forgot, there is an election looming and you want to show what a caring individual you are.  Oh yes, he did allude to the election; no doubt hoping that this sudden show of concern would persuade Stewart (had he been able) to vote for him.  Well, no.  For two reasons, mate.  The first is that if you had shown any interest at all in Stewart’s predicament while he was alive, you would have been well aware of his ‘change of circumstances’ in August 2013.  The second?  Stewart would never have voted for you, anyway.  He was a staunch SNP supporter and not a labour voter.

And do you know what, pal?  After your obvious lack of concern for a constituent until it suited you - that is, election time - you don’t deserve any votes.  You won’t get mine, anyway.
I had better finish; I am also turning into a rantoholic.


FOOTNOTE:  You can tell it’s election time - this week’s local paper has a certain politician’s picture in it three times.  One picture shows him with a disabled man.  The headline reads ‘Battling for Justice’.  Think he’s mixing up the word ‘justice’ with ‘votes.’




We, Stewart’s family, wanted to commemorate his birthday in some way.  We didn’t think a bench in the park appropriate and he already has a tree in his memory at Calderglen Park (our local bit of green belt).  What could we do?  As I have mentioned on many occasions, he was a Motherwell supporter from a very early age.  With this in mind, we thought a mention at Fir Park might be in keeping…



I like to think that Stewart would have approved.




For the last few weeks I have finished with a mention of the main reason for continuing to publish this blog.  I’m going to do it again.  Yes, we have raised a goodly sum for the Bobby Moore Fund - currently the total sits at £22,620.07 (No idea who put in 7 pee), but the blog is mainly about raising awareness of bowel cancer.  There is an advertising campaign which tries to persuade people over 50 to take the time to do a simple 2 yearly test which could signify the early symptoms of bowel cancer.  What the advert does not do is point out that young people can also fall victim to the disease.  Stewart was 26 when he was diagnosed; an age where no testing is considered appropriate. 

If you have any bowel problems, don’t be fobbed off with the line that you are too young for bowel cancer to be a consideration.  Just point your doctor in the direction of .


Happy grambling.


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