Saturday, February 25, 2006

Scotland - it's time to grow up.....

It wasn’t just the craven jingoism oozing from every sweaty tartan pore. It wasn’t even the anti English lyrics spewing out of the Murrayfield sound system, courtesy of the tartan duo, 'The Proclaimers'. The lighting was a bit over the top though. Subdued when England trotted out, it exploded into life when the Scots appeared. It was all Hallelujah chorus and lightening bolts, I mean, was it the Scottish rugby XV taking to the field or was it Jesus, his 12 disciples, the Pope and Mary Magdalene about to play England? The National Anthems were a bit of a pain… God, how I wish we had one.

All that I could stand – even the result didn’t unduly concern me. England lost, Scotland played well, I can handle that…. I mean, it’s a game for God’s sake - it’s not a war is it?…..

Is it?

Well to view the pre-game ‘entertainment' you’d think we were still in the Middle Ages. It’s Scotland versus England again – so let’s all don the woad, dress in the tribal tartan, dig out the claymores, clubs and dirks – and lets go and hunt invading Englishmen. There they all were – on the rugby pitch at Murrayfield doing the old ‘Braveheart’ routine. Instead of teenage majorettes with pom-poms, I watched a group of dressed up weirdos doing a little re-enactment of the battle of Stirling Bridge, where William Wallace beats the invading English…

And that is what really sodding well bugs me. With Scotland and the Scottish psyche, it’s all about England – a big ugly, bullying, teutonic neighbour constantly invading Scotland, a little noble Country trying very hard to mind its own business…….

And, according to them, it has always been so, hasn’t it? They’re always quoting Stirling Bridge, Bannockburn, Dunbar, Falkirk, Wallace, and Essex boy Robert the Bruce as examples of English aggression, because it’s all one way, right?

No, actually, it ain’t….
I’ve been delving into a few history books – you’ll be surprised just how many times the wild men from the north have sallied south to try and grab a piece of dear old Albion.

It’s quite a list….

Scots invade Northumbria and win at the battle of Carham in 1018 – thus annexing all Northumbrian and hence English land stretching from Edinburgh to the River Tweed.

King Malcolm III of Scotland invades England in 1093 his army is beaten and he is at killed at the battle of Alnwick.

King David of Scotland invades England in 1138 – and is beaten at the battle of The Standard.

Scots invade and start pillaging and stuff in Northumberland. An English army meets them at the battle of Halidon Hill – Although the Scots outnumber the English, 14,000 to 9,000 - they are soundly spanked, losing 4,500 troops killed to English fatalities of just 15.

King David II of Scotland invades England in1346 and is beaten and taken prisoner at the battle of Neville’s Cross

The battle of Otterburn in 1388 – Earl Douglas and his Scots army invade England and defeats Harry Hotspur and his English army.

The battle of Humbleton Hill in 1402. Hotspur gains revenge in the return leg, this fixture as per all the others, also played on English soil due to the fact that the Scots had invaded - yet again
King James IV of Scotland invades England in 1513 and is beaten and killed at the battle of Flodden Field in Northumberland.

Then there’s the Scottish interference during the English civil war - and that posh French prat, Bonnie Prince Charlie and his mad excursion down to Derby – and of course, not forgetting the current campaign of Westminster occupation by the Scottish Raj….

One day, the Scots are going to lose their misty, one-eyed skewed view of history and grow up. It is no wonder that south of the border, attitudes are hardening towards our northern neighbours – who knows, maybe next season, at Twickenham, we'll have a re-enactment of a noble English army bravely defending our homeland against an aggressive Scotland, after all, there’s plenty of battles to have a go at….


wonkotsane said...

According to the RFU, when Scotland play their national anthem, they aren't. They said that Scotland are choosing to have their rugby anthem played instead of their national anthem which is God Save the Queen.

Try telling that to the jocks.

Toque said...

Go back far enough and Scotland used to have half the population of England, a disproportionate number of whom were in the south of the country, whilst England's north was quite sparsely populated.

The Scots used to enjoy frequent raids into England. The churlish moaners about English aggression would do well to read a few history books and ignore Hollywood and the SNP.

Andy said...

The thing that gives me the creeps is that nobody in the public eye ever challenges the Scots. That's why they wallow in fantasy, that's why they manipulate the political scene and abuse the "British" thing to their own advantage.

How about Channel Four making a programme about the mixed origins of Scots to bring them down to earth? Proud noble Celts? My bottom!

Fred said...

What a depressing exhibition of small-minded xenophobia!

Alfie says it is time for the Scots to "grow up": then he gloatingly celebrates a battle in which 4,500 people were killed as a "spanking". How VERY mature! You'll be out of your nappies and into proper underpants soon, Alfie!

I have been living in Scotland for nearly 12 years now and I have heard the dreary dirge 'Flower of Scotland' more times than I care to remember. The lyrics do not say anything "anti-English" beyond pointing out that we lost one battle in the year 1314 which saved Scotland's nationhood. If you think it is unreasonable for Scottish people to remember that event, you probably thought the commemoration of Trafalgar last year was anti-French. Unless of course you think there should be one rule for the English and another for the Scots.

As for "sweaty" Scottish people - we all perspire; it is natural. If we didn't we would overheat and die. So what is your point, you sweaty little man?

I love the statement that "it is no wonder that south of the border attitudes are hardening towards our northern neighbours".
For "attitudes are hardening", read xenophobic abuse. Alfie may think that Scottish dislike of the English is shameful while English dislike of the Scots is "understandable" but you cannot have it both ways. Racist prejudice is either acceptable or unacceptable.

For heaven's sake, man; take your own advice and grow up.

Toque accuses the SNP of moaning about English aggression. Wrong. The SNP avoid that kind of thing like the plague because they are scared of being seen as backward-looking dreamers. Being a Scottish nationalist does not necessarily mean that you are anti-English any more than George Washington choosing indepedence for America meant he was an anti-British racist motivated by mindless hatred.

Andy said that the Scots "wallow in fantasy". What a pathetic, patronising and insulting thing to say! You should have let your bottom do the talking, Andy: it might have thought of something more intelligent to say.

Anti-English racism is a nasty thing and I have experienced it in Scotland: but to blame "the Scots" for the behaviour of a moron minority is not only stupid, it is racist. I also know Scottish people who have experienced racism in England. One of them has a permanent scar from a bottle attack by a bunch of thugs who heard his accent when he came out of a pub in Fulham.

Racial prejudice is a very serious problem. Let us take it seriously and not indulge in pathetic, one-sided whining that depicts the people over the Border as always 100% in the wrong and ourselves as halo-wearing creatures of perfection.