Thursday, 9 December 2010

How do the people who drive snow ploughs get to work?

Way back in my childhood Billy Connolly was making something of a name for himself. We used to titter endlessly at his description of the wee guy biting his own willie to undo Russian behemoth, Ivan the Terrible, and his deadly full-pretzel hold. We listened on LPs and when the big yin was making an appearance on Parkinson, I was allowed to stay up to watch. Later when we got a video recorder, it was no-brainer Christmas present for the old man - one of the big yin's video classics.

One of the lines I remember most was his question about the people who drove snow ploughs and how they got to work. It's a cracker! So simple that I still can't work out why I find it funny. Is it that it was so obvious to me that the council (who ran the gritters and snow ploughs back in the day) would have known the bad weather was coming and would have had a plan in place to deal with it before the weather arrived, that it just makes it a stupid question to ask? Apparently not!

Still, I'm astonished to read lately that the guy responsible for sending out the snow ploughs is apparently Stewart Stephenson. Well, no wonder it all went tits up for us this week. He was probably at home over the weekend, not really bothering about the snow ploughs - surely someone else must cover him when's he's on holidays or something? Maybe not! Anyway, Stuarts at home chilling out with his wife or whatever it is he does of a Sunday and it's only when he gets into work on Monday and the snow has already started that he realises he'll need to call out the ploughs... alas and alack. Noone seems to have answered the heavy philosophical question posed by the big yin all those years ago... "How do the folk who drive the snow ploughs get to work?" The driver's cannae get to their big rigs with the plough on front and grit spreader on the back and we're all in the stew 'cos Stewie boy was chillaxing at home when he should have been on the blower to the drivers telling them to get intae work early on Monday.

Hell mend him I say! No need to ask any questions of the board at Transport Scotland. I imagine it's probably just a hobby for them to be involved in keeping the transport system running. I mean, just because this group of people happen to make big claims about their vast experience and knowledge of transport matters and are maybe remunerated in some small way for helping guide us on these matters, why the hell should Stephenson get off the hook for no getting in early on Monday and organising the ploughs to be out there before we disappeared under the forecast blizzards.

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