John Gibson: Get smart and savour the Tattoo

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Every home should have one. The DVD of the The Royal Edinburgh Tattoo. Some 25,000 copies have just gone out around the world.

More than Madonna’s done, I suspect. Even more than Subo. Alan Smith, well into his second decade as marketing director as the Tattoo headquarters in Market Street.

Credit where due, he’s telling me: “It was back in 1988 when Brian Leishman, then our business manager, produced the first video.

“We’ve simply updated it and since 2003, and as the market dictates, we’ve brought out the DVD annually, recording the event as it has happened up on the Esplanade.

“Running time of the 2012 version is 95 minutes and we’ve added a collection of ‘special extras’.”

Priced at £17.99 and available at respectable retailers near you.

Wise words

Is no one sacred? Even among the departed? Now they’re scandalising Norman Wisdom. Dear old Norman. I’m falling about at the very thought of it.

A fellow journalist I’ve never heard of, and neither have you, I dare say, is claiming that while she was trying to interview him, he “unexpectedly thrust his tongue down my throat”.

Did he have his flat cap on? That’s what the world wants to know. Sometimes affectionately answering to “Mister Grimsdale”, Norman, bless him, had a good kick at the ball, expiring at 95 two years ago.

It should go without weeping that successive editors have told me never to speak ill of the departed.