The Scottish Inquisition
Ouesti'ons you don’t expect. This issue: Phil Taylor, Network editor with BBC Scotland News and Current Affairs. First arts/media/music related job? Reporter on The Times (Bootle Times in Liverpool). First 'celeb' interview on The Times — Lonnie Donnegan (skifer king and perpetrator of cockney classic 'My Old Man's A Dustman.')
Doing an impersonation of the Queen Mother during live outside broadcast of a ship launch in Govan for Radio 5 Live.
Award for a Lifetime contibution to Scottish Culture goes to?
Name of a work of art that you cannot live without . . .
Pieter Brueghel’s 1565 painting’Hunters in the Snow' (no idea why) and Merle Haggard's 'Okie from Muskogee' (contains lines ’We don't smoke marijuana in Muskogee, we don't take our trips on LSD' - Agenda ed.)
. . . and a law that you are proud to have broken?
I always stand on the left when I'm on the London Underground escalators. You’re about to be exiled - where and how would you spend your last night?
With my Wife, Sally McNair, at Port Appin in Argyll.
Glasgow: City of Architecture and Design, but which Scottish building would you like destroyed?
The Centre One tax Office at East
X marks the Scot: (left to right) Douglas Henshall. Lesley Riddoch and Christopher Brookmyre
enormous stimulus for creativity in all media. I can’t speak for the arts in general btit. as a satirist I certainly envisage it providing a bounteous wealth of new material.‘
Actor Douglas Henshall. whose Channel 4 series I’svi-lios begins at l()pm on polling day. was less certain that devolution would benefit his particular industry. 'It depends who‘ll be running the country.‘ he says. ‘lf it‘s Labour. I can't see that they’d be any better in Scotland than they are in England.‘ Nonetheless. the ()I'p/lallS star feels it‘s imperative that the ballot boxes are bulging. particularly with the votes of younger members of the electorate. ‘Young people .v/ioii/(l be political.‘ he insists. ‘instead of having to live with and through the fuck-ups of other
Holyrood or bust
With the country gripped by election fever, The List asks a high profile focus group drawn from the arts and media what the new Parliament has to offer. Words: Rob Fraser
Apathy is. by definition. the easiest option. Exercise your right of indifference. stay home on (3 May and remain smugly aloof from the political world. .»\lternati\e|y' become part of the democratic process and vote. As vv ell as making history (the first Scottish Parliament for 300 years. remember) you‘ll have the chance to make a difference. The proportional representation system in operation for the first time in Britain means your vote will not be wasted: btit if
For journalist and broadcaster Lesley Riddoch. who will be presenting a new political programme each weekday from noon until 2pm on BBC Radio Scotland. events at Holyrood represent a galvanising force for the nation‘s media. ‘lt should mean a good kick tip the backside — same as it will mean for the politicians.‘ she argues. ‘New parliament. new structures. tons more women. new rules. hopefully
involving yourself in such a
Anyone planning to abstain
something approaching new
Kilbride OR Tay House, the thing they
mm on the Bridge of Sighs over the
M8 at Charing Cross in Glasgow (this
edifice is most ripe for production in
the opinion of people featured in this
questionaire — Agenda ed).
What motion would would you make
as an MSP?
'This house calls on all shirt manufacturers to state clearly on the
packaging how many pins are contained Within the shirt, thus enabling the buyer
momentous event isn't through apathy or lethargy consensus and a new non-
enotigh to inspire a stroll to the polling station. maybe fear will do the trick.
'I think that anyone planning to abstain through apathy or lethargy should be forced to watch sustained archive footage of Margaret Thatcher in her handbag-wielding heyday. as a pointed reminder of what it felt like to be voiceless and ignored.. novelist ('hristopher Brookmyre says. ‘\\'hether or not voters consider the prospect of the Parliament to be inspirational. they should be aware of what. at the very least. it is an insurance policy against.
.-\sked whether the new body would be a positive influence on the country's creative community. Brookmyre vv as equally forthright. ‘Such a fundamental change to the way Scotland is run and consequently perceives itself is bound to be an
should be forced to watch sustained archive footage of Margaret Thatcher.’
adversarial chamber. All this should mean that journalists must develop a new way of covering politics that at least rises to the challenge the politicians have set themselves. How will we perceive "opposition" when there are several opposition parties — if the public are to be involved. how will we make it happen‘.’ It‘s going to be a lot of fun.‘
Riddoch also feels that the demands an election places on those eligible to vote help produce a more fully rounded individual. 'This choice is good practice for all the other big choices in your life.‘ she says. "l‘hey come along when you don‘t feel fully informed or completely motivated. btit they have to be taken. It isn‘t good enough to be cynical and hip. Isn‘t that climate of automatic sneering exactly what we‘ve voted to change‘."
to avoid personal injury' (compiled by Rob Fraser)
29 Apr—13 May 1999 THE LISTTI