DAVID YOUNG CAN HARDLY CONTAIN HIS EXCITEMENT
1. Hullo – it looks like major work is underway in Edinburgh city centre.
2. What can it be?
3. Fixing the holes in the road? Cleaning the gum-spattered pavements? Clearing out the clutter of signposts?
4. No: they’re getting high-class George Street all ready for Edinburgh’s Christmas TackFest’17!
5. And this year they're thinking BIG …
6. OK – so there may be ‘spectacular views to the North and South … architecturally framed from George Street’ (The Buildings of Scotland: Edinburgh). But hey, you’ll get an even better view from the top of this cool tower!
7. And the tower can be seen …
8. … all over …
9. … the New Town!
10. OK: so stuck-up George Street may be ‘the central vista’ of the First New Town (The Buildings of Scotland: Edinburgh). Vista, schmista! Instead, get a load of TackFest’s hyper-minimalist long blue wall – cleverly referencing another cool city, Berlin. Geddit?
12. And if this ‘statement’ partition is a tad too artsy-fartsy for your taste, don't forget: just behind the long blue wall is – loadsa booze and tons o' festive fun! Pay your money and come on in (terms and conditions and exorbitant prices may apply).
13. Yes, at TackFest everyone's joining in – even 19th-century theologian Thomas Chalmers …
14. Chambers Scottish Biographical Dictionary says this guy was famed for his ‘magnificent oratory’. Try talking your way out of this tangle of tinsel, Tommy!
15. And rumour has it Sir Walter ‘Rob Roy’ Scott himself will be roped in for similar treatment next year, along with his famous rocket-ship-style monument!
16. What other global city would be bold enough to obscure the view of a real castle (yawn) with a fun castle made of lights (yay!). This is the kind of ambitious, go-ahead thinking that takes TackFest’17 to a whole new level.
17. And all of this is brought to you by those great guys at ÜberBelly (‘We stick out everywhere!’) …
18. … in association with our very own …
19. But what about those party-poopers who claim that all this harmless fun and frivolity spoils the historic city for residents? Says Edinburgh’s Director of Pleasure, Councillor Callum Bland: ‘In terms of tourism, you've got to strike a balance between catering for the lowest common denominator and turning the city into a fifth-rate Disneyland where no-one in their right mind would actually want to live. I'd say we've got that balance about right.’
20. And bosses at ÜberBelly have even BIGGER plans for the future. ‘Next year's Christmas TackFest will start in September and run till Easter,’ says a spokesperson. ‘But that still leaves Edinburgh with nearly six TackFest-free months. So, long term, we're aiming to run it from June till December of the following year. Can you imagine – an 18-month TackFest! With double the number of events – and twice the tackiness – in the six months overlap where one year's TackFest runs on into the next!’ He adds with a wink: "Thank God I live in London!’
21. With talks between ÜberBelly and the city’s Department of Place, People and Partying already under way, other joint projects under consideration include the redevelopment of Dundas Street as an artificial ski slope, with robot reindeer sleigh-rides in both directions throughout TackFest, and the compulsory purchase of all private residences within a 2-mile radius of Princes Street for conversion into ‘high-end world-class Airbnb apartments’.
22. Edinburgh: a great place to live, work and party party party like there's no tomorrow! Which there probably won’t be, if the city keeps selling its soul for the tourist dollar. Or so say the sour-faced spoilsports who're already selling up and moving out of town. We say: who needs ya?!?!