Pigging out
BORIS Johnson’s loopy CBI speech inevitably led to Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross being asked if he'd also sampled Peppa Pig World. “No, I have not. But on Saturday afternoon I was at Elgin Town Hall watching the McDougalls, "he replied. "If you’ve not seen them, congratulations, you’re relieved of that. They’re basically the new Singing Kettle.” A bit harsh, we thought, but then if you’re having to deal with the Prime Minister, being surrounded by hundreds of unruly toddlers is hardly a good day off.

Jim'll poll it
DESPITE the register of MPs interests being pored over by all and sundry at the moment, one development went unnoticed last week. Two Labour frontbenchers - Oldham’s Jim McMahon and Sunderland’s Bridget Phillipson - declared “payment of £200 expected” from CMD Polling for a half-hour survey. CMD turns out to be the latest wheeze of failed former Scottish Labour leader Jim Murphy. The name seems to come from the initials of his children. However our mole wonders if it might secretly stand for Can Murphy Do Polling? 

Modest? Moi?
CMD boasts its “rigorous methodology helps clients navigate risk, get ahead of changing attitudes, and understand how they and their arguments are perceived amongst target audiences”. Alas, too late for Scottish Labour, we fear. Still, it seems to be doing something right. The firm’s website blurb says it has “helped dozens of FTSE250 & FTSE100 companies better understand their reputation among decision makers and influencers”. Not bad going given it was only incorporated in January.

More the Ferrier
HAPLESS Scottish Secretary Alister Jack hosted a Taste of Scotland event in Whitehall this week, only for it to  turn into ‘Haggis Wars’. The SNP accused him of hypocrisy for staging the showcase - piled with haggis, Tunnocks teacakes, Stornoway Black Pudding and other edible legends - while failing to help food firms facing Brexit woes. A boycott of SNP MPs ensued. The Yes ranks were thus represented by former Nat MP and Covid ambassador Margaret Ferrier, who was spotted tucking in like a good ‘un. Several SNP MPs quietly admitted they were “gutted” not to join her at the beano, for what could be more patriotic than troughing on Caledonia’s finest fats and sugars.

Look who’s talking
Some late news from the COP26 summit, where one side event was a shindig for UK mayors in Glasgow City Chambers. Unspun’s mole reports one mayor struggled to make herself heard when trying to address the banqueting hall as two blokes were jabbering so loudly to each other. The chatterboxes, Labour Manchester mayor Andy Burnham and Labour MSP Paul Sweeney, then became the talk of the steamie themselves.

By George!
GEORGE Adam’s dreams of glory briefly came true on Tuesday as he talked to MSPs about Citizens Assemblies. The minister for parliamentary business was asked a question by Scottish LibDem leader Alex Cole-Hamilton, who carelessly called him Cabinet Secretary. “I thank the member for the promotion,” beamed Mr Adam. “I seem to have gone through the ranks quite quickly today. I 've made one statement and I'm a Cabinet Secretary already.” A one-way boost, we suspect. No one will ever call Mr Cole-Hamilton First Minister.

Close snorters
ALSO  in the chamber that day was Nicola Sturgeon, giving her latest Covid update. At one point MSPs were distracted as Nat Christine Grahame dumped her sinuses into a paper hankie immediately behind the FM, then jammed the humid rag up her sleeve. We’re not sure if that counts as correct Covid etiquette these days, but nor are we in any hurry to conduct an inspection to find out.