Yuletide spirit? No chance. At least, not at Holyrood.
Alex Salmond heaped scorn and anger upon Nicol Stephen (for his comments about the Trump affair). Then he barked: “Happy Christmas.”
Today’ session of FMQs was decidedly sparky. The prime contenders were, mostly, on good form.
It was Wendy Alexander’s best outing yet (who said that wouldn’t be hard? Take that person’s name).
Seriously, Wendy was persistent and controlled, having sensibly seized upon a potentially questionable element in the government’s explanation of how the Trump issue was handled.
She questioned why the MSP for Gordon (one A. Salmond) had phoned the chief planner in the Scottish Government (Leader: A. Salmond) to investigate the possibility of said planner meeting Team Trump.
Mr Salmond had a robust reply: that, as constituency MSP, he was querying the feasibility of such a meeting, in the light of events. He did not request the meeting. That was done by Team Trump. He had acted at all times with propriety.
Indeed, generally, Alex Salmond was on potent form. He tackled Ms Alexander head on. He had the grace to laugh when Annabel Goldie got him with a deft funny.
And he was brutally assertive in slapping down Nicol Stephen who, last week, had claimed to detect a scent of sleaze around the issue (Mr Stephen, incidentally, had chosen not to pursue the Trump matter, opting to challenge the FM on health provision in Aberdeen).
Does this all go anywhere? As billed previously, I rather suspect not. Even those who have helped orchestrate the Holyrood committee investigation forecast a “slap on the wrist” for Mr Salmond. No more.