Thursday, 11 December 2008

Dubs, drubbings and dopes

DUBLIN has never appealed to me. Well, that’s an exercise in understatement. Being honest about it, excursions to Dublin or capital-themed conversation in general can cause my temperature to rise, brow to sweat and can occassionally result in some involuntary wincing and growling.
You may wonder why I have such an irrational aversion to all things Dub but unfortunately I can’t offer one concrete reason for why I’d like the feckin’ place to dislodge and float away.

Off the top my head I’d have to cite the accents (North and Southside), the unfounded superiority complex, the Spike, Reggie Corrigan, Mark Vaughan, Bono and the complete lack of knowledge many of its inhabitants display regarding anything outside of the pale.

Then you have the way the national media treats Dublin winning the Leinster football title like Ireland winning the World Cup (well done lads, you only have half the population and even at that you haven’t won an All-Ireland in well over a decade).

Don’t even get me started on the impossible task that is trying to navigate through the bloody place. Speaking of which, if you’re using the AA Route Planner around Dublin City Centre, don’t make the same mistake that I did and blindly trust the directions which instruct you to drive right up Grafton Street.

Quite regularly my friends who have defected to Dublin - either for college or work reasons - will ask me why I never call up to visit them in their adopted home. If I give an honest answer, there’s always the potential for seeming backward, jealous or even racist (although I’ll recognise shopkeepers as a race before I do Dubs.)

Now I’m willing to admit there are obviously a fair share of honest, decent, down-to-earth Dubs who get up in the morning and put their trousers on one leg at a time just like regular human beings. The only thing is, I’ve yet to meet them.

And until such a time arrives, I’m avoiding the capital like the bubonic plague unless I make the Irish team to play the first game in the reopened Lansdowne Road (I think I’m fairly safe here) or Limerick reach Croke Park (probably even safer on that one).

We’re off!

BREAK out the champers, throw your hats in the air and give the cat a kick because Limerick’s media soccer team has finally put some points on the board at the ninth time of asking.

After a somewhat disappointing but not completely unexpected start to the astro league season (eight absolute tonkings from eight games) our team made up of journos from around the city finally got a win under the belt last Thursday. We even managed to do it with a scoreline of 20-6 which brings our goal difference up to an impressive minus 57.

Now, I’m not one to engage in wildly ungrounded predictions but I reckon this could really be a turning point for our beloved team. I’ll admit, you can use the term ‘athletes’ in only the loosest of senses to describe our players, and we’ve done for the beautiful game what the Taliban did for feminism, but no longer can we be known as the whipping boys of the league.

Everyone’s walking around the office with a little bit more spring in their step this week, buoyed by our first taste of sweet victory. However, this Thursday evening will tell if our first win was merely a flash in the pan as we take on the Moscow Brains (Castletroy College, 9pm, supporters welcome as long as they’re supporting the right side).

If we once again come out on top, expect to hear about it in boastful detail right here next week. However, if this week’s jubilance is replaced by the far more familiar feeling of resounding defeat, there will be no match report, no account of the goal celebrations, no mention whatsoever.

So just don’t ask.

The Brit-Factor

ANYONE with a modicum of taste could tell you that “talent” shows such as The X Factor lose all entertainment value once the truly atrocious have been eliminated, leaving only the semi-talented to battle it out.

Nonetheless the show is a huge ratings success which - despite further reinforcing the theory that people on the whole are without taste - didn’t seem like such a bad thing up until now.

However, the brains trust over at Republican Sinn Fein know better, pointing out that the X Factor is in fact “yet another attempt to gradually spread the normalisation of British rule in all of Ireland.”

Of course, it’s so obvious now. How could we all be so stupid? I knew Simon Cowell had a Cromwellian go about him.

And have you noticed the orange complexion of his two fellow judges, Danni Minogue and Cheryl Cole? Orange? Come on folks, quite a subtle way to show the true colonial ambitions of the show don’t you think?

Not subtle enough for our RSF friends though. Keep up the good work guys.

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