Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Nat sure whit tae call this yin.

Pause fur thocht

The ither day ah hid a bit o' a mornin' crisis fur whin ah goat up fur wurk ah foun' that the motor wudnae start. As a result ah hid tae lend yin aff Wullie McIlveen an' it turned oot that the wireless in his auld yoke wis stuck onatae the Licht Programme (BBC Wireless Twa fur youse yungyins), sae ah wis forced tae drive til the aerodrome listinin' til Terry Wogan. It hid bin sevral years hence since ah last tuned intae "Wakin' up til Wogan", an' a cupple o' thochts come tae me.

Yin -

This is meant tae be Wireless Twa oan the BBC, nat the RTE, sae how come thy'on Free State Boy has bin oan fur sae lang? Its nat as if we'uns in Ulster cannae produce high quality braidcasters. Ye need oany luk at the likes o' George Jones, Canny Divine an' Hugo "skiddileye" Duncan tae realise the wealth o' talent that is concurrently languishin' oan oor local radio. Why hivn't these yins bin given the nashunal exposhure thar talent clearly deserves? Howiver, mair til the point -

Twa -

Fernenst 9.15 each mornin' the aforemenshuned Wogan takes a brake frae playin' Katie Melua (an banterin') tae introduce "Pause fur Thocht", genrally a few wurds frae the Pastor o' sum religion oor ither. This spat his bin filled by folk frae awl religions an' Nuns, frae Muslim Imams tae Jewish Rabbits, but, an here's the rub, nat yince in the 53 years that Wakin' up til Wogan has bin braidcastin' his the Big Mawn hissel bin on. Tae the best o' ma knawledge they havnae even hid yin representative o' the Free Presbyterian Church gi'en us a few comfortin' wurds o' a mornin'. We here at 1690 regard this as a a lak o' respeck fur oor kulture an' heritage an' hiv therefower e-posted til the BBC til demand that this wrang be richted. Ah hiv copied this e-post til below.

Dear Sir Terry Wogan, Lottery boy and Traffic hen.

Ah am an occasionally regular listener tae your show an' fally in particlar yer religus bit - Pause fur Thocht. Generally ah enjoy this, full well in the knawledge that if sum boy comes on who ah knaw is wrang ah kin turn over til he's aff. Racently, howiver, ah hiv realised that yis hiv yit til hiv the Rev Dr Big Ian Paisley oan tae giv his thochts. This dispite the fak that he invented the church an' wis its heid yin til nat lang syne. Yis havnae even hid yin o' his boys oan; the Rev Wee Wullie McRea fur example.

We in the Ulster Scots community deman' a purity o' steam an' that the Rev Dr gits a turn oan yer show. In fak, gi'en that yiv niver hid him oan, we deman' that he's oan ivery day for 6 and a haf weeks, til mak up fur the previous years. If yis dinnae putt this richt, ah will screed til the Equality Commisshun fowerthwith an', ah hiv nae doubt, yil be gittin a stern screedin' aff them afore lang.


Billy McWilliams
Heid Yin o' http://1690andallthat.blogspot.com/
Hopefully that will putt them richt. Ah will let ye knaw if they reply, but it micht help if youse raiders fally suit an' e-post yer thocht til Sir Terry. Go oan, yis knaw yis want til.....
Bit Nine Point Yin.
Thosun's o' yis wha' fally this will rememember that Bit Nine - Life in the Branze Ages Times - came til a grindin' hault as WJ McIlveen wis dragged intae the holdin' area o' ASDA by a big Latvian. Yince inside thy'on, he wasnae able tae provide any mair histry, laivin' me stuck. Luckily WJ wis relaised wi'oot charge an', far frae putt oot by the experience, came bak tae me wi' a fresh ootluk.
It turns oot that thy'on Latvian Security boy was, in his hame place, a Professor o' Archaeology, he wis jist here fur ASDA security pays better. WJ an' his new pal got chitterin' o'er thair shared intrest in histry an' the big lad offered tae take him up the Giant's Ring. Now WJ tells me he'd niver goan thy'on way afore, but he's bin sae excited sin' he kin haurdly sit doon. Accordin' tae yung Wullie, its a hinge monument, likely sum kindae late Neolithic/Early Branze Ages Nicht Club, best visited efter dark tae git the full effeck. Ah menshuned tae Mrs McWilliams that ah micht pop up tae see whit awl the carfuffle wis aboot, but she jist lukked at me.
The nudey pole his closed wi' a wile puir turn oot. Ah'm puttin' this doon tae the fak that ah didnae giv yis the option "nain o' the abuve", but naintheless ah fail a bit let doon. Luckily yis voted tae see a nudey snap o' Iris in the Ulster Museum, an' ah will screed tae them tamarra' makin yer thochts clear. Alsae, ah suppose, yiv already seen Sammy in the nip sae micht nat be sae interested in larnin' mair, but yis micht hiv furgat that Mervyn Storey nearly gained maximum exposure a wheen o' years hence. In an earlier career he wis a much soucht efter male model, a whisker away frae appearin' nudey oan o' an album cover. Fortunately fur us all Oasis opted nat tae call thar 1995 Number yin album "Mervyn Storey's Morning Glory."
Nae pole this week, fur a cannae be ersed thinkin' oan yin.

Thursday, 26 March 2009

Bit Nine - Life in the Branze Ages

Racent Exitements.

A terse screed frae oor funders his remindeded us that we havenae dun any histry this last feu weeks. Ah apologise fur that, but a combination o' drinkin excursions, grawn slawms, press appearences an' genral laziness hiv meant that the histerical aspects o' the blog hiv bin furgat. This we will rectify this eavnin'. Afore we dae, ah need til address the pole.

Address til the pole.

The last pole asked yis til wurk oot which yin o' a few boys wisnae af Ulster Scots roots. The voters went fur Muhammad Ali by a massive 12 - 9, but they were wrang. Surprisin' as it may saim, Ali did indaid hiv an Ulster Scots ancester, ah knaw this fur a fak fur ah read it in a Belfawst Telegraf supplyment. Researchin' this ah foun' oot that Ali yince visited Ulster in search o' his roots. Wile the "Rummle in the Jungle" is yin o' the maist famousest baxin' bouts o' histry, less well knain is the "Pochil in Ahogill"; when the then Cassius Clay wis flewred by Professor Willie McIlveen ootside the Orange Hall, in a squabble o'er which bawnd wis the best Melody Flute at the town's weekly parade.


Is still thar, thank the Laird.

Bit Nine - Life in the Branze Age.

In bit Echt (sumtime hence) we explained the Ulster Scotsness o' the Branze Ages folk, lurnin' how they were driv frae thair hames by Aliens but ris up agin tae invent metal. Whit we didnae lurn wis how they lived thar evryday lifes. Luckily ah bumped intae WJ McIlveen in the cheese section o' the big ASDA in Strabane (which wus bunged full o' Free Staters avoidin' the cripplin' drink taxes o' thar native land) an' he gie me a few notes.


Accordin tae WJ thair is sum debate o'er the nature o' the hooses that Branze Ages folk lived in. Sum archaeologits reckon that they lived in recktangle hooses, replete wi' murial bedecked gables, but new evidince points til roun' yins. It saims that the archaeologits foun' thesels an entire Branze Ages village at a place called Corrstown, a hauny step frae yin o' the Ulster Scot's favrite hingoots, Portrush. This wee settlement wis sae advanced it even hid cobbled roads. Fur sure this is further proof o' the Ulster Scotsness o' the Branze Ages, fur if thair wisnae a European grant Free Staters cudnae metal a surfice.


Like awl guid Ulster Scots, yer Branze Ages mawn was wile fur his fuid. Evidince suggests that he (oor mair likely she) cuiked this fuid in a big hole in the groun' now generally termed (in the Free State) a fulacht fian. This name ignairs the obvious Scots inheritance o' this form o' cuikin:

Yin - The cooker wis warmed frae stains hated an' threw in a pit o' water. Wair wur the stains heated? In a bonefire.

Twa - Fulacht fian is clearly a jumblin o' the Branze age Ulster Scots - Fulla Feedin'. Thair are nae better aters than Ulster Scots, sae if yer lukin' tae boil haf a yo in a hole in the groun' yid be as well in Markethill.

Stain Rings

Branze Ages folk were mad fur bildin big rings o' stains, maist famously at Beaghmore sumwair in Co Tyrone. Noticeably, aside frae a few in Cork an Kerry, these are mainly in Ulster. Archaeologits hiv suggested that they wur bilt fur rituals, perhaps oany used a cupple o' times a year. WJ McIlveen reckons that this is further proof o' the marchin' instinct o' the Branze Ages man. He points oot that the circles wernae built in toons, but in fields, perhaps, he suggests, sum kindae o' pre-march assembly field. Alternatively, it cud be "the field" that yin marches til. If the proximity tae fields wasnae proof enough, WJ reckons that the placement o' the stains exactly mirrors the stawnin' distances required fur a guid lambeg circle. He shud knaw, fur he's measured wi' an inch tape.

If ye doubt the wisdom o' this, go back tae oor Youse Tube bit in February fur proof.

Ah hid hoped tae gain mair information frae WJ but he wis lifted fur cheese theft by the Latvian security mawn. Hopefully he'll be oot in time fur the Iron Ages.

New Pole

Yisturday ah wis amazed til see that a portrait o' the Free State T-Shurt oan the cludgie wis putt oan show in a gallery. This week's pole asks ye tae consider which o' oor Ulster Scots MLAs yid like tae see in a nudey picture. Ah hiv tae admit ah've picked ma puck already.

Incidently, ah've added a few photis tae Aboot us.

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Low........lie.......the fields of Ballynafeigh.......

Wanstain Churchill, Charlie De Goal, Walter Scott, David Lloyd Gearge, the Pope, yer boys tuk yin hell o' a batin'!


Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Aboot us.

Oor menshun in the Saubeth Times his brung us up tae 23 mair raiders than yid normally fine in thais parts an' thair mair than welcome. Howiver regular raiders will by noo hiv grown accustomed tae the body of folk that provide us with thair knowledge, an' ah thunk that it micht be useful fur the blow-ins tae git mair aquainted wi' the 1690 team.

Thus insteid of yer usual Thursday update this week ah hiv spake tae a few o' oor experts an asked them tae tell the new raiders a bit aboot themselves. Ah hiv put taegither the yinst thrie here.

Aboot Us.

Monday, 16 March 2009


Of awl the days aff ye git, St Patrick's is prabably yin o' the average Ulster Scots laist favrite. Wakin' up ye knaw thairs a march oan sumwair, but thairs nat much point in polishin' yer nummers. Tae be sure it's a hauny day fur a few hurs dubble time, but nat much else. Howiver at 1690 we hiv been bin researchin' the St Patrick's Day phenomenomenum an' noo reckon it's as guid a day as any tae git doon the hall. Fur expartise in such matters ah usually turn tae the Reverend Dr. Dougie Muldrew, Professor o' Divinity at Poytnzpass Presbyterian Preachin' an' Pole Dancin Polytecknic. Over a ribena oor twa at his office ah hiv discuvered a variety o' faks that micht change a Braid man's mine.

  • Scot.

Accordin' til the Catholic Encyclopedia (1911) Patrick wis bairn at "Kilpatrick, near Dumbarton, in Scotland in the year 387." It disnae gae oan til say that he was reared within' the ranks o' the Presbyterian Kirk but neither dis it say that he wasnae, thus laivin' the possibility open.

  • Welsh

Accordin' tae the BBC he wus in fak frae a village called Banwen in the Dulais Valley, suwair in Wales. The Welsh association wi' the dissentin branches o' the church is well knawn, perhaps makin' him a Methodist.

  • English

Accordin til a buk by a Henry Jelley, Patrick wis bairn "in south-western England, in Somerset, at or near the village of Banwell, five miles east of Weston-super-Mare." Whilst Mr Jelley, an' his slightly amusin name, micht nat inspire confidence, ye hiv tae admit that "St Patrick o' Weston-super-Mare" wud luk guid writ doon the side o' a float in Buncrana

  • French

Anaither argument is that St Patrick wis jist yin o' many boys wha brung Christianity tae Ireland, but he becum knawn as the main mawn due tae the influence o' a French boy by the name o' John de Courcy. Nat lang efter invadin' Ulster de Courcy happen'd tae fine the bones o' a few Saints knackin' aboot' an tuk thum tae his new capital, wha he called Doonpatrick, a hauny story if yer lukkin' tae curry favour wi' the locals.

  • The Truth.

Through his larnin the Reverend Dr. Muldrew his wurked oot that Christianity wus in fak brung til Ireland by St Willie McDowell.


Wakenin' up in a state o' disrepair yisturdey mornin' ah foun' ah hid a text frae yin o' oor regular raiders tae tell me we hid made page 19 o' the Saubath Times. Stranded as ah wis in Edinborough ah hid tae wait til taeday tae git the full story. I wis shacked tae fine that the paper described oor site as a "satirickal Ulster Scots" wabsite. Ah wid like tae point oot tae themuns at the Times that this is an EU funded Edukational site, nat sum kine o' cod thing. Ah considered contactin' oor solicitors but hiv decided tae laive it this time. Efter awl, it's the yinst mention wiv' hid in the press since Professor Willie McIlveen (o' the University o' mid-Antrim) wis arrested fur tryin' tae smuggle fut an mouth intae Cavan.

Credit wair its due, fur they managed fur tae fine a guid photae o' Mrs McWilliams oan last year's Anahilt Presbyterian Ladies ootin' doon tae Ballyhalbert.

Spakin' Toor.

The spakin' toor went accordin' tae skedule, aside frae the fak that much o' the time was spent discussin' bodily functions wi' ma companions. Ah wud imagine that betwain us we managed tae black haff the toilets in the capital, though thair was a surprisin' lack o' boakin'. As fur the rugby, ah cudnae tell ye that much aboot it. Fur yin thing when big Jimmy Heslip scored his try ah was doon belaw blackin' the toilets o' the saith stawnd.

St Patrick will be dealt wi' later oan.

Thursday, 12 March 2009

Spakin' Toor

Nae Branze Age

Ah'm afraid that Bit Nine is nat happenin' taenicht fur Ah hiv a wile early start. Tamarra Ah am fur embarkin' oan a cross kultural spakin' toor o' Scotland, which requires me tae be in the Paris o' the Nairth - Larne - fur aboot 9am, a fair auld shift frae Donemana. Kindly oor new EU funders at the Ulster Protestants in Scotland Spakin' Edukation (UPISSED) hiv' gie me a grant fur a wee lekture toor, wha' happins tae coincide wi' Norn an' Sorn' Ireland's rugby match agin' the auld country. Shud any o' yis oot thair want tae sign up; a few places still remain, the full details are belaw.

Day Yin

Lekture Yin - Time, 7am - Place, ma hoose - Subject, "Oan rememberin' tae feed the cat an' turn aff the ootside lichts at nicht"- mainly deliver'd tae Mrs McWilliams

Lekture Twa - Time, aboot 11am - Place, the boat - Subject, "Thoughts oan the difference between beer oan land an' at sea."

Lekture Thrie - Time, aroun' 1pm - Place, the chip shap in Girvan wair ivrybody staps - Subject, "Why havin' a cup o' tay wi yer chips is grate, especially as ye dinnae normally dae it unless yer in Girvan."

Lekture Fower - Time 2pmish - Place - Alang the road tae Edinborough - Subject, "Why a wee doze mid-afternain sets ye up fur a nicht oot."

Lekture Five - Time 5pm or thairaboots - Place, whitever hotel ma braither booked - Subject - "Sharin' rooms - why ah dinnae wantae be in wi' me da."

Lekture Sax - Time 11pm - Place, Rose Street - Subject, "Yer ma best friend ye are - ah luv ye."

Day Twa

Lekture Sevin - Time, 9am - Place, thy'on hotel - Subject, "Brakefast - is it wurth half an hours slape?"

Lekture Echt- Time 11am - Place, a bar near til thy'on hotel - Subject, "Bluddy Mary - Bad Queen or guid drink?"

Lekture Nine - Time 12pm - Place, a bar a bit nearer tae the groun' - Subject, "Tae beer or nat tae beer..."

Lekture Ten - Time 3pm - Place - The beer tent at the groun' - Subject "....that was the question".

Lekture Elevin - Time 4.45pm - Place - Murrayfield - Subject "Whit sortae time is 5pm fur a kick aff, fur wair jist gettin goin'."

7pm - 4am - left free fur roun' table diskushuns an' conversations oan the porcelain telephone.

Day Thrie

Ah will be unable tae spake.


Oan oor sportin' theme, ah've set ye a wee quiz question in the pole this week. Ah left oot Mary Peters, fur we awl knaw she wis English, Ah think, though she did her hair like she wis frae Rathfriland.

Dinnae furget that Iris Robinson is oot thair, waitin' til solve awl yer problems..

Nixt Week

St Patrick - Which fut did he keek wi'?

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Seturday Nicht at the Picturs

New Joab.

Ah'm noo near tae a week in the Royal Ballat Skool, nair til London, a quare chenge frae ma deys in Ballymena. Sae far things hiv goan fine. At yinst the cast o' Swan Lough wernae tae plaised at the introducshun o' Drumnavaddy's drum corps at full throttle, bit a managed tae persuade them that Tchaikovsky hid aways envisaged a rattle o' Ballylough time in the backgroun'. Whit swung it fur them wis ma point that yid rairly fine a mair Ulster Scots name than Billy Elliot. If thesuns iver want til raich the hichts o' him, thid naid til larn til appreciate the auld goatskin. Ah'll still be visitin' leckturer in Ballymena, mind you, sae willnae succum tae London ways.

Nudey Picturs

This week ah hid intended til luk fairther intae the branze age, bit as usual events hiv overtakin' me. A group o' "comediens" hiv decided til dub the nudey pictur "Flesh Gordan" intae Ulster Scots, wi the idea, ah'm sure, o' gi'en a few smart erses a laugh at the hamely tongue. Whin ah heared this idea, ah got strait oantil Billy McQuillan, oor very ain linguist an' pictur buff. Billy taul me, that efter manies an hur researchin' nudey picturs, he his oany iver come across yin o' them in Ulster Scots.* This wus the infamous "Braveerse", a durty luk at yin o' Scotland's gratest folk. Full details o' this new travesty can be foun' at...


The quality o' the translashun can be judged by the fak that they use "smot" when they main "nudiness". Yin o' ma correspondants his suggested that we here at 1690 organise a group visit fur til see this this fillum, but ah sae Naw tae that. Insteid we shud be organisin' oorselves fur a form o' flash protest. Ah recall a few years hence there wis a dokumentary aboot the Roman Catholic church called "Father Ted." In yin episode, the eponymous Priest an' his sidekick protested agin a nudey fillum. Ah' reckon that fur yince we shud tak a leaf oot o' the papist's prayer book an git oorselves doon til the cinema, banners aloft. Sammy Wilson his reciprocated oor support fur him by puttin' his wee red face on yin fur us. The hamely tongue is fur the spakin', nae fur the lickin'.

Grate Picturs.

Howiver it putt me tae thinkin' aboot whit micht happin if we goat a big enough grant frae yin o' oor o'er funders - the European Fund Of Oral Linguistics Secretariat. It micht allow us til putt ano'er few films intae Ulster Scots, makin' me wunder how some o' the classic lines o' cinema histry micht soun' in the hamely tongue. A few examples are belaw, if ye kin think on any mair let us knaw.

Of all the ginjoints in Annaclone......

1. Mrs Robinson, yer tryin' til coort me, aren't ye?

2. Yiv got til esk yersen yin question: 'Dae ah fail lucky?' Well, dae ye, ye boy ye?"

3. Hasta la Vista, bairn!

4. Tae be fair tae ye wee cuddy, ah dinnae gie a hoot.

5. Ye had me at, "Whit aboot ye?"

6. Why dinnae ye git yersel up here sometime an' tak a luk at me?

7. Ah wantae be oan ma sen.

8. Thy'ons lukkin at ye, wain.

9. A wee Bush, shuk, nat steered.

10. Ah luve the guff o' 4 star in the forenuin.

A Prablem Sheared

As I screed this evenin' the pole has nat yit stapped, so ah'm unable tae pass comment oan the result. Howiver it is apparent that yis share ma admirashun fur Iris, an' her style. Ah mentshuned this tae her o'er dinner in Portavogie the oe'r nicht, an' she is wile touched by the affectshun yis hiv shewn her. Sae much sae that she his affered her services as an Agony Aunt til Blog fallyers. Jist putt yer prablem, whitever it micht be, intae the comments, an Iris will git back tae ye as sain as she can.

Nixt week, wurk an' events permittin', Bit Nine.

*In the intrests o' dacency Ah've removed ma earlier intrests o' dacency addendum. This will oany mak sense if ye saw the yinst wurds oan the intrests o' dacency which Ah hiv decided werenae dacent enough.