The Scotsman

31st August 1996

Horror of Horrors as the circus starts to act up

What a Week

Robert McNeil finds some aggressive street-suss being directed at the Festival luvvies.
MY eye was inexplicably drawn to this headline in yesterday’s Independent: “Why I hate this bunch of fizzy-water, arty-farty folk who run Edinburgh.”
Gosh. The article was written by the estimable promoter Gerry Cottle, who is down at Leith Links with the Circus of Horrors.
In it, he complains that, while the punters are flocking to the Circus, the luvvies are ignoring it and it ain’t getting no awards.
“Meanwhile, the bar-room hangouts of the Edinburgh habitues resound to the sound of bitchily dismissive critiques of a ‘scuzzy’ circus which markets itself with an aggressive sense of street-suss, and which wins popular support by the barrel-load, but scores ‘nil points’ in Edinburgh’s teaming enclaves of fey, androgynous arty-farty folk.”
That’s you telt, ya jessies.
SCOTLAND’S crime figures soared in the first three months of this year, according to a police report issued this week.
Apparently, there were 20,000 crimes in Lothian and Borders, 60,000 in Strathclyde, and 12,000 in Grampian.
This can’t be right. Because every time we phone them of an evening to see if there has been any crime, they say: “Nope. There’s nothing happening. It’s all quiet.”
Even when you do know something has happened, you usually don’t get any details because “it’s not in the computer yet”.
No kidding, chums. It’s a mysterious world out there. No wonder people resort to crime.
TALKING of crime, the state of California is to castrate child abusers on their second offence. Splendid
ONE’S sympathies go out to the Greenock man who went on a bender after his ex-wife was nowhere to be found on what would have been their 23rd wedding anniversary.
He bent all her knifes, and all her forks, and all her spoons. His solicitor told the court: “He has achieved a certain amount of notoriety. He is now known as Uri Geller.” Fined £350.
MAIR crime. This time in Sweden where it was reported that a drunk man faces a charge of careless driving.
Nowt unusual in that, you might think. But said drunk was in charge of a trolley which careered at 30 miles an hour downhill, straight into a car.
He was uninjured and might have got away with it. But somebody shopped him.
A MONSTROUS injustice has taken place. It involves Mr Danny Bird and the Loch Ness Monster. Danny, from Inverness, bought himself a Nessie costume to attend the Boston marathon.
With claws akimbo and a tartan bunnet on his napper, he hoped to attract sponsorship for Help the Aged.
So, Mr Bird flew to America – in a plane, Watson; don’t be a fool – and found that everywhere he went in his monster costume, people burst out laughing.
“You don’t look like a monster, you look like a troll!” they cried. Worse was to come. When Danny tried running in a fun-run before the marathon, he found himself at the back of the pack.
“The head and neck were so cumbersome that when a slight wind blew up, it was strangling me,” he complained. He is now suing the costume-makers for £750 of the £ 1,000 he shelled out on the suit, alleging that the costume was poor quality, too big, awkward, and unsafe. Sounds like a pretty accurate Nessie.
WHAT a nightmare having to write about the Royal divorce. A million factoids and bits of observation are collected and, at times, you even remember that these are, after all, two human beings whose personal lives are under the microscope.
If you had any kind of conscience, the whole business might even make you shudder.
It was with some relief, therefore, that I turned to see how our tabloids had dealt with the story. The Sun headline said it all: “Bye Bye Big Ears.”
Love it. But it is a strange habit you earthlings have of picking on each other’s physical characteristics and ridiculing them. At its worst, it takes the form of racism, where dangerous dimwits formulate entire political philosophies around the fact of differing shades of skin colour. Bizarre.
At a less harmful level, it still proves puzzling. Like at the football. Members of the visiting team are subject to all manner of friendly advice and anatomical observation from the home supporters.
“Ya ginger-heided balloon, ye couldnae hit an aircraft hangar from ten yards with a bazooka!”
“Yir full o’mince, ya squinty-nosed galoot! ”
“Hey you, with the slightly uneven eyebrows, get off!”
Anyway, from this beardy, daft-haired, knobbly-kneed loon, it’s toodle-pip till next week

30th August 1996

The Daily Star

FURIOUS John May did a Uri Geller when his ex-wife started dating another bloke.
He went round to her house and BENT all her cutlery.
The 48-year-old divorced electronics worker went looking for his ex-missus Georgina to celebrate what should have been their 23rd wedding anniversary.
But he flew into a rage when he couldn’t find her and so he started his Uri Geller act.
Georgina was hiding at a friend’s house three doors away as May shouted and swore and demanded to see her.
When he left and she returned to her council terrace home in Cumberland Road, Greenock, she found the door kicked in and all her knives, forks and spoons bent.


Rodney Cairns, defending, told Greenock Sheriff Court: “My client found his divorce difficult to accept.”
“He began to brood when he discovered his ex-wife was seeing another man – which being a divorced lady she was perfectly entitled to do.”
“There was no question of any violence towards her and he has achieved a certain amount of notoriety.”
“He is now known as Uri Geller – the man who bends spoons.”
First offender May admitted wilfully and recklessly destroying a quantity of cutlery.
Sheriff John Herald fined May £350 and ordered him to fork out £175 compensation to his ex-wife.
When quizzed, after the hearing, about his Uri Geller act, May stormed: “I’m not speaking about it. “

30th August 1996

Daily Record


JEALOUS- John May took Uri Geller-style revenge when he heard his ex-wife was dating a new man.
He kicked in her door, went into the kitchen and BENT her cutlery.
Electronics worker May, 48, went looking for former wife Georgina on June 8 – what would have been their 23rd wedding anniversary.
His ex-wife was at a friend’s house three doors away and hid as May shouted and swore and demanded to see her.
When he finally went away, she returned to her Greenock home – to find the results of May’s twisted revenge.
Rodney Cairns, defending, told the town’s sheriff court: “He found his divorce difficult to accept. When he discovered his ex-wife was seeing another man he was brooding.


“He accepts he had too much to drink and acted stupidly but there was no question of any violence towards her.
“He bent the cutlery in a fit of pique and anger.
“May now has achieved a certain amount of notoriety, being known as Uri Geller locally.”
May, a first offence, admitted wilfully and recklessly destroying a quantity of cutlery and a breach of the peace.
The court was told earlier that May had been on a drinking bender.
He had arrived at his ex-wife’s friend’s home, shouting “where’s the cow?”, upsetting a 16-year-old girl there.
Sheriff John Herald fined May £350 and ordered him to pay a total of £175 compensation to his ex-wife – £70 for the cutlery and the rest to replace the door.
May later rushed from court, saying: “I don’t want anything to do with this. I’m not speaking about it.”

30th August 1996

Greenock Telegraph

SPOONBENDER John May, who doubled up his former wife’s cutlery in a jealous rage when he found she was out with another man, was fined and ordered to pay compensation at the sheriff court.
May (48) of 115 Drumfrochar Road, Greenock, was reappearing for sentence after admitting causing wilful damage and breach of the peace.
He was fined a total of £350 and ordered to pay £104.56 compensation to the council for damage to storm doors he smashed to get into her home at Cumberland Road, and a further £70 to his former wife to replace her cutlery.
His agent. Mr Rodney Cairns, told the court that since the incident his client had gained a “certain amount of notoriety” and was now known locally as “Uri Geller” because of his spoon-bending escapades.
The court heard earlier that May and his wife had divorced in 1987 but he had not “fully accepted the situation” and still had “extremely strong feelings for her”.
He discovered she was consorting with another man and when he went to her house and was told she was out with him flew into a rage.
He smashed his way into her house, emptied out her kitchen drawers and bent all her cutlery, the court was told.
Then he had gone to the house of a neighbour, a close friend of his wife, and shouted and bawled at the top of his voice, upsetting the woman’s six-year-old granddaughter.
Mr Cairns said his client had been drinking that night and now in the cold light of day realised his wife had every right to see another man if she chose.
“It was totally irrational behaviour all stemming from jealousy,” said Mr Cairns.


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