How To Get To Heaven From Scotland…

A break from the politics then, with your monthly round-up of the other bits and pieces that have got Scotland’s ever-passionate bloggers talking. I’m Lis, or Last Year’s Girl, behind the scenes at Scottish Roundup for the first time.

Starting on a serious note this month, Jamie Ross was a teenage English student until he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. His blog, in his words, is “a reading experience that will make you laugh, cry and possibly physically sick as I mention my testicles more times than social convention deems acceptable”. It’s extremely well-written, and we wish Jamie all the best.

If February 2009 was memorable for one thing, it was as the month that the increasingly popular microblogging service found itself smack in the mainstream media spotlight. Cue lazy features supplement roundups of the latest celebrity users, a link on my mobile internet homepage to “the latest social phenomenon sweeping the nation” (?!) and a barrage of irritating made-up buzzwords beginning with the letters tw. The most worthy of these? Twestival – combining the traditional web meetup with the chance to raise money for a good cause. Scottish Roundup’s own Duncan Stephen made it to the Edinburgh event – an evening that was not without incident. “It felt a bit like a gig really — just one where people were staring into their iPhones a lot,” he reports.

February’s other big topic was the snowy weather, and Scottish bloggers collectively rolled their eyes at the London media’s overreaction to a bit of nasty weather. Something I missed out on because I, er, was stuck in London with my Tube-driving best friend who was able to explain in excruciating detail just why the trains couldn’t run.

Sharing Experiences is a great photography/travel blog from Edinburgh-based writer Andy Hayes, who recommends “Scotland’s Waterfall Walk” by New Lanark. If the thought of all that walking makes you hungry, Wendy’s got a delicious-looking recipe for vegetable biryani – and Europe a la Carte will feed your wanderlust.

Back on home shores, Colonsay Brewery has jumped on the blogging bandwagon, bringing an interesting insight into the brewing process. Whisky Guy Rob has also been going behind the scenes at a distillery these past couple of weeks.

It’s On It’s Gone tracks the best of the off-the-beaten-track in the Edinburgh arts scene, with an emphasis on film and theatre.

Amy Palko has some stunning photographs of a frozen waterfall; while there are great new shots at Islay Photography Gallery and Gasoline Rainbows.

18 Saughton Mains is an Edinburgh allotment, which Alex documents.

The Ben Lomond Free Press calls Scotrail out on its cutting down of trees on railway embankments. Silversprite isn’t impressed with big corporations either this month, after spotting a strange sign in the window of Domino’s Pizza.

As a music blogger you get used to junkmail, but sometimes the odd gem catches your attention. Glasgow PodcART is just such a worthy contender, showcasing Glasgow-based art and writing on the site along with a weekly podcast featuring the best in local music. Well worthy of your time.

Neil at Notes From A Toy Piano is creating a weekly playlist at HMV’s “Specialities” department – and he’s posting the results for readers of the blog to enjoy.

There’s a lively discussion going on already at Bigmouth Strikes Again, where Gary is looking for your maddest Bella-magazine-meets-The Dangerous Book For Boys-style Top Tips.

Anas has a thought-provoking post about tracking down old friends online.

Confessions of an Ambulance Man has an embarrassing moment with a patient. And a happy 3rd blogging birthday to Stuff On TV!

Everyone I Ever Kissed is an intriguing and beautifully-written project, if a little racier than the sort of content usually featured on Scottish Roundup – but I figure that’s why they let me do these things for a change!

And finally, just to prove nepotism will get you everywhere: Marah Chase is a fun adventure serial in the style of old pulp novels, with new chapters every Sunday.

I hope this has been an interesting read, or has maybe even turned you onto something new – but please, keep sending your links to scottishroundup@gmail.com or use our handy form on the right. Cheers!

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