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Wings Over Scotland

Andy Kerr’s Dancing Hands

Posted on April 07, 2011 by

"Interview body language experts agree that the less you move your arms and hands about the more confident and in control you are."
On Using Body Language During Interviews

Non-Scottish readers probably don't know who this man is. You're missing out.

As some readers are probably aware, there's a general election being held in Scotland next month – controversially on the same day as the UK-wide AV referendum – to determine the composition of the next devolved Scottish Government (formerly Executive). Even semi-alert viewers will know that this columnist favours a vote for the Scottish National Party, but there are reasons for that over and above the ideological ones.

The other three main parties in Scotland – the ones that exist in the whole UK – share a common problem. Namely, that their best and brightest naturally want to become MPs in Westminster, which is by far a bigger stage than the Edinburgh parliament. The SNP, meanwhile, with little presence or influence in the House Of Commons to worry about, can concentrate all its top talent in Holyrood against the other three's second-raters.

(And hey, we're being pretty generous there. Bear in mind that Labour in Westminster managed to accommodate the stellar skills of the likes of Hazel Blears and Stephen Byers, so anyone who couldn't make it onto their Commons benches must be pretty grim material.)

This leads to a sometimes spectacular imbalance in the levels of competence and ability displayed by SNP ministers and their counterparts in the three Unionist parties, something seen most sharply in the Scottish ranks (and I use the word "rank" advisedly) of Labour, who need to dredge up three times as many seat-fillers as the Tories or Lib Dems.

It can be a tough call determining which of the front-bench likes of Iain Gray, Jackie Baillie and Richard Baker are the biggest embarrassment to their party, the Parliament and Scotland in general. Or at least, it could until last night.

Marvel at and pity the poor people of Scotland, viewers. Literally thousands and thousands of them next month will place their votes and their hopes in the hands of the man you're about to meet. I give you, fresh from last night's Newsnight Scotland, Labour's Finance spokesman (ie the second-best man they've got and their nomination for a post equivalent to the Chancellor of the Exchequer), the one and hopefully only Mr Andy "PFI" Kerr.

At the time of writing, most polls still show Labour narrowly ahead of the SNP, though the Nationalists have closed a 15% gap in the last six weeks or so. (And Ladbrokes have today suspended betting on the SNP.) It's still very much possible that in just under a month this man could control the purse strings of a government with a £30bn budget, paid from the UK Treasury (in case you smugly thought all this had nothing to do with you).

So pull up a chair, keep your eyes on the prize and look at these puppies go. You may find it helps if you sing "Let's Do The Time Warp Again" to yourself along the way.

A favourite trick of Andy's is to count off points on his fingers, oddly starting with his pinky and moving along to the thumb (and if there are more than five points, looping back again). One splendid example can be found between 2m06s and 2m19s on the clip, and another from 3m40s to 3m54s.

But there's plenty more in his repertoire.

Does anyone know how to make animated GIFs?

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    3 to “Andy Kerr’s Dancing Hands”

    1. Paul R says:

      Tough on wargamers, tough on the causes of wargamers.

    2. Irn-Bro says:

      "There's one thing you should know about me: I've got great big cojones, but little tiny nipples that are no good for milking"
      That's what I think he's talking about, judging by a sequence of his hand movements

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