Rear View

As part of sublime Glaswegian soul pop gods The Blue Nile, Paul Buchanan knew a thing or two about urbane sophistication. And it continues to pervade his social life, even when it comes to biscuits, jokes and breakfast.

What’s the most rock’n’roll thing you’ve done today?

I turned my collar up.

Which time in history would you love to have lived?

The Garden of Eden. Why? Because there is no sin. Which means you can then indulge.

Your house is on fire, loved ones and pets are safe, you have a chance to go and retrieve one thing, what would it be?

The Haagen Dazs, vanilla flavour.

What would be your ideal birthday present?


What’s the longest time you’ve slept soundly in one go over the last five years? Thirteen hours; is that good or bad? A couple of years ago, I had probably been away somewhere. you know, jet lag.

What was the last thing you stole?

A glance.

What’s your least favourite country? And why?

I am not a huge fan of airports. I've been places where I haven't thought it was wonderful, but it’s not really the countries that bother me. it's just the airports.

If you could wake up tomorrow and have obtained one ability what would it be? Foresight.

How many times a day do you look in the mirror?

One time too many.

You could quit your job and start afresh tomorrow and have the skills to do something completely new. What would

1 12 THE LIST 16—30 Nov 2006


you choose to do?

Footballer. I can't say what team. because we're

a divided country. but just a good footballer.

Do you consider yourself organised? How often do you have to look for your keys?

I don't have much problem with my keys. it's my glasses. I wear reading glasses and I can never find them. They're quite often on my head. Sometimes I think I'm having some kind of brain haemorrhage, like my head starts to tingle. but it's my glasses! Am I organised? Nah, I'm delusionally organised. Tell us the punchline to your favourite joke?

‘Not now Frank I'm busy'.

What, if anything, is too serious to joke about?


What’s your favourite biscuit?

I'm a bit of an aficionado of the biscuit. My favourite is called the Eton Sandwich.

What song would you hate to be played at your funeral?

‘Three times a lady“. What I would like is that comedy thing where they go ‘whah . . . whah . . . whahhhhhhhh that's all folks!‘

How big do you tip in restaurants?

I tip reasonably well. I've been a waiter. They're not smiling at you because they want to be there. When did you last laugh out loud while reading a book?

This week probably.

Have you ever exploited your position to get something? Did you get the results you hoped for?

I don't have a position.

Who would you like to play you in the film

I of your life? Who do you actually think

would play you?

God, I think I'm going to have to have a joke answer here. Angelina Joile. And Nicole Kidman would actually play me. Maybe Bruce Willis.

When did you last dance? What was the occasion?

Actually I danced last night. The occasion was just exuberance.

Can you cook? If so, what’s your signature dish?

Breakfast. I can do the whole gamut of breakfasts. I favour a combination of croissants and scrambled eggs. I'm an almost genius level at poaching. When did you last cry? What was the reason?

Ten days ago. I was at a service for a friend who died.

What’s your lucky number? Can you tell me how it has proved to be so.

My lucky number is seven. Well it's not really my lucky number, I just like the shape of it. It's not lucky but I keep it around.

What’s your biggest regret?

Weaknesses I suppose, aspects of myself.

Are you a cat or dog person?

I'm a dog person personally, but some of my best friends are cat people. I have an imaginary dog. The walking is completely optional.

What’s your all-time favourite sitcom? Whfl

The SOpranos. I really like it but I'm always nervous when it's coming on because it's so violent. What’s the longest you’ve ever pursued

a man/woman for? Was it successful? About one hunded yards. and yes.

What do you like best about your life? Mystery.

I Paul Buchanan plays Usher Hall, Edinburgh, Sat 25 8 Sun 26 Nov; Perth Concert Hall, Mon 27 Nov.

Mth St Andrew’s Day drawing nigh, The List wants to know, once and for all, which is the best: saints or sinners. Here are some examples for your delectation.

I St Andrew Our very own martyred figurehead. the Patron Saint of this dear land. Kicked ass back in ye olde days hanging with the Jesus. However. also being the patron saint of Greece. Russia and all fishermen does make the Scots feel a little less special.

I Satan Lucifer, the Morning Star. and sex on goat legs.

I Richard and Judy Are. Not. Human. It has been medically proven that the gormless pair are in fact hand puppets of the Devil. They have been placed on God's green TV schedules to scare old people with spurious news and promote bland literature. Think about it: have you ever seen them drinking holy water? Well, have you?

I “My Salnted Aunt’ Familiar mid-19th century exclamation.

I St Johnstone Lots of sports teams are nicknamed the Saints.

I All the Patron Saints Like the supposed dumbing down of school exams. it seems that all you need these days to be canonised is to have not gone on a killing spree. Groups that have their own patron saints are animals (St Francis of Assisi), the sick (St John of God) and farmers

(St Isidore the Farmer). More confusingly. many sectors of society seem to have adopted mascots that would have had no knowledge of the area they now preside over. Unless they could see

into the future, the patron saints of pilots (St Joseph of Cupertino and St Therese of Lisieux), anaesthetists (St Rene Goupil) and astronauts

(St Jo again) are more than slightly irrelevant.

I All Saints Not really sure where they sit in

the theological debate. Horrifically banal music

and even less exciting in-fighting are (not yet) considered a mortal sin. Unwarranted comebacks motivated by bills for the kids' school fees might be.

I The Saint Turned Sinner On one side there's ‘Sympathy for the Devil' and Iron Maiden. On the other there are hymns and Evanescence. This little gem of a Quaker ballad straddles the two. It's about a preacher with wandering hands (‘A Gospel Cushion thumper, who dearly loved a Bumper') who gets his comeuppance. Check it out at (Suzanne Black)