Possibly because it is such a practical book, it becomes doubly funny in the passages where the writer obviously began to have too much fun. The edition I have was revised by Rab Wallace, so I don't know whether Mr. MacNeill or Mr. Wallace is to blame for the pithy statements that sneak up suddenly upon you, but no matter where they came from, here are a few highlights:
- "The singing is only to help your mind's ear (a neat phrase that, and worth dragging in again)."
- "Take your time. Remember that the race is not to the swift. Remember also that this is not even a race."
- "Now it's time to begin your third piobaireachd [. . .], 'The Lament for Alasdair Dearg Mac Donnell of Glengarry', generally referred to as 'Alasdair Dearg'. 'Alasdair' is pronounced with the 'd' something more like a 't'. 'Dearg' is pronounced 'jerrug,' somewhat to your surprise, no doubt, if you are not a Gaelic speaker."
- ". . .'What a great song I am making,' you say. But when you come to the Taorluath and the Crunluath variations you add, 'and what a clever chap I am, the way I do it'."