Thursday, 3 December 2015

THE 'GOOFY' LETTERS...


Mr. TOM TIERNEY and granddaughter STACEY

In November 1965, my family moved into a new neighbourhood - new to us, as well as being only two years 'new' itself.  I can no longer state with any certainty whether it was on the first or subsequent evening that my brother and myself met the other local kids, but I do remember one of them introducing the group to us.  "Hi, I'm Tony and this is my brother Kenny," said one of them.  Tony was TONY TIERNEY, and it should come as no surprise to you to learn that his wee brother shared the same surname.  (This was the '60s remember, when siblings tended to have the same parents.)

There were others there too, to whom Tony introduced us in turn, but I no longer recollect the precise roll call.  Probably ROBERT FORTUNE and GRAHAM BROWN, along with GUS MARTIN and KENNY McLEOD maybe, but I do seem to recall there being around four or five in total.  I ran into Gus in Glasgow a few weeks back, and Kenny called in today to deliver the pics you see in this post.  Which brings me to the point.

Daughter GERALDINE and her dad

Kenny's father, TOM (who I always called Mr. Tierney) was a regular letter writer to the local newspaper (and others).  He wrote under the nom de plume of 'GOOFY' and his missives offered an often whimsical view of life in general, and also opinions on issues relating specifically to things happening within the town.  His alter-ego enjoyed a certain amount of celebrity status among a loyal group of readers, whose daily lives were cheered by exposure to his latest thoughts, theories and fancies.  If he were alive today, he'd doubtless have a blog of his own.

Tom's wife, ALICE.  (Or Mrs. Tierney to me.)  Blackpool 1977

I mentioned him on another post a few years ago, and Kenny was much touched by the fact, and, I believe, derived a certain pleasure from seeing his father's literary contributions receiving public recognition, even on such a low-key outlet as this blog.  I asked him to provide a photograph or two of his dad so I could add one to the other post (which I have), but I thought I'd do another one specifically on Mr. Tierney, as he was such a fixture of the neighbourhood for so many years.

I have extremely fond memories of living  in that neighbourhood -  for nearly seven of the most formative years of my life.  Most of the friends I know today, I first met back then, and it's been a source of some surprise to me over the years to learn just how many of them thought I still lived there many years after having moved away, so strongly did they associate me with the place.  Of course, the fact that I was often back in the area probably helped cement that idea in their minds.

A slightly blurred screen-grab of Mr. Tierney's 'scooter' in his
back garden, shot from my bedroom window in a video I made
of my old house in 1991 - 19 years after I'd moved

There are quite a few folk who remind me of the area, but none moreso, I guess, than Mr. Tierney.  No doubt he's putting about on his little scooter in a finer place than this one, mentally composing his next letter to The Heavenly Times.  And I'll bet they're enjoyed up there every bit as much as they were down here.  In fact, he's probably been made editor by now.  So here's to 'Goofy' - he may be gone, but he'll definitely never be forgotten.

Mr. Tierney, with  KENNY & TONY

2 comments:

Colin Jones said...

"This was the '60s, remember, when siblings tended to have the same parents" - ha, that's a great line, Kid, but you'll never be Prime Minister saying things like that :D

Kid said...

Sadly, CJ, no one will ever be Prime Minister by telling the truth.

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