“Brief Encounter” or “What’s in a Title?” – Guest Post by Carl31

“I’m here to assist you in filling out your form,” said the guy behind the desk, “What’s your name?” he begun.

“Carl,” I replied.

“… and your surname?”


“Pardon?” he queried.

“It’s a long story. I know it’s a number, but I like it. It rolls off the tongue.”

I smiled, a bit nervously. He looked unmoved, and after a short pause returned to his paperwork. The guy wasn’t the Gestapo, but he wasn’t exactly full of fun, either. He was in the middle, I supposed.

“Its not often we get numbers for surnames, sir. That’s up to you, though,” he said without raising his head, “Can I have your title, please?”

“I guess I’ll go for Professor,” I replied, “I’ve always liked that.”

“Are you actually a professor?”

“Probably not in the way you mean, but I have professed things at various times here and there. I have professed to know a bit about this and that.”

“That’s as may be, but on a professional basis, are you a professor?”

“Er…no,” I admitted.

“Then you can’t ‘go for professor’.”

“Well, what are my options?” I asked.

“Usually you would tell us what your title is based on gender or age, like ‘Mr’ or ‘Mrs’ or ‘Master’ or ‘Miss’, but professional achievements might mean you’re a doctor, or suchlike.”

“Can I be ‘Lord Thirtyone’”, I asked, more in hope than expectation.

“No, because that’s not yours to choose. That title is given to you by others. You’re not… “ he thought for a second or two,  “… ‘entitled’”, he concluded with a smile. Maybe he was more towards the ‘full of fun’ end of the scale.

“Which others? “

“The State.”

“Why can’t I just deem myself to be Lord Thirtyone? ”

“Well, you can if you want, but you won’t actually in reality be a Lord. More importantly, it’s not going down on my form.”

The guy smiled.

I smiled back.

“It’s a free country, and I want to be Lord Thirtyone. No, in fact I’ve changed my mind … I want to be Reverend Thirtyone.”

The guy put his pen down and sat back in his chair. He looked me straight in the eye, without hint of humour. Any patience he had was leaving him. I thought to myself, ‘This guy clearly wants to finish off this bit of the form’.

“Carl. There are titles to which you are entitled and other titles to which you’re not. There are titles that don’t bestow anything notable or significant upon you, but the other ones that do – well they are in recognition of something, but recognition comes from those that have the title in their gift to give. You only get those if the givers give them. Other than that you’re not entitled.”

He sat forward to the form on his desk and picked up his pen again.

“I’ll put you down as a Mister. Now let’s get on to section two of twenty seven.”

“What time is it?” I asked…


Posted by Carl31



Filed under Alleged Humour, Allegory, Guest Posts

100 responses to ““Brief Encounter” or “What’s in a Title?” – Guest Post by Carl31

  1. Excellent Post Carl or prof from now on, however in the case just notorised by your good self as in granting titles, “they” can just as easily be removed just ask Mr Archer……and not the fitba pundit……maybe that was your point all the way along. TU

  2. maricharle

    Excellent post ! Kept it nice and simple for any zombies I see although I’m not sure they will appreciate it. Lol

    • mick

      alex carl is well balanced in his views and not in the tesco team like myself thats unfair and hyper critical weres your nice side

    • COYBIG


      Utter pish? Are you referring to Carl31’s post? Or the current amount (£1.6m) people, including The People, have said The Rangers fans have ‘raised’ for the IPO?

  3. mick

    hi carl great post academic with comicial under tones ,after reading it my mind wondered to feb 13 when LNS sits and proves or not proves the ebts as side letters

    • Mick

      If you think the above is a great post, you are sadly deluded. It is not even clear what point it is trying to make. But I have been looking at a few of your comments and such is the standard of literacy used, I didn’t understand them either. This site is now a waste of time. Goodbye.

      • charliedon

        @Violet Carson
        Goodbye to you too.

      • mick

        vi read my post below we posted at same time a was trying to say sorry to you am really sorry if a have upset you

      • cam

        its just a wee parody on officialdom which drives us all mad and the meaning is in the last part to to do with entitlement.
        No matter what LNS say its still RFC 54 and counting for me.
        The gaffer has promised you a new post shall be launched tomorrow and my torpedo tubes are primed.
        The depth charges won’t deter me and i’m prepared to go down fighting.
        Don’t abandon ship just yet and ready your Exocets.

  4. Gortnamona

    Send off fifty bucks to Bob Jones University and you can have any title you wish.

  5. ecojon

    Talking of titles – one of my pals is a captain and when he was updating his passport a few years back he had been promoted to Captain in the interim and put the ‘title’ on the passport without a problem.

    But the laugh is every time he goes on a plane he gets upgraded presumably because they think he’s a pilot but he’s a sea captain.

    He says it’s great but he worries about the day some emergency happens to the crew and they ask him to fly the plane 🙂

  6. dan

    Carl. You have obviously read Kafka, and these days ‘K’ could be the one trying to make sense of the stuff coming out of IOUbrox, and that even grubbier place The Kublakhan. Nice work.

  7. mick

    @adam cam and violet following on from my comments earlier about all the dramas a would like to to say sorry to adam cam and vi if a caused them any offence and a would like them to point out in future anything that a say that might be upsetting to them although there is a serious side to blogging a did think at the time it was jokefull thoughts of mine ,so a am sorry deeply and will be more conciderate in my comments in the future so a hope you take this in to consideration in the future when reading my views so 1s agian am deeply sorry and hope yous can forgive me throw out the weeks and months on here we have all became cyber friends and am sorry if a have done wrong and upset this also a should say sorry for ruining jons post a do enjoy commenting along side yous and hope am back on your cyber xmas card list

    • Mick

      Is this English? I do not accept.

      • mick

        vi am deeply sorry a cant say no more than that come on a bit of forgivness plz its not hard

      • COYBIG

        @Violet Carson

        That’s weird. I’m sure I read a post from you earlier, hang on a sec’…yes, at 8:09pm, you wrote,

        “This site is now a waste of time. Goodbye.”

        And yet here you are at 8:30pm, posting on this site. To some people that would make you look like an attention seeker. You’re not an attention seeker are you Violet Carson? Surely not.

        • ecojon

          @ Coybig

          As I mentioned further up – To some people goodbye is not forever 🙂

          • charliedon

            Forever certainly hasn’t described the length of this particular absence!

          • COYBIG

            Na na na na, na na na na, hey hey hey, goo…what? You mean it wasn’t sincere? Damn! I wish some people would stop messing with the emotions of others. Mick was heartbroken, hence the appology. Cam? Well he’s tried to console himself by going down the pub, someone he’s just spent half an hour arguing with is buying the next round. Even you, you’ve put on a brave face, or a simlie face thing, but we all know how you would have felt reading it. And now we’re told it’s not true?

    • cam

      Mick,sometimes you have twisted my melon,but you remind me of the guys who you can stand in a pub with,rip each other to shreds(verbally!) and then ask if they want a pint.
      If the gaffer can tolerate my mince then yours must stay on the menu.
      We all are guilty of taking ourselves a bit too seriously and i live in genuine fear that one of your predictions comes true!
      Your previous post didn’t bother me,some of your others had me swallowing the bait,but you don’t need to apologise to me at least.
      I just learned the copy pasty,thingy for the vids and had a few belters lined up and now they are binned.
      Carls post was a belter and was very Bill Brysonesque.Now that guy makes me laugh.
      From now on please refer to me as Father Cam.
      Two acts of contrition and your sins are absolved my son.

  8. Like all good stories, there’s a moral for some people to take to heart.

  9. ecojon

    Rangers fans call for apology after Montrose programme’s ‘newco’ jibe


    I feel another boycott coming on 🙂

  10. cam

    Paul’s post tomorrow should get everyone back on track.The hounds are in need of a juicy bone to gnaw upon.
    I’m a British bulldog
    Eco is a bloodhound
    mick is a pit bull
    fill in the rest,,,,,

  11. ecojon


    The article states: ‘It is not the first time that a club has poked fun at Rangers. Earlier this year, the Falkirk stadium announcer was relieved of his duties for referring to the Ibrox club as the ‘Sevco Franchise’ whilst reading out half-time scorelines’.
    I read that the announcer was relieved of his duties for one day, on full pay, for health & safety reasons because of the threats Falkirk had received.

    I remember when you had not only be able to dish it our but take it back and have a laugh – Rangers look as though they have lost their humour somewhere. Paradoxically, they are in danger of turning themelves into clowns.

  12. ecojon

    Just love this snippet of a comment on the Independent article from a Rangers fan.

    ‘Soon Rangers will return to its rightful place and once again eclipse all others in Scotland’.

    I’m obviouly a very poor Celtic Supporter because as much as I love my club and want them to win every game I live in the real world.

    I also don’t think the ‘rightful place’ of any football club is to eclipe all others as it’s just a bloody game – it is not life or death.

    • COYBIG


      It’s like a bad guy in a cartoon who’s just been beaten by the hero. “Ah! You won this time Batman…But I will return and I won’t stop until I take over the WORLD! Ha ha ha ha ha ha!”

  13. COYBIG

    Quickfire maths quiz: It cost Charlie Green £2.4m to stage the IPO. The Rangers fans have apparently raised £1.6m so far. So what time will the 3:30pm train from London arrive in Glasgow?

  14. you would think to read some posts that ” the greatest fans in the world ” saved their club but the truth is a little different firstly wee fergus ( a man hated by the greatest fans in the work) , saved their club secondly by money lent to him by brian dempsey , the green seat brigade only purchased shares once the hard work was done ! the same “fans” who attacked their own players in the car park after the ICT game attacked opposition players and officials with missiles who sing songs praising murder who can not stand silent for one minute to honour war dead (including celtic players /officials) YES they really are the custodians of SPORTING INTEGRITY

    • Ash

      The mighty Cumnock Juniors are the only team worthy of being the custodians of sporting integrity. We’re shit though.

    • Thomas

      utter rubbish, tell me why do Sevco now have 5 stars above their borrowed badge.
      Are you not embarrest to have this

    • lord mac

      that’s rich carson, just think what that money your team and management swindled from the public, and what that could have done to help the heroes, i cant believe staunch loyalists would steal from Lizzy purse. she must be very very disappointed one of her own tribe robbed her.

    • Allfanstogether

      Celtic have never claimed to have “the greatest fans in the world” that was F,I,F,A that said they were, Brian Dempsey never had the money that”s why Fergus came in, the wars your always on about was to give us freedom of choice which your club has never offered to anyone.

      • ecojon


        I had to laugh at carson and her claim that Dempsey gave the wee man the money 🙂 How does this nonsense start when the most cursory investigation would reveal it to be mince.

        I can only guess that carson isn’t old enough to have been around at the time the battle for control was being waged and thank gawd Fergus won it or we would be playing on an ash pitch somewhere waiting for the bulldozers to move in at full time for houses to be built.

        All I can say to carson is: rhubarb rhubarb – not as an insult but as a clue 🙂

    • ecojon


      I don’t know who tell you these tales but it’s obviously a fantasist who wasn’t actually there when it was actually happening.

      The people of Manchester, Barcelona and various other cities also speak highly of the sporting integrity of Rangers’ fans.

  15. no ash , you are wrong you can not be the custodians of sporting integrity that is reserved for the ” greatest fans in the world ” who have a great affinity with arsenal , manchester united , real madrid , barcelona, seville , ac milan , inter milan , inter milan , inter milan ,have i said barcelona what about inter milan ? and largs thistle a great double header in the late 1800s if god forbid!!! they were not in existence how would the modern world cope ???????? we should be grateful for their mere presence HAIL HAIL

  16. Just to repeat there is only one team in Glasgow who have been ordered by an official tribunal to return withheld monies that should have been paid to the Exchequer, that team is not The Rangers.

    That team of course was ras selik….on more than one occasion, I wonder if Mr McConville will pull it again ?

  17. JohnBhoy


    Putting the vagaries of literary fashion to one side, I recognise first-rate writing when I see it. If mick could replicate his flowing vivid realism and mystical insight in novel form – or even as a novella – he would be hailed as a genius. Conflating content with format and dismissing the message does him, and you, a disservice. As for Carl31’s post – it is a lesson in writing with clarity and precision, with no shortage of humour. Well done Carl31. Two different styles, two marvellous writers.

    This is not a Celtic v Rangers (or The Rangers!) thing. Cap off to Cam and Andy’s literary skills too!

    • ecojon


      When I first came to this Blog I found it hard to break into mick’s rhythm & style which defies the norm.

      Once I managed, I found a rich tapestry of humour, passion and an over-riding compassion for the poor and exploited in the world. His vision soars beyond the petty Rangers/Celtic squabbles which, for a small percentage of their support, will never rise from the gutter.

      Yip he does go OTT – I have never ever met anyone with real passion who doesn’t have this ‘fault’ which is often the only or main driver for change rather than the milk-sop discussions of the suits and carpet-bagging politicos.

      And the thing that is richest about mick’s style and message is it’s pure deid natural and not a contrived word in it. Yea and I do disagree with him on certain things – so what?

  18. cam

    Interesting programme tonight at 20.30.
    The Tax Haven twins.The two Barclay brothers and their tax avoidance measures are investigated.
    I see that they have tussled with Hector and won.
    Memo to Charles Green;send these two chaps an IPO prospectus immediately.

    • ecojon


      Apparently since they took over The Ritz 17 years ago they haven’t paid a penny Corporation Tax.

      I have often wondered whether we shouldn’t be taxing on profit but on turnover on a system similar to how VAT is collected.

      Probably omeone with any profesional expertise can destroy the suggestion but it’s clear that the current system is totally broken and must be rebuilt from scratch.

      I would say that no tax avoidance scheme should be allowed unless it is certified by the Treasury and its use would also carry a hefty ‘premium’.

      I hear you say ah well they’ll just move offshore – they do that anyway. But that’s why I talk about the turnover taxation scheme because it means they are taxed on what they sell or generate in the UK.

  19. cam

    Yup,they have offshore trusts and might bump into a few good men of the Gers variety in the Turks and Caicos.
    If i was Chico i would ply them with a few Margarita’s onboard my rented yacht and sign them up for a naming rights at Ibrox.
    The Barclays Ibrox Ritz does have a nice wee ring to it.
    I would have put up the “putting on the Ritz” sketch from young Frankenstein if mick hadn’t overdone the vids.
    The Barclay boys not content with winning back VAT payments from HMRC are now involved in a test case which could cost Hector billions.
    Filthy,filthy lucre.

  20. ecojon

    From today’s Scotsman

    ‘Charles Green faces sweat over Rangers shares

    ‘Rangers chief Charles Green may have to rethink his plans for securing financial backing for the club – after supporters failed to take up a share offer outlined by Green that saw £10 million worth of shares ringfenced for fans. However, Ibrox sources are suggesting that despite online pledges, few fans have taken up the offer, leaving Green with a total far lower than his intended target’.

    And why would Ibrox sources reveal the share sales were poor? Only reason I can think is to gee up Bears into digging deeper. But does that mean previous share sales have been poor – who knows?

    But it will eventually surface and as I keep saying the actual measure of flotation success isn’t the number of shares ‘sold’ but the net capital actually raised. One could also add and how that capital is spent.

    • ecojon

      I have noticed a number of other newspapers are running the same story so it obviously comes from either a press release or a wee phonecall from the Ibrox mole 🙂

      • Gortnamona

        ” Rangers’ IPO has the characteristics of a turkey with a short sell-by date. It may look delicious on Christmas day but will not smell so good in a few months.”

        • Gortnamona

          ” “We have got people who have got shares but they are not the owners. The owners of Rangers are the fans.”
          Charles Green
          Quoted by Gersnet – 17th July 2012

          So why should they buy shares?

  21. cam

    In the light of all the recent tax avoidance policies of companies like Amazon,Starbucks and now the Ritz it would be good to see a group of concerned folk form a blogsite investigating all this heinous activity.
    The sums involved dwarf the RFC case and an Orwell might look nice on the mantlepiece.
    I suppose its all down to just how motivated and impassioned you would have to be to devote a huge part of your life to undertake such a mission.
    The upside of course is not having to stay anonymous to avoid the rampaging hordes of herrenvolk manning the checkpoints.
    Arise the new RTC,the Ritztaxcase,,,you would have to be crackers to read it!

  22. ecojon


    Sadly it would take an army of lawyers, accountants and tax experts to do as you suggest.

    In any case, I would say it’s a waste of energy as EVERYONE knows the tax system is kaputt and needs totally reorganised – we are already drowning in examples. What we lack is political will to change it becaue of the power of the Establishment, vested interests and political lobbying groups.

    And I don’t just blame the Tories here as Labour also didn’t cover itself in glory as Blair set the party on a centre-right folly.

  23. COYBIG

    Serious question – Have any of The Rangers fans on here bought shares? If not, why not? Because it looks like not many fans have.

    But don’t worry. It isn’t as if Charlie was on Sky Sports News this morning telling fans to buy…..oh wait…

    • cam

      No,i wouldn’t buy shares in a holding company to raise capital and possibly line a few investors pockets.Wrong time of year also.
      My daughters have diverted my spare £500 and “invested” it in Apple products instead.
      If it was money to be part of a fan based takeover then i would be working more overtime to raise funds to buy shares then.
      I’ll wait for the next,hopefully bluenose led consortium before i invest.
      The spectre of that Craig Whyte disgrace still loom large.

      • COYBIG


        Thanks for being honest. But what they told you the Club needed to raise working capital to keep going? Would you let it go under, again, and wait until a “Bluenose led consortium” took over?

        Again, I know it reads as if i’m trying to be funny, but i’m not.

        • COYBIG


          Forgot to add – I think this might be a wee ploy by Charlie tho. Then when the final figure is somewhere between 4 to £5m, he can call it a success.

          • ecojon

            @ Coybig

            Yea that could be it. I said a few weeks ago that a good success for chico would be £5/6 million from fans but I doubted if that was possible under current economic situation and timing.

            But it’s a hard one to judge because it is ’emotional’ investment for the vast majority of fans. And of course no one in MSM will ask about his £22 million in pledges after they had a chance to weed-out the Celtic and other club ones.

            There’s no doubt that it is a structured leak from an Ibrox ‘source’ but the intent is unclear but sometimes such leaks can explode with surprising consequences.

        • cam

          Yes if RFC are not being ran as promised by Malcolm Murray in a prudent manner with proper corporate governance then they must go under.
          If the tree needs shaken and the club reduced to paying 3rd div wages and living within its means then so be it.
          If the Gers are playing at Ibrox with kids for the next 20 years and staying on good financial foundations then that will do for me.

    • ecojon

      @ Coybig

      Have been looking at the Darkside this morning trying to judge feelings. The PR ‘boilers’ are beavering away telling how they’ve jut bought but when you look at how long they’ve been a poster the game’s a bogey 🙂

      Looking at what seems to be real fans: The main argument is just an economic one with £500 minimum too high, Xmas and generally tight for cash.

      A few don’t trust chico and a few say they’ll wait and see and some say they’ll wait and buy a few as wall hangings after the price drops – now I would say those are savvy bears and I genuinely mean that.

      More than I would have thought also raise the issue about what are they actually buying into. So it’s quite a mix going on. Very few going for the RST scheme – although hard to work-out genuine fans on this one and RST ‘sellers’.

      Been following arguments on non-Darkside that chico deliberately timed it so there wouldn’t be much of a fan take-up so that it would become solely and institutional bean-feast with the fans unable to complain later because they were given the opportunity.

      Considering that chico and the Zeus Capital people have more shares between them than what was offered to the fans that’s a hollow argument.

      But I do feel there is less of a blind Follow My Leader mindset and more a genuine lack of cash just like the Celtic support when it has to cough up for glamour CL matches it means other games suffer attendance-wise

  24. ecojon

    @ cam

    Btw you have to try and get away from the ‘victim’ mentality that HMRC saw EBTs as an opportunity to attack Rangers.

    Rangers were certainly selected for the ‘test case’ and I would asume Hector made a judgement as to why they made ‘the cut’.

    Personally I have always felt that if Rangers had come clean from the outset and fully co-operated with the HMRC investigation it is less likely they would have been picked as the ‘test case’.

    But to go back to the point, Hector wasn’t just interested in Rangers’ EBTs – it was ALL the other Baxendale mechanisms, or copies, throughout the UK and that potentially amounts to a masive amount.

    That is always why, having read the FTTT Decision & Minority Report, that I was convinced that HMRC would appeal. I truly believe this one could go all the way to the Lords – if cases still go there. But I doubt if Murray would go all that way and he may well decide, at some stage, to do a deal.

    As usual I give my usual caveat – Time will Tell 🙂

    • cam

      Well they took long enough to consider the appeal and had 3 experts? doing the deliberating.
      HMRC didn’t like the result and now want another set of judges to look at it.
      They have to find a point of law for an appeal to be successful.
      The victim mentality that many a Bear may feel is probably due to the internet sites and the press coverage that had RFC guilty on all counts and left the club open to attacks and vulnerable to the likes of vulture,oops,venture capitalists like Whyte.
      We quite like this novel “victim” mentality that the bhoys have honed to a fine art over the years.
      Personally,i think its all part of an anti establishment conspiracy hatched in KOSC clubs under the watchful gaze of the Dark lord himself!
      I’m now a fully paid up member of the paranoid victim society and i demand transparency!!

      • COYBIG


        Yes HMRC didn’t like the result. Just like Rangers didn’t like the first result, hence the appeal.

        The BTC is still ongoing, so the internet sites might end up 100% right. But, in saying that, they’ve only highlighted the cheating at Ibrox, or are you saying no player had a dual-contract?

        All Venture Capitalists are vultures, that’s their ‘job’.

        And the Dark Lord is who exactly?

        I know the last your last sentance was ment as a joke. But it’s kind of ironic, jokingly asking for transparency when no The Rangers fan has seeked that of Green.

      • ecojon

        @ cam

        Length of time – the problem with most tribunal jurisdictions is actually a diary one of being able to get three busy people together at the same time when they have other separate tribunals to sit on and other professional ‘lives’ to lead. It isn’t a conspiracy to delay – just the mechanics of getting it together.

        I haven’t looked at the appeal mechanism for FTTTs in any detail but would doubt that it boils down just to a new point of law. A much more common ground of appeal is that the ‘judges’ misapplied existing law or misdirected themselves on it. The dissenting opinion makes a strong argument re this and the majority didn’t make any written objection to this which, in itelf, is quite unusual IMHO and left an open goal for Hector. Indeed many have speculated that this was intentional and it is always worth considering the ‘sham’ argument in this context.

        As to leaving the club ‘open’ well that really is down to Murray using a mechanism that many UK companies didn’t like the smell of. But leave that aside and look at when HMRC started the investigation – when was it 2004 or earlier ?

        Whenever, there was tons of time to come to terms privately with Hector and pay-up over a few years and flog a few player to do so. Murray failed to do this possibly because the fans would have walked away. So he made a business decision to appeal and when matters became public he then took another business decision to sell to Craigie and I feel there is a lot of recordings still to come from the Whyte Corner.

        However, Rangers fans must try and decide honestly what brought about the Downfall of Rangers and to me it all points to bad business decisions that were made over a long long period. But the fans also have a share in this as very few of them raised any warning signals and those that did were drowned out by the World Dominationists in their ranks,

        As to the point in your post where matters become a bit disjointed – go take the meds 🙂

  25. COYBIG

    I guess Charlie’s counting his lucky stars (all 5 bought from the now liquidated Rangers) that he’s convinced institutional investors into pledging to buy shares. I wonder what would happen if they failed to follow through with their pledges tho…

    • ecojon

      @ Coybig

      I am much more interested in the original investors and what they are going to do with their shares. If I get a mo I’ll need to see what’s locked in and what isn’t – if info is available on Flotation.

      I think chico said they were all staying and were in it for the long term but I think it’s safer to check the Prospectus with chico’s seeming confusion over things on occasion.

      With mystery shareholders in an investment vehicle what happens on flotation if the investment vehicle is dissolved and the shares split and issued to the individual contributors – does that mean that any lock-in on the investment vehicle flies-off?

    • ecojon

      @ Coybig

      I confidently predict that once sevco has boycotted everyone else that they will then boycott themself just to be consistent.

      Just what the investors will make of that will be interesting to observe.

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