It was the best of cludgies, it was the worst of cludgies, it was the cludgie of wisdom, it was the cludgie of foolishness, it was the lavvy of belief, it was the lavvy of incredulity, it was the pan of Light, it was the pan of Darkness, it was the throne of hope, it was the throne of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way...

(with apologies to Charles Dickens).

Communal, stairheed lavvy, Gorbals 1948 (Picture: Mark Kauffman)Palatial lavvy, Blythswood Square, early 1900s (Picture: Glasgow Museums)

Much as we think of Glasgow as a very egalitarian city, it's always been divided by class - even in such fundamental things as going about our daily business.

Compare this communal Gorbals cludgie with this gleaming temple to the goddess Hygeia in one of the plush townhouses in Blythswood Square - some Glasgow folk brought up whole families in a smaller room.

This hell-hole, snapped on a close landing in the Gorbals in 1948, would need more than a blast of Domestos to kill all known germs (and a few that science is yet to put a name to), while the plush, spacious and beautifully-tiled bathroom, complete with shower and side jets, toilet, bidet, bath and plunge pool wouldn't look out of place in a royal palace.

The communal cludgie reminds me of the old joke, about a neighbour who would leave it in a disgusting state, with keich all over the floor, up the walls, and even on the ceiling.

When cornered by the woman who's turn it was to clean it, he said he was in the habit of taking "salts".

The enraged wee wumman demanded to know whit kind of salts... Epsom salts? Jaap's Salts? Andrews Liver salts?

He replied, sheepishly: "Naw, missus, somersaults..."

Next time you feel the need, thank your lucky stars that you don't have to pull the front door behind you before you drop your breeks, bare your bahookie, hover and then pull the chain...