When Ah was but a laddie
The world was bright and gay
Jumpin’ dykes and playin’ fitba’
It ferlie filled ma day
Then ah grew up, a fine young lad
Jist like ma mammy hoped,
‘Twas then ah met the lassies
An’ aw the guid times stoaped.
Ah Gentlemen, --that’s l,ife, - Time keeps marching on,
And even Burns -wi’ aw his love for the lassies said “ If ye gie a woman aw her will-guid faith - she’ll ower gang ye.
Not that we should try to ignore the gentle dears
That would be difficult -if not impossible
And there is the time when an odd lassie drops a gem of wisdom.
Like just before I left home tonight --my wife said to me
Take care when you are at this dinner tonight to remember your A.B.C.s and X..Y.Z.s and whit are ma A.B.C.s , says I, - and back came the answer “Be accurate in what you say” be brief in saying it, and be cheery- that’s simple- says I - and what’s this X.Y.Z. - Well she says- before you stand up- examine your Zip.
I am sure - like me- the gentlemen in the audience will agree that lassies are wonderful- In the many positions they occupy and so helpful to a man in distress. Wee Hughie arrived home from the shipyard puffing and panting because he had run all the way- Jeanie - he says tae his wife- whit height am I - 5 feet six says Jean- whit are ye asking that for ? - Oh, thank God for that - says Hughie- Ah just heard the Manager tell the gaffer tae sack six fitters.
It is written that the greatest compliment ever paid to the Lassies was when Burns said of nature, “Her ‘prentice hand she tried on Man, and then she made the Lassies Oh.” It is also written somewhere that “God made the Earth and rested. He then made man and rested. He then made Woman- and neither God nor Man has rested since. One can imagine the Great Creator moulding the first Lassie- preparing her lovely face, crowning that face with beautiful hair - smoothing off her delectable body- with all its curves and bumps in the right places and standing back to admire his new creation- and spoiling his whole production by putting a tongue in her head. Not that all the Lassies are Talkers -by no means- Not so long ago I was attending a rather Posh dinner- and found that my seat was at the end of the table next to a very Matronly Lady who no matter how I tried to enter her into conversation - she refused. It was not until the desert course of custard and prunes arrived- and I accidentally spilled some juice on my trousers - that I remarked to the Lady - “I hope these stains will come out” - and to my astonishment she remarked- “I hope so too- A’ve swallied three o’ them. I can just about remember when the lassies knew their places in life- today it is the Lassies who own the place- It was Darwin who said that Man took countless years to develop from Monkeys and a lassie can reverse that in two minutes flat. And yet Gentlemen - in spite of all their faults - I am sure that if ever the lassies start to burn their Bras again we will extend a hand to give them support. Men are always willing to admit that the lassies are better equipped than men in more ways than one - the Lassies have that most wonderful thing called intuition-which enables them to come to instant decisions without thinking- and then when the trouble starts, they have the ability to wriggle out of anything from an awkward situation to a girdle. Some lassies are known to be quite inventive- it is said that it was a PETITE young Lassie who always got kissed on the nose- who invented high heels. When Burns spoke of the rights of women - I am sure that he had no idea of the forces he was releasing. Today we have Lassies in our Police Forces - In our armies- in engineering shops- in Parliament and I heard one man say they are in—sufferable. But gentlemen - we Men - can enjoy a quiet chuckle to ourselves - if the Lassies continue on their present course they will soon be down to our level- we will never be able to fathom a Lassie”s mind- for as Burns himself said- “Though Woman’s minds like winter winds- may shift and turn and a’ that” - and perhaps that is why we admire and cherish them - for even they don’t know what they will be thinking tomorrow - -but whatever they may think - we will continue to admire their challenge- we will go on to enjoy the sparkle that they bring to our lives - for surely that is what the Bard spoke of when he said - “They steal our affections aw’ man”.
Gentlemen I give you the toast-----“THE LASSIES”
This was the winning entry of “A Toast to the Lassies “ In a national competition sponsored by “ The Balvenie Single Malt” in 1988.