The MacBitseach

I am The MacBitseach of Clan MacBitseach. (MacBitseach is Irish Gaelic for son of a bitch.)
This blog is about wearing, making, and some of the social aspects of kilts. I started wearing and making kilts in 2003.
If you have any questions, comments, or ideas, email me at

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Location: Vancouver, B.C., Canada

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Right-Brain Kilts

Picture a holographic kilt floating in mid-air, rotating.
Now imagine you can see every stitch, every pleat, inside and out, every technique of kiltmaking used in its construction.

When I took Fine Art in college, I used to be able to see my sculptures from all sides at once and know every detail of them and know what had to be changed to get the sculpture just right. Very right brain.

I can feel myself getting that way with kilts. It's taken me two years of daily kiltmaking, learning as I went, getting some tips along the way, but always getting better at seeing the big picture.

I've been exercising my right brain lately. Things as simple as looking at things on the bus to work, trying to see just the shadows they create.

A kilt is a flat piece of fabric constructed to match a roundish shape. This can be done with kiltmaking techniques learned from books by just about anyone with the time to spare. Once you learn the tricks, magic always looks easy.

I'm on the verge of a new kilt design. I can feel it sitting there in idea-space, waiting to come through. It has something to do with shaping flat things to round but that's as much as I know. It will be instantly recognisable as a kilt but there will be a difference.

Dang! It's like having a word on the tip of your tongue, except I have to be in the perfect frame of mind to get the word. A right-brained frame of mind.

I'm entering the art world again, this time with kilts instead of clay. For me, it always goes back to the creativity, the way of seeing something in its simplest form. My Classic Cut is a very clean and simple design. But I sense something simpler about to reveal itself to me.

In the meantime, I'm making kilts and cultivating right-brain thoughts.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Momma MacLeod

I wore my yellow and black "loud" MacLeod kilt today.
I left the store about 8pm, tired and as it turns out, a bit cranky.
As I was crossing a street, I hear, "Hey MacLeod!"
I had a quick flash of spinning with my katana and taking his head, (they did film the TV series here), but instead just turned to look.
Some mid-forties businessman in an SUV stopped at the light was waving wildly at me, making a big scene. Greying hair, suit, probably gets his stick up when he plays recreational hockey.
"My mother was a MacLeod!" he yelled.
I shrugged. "That's not my fault."
The look on his face was priceless. A mixture of hurt and surprise. Then he smiled.
"Yeah, I blame my dad, too!"
Then he gunned it, laughing, as the light turned green.
No moral from that story.

Picture this; an old man has worked his entire life on a massive ink drawing covering an entire barn. It is the history of humanity's efforts at nobility. There are myths, religions, cautionary tales, fables, all drawn in incredible detail. It would take a week to properly enjoy a square foot of this incredible masterpiece.
The day he finishes the very last pen stroke at the last top corner of the barn, he has a heart attack, falls from the ladder, and dies.
The new owners tear down the barn for firewood.
No mural from that story.

Now you know why I'm The MacBitseach.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The MacBitseach Tartan

While I'm on the subject of the MacBitseach clan, It would probably be a good time to release the MacBitseach tartan.
Let's face it, some tartans are better looking than others. I'm not going to insult anyone's clan by naming tartans but it's possible to have pride in one's tartan without liking the colours.
Clan MacBitseach doesn't have that problem. This tartan is gorgeous!

I ordered some of it in wool today. I have a couple of MacBitseach kilt orders already and, of course, want one for myself.
Now, which arm for the tattoo?

Monday, April 04, 2005

MacBitseach Clan Requirements

I was recently asked the requirements for joining the MacBitseach clan.
My first thought was to answer with a short question.
How's your mother?
In a rare moment of good taste, I answered that I'd have to think about it, so I'd get my thoughts expressed concisely and clearly.
How do you write a serious requirement list for a clan that you started for the name, a clan that to my surprise, has become somewhat more serious than intended? The more I thought about it, the deeper the problem became and the more I wanted to write a requirement list with purpose.
I have the clan name, the tartan, the crest, and the motto, all suggestive of my way of looking at the world. The name and the crest both mean son of a bitch, which has less to do with my mother and more to do with attitude.
The motto, Fey, has several meanings and I've discussed them before. The meaning I'm most concerned with is truly understanding you're going to die. Death makes life precious. People who have been very close to death see life differently because they have become fey.
The soon to be released MacBitseach tartan is a beautiful, vibrant tartan with a darker feel.

So, having the clan name, the tartan, the crest, and the motto all ready to go, how to choose rules for joining clan MacBitseach?
Honour? Truth? Kilt wearing? Ring size? Heritage?
The Masons don't accept atheists. Should I exclude some group or another? Gum chewers? SUV drivers? People with other clan affiliations? Litterbugs?
There were a lot of questions I had to answer.
Hey ... wait a minute. Says who?
I don't want Clan MacBitseach to be just another clan, so why should it follow similar guidelines?

And then it all became clear.

Here's what you have to know to join Clan MacBitseach.
MacBitseach is pronounced mak bitch' ak. (Note the emphasis on bitch.)
Understand the motto. Fey: those who know they are doomed to die.
Death makes life precious. If you get a kilt in this tartan, wear it proudly and to live up to the name MacBitseach, knowing that it means 'son of a bitch' in Irish Gaelic.

Nothing else matters. If you know that death makes life precious, you will live the way you want to live, within your own personal code of honour. You'll wear a kilt because, as the son of a bitch you are, you're going to wear what you please and kilts are pleasing.

You need not be of a particular bloodline or race to be of clan MacBitseach. Your ancestry is unimportant. You need not wear this tartan in the traditional manner. It is a tartan to be worn as a garment, not a costume!

As serious as that sounds, it isn't. Clan MacBitseach Is about loving and celebrating life because life ain't forever. It's about living, instead of merely existing. It's about not being a drone. It's about a clan of people that live a little bit more fully because we wear kilts.
All you sons of bitches that intend to join, send me an e-mail. I've made a Clan MacBitseach certificate. Maybe I'll do some tee shirts.
Hell, I'm getting the tattoo!

Saturday, April 02, 2005

Kilts = more

More fun, more self respect, more life.
Let's look at those three, though there are tons of ways that kilts = more.

More fun:
First, your social life will improve. People will stop you on the street to ask you about your kilt. I've had some great conversations that started with my kilt!
There are Kilts Nights popping up all over the world. These range from quiet social gatherings over dinner to some ribald pub nights.

More self respect:
People respect a man in a kilt. They respect the guts it takes to wear one. They see a potential alpha male. Again, people stop you on the street to tell you how good or sexy you look. Cars honk with a thumbs up in approval. Women turn and watch you after you've passed them.
When people give you respect, you feel your own self respect grow.

More life:
The health aspects of kilts are still being discovered. I've been told of rashes disappearing, an absence of cold symptoms, and more energy. I've covered incresed sperm motility in the past but there is a definate boost in sex drive. There has been discussion of increased size and performance but the jury is still out on those issues.
I believe that wearing a kilt will cause you to live a longer life because there are fewer health problems for your body to combat. The increased joy of living is also a factor in long life. Stress kills but the increased happiness caused by wearing a kilt kills stress.

As I said, there are tons of ways that kilts = more that I haven't covered. Some things you can't get from a blog; you just have to discover them yourself.

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