Our Donald – Mr. Randal wary of the return of The Big Levein…

Date: 18th November 2023

In this weeks second blog from our resident writer Donald Stewart:

Mr. Randal wary of the return of The Big Levein…  

Armistice Day 

A day for celebrating peace.  

But down in the dingy, dark depths of Perth a war is being considered as the man who went into exile in Brechin has now emerged in the dusty environs of Perth… 

And a certain Mr. Randall expects there to be trouble ahead…  

Picture the scene… 

It is an early Saturday morning in November… the 11th to be precise… 

Having made the journey from the outer reaches, Dingwall to be exact, Mr. Randall is contemplating life, the battles ahead and the foam on the top of his take away flat white. 

Things have been dicey in Dingwall of late and Mr. Randall was hoping that a wee sojourn into the soft underbelly of the underworld in Perth would have made a difference to his takings. But now, he hears, The Big Levein is in town. With him comes a reputation some fear and many wonder at. Given he has been in exile for so long there are many who believe he has lost “his edge.”  

There are others who consider he never really had an edge and at some point, considered being more of what they called a midfield maestro than an attacking force and so people should just relax and let things continue as they have forever and a day. Perth is a soft place to go and trade and you should just… go and trade there. 

But the traders of the Perth and Muirton Mini Mart who have been trading on the same car park space for years are worried. 

For Mr. Randall, two pairs of socks for a £1 is his stock in trade and he never wants to give it up. He wants to pitch right where he has always pitched. Well, except up until recently, he had another pitch – right back near the disabled bays – but it was less prominent, and he was doing less well. Now he is “pure flying” with the sports socks, right in the middle of the action. He has even thought about branching out and branching up – into men’s and ladies’ underwear. 

Knickers to be precise…  

But the arrival of The Big Levein on the market stalls may alter his plans and is likely to ruffle quite a few feathers. 

“We have to wait and see how he lays out his stall,” was the mantra that Mr. Randall had heard. 

Today was the big day when he would arrive and do precisely that. The opposition had got in early. People were standing beside their pitches as the mist began to rise from the car park and people, early for their shopping at the supermarket wondered why it was that the whole of the car park area was now completely covered by market traders with scowls and angry faces. They had not even asked for a discount before a growl emerged in response from that side of the car park. 

The tension was palpable.  

Then, in the distance, there was the first sighting of the caravan of Levein. 

Four big transit vans. 

White vans. 

Filled with gear and clobber.  

Coming to… 

A car park filled with fear and traders. 

The scene was being set as the four transit vans turned into the car park searching for their prime spot.  

It was a massive gap right in the middle of the traders which had been left empty and pre booked. The other traders knew better than to argue with the man in charge who had splashed out on new cones to mark the spot. Some wit had even turned them into a sort of X for the spot to be tough to miss. 

As the four vans came to a halt, the doors were flung back almost before they came to a complete stop and out jumped 11 hardy track suited wee guys who had in their hands… 

Sport socks to the left of them…  

Underwear on the right…  

Instantly Mr. Randall started to see the new guy bounce as they began to trade with whoever was in the market for new underwear. 

Mr. Randall took a step back. Three pairs of sport socks for a £1, he heard. He was being undercut.  

As the new 11 traders made their way around their trading area, drawing the support in from the Perth crowd, Mr. Randall realised this was a long game and he needed to rethink things in Dingwall.  

What he could not see was the man in the passenger seat of the fourth transit. He was sitting half in the shadow, smirking and realizing that this was just exactly what he needed. The return was real, the emergence was exciting. He now had to make it work and he knew just how to do that. People in Perth were in for a treat but first he had to send them Dingwall folk back home with a  sair heid… the fightback was on…  

 

Whilst the author asserts his right to this as an original piece of work there is no evidence that Connor Randall drinks flat whites, unless you know differently, so, this is clearly a piece of fiction.  

The fact is that Craig Levein’s next game as the new boss of St. Johnstone is against Ross County and Dingwall’s Connor Randall who played under Levein at Hearts and has been battling successfully this season from midfield having traditionally been a right back,  was quoted as saying in the local papers that he expects a wee new manager bounce in the St. Johnstone game, when they face them. Randall was full of praise for Levein, commenting, “I got on very well with him – he was a good manager to work under. He’s very experienced and knows the game in and out. He’s going to have a very organised and hard-working team. You can see what he’s trying to implement on the team. I think any time a team gets a new manager it gives everyone at the club a lift. It always happens.” St. Johnstone fans wait with baited breath…  


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