SELINA SCOTT; I Could Live without My Ewan but Not without My Plumber Now Let Selina Know What You Think. WRITE TO: Mailbox, Sunday Mail, One Central Quay, Glasgow G3 8DA FAX TO: 0141-309 3587 E-MAIL: Mailbox@sundaymail.Co.UK.(Selina Scott Page)

Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland), May 26, 2002 | Go to article overview

SELINA SCOTT; I Could Live without My Ewan but Not without My Plumber Now Let Selina Know What You Think. WRITE TO: Mailbox, Sunday Mail, One Central Quay, Glasgow G3 8DA FAX TO: 0141-309 3587 E-MAIL: Mailbox@sundaymail.Co.UK.(Selina Scott Page)


Byline: Selina Scott

LUCKY Martin Compston. Already a promising young defender with Morton FC, the Greenock teenager seems set to follow Ewan McGregor as Scotland's next big screen heart-throb.

Before his debut in Ken Loach's movie, Sweet Sixteen, Martin had never acted in his life. But fate's fickle finger picked him out and last week the 17-year-old was making all the headlines at the film's premiere in Cannes.

Martin's story has close parallels with that of Sean Connery - the working-class Edinburgh kid who was on Manchester United's books as a defender before landing his first movie role.

Let's hope Martin has as much success as Sir Sean.

But bored teenagers all over Scotland might be forgiven for thinking there's no justice. Here's a boy with a glittering soccer future being handed an even more glamorous career opportunity. Is it because such fantastic breaks do come along for the lucky few that teenage boys everywhere seem so bored with their lot?

In their minds do they all see themselves as the next Macca or Becks? And is it the realisation that they are never going to escape what they see as the humdrum and the ordinary that makes so many kids seek solace in drugs and drink?

I could just about get by if I never see Ewan McGregor in Trainspotting, but I'd be lost without my plumber, for example.

Yet how do you tell a youngster to stick with the tools when part of him just knows he could be the next rock legend, soap star or demon striker for Celtic? All he needs is that one break and he too could be a contender.

But for the vast majority the break never comes, the electric guitar gets stuck in the attic, and guys emerge from the dark tunnel of adolescence, to relive their dreams in pub-talk or worshipping their heroes from the football terraces.

Lord knows it's hard to be a woman. But seeing the pictures of the kilted Martin Compston strutting with the starlets along the sunny boulevards in Cannes, must have been like a dagger at the heart of every fame-hungry guy in the land.

But if the unfairness of it all makes just half a dozen of them decide that their futures lie instead in learning to re-wire a house or install a central heating system, there's not a woman in Scotland who'll begrudge young Martin his day in the sun.

Until Industry Minister Brian Wilson gets us all re-trained to do these jobs ourselves, we know who the real local heroes are.

They're the guys who unblock the drains, fit the kitchen units and get our cars going again.

Just watch us crumble to the Spanish over Gibraltar

WHETHER it's Manuel in Fawlty Towers or Prime Minister Aznar with Tony Blair, we treat all Spaniards as funny little chaps with moustaches whose Armada Francis Drake sent packing all these centuries ago.

I admire the Spanish and believe we underestimate them at our peril. For all their Latin charm and affability, they have mucho macho, and, where necessary, a total disregard for the rules. Take a look at Europe's top golfing prodigy, Sergio Garcia, who regularly ruffles the feathers of players and officials alike on both sides of the Atlantic.

Or look at the murky money men who run Europe's top soccer team, Real Madrid, or, for that matter, at the Spanish politicians who are taking everybody to the cleaners in the current EU fishery negotiations. In sport and politics, the Spaniards play to win.

So, despite all the assurances from Jack Straw, I predict that the country which wants to save furry little foxes will soon be delivering Gibraltar over to the country that torments and kills thousands of bulls every year. Quite simply, Spain wants the rock more than we do.

What's more, their old colonial bases in North Africa will remain Spanish no matter how much Morocco protests.

Logic plays no part in Spain's sense of nationhood. …

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SELINA SCOTT; I Could Live without My Ewan but Not without My Plumber Now Let Selina Know What You Think. WRITE TO: Mailbox, Sunday Mail, One Central Quay, Glasgow G3 8DA FAX TO: 0141-309 3587 E-MAIL: Mailbox@sundaymail.Co.UK.(Selina Scott Page)
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