Tuesday, June 23, 2009


Chuck Norris doesn't bowl strikes, he just knocks down one pin and the other nine faint

An alluring combination of mechanics and a job interview in Blackrock find me briefly in Bray on a Monday afternoon.

The familiar sound of teenage skangers causes me to turn and look across the road. There are four of them, about 15 years old, decked out in Nike and Umbro's finest and clearly bored shitless. One of them is grabbing his balls in a fashion so lurid it makes even me blush. This may be a reaction to the young lady crossing the road at this point, it may be a rather overstated but necessary crotchal adjustment on a such a humid day, or it may be that he simply enjoys making a show of clutching his testes in public.

It's not really my place to speculate. But he and his chums have caught my disapproving glance. "Hey, pervert!" is shouted. My heart sinks as I realise they mean me. I immediately am reminded of that episode of Peep Show where David Mitchell's character Mark is chased back into his flat by teenagers shouting "Oi! PAEDO!" at him for no apparent reason.

I have a quick decision to make: Do I scurry on, pretending not to have heard them, but appearing very much like a guilty paedophile to any onlookers who may have viewed this incident out of context? Or do I front up, telling these little scuts to go fuck themselves?
Disappointingly, I pick the former option. There were four of them, after all. And life has made me very good at feigning nonchalance.

"Chuck fuckin' Norris!" is the next catcall. As insults go, this is a marked improvement. Chuck has never been a style icon to me as such, but with my beard and almost slightly long hair I can see where these kids are coming from. As such, I feel empowered enough to stride across to their side of the street, channelling every bit of Delta Force I can muster and casting them a glare that says Chuck don't take no shit off no punk-ass kids. Or something. It appears to be a remarkably successful move, as these little scallies shrink right back into their boxes and not another word is heard.

Kids, when attempting to vex older members of the community on the streets, don't compare them to the greatest human being the world has ever known.

Monday, June 22, 2009


Renaissance Man

I realised recently that the only novels I've managed to finish in the past couple of years have all been from the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series.

I've bought the Sunday Independent for the past three weeks running, and have found myself reading the Life supplement from cover to cover, pondering the merits of a €500 man bag.

I was out in town on Saturday night. In Buck Whaley's on Leeson Street. Six euro pints and coked-up teenagers? Yes, please.

I went to see Synecdoche, New York last night. Lots of people whose opinion I respect had said it was great. I couldn't find it to be anything more than a pretentious piece of art-wank. If Charlie Kaufman is the emperor then I regret to tell you that he has no clothes on.

I went to see The Hangover the week before and laughed my hole off.

I recently discovered that I had quite a large collection of Nuts magazines.

I passed a friend while driving down the dual carriageway earlier. Instead of pulling over for a chat I called and kept her on the phone while I wittered on for about five minutes, whilst speeding through an area that often has Garda checkpoints.

If things carry on like this it won't be long till I'm sat on the couch dribbling into my Pot Noodle and watching Big Brother.

Monday, June 15, 2009


There is a chair, he is walking down the street with the shoes

A Scotsman, an Englishman and an Irishman walk into a bar. The barman asks what they're having. The Englishman says "Pint of Heineken, please." The Scotsman says "Aye, Heineken too." The Irishman says "Yeah, Heineken's a good beer, I'll have pint of that too, please."

What's round and orange and looks exactly like an orange?
A piece of wax that has been coloured and shaped to look exactly like an orange by a man who has a number of years' experience in that line of work.

A Christian, a Jew and a Muslim are discussing their memories of 9/11.
The Christian says "I was at the canned food aisle in my local supermarket when I bumped into my neighbour and she told me all about it. I was shocked."
The Jew says "I was at home flicking through the channels when I saw it on Sky News. I watched the second tower fall. It was awful."
The Muslim says "I was out in my garden watering the petunias when my wife called me inside to see the terrible thing that had happened on TV. As it became clear that Bin Laden's people were behind it I began to worry that it might have a negative impact upon the public's perception of my religion."

Friday, June 12, 2009


Out to stud

"Have you retired?" asks some cheeky little bollix earlier, via Googlychat. His question refers, presumably, to my blog rather than real life. Early retirement for realsies has long been a temptation, but they tell me it helps if you have a career of some kind first, and have at least reached the age of 30.

The blog has been quiet because I have been, hither and thither, doing other things.


Exams. Badness. Let's not talk about them.

Shacking up. Goodness. Very lots of goodness about that.

Failing to obtain the visa that would have allowed herself and I to go to Nova Scotia for a year. It's a shame, the recurring fantasy I had of wearing lumberjack shirts and becoming a cult hero for my exploits in bare-knuckle bear-boxing was not an unpleasant one.

Successfully climbing Croagh Patrick. No-one has ever really conquered that motherfucker in their bare feet, have they? Having abandoned any hope of keeping up with my hideously healthy brother and disgustingly wheeze-free mate I set myself the task of making it to the top before a six year-old English girl I passed along the way called Harriet, who was being cajoled along by her mother. Harriet did not much care for holy mountains, and cared even less for my patronising attempt at encouragement. Yet, every time I stopped for breath and turned around to look over Clew Bay, there was Harriet, steaming along with a face that could advertise infanticide. I suppose she's never smoked Luckies or snorted vodka, but my self-esteem still took quite a kicking. I made it to the top a full three minutes ahead of her. In your freckled face, Harriet.

Finding a job, albeit a very temporary one, that allows me to sit in a warm room drinking tea and playing Football Manager while getting paid. And not even having to pretend to be doing otherwise.

Crossing off the final two counties on this island that I'd never been to. Derry and Donegal, so's you know. If we could be sure of the kind of weather we've had recently for as much as four weeks of the year then I don't think I'd ever need to leave this country.

Applying for a real job, even one that doesn't allow me play Football Manager. Writing letters and lists of why you're better than everyone else is most unbecoming, in my view.