Scott Bain knows what it means to be out in the cold which is why he has savoured the warmth of fan approval since his unexpected contribution to the drama of Celtic's 3-2 victory over Rangers in the Old Firm league derby at Ibrox this month.
he third-choice goalkeeper was pitched into his debut because of a training injury sustained by Dorus de Vries, who had been deputising for Craig Gordon, victim of a long-term knee problem.
Former building-site labourer Bain, who joined from Dundee in January after a loan deal with Hibernian fell through, had to retrieve the ball from his net within two minutes, after an error by Dedryck Boyata.
However, he made crucial saves to deny Alfredo Morelos and contributed to a winning performance after Celtic were depleted by the second-half dismissal of Jozo Simunovic.
At that point, life was transformed for the affable 26-year-old. "It's been mad, really. I stay in Edinburgh but even through there a lot of people recognise you, stop and speak to you," Bain said.
Bain's new-found celebrity status was not only aided by the misfortunes of De Vries and Gordon, but also by an unforeseen end to his time with Dundee, after an otherwise unremarkable three-and-a-half-year spell at Dens Park.
After Dundee lost 3-1 at home to Hamilton on October 28, coach Neil McCann dropped Bain and fined him two weeks' wages.
Bain refused to pay and appealed to PFA Scotland for backing in a dispute that was ongoing when he first moved on loan to Hibs and then, at the end of the January transfer window, to Celtic.
At that stage, he was simply trying to get out of an untenable season and his most likely prospect at Celtic was of making up the numbers.
"It did go through my mind a bit," Bain said. "When you first come to a club this size from the situation I was in, it's going to go through your head, but they wanted me to come and that was a big confidence boost.
"I thought if I'm still at Dundee then it's going to be hard to get another club, because you're forgotten about quickly."
(© Daily Telegraph, London)
Telegraph Media Group Limited