Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Up the (Partick) Thistle!

The purpose of the title is to persuade Partick Thistle supporters that I come in peace! The thistle is a prickly devil that served as Scotland's emblem of choice for some time. On the perimeter of the Scottish camp, the enemy stepped on one on battle's eve and let out a mighty cry. The battle was duly won for Scotland and lost to the invader. So the story goes, anyway. Certainly if anyone stood on one of these, they would be permitted to emit a small cry. This fine specimen was spotted in the Pembroke Road and I am pleased that I saw it just at the right time for a photograph with limited depth of field. The thistle is related to the asparagus, which one can certainly see from this photograph - and the asparagus thistle is used to make certain kinds of cheese. It's a coagulant that substitutes well like rennet apparently. I am not sure what kind of thistle this is - a milk thistle, bull thistle or another of the common varieties. But probably it wasn't planted for decoration. They are notoriously difficult to get rid of so I like to see this growing subversively in the city. Persistence and staying power - that's the thistle. There you are Partick Thistle, I said something nice about you!!