Gary Strachan – "Write" Said Fred

Off The Wall Essays From Deep Within A Capricious Mind


Festive Soap On A Rope

Door number five on the advent calendar opened effortlessly this morning. A small tug of the sticky tape applied by pilferer of its former confectionery contents (who’ll remain nameless) relinquishing the cardboard door from it’s union with the calendars façade. With aspirations of elevating Christmas cheer levels in the Thirsk cottage I’m sharing with a group of friends, we’re adorning Christmas sweaters and partaking in what for many is a traditional […]

Continue Reading →


Today sees my last day on the North Yorkshire break hastily instigated a week ago in a bid to escape the relentless stress consequential of living at my mum’s abode. Anxiety levels heightened by our increasingly fraught relationship, which’d reached a plateau where yours truly genuinely feared, if unaddressed, I’d undergo another heart attack. That being said, I suspect spending four nights in a Thirsk cottage writing on my laptop, […]

Continue Reading →

The Most Wonderful Time…..

December’s arrived! Consequently, Joe and Josephine Public have reached a juncture whereby, without fear of repercussions from the Christmas tree police, they can now erect and decorate their Christmas tree. Additionally, as a consequence of commencing 2019’s final month, it won’t be long until the very same Mr & Mrs P are subject to visits from carol singers. Warblers whose singing abilities ordinarily vary from cacophonous to the even more […]

Continue Reading →

Consistency is Key

It’s Black Friday. Below my mezzanine pew in a Next store coffee house at The Springs, east Leeds, I’m greeted by the sights of ‘70% off – Black Friday’ signages, along with a throng of excited customers seeking to take advantage of the franchise’s benevolence. Even though I’m not in the market for new clothes, if I’d not inadvertently left my debit/credit cards at home, I’d have no doubt had […]

Continue Reading →

King James of Kogarah

Yesterday, I was saddened to hear about the passing of Australian writer/broadcaster Clive James. A man whose erudite and witty essays in his book ‘Unreliable Memories‘, like Woody Allen’s comedic tomes in ‘Without Feathers‘ and numerous whimsical Les Dawson monologues, were catalysts for my dabbling in the domaine de l’écriture humoristique. James’ Sunday evening broadcasts on ITV were also a great favourite of mine in the 1980’s. His dry and acerbic […]

Continue Reading →

Learning A Wonderful Lesson

Since July’s swapping of my residential post code area from LS15 to WF3 I’ve been lucky enough to have travelled to Scotland, Wales and Canada. In the process meeting some fabulously positive, engaging individuals whose company and generosity of spirit has been the very antithesis of the toxicity and negativity that for decades had hung around my neck like a millstone. These new encounters shared with ‘real’ people; many who’d […]

Continue Reading →

The Royal We

The royal ‘we’ – A much used addition to my mother’s vocabulary since I commenced residing in casa Strachan senior back in July. A ‘we’ which, when inserted into a conversation with yours truly, always means ‘you’. “We need to cut back the buddleia in the back garden, Gary!”, “We need to ring Sky and cancel the Sky Sports package, Gaz!”, “We need to sort out the house insurance renewal, […]

Continue Reading →