Nicol Stephen, our last leader, had a young family too and I really admired the fact that he would stop whatever he was doing at 7pm and phone his kids. Tavish said:
Politics is not a family friendly lifestyle. I regret, and in some ways resent, all the times I missed out on: parent-teacher meetings, not being there to do the homework, all that kind of thing. I will never get that time back again. The days when you’re getting a right royal going over by someone in the press that’s the day you think why am I doing this?”You can understand his frustration. Especially when he seems to be expected to conform to higher standards than the others, as I pointed out yesterday.
He talked about the debates - how some might waffle on but that's just not him.
“I try to keep my answers sharp and to the point and answer the question, then I get accused of not being part of the debate because I don’t make long waffly answers like Annabel and Alex do. They just go on and on and on. Well, it’s my style – I’ll do it the way I want to do it.”He doesn't often let his guard down, but he gave us a bit of what makes him tick:
Mr Scott and his younger sister grew up in Shetland in a house of books, newspapers and radio. Being “miles and miles from anywhere, surrounded by the sea” gives you a certain outlook, he says. “I never could be a Nationalist in that sense because it’s too insular, always about looking at ourselves.”Someone left a comment on here when we were away in the Highlands a couple of weeks ago asking me if being in the beautiful Highlands didn't make me want independence. Believe me, the very thought of the view over Munlochy Bay, or Rosemarkie Beach or Chanonry Point makes my heart go all tingly because I love those places so much. Coming down the M90 yesterday evening as the sun was starting to set was gorgeous. It makes me think how lucky I am to live near such spectacular places, not that Scotland should be independent. I don't see a connection.
I can't get excited by squabbling over the ownership of oil. What I want is for people's lives to be made better, for everyone to have a decent, private, warm place to live, for kids to grow up feeling secure and happy, for people with mental health problems to get the help they need, for schools to equip our young people with the skills they need to make this country successful. Those are the things that matter to me. Creating a fair and liberal Scotland is more important to me than creating an independent one.
Anyway, that was a bit of a rant that snuck in there. Back to Tavish. You learn something new every day. I hadn't realised he was such a Kenny Dalglish fan.
Football was the young Scott’s obsession, and Kenny Dalglish was king. “Utter hero worship.” As for the campaign by backbench MPs to have Dalglish knighted: “He can have the lot as far as I’m concerned.”I was quite into Kenny Dalglish in 1978. Not for quite the same reasons as Tavish, I'm sure, though.