Friday, 16 September 2016

THE 'GOOFY' LETTERS...


Mr. TOM TIERNEY and granddaughter STACEY

In November 1965, my family moved into a new neighbour-
hood - new to us, that is.  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 ex-
posure 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 in a previous post a while back, 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 neigh-
bourhood -  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

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