As ever, the courts of the north and north-east of Scotland were kept pretty busy in 2018.
The law is at the cornerstone of our society and police officers, solicitors, court officials and sheriffs are just some of the many people who help maintain order and keep it all running smoothly.
But despite the extremely serious nature of so many cases that appear in our paper and on our website, there have been several in the past 12 months that have left us at P&J towers scratching our head.
From the interesting ways that police have tracked down criminals to the downright bizarre behaviour of some of our fellow men and women, here are seven of the weirdest court stories we read in 2018.
The danger of buying a grab-bag of assorted items from a man in a pub was exposed in this unusual tale from October. Trainers, baby clothes, perfume and a clock were also recovered, along with the aforementioned sex toy and custard creams.
Anyone that has ever been on a night out in our fine country will surely at one time or another have seen a couple of men who have had one too many squaring up to each other.
This preference for fisticuffs is a huge part of what keeps our court system busy anyway but very rarely do the cases come to court and you find out that one of the men involved was behaving aggressively while impersonating a cat.
They couldn’t agree over whether he looked more like Gandalf or some sort of Messianic figure, but he still ended up being fined £300 for his trouble.
The way some amateur footballers carry on in Scotland, you’re taking your life in your own hands just by lacing up your boots on some parks.
That said, it’s considerably harder to unlock a defence when there’s a drunk driver doing handbrake turns on the pitch.
Concerns about immigration are as old as the hills and in the current political landscape both in the UK and around the world, passions have sometimes spilled over into racist tirades.
Very rarely, if ever, does charging for cheese tend to be the tipping point however.
Sometimes, police have to crack a sophisticated code to hunt down a criminal. Sometimes, they find a bag of drugs and a McDonald’s staff discount card on the ground.
In theory, if you are doing something illegal then the logical step would to be take extra care to not attract police attention.
And yet, here we are.