Meet the Forum Staff.
As with virtually all online forums, ours has Forum Moderators that assist with questions, problems, and watch over discussions here to maintain our rules. Our current Forum Moderator roster is:
Screen Name: ThistleDown
Inducted 16 Oct '10
I was born in Canada of a Highland father and an English mother. My youth was spent in the best of two worlds, the Highlands of Scotland and on the lower mainland of British Columbia. My first kilt I wore -- I am told -- when I was three.
There’s no memory of that, but I do recall with great clarity numerous cold, wet kilted school tramps over the moors of eastern Inverness-shire and Nairnshire when I was seven, eight and nine. Those years must have placed more than an educational mark on me because I have worn Highland dress ever since.
I was educated in Scotland, Canada and England. Over the years I was a journalist in England and Ireland, a lecturer in Scottish history in Scotland and Canada, owned two large restaurants in British Columbia for many years, and presently own, with my Swiss-born wife, Ruth, a well-respected and busy inn in North Vancouver.
Today I spend a decreasing half the year at my home near Tomatin in Inverness-shire and an increasing half in B.C. I am a Council member of the Clan Chattan Association in Scotland and sit on the advisory committee to Simon Fraser University’s School for Scottish Studies in B.C. I am a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and read voraciously; I am also a woodworker, leatherworker and occasional knife-maker and have a pair of Harris hawks, a Deerhound and three Scottish Terriers.
Screen Name:- Cessna152towser
Inducted 16 Oct '13
I was born in Scotland in 1951 and still live in Scotland although most of my relatives are in Canada. I bought my first kilt in 1993 but did not wear the kilt much until a leg injury in January 2003 put me on crutches and forced me to wear the kilt to work as I was unable to get into trousers. I was so impressed by the comfort and by all the positive comments that I began to wear the kilt almost every day and soon added more kilts to my collection.
I joined Xmarksthescot in December 2005. I worked in the legal profession in Scotland for 35 years, both in the public and private sectors and then took early retirement at age 58 in favour of less stressful part-time work driving buses, minibuses and taxis.I married Ann in 1984 and lived with her till 2009 when sadly a stroke left her paralysed from the waist down and led to her early death. Now living with my new partner Gabrielle. I have an adult daughter Laura from a previous marriage.
I am Scottish Director for Clan Cunningham International and was also secretary and treasurer of Hawick Highland Games. My other hobbies are Scottish Country Dancing, aviation history, classic vehicles and model trains.
Name: Jim Dunlop
Screen Name: CDNSushi
Inducted 1 Sep '11
"Where Everybody Knows Your Name" was the theme song from the TV sitcom Cheers. That's just the way I felt when I found and joined X Marks the Scot in 2008. It's rare to find a good group like this, and the sense of community and camaraderie are why I've stuck around so long.
So far, I've met a couple X Marks members in person, but that's not an easy feat from my corner of the world. I did however have the honour and privilege of hosting the XMarks Quaich on her maiden journey around the world -- an experience that I hope all our members have a chance to have.I
was born and raised in Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada, moved to Edmonton to attend university, and lived there for ten years. That is where I met my wife Bonnie. A year after we got married, we decided to undertake a new adventure. We sold everything we had, our condo, our car, our furniture, and traded it all in for two one-way flight tickets to Tokyo. We had no jobs lined up there, nor any friends or relatives living there. In fact, we didn't even have a place lined up to stay the night after we landed… We simply just decided to trust God. Almost ten years later, we are still living in Japan, in the city of Kofu, Yamanashi Prefecture. I teach English at a community business college, work as a live announcer at J-1 football (soccer) matches, and freelance as a business writer.
I have many interests, hobbies, and passions. Everything from fashion, (in which kilts do play a part), to board sports, to scuba diving. Travel and photography are also activities I enjoy a lot. I'm a musician -- I play piano, guitar, and am currently learning how to play the fiddle. I love Bluegrass music, but many other genres as well. I used to be the keyboard player in a band. I love cooking, wines, whiskys, and cigars.My first kilt was a Utilikilt, which I still enjoy wearing from time to time. But it wasn't long until I got into traditional kilts as well, my first being a Nightstalker tartan from Stillwater Kilts.
That's also when my wife realized that she loved a man in a kilt. Since then I've expanded my collection somewhat, and keep about 4-5 of them in my closet. My latest acquisition was a Canadian tartan kilt from Burnett's & Struth, to mark the occasion of this tartan becoming Canada's official tartan.As they say here in Japan: Yoroshiku onegaishimasu.(Means: I hope to have a good relationship with you all)JD
Screen Name: Pleater
Inducted 1 Sep '11
I began sewing kilts for my own use when I was losing weight and found that conventional clothing was simply not adaptable to my changing shape and size. When using the internet to research the correct method of construction, I found my path directed again and again to X Marks. Before long I joined, hesitantly, I must confess, and discovered I had found a home from home.
Being wife, mother of two grown up offspring and now a grandmother time can sometimes appear insufficient for all requirements, but nature has resolved this with occasional insomnia. During those times I would sew kilts and knit or crochet, but I now add using the computer. My given name is Anne - the 'e' is pronounced by older people in my native South Yorkshire, but not so much since Princess Anne came on the scene. I have had the surnames Gillot, Winslade, and now Croucher.
These days I wear a kilt just about every day, and have quite a selection of kilts and pleated skirts but I still make more as I find the different ways of pleating them fascinating. I should construct other garments, as my output of all sorts of clothing used to be far more diverse, but somehow the kilt proves too interesting.I earn a little money from my interest in knitting machines, and I teach, repair, service and sometimes sell them, and I do make garments with them once in a while. I play my guitar and sing a little - mainly during the first week in August when I decamp to the Sidmouth folk festival in Devon from my present location close to Poole harbour, Dorset, in England.
When I have some I will edit in a photograph or two, but first I will have to devise some method to get images of myself.
Screen Name Father Bill
Inducted 13 Apr '13
After thirty-two years in the public elementary school system as a teacher, special education teacher, enrichment resource teacher, vice-principal and principal, Bill retired only to hear a call to the priesthood in the Anglican church less than a year later. Three years in the seminary, and voila! Father Bill, an Anglican priest with a bent sense of humour! After four years in a rural three-point parish, he came home to take a parish in his home town of London, Ontario, Canada.
Even as a little kid, Bill had a fascination for everything Scottish — the pipes, the kilts, the history, the clans, the tartans. When he was ordained, he finally had a tartan he thought he could legitimately wear as his own, and soon while in Scotland, ordered a kilt in blue clergy tartan. Bill's father was Jewish and his mother always said that her family were Saxons, but shortly after joining X Marks while doing some digging he found a path leading back to Caithness and the Orkneys, and had a hunting Sinclair kilt made up by John at Keltoi — an X Marks sponsor a short drive from home. It seems that Scotland was always hidden in his blood, and now he felt that the circle was complete!
While doing more research, Bill discovered X Marks in 2011, and now signs in almost every morning and often through the day while he works at his desk. He enjoys the discussion and repartee, and is highly appreciative of the kind, respectful discussion that characterizes the forum. The members of X Marks are considered friends!
Bill is married to his ever-beautiful freshman sweetheart, Liesel, a manager in municipal employment development. They are parents to Bill III, a municipal services engineer specializing in water treatment and purification.
Screen Name Geoff Withnell
Name Geoff Withnell
Inducted 26 Jan 2014
I have always been interested in wearing a kilt, but only started a few years ago when my lovely bride Michele (the good looking one in the picture above) got me a great kilt at the Maryland RenFair. I discovered I liked wearing a kilt, and Michele thought I made me look good, so my collection grew. At first I wore universal tartans or my USMC Leatherneck tartan. I knew my heritage was primarily Celtic, but I thought it was Welsh (father's side) and Irish (mother's side). Some research into family history disclosed that my father's mother was not a Welsh Davies, but had come from "up North", which could only be Scotland. Well, since Davies, or Davis, or Davys (all three spellings exist in her written records, sometimes on the same page!) are septs of Davidson, I have since joined Clan Davidson Association USA, and have become mildly active therein. I am also active in the Scottish American Military Society, being a proud Marine veteran.
No discussion of my kilt wearing would be complete if I didn't mention the recently retired XMarks Mod, Ern Malcolm, who was a great friend and encouragement in my first steps in our mutual addiction.
Professionally, I am a Quality Assurance engineer, currently a consultant for a nameless Department of Defense agency outside Washington, DC.
Personally, I have been married to Michele for 42 years as of this writing, and we have 4 children and 14 grandchildren. Besides going to Highland Games and Renfairs, we also square dance, and are active in our local synagogue.
I hope I can be as much help to new kilt wearers as this forum was to me, when I was getting started.
Last edited by Steve Ashton; 2nd June 15 at 10:03 AM.
14th February 14, 10:00 PM
Mike In Dayton
NAME: Mike Suhar
Screen Name: Mike In Dayton
Inducted 26 Jan 2014
For the last 27 years I have worked in the IT (Information Technology) field. Prior to moving into IT I worked for the local power company in telecommunications. I worked with the two-way radio system in the service trucks and on the microwave point-to-point communication system that tied the power plants and major substations together. My hobbies include Amateur Radio, electronic design, and I flew as a private pilot for about 30 years. I have recently taken an interest in making kilts.
My interest in kilts goes back many years but not having a significant connection to Scottish or Celtic ancestry that interest was mostly suppressed. I do have confirmed English and eastern Europe ancestry. Of those two my interests were on the English side which evolved to being more connected to the Scottish and Celtic culture. Around the year 2000 my interests in kilts awakened. I don’t remember how I found X Marks but I joined the group. It was not until 2007 that I was in a position to obtain my first kilt and I went from there. I now own around 25 kilts ranging from traditional to utility type kilts. My primary kilt preference has moved toward the traditional side over the past couple of years. I wear kilts about 50% of the time all year round. Being a shy person wearing kilts as much as I do forced me to be more outgoing and accepting of the attention. You cannot avoid the attention when you live in an area where you only kilts you see are at Celtic festivals and parades. I have meet some very interesting people on this journey into the land of kilts.
I live in Dayton, Ohio, USA, with my two Silky Terrier dogs Jake and Bella.
The Following User Says 'Aye' to Mike in Dayton For This Useful Post: