The Queen of Ireland & Gerry Adams


Last night I walked into my local supermarket. Serving me was a six-foot man in drag, complete with a staff name-tag. I have to admit, I admired his balls.

Because it’s an act of extreme courage to go to work in a supermarket (or anywhere for that matter) dressed as a woman. When you are not already a woman.

And particularly if you are a six-foot man.

However, I must be honest and admit I was grossly offended by the whole situation. The man had made absolutely no effort whatsoever. He hadn’t even shaved…

With the centenary on the horizon, we can’t be seen to tolerate such a lazy standard of transvestism in this country. If our men don’t look good dressed as ladies, then what’s it all been for?

So I decided to go back into the supermarket tonight. I had some questions. I wanted to know about the abuse, the bullying, the prejudice, the discrimination this brave soul must’ve endured. I wanted to know whether his employees in this nationwide supermarket chain were progressive enough to allow gender fluidity among their staff?

But on the way to the shop I got flustered by pronouns. I didn’t know whether to call him her or what? I know they’ve added ‘Mx’ in the Oxford English Dictionary along with ‘Mr’ and ‘Mrs’, but how do you even pronounce ‘Mx’?

And would complementing him on his courageous stance be offensive in the first place? Should I pretend not to notice? Would that be the politically correct action to take?  We’ve entered a whole new era of tolerance and acceptance, but we haven’t been tooled-up with the protocols…

I’m familiar with all the terms – gender fluidity, gender non-binary – I think I’ve a fair grasp on what they all mean. I still wouldn’t fancy a question to come up on the Leaving Cert about it though.

So all these questions – these delicate issues to navigated like a ballet dancer in horseshoes – had me in a ball of nerves by the time I reached the sliding door of the supermarket. But he wasn’t working. So it was all a complete waste of time.

But the experience got me thinking. We’ve come a long way in a relatively short space of time. Cross-dressing was considered a mental illness in the 1960’s. And let’s not forget it was illegal to be gay in this country as recently as 1993. I’m not implying the cashier in the supermarket is gay; many straight men dabble in a spot of transvestism – I’m just illustrating that our status as one of the world’s more progressive societies is quite a recent development.

So therefore it in the spirit of Monty Python, it would be politically and patriotically appropriate – particularly with the centenary approaching – that we retain a small dose of traditional ingrained Paddy backwardness, amid all this newfound progressiveness and tolerance. A new form of sexism perhaps?

We only want good-looking trannies working in our supermarkets!

Enda Kenny will make the announcement at a press-conference, with Joan to his left, and Noonan to his right, nudging Leo out of the way – edging his way into frame, the old pro.

Gerry, Mary Lou and Pearse will then swiftly issue a counter-statement, denouncing the government’s decision in the strongest possible terms – as it clearly involves the re-introduction of a monarchy system in the Freestate. All this talk of that film The Queen of Ireland in the past week has made Gerry and the lads nervous.

Mick Wallace will not be allowed to make any public comment on the issue whatsoever, as his is the exact ‘lazy-transvestite’ look we are trying to avoid in the first place, with the introduction of this new form of politically Pythonesque sexism.

Random spot checks will be undertaken in supermarkets up and down the country, to make damn sure our transvestites are making the effort.

So trannies of Ireland, have some pride. Don’t get complacent. Have a shave. 

Do it for your country – there’s a centenary approaching.

short clip from our new film ‘Too Shall Pass’

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The Consequences Of Having A Cigarette

*This piece was originally written in June*

Finding oneself at an Irish wedding – retired from alcohol – can be an alarming affair. So when a friend came around taking cigarette orders on her iphone, I handed her a tenner. It’s almost a decade since I was a full-time smoker, so I thought I’d be grand…plus I needed something to do with my hands, now that I’d no pints to be playing with.

Fast-forward seven days, and I was sitting in the studio trying to do some work – but not getting anything done. All I could think about was smoking fags. I was running outside every twenty minutes for a cigarette. Those sneaky little smokes were cackling and wheezing at me – after one short week.

My pulse was gone mental, my heart was beating like a fucked clock, and my lungs felt full-up. Seven short days and I was back to where I started, when I first quit smoking back in January 2006. The quick clutch of cigarettes truly terrifies me.

After exactly one week, I knew the smokes had to go.  So on the Sunday night I had one for the road, then a long hot shower to get rid of the rancid nicotine smell. While I felt good about my decision to quit – again – I also dreaded the ginger-rage Monday’s withdrawals would surely bring…

But I got through that first day okay – if a little more stressed and short tempered than usual. Until that night, lying awake, twisting and turning with my crazed pulse and carcinogenic lungs. I began to wonder how people are still alive after decades of this carnage? After nine years off them, I smoked for a single week, and I was convinced I was about to have a heart attack. While lying down.

To make things worse, some new guy had moved into the gaff, and he was smoking inside. The smell of cigarettes was driving me fucking demented…

But not quite as demented as the two cigarettes I left in a pack laying on my bedside table. An amateur mistake while in the throes of nicotine withdrawal! Lying there looking at me, somewhere between a tease and a torment. As I twisted and turned with my rushing pulse, and frantic heart-rate, I wrestled with what to do.

An hour later my stubbornness got the better of me and I ripped those cigarettes up and threw them out the window – thinking now I’d surely relax.

But still no sleep…

Three days later – by Wednesday – the withdrawal-rage had calmed and I knew I was just-about in the clear. Apart from the physical, temper-inducing cravings, I didn’t suffer from any psychological withdrawal this time – having not been a full-time smoker for almost a decade. I flicked a switch in my head, and became a non-smoker again. I’ve had a decade’s practice, so I don’t feel the need to sit on my hands, bite my nails, or stuff my face with sweets.

But hurdles lay ahead. Another social function – this one slightly different to a wedding…

One week off the smokes and I was back down the country again, this time for my best mate’s ordination.

My plan was to have a week off the smokes before gracing the ordination. That’d surely give me enough breathing space not to be tempted into handing over another tenner, and starting the whole horrible nicotine-addiction process again?

Another motivating factor was I didn’t want my parents to see me smoking at the afters of the ordination. Especially considering I officially quit a decade ago, and they’re both also reformed smokers/cured whoores.

So I thought I’d gotten away with the whole dirty operation – that nobody’d be any the wiser as to my one sneaky week back on the smokes in Belfast.  But then a mate posted a picture on Facebook of me handing a tenner over at the wedding for twenty Marlboro Lights, and I was caught rotten…

Caught rotten!!

Caught rotten!!

This lead me to consider the question – which is more dangerous, social media or social smoking?

I don’t know the answer.  I suppose it depends on how much your parents know. But it certainly seems easier to give up the smokes…

And like I said the last time – it won’t happen again.


On Wednesday night this week while working late in the studio, a mate of mine offered me a cigarette. It was the end of a long days work, so I reasoned what’s the harm – one won’t kill me.  Plus I needed a break.  So we went outside for a smoke.

Within about five minutes I started to feel nauseous. After another five minutes I had my head down the toilet, spewing the contents of my stomach down the loo.  So I can safely say; that’s the end of my smoking career, for once and for all!!

And like I said the last time – it won’t happen again!

short clip from our new film ‘Too Shall Pass’

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The Dark Days Are Over


As the centenary looms and we prepare for our year of misplaced patriotism, there’s a different kind of rising on the horizon. Because as the bankers stand in court and the ghost estates stand empty, the people the Tiger didn’t bite are about to have their day in the sun.

We are a country internationally renowned for punching above our weight in the arts. Yet for most of us in the creative game, that Tiger passed us by. We watched from the dole queues as the fat men in Mercs drove past with wallets full of fifties.

In the world of writing, filmmaking, and particularly painting, the rule is show, don’t tell. The Samuel Beckett Bridge in Dublin shows everything we got grossly wrong in that mad period of false opulence.

Beckett would be spinning in his grave at the sight of Calatrava’s neo-futuristic bridge spanning the Liffey, named in his honour.  If Beckett were to build a bridge, it’d be a single plank of wood – that stopped half-way out across the river. But we were too drunk on debit to listen to that artist, or any artist that wasn’t making us money.

We’d finally shaken off the shackles of oppression.  Goaded by our chronic victim complex, we were busy building our own version of Dubai. We desecrating Dublin with glass and steel that’ll haunt the horizon for a century.

The Tiger’s scars are visible all over Galway too, where every available building was clad with that greenish copper look, that even now – less than a decade later – looks horrifically dated.

But then the fat lady sang, and it all came crashing down around us. The fat men in Mercs booked flights and filed for bankruptcy. Behind them lay ghost estates and ruined lives. As the skinny man said, there’s no strategy to combat negative equity.

I don’t understand the finer points of economics – booms, busts and subsequent recoveries. You need David McWilliams for that sort of thing. What I do understand though, is that I’m in a very privileged position to have nothing. Because it’s a far better place to be than owing vast quantities of cash that never even existed in the first place.

But show; don’t tell. At the height of the Celtic chaos I worked in a newsagents. The main problem we faced towards the end of each day was the cash register wouldn’t close because of the massive stack of fifties stored under the coin part. Everybody payed for everything with fifties. Scratch-cards, fags and mags, it was brown notes all the way.

That newsagents is now an empty shell of a building, another victim in the cycle of boom and bust. Suckers for a good dose of oppression, but this time around we didn’t even need the Brits – we did it to ourselves.

Speaking of Brits, during the Second World War, Winston Churchill was approached by one of his cabinet ministers with an idea. The minister suggested to Churchill that they slash the arts budget, and put all the money into the ongoing war effort. Churchill refused outright, and told his minister that if there was no art, what were they fighting for in the first place?

So now we find ourselves in this strange post-apocalyptic place where those of us with nothing are in pole position. We’re not being followed around by houses we bought for double their value, and we’re not being sought for extradition to answer for our crooked accounting and blatant lies.  I think Beckett would appreciate that irony…

So let The Rising commence; the dark days are over. But we don’t need to thump our chests and sing rebel songs for this rising.

What’s the moral of the story? How does the film end?

When the going gets tough the fat men in Mercs will fuck off and leave you high and dry, laughing at you from their gated mansions in the States. The glass and steel will eventually erode, along with that neo-futuristic bridge.

But Sam Beckett will be with you forever.

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Are You A Sociopath?

Tony Soprano

Every weekend the Irish country set get all tarted-up in blazers and bow-ties to go hunting foxes on horses. After their killing spree, they celebrate their murderous escapades with brandies and port down the local.

The majority of us don’t bat an eyelid to this weekly slaughter of innocent mammals – ripped to shreds by packs of hungry hounds. Why? Because dead foxes aren’t celebrities. And they don’t have names.

Especially fancy names like Cecil…

Cecil the Lion is still making headlines, weeks after a dentist from Pennsylvania did a Tony Soprano on him in the wilds of Zimbabwe. Presumably, the dentist in question wasn’t decked out like a meringue in a saddle at the time. The heat would’ve killed him, and possibly warned off the lion.

As Tony Soprano’s therapist would tell you, one of the defining marks of a sociopath is an affinity towards small children and animals – but scant regard for the rest of human life.

I find this all a bit troubling. Allow me to explain…

The global outpouring of grief over the death of one celebrity lion has been massive. Yet we don’t devote anything resembling the same level of sadness over the thousands of humans being murdered, raped, tortured and trafficked every single day.

So does this suggest we are a world full of sociopaths, crying into our cornflakes over one dead animal, while our fellow humans unfortunate enough to be born in the wrong time-zone suffer unfathomable fates?

Here in the ‘Free World’, American drone strikes massacre women and children on a daily basis, in the hope they might take out a suspected militant or two in the blood-soaked carnage.

Limbs ripped to shreds, children’s heads melted to mush – all watched on a computer screen by some military operator on the other side of the globe. Pushing a button in the Pentagon – as if playing the latest computer game.

Do we give that a second thought? Do we cry for those mutilated women and children like we cry for Cecil the Lion?  Do we fuck!

And while you’re up there on your pulpit, try to explain the plight of one celebrity lion to the families of the 210,000 dead Syrians wiped out in the most brutal civil war in recent history. Or the families of the 30,000 Libyans slaughtered since Gaddafi’s dead head was kicked about like a football on live TV – while we all cheered and drank our brandies and ports.

We don’t even have to look to the Middle East for our daily dose of blood and guts.

Three people are shot dead every hour in the States. Even closer to home, innocent people are caught in the cross-fire in the murky world of gangland slayings. The most those victims ever get is a day or two in the papers. Then we move onto something more relevant to our cosy ‘First World’ Irish lives – like water charges and gay marriages.

So how do the Zimbabwean’s themselves feel about this global outpouring of self-righteous moral panic?

Baffled! Eunice Vhunise, from the Zimbabwean capital Harare, has been quoted as saying there are much more pressing issues in the country than a single dead lion. Life-threatening issues, such as drastic water shortages, no electricity, no jobs – and to top it all, a geriatric despot as president. One dead lion is the very least of their worries…

Yet the hackneyed old argument exists that lions are an endangered species, and therefore worth our tears.

Tell that to the migrants in Calais, risking life and limb to try and make it across the Channel Tunnel. And while you’re up there on your PETA pulpit giving your sermon, explain your feline-grief to the Syrians, the Libyans, the Iraqis and the Afghans.

I doubt you’ll get much sympathy for Cecil…

However, here in the ‘First World’ where we take all our basic needs for granted, over 100,000 Americans have signed a public petition to have the lion-killing dentist extradited to Zimbabwe to face charges.

The hypocrisy is laughable. In the space of five years, the Zimbabwe Human Rights NGO Forum has recorded over 1,200 cases of human rights violations by the law enforcement agencies, including 363 cases of torture, 516 cases of assault, 58 cases of death threats, 399 cases of unlawful arrest, and 451 cases of unlawful detention. And that’s against their own people.

One can only imagine the fate of a lion-killing dentist from the States…

Yet 100,000 people from a country that routinely renditions (a fancy word for kidnapping) suspected militants, holds them for years without trial, and subjects them to well documented torture, want to send one of their own to a country with one of the worst human rights records in the world.

One thing is for sure – he wouldn’t be seeing much brandy and port over there.

So maybe those fancy eejits ripping foxes limbs to shreds are the sensible ones, while the rest of us sociopaths ignore human rape and murder, while we cry into our cornflakes over Cecil the fucking Lion…

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The Silly Season Has Started

A toddler screamed in her father’s arms, as the pounding drums of The Orange Order marked the start of  ‘The Silly Season’.   On Thursday evening they marched down the Lisburn Road, flanked by armed police, followed by PSNI Landrovers, and monitored from the sky by helicopters.   I used to think the Vintage Parade in Birr was fairly hectic, but all we need down there is a few bollards and a couple of stewards to keep it kosher.

And being a naive Freestater from that cosy Vintage-Week world of Midlands Ireland, when I moved up to Belfast a year ago, I made a definite point of not talking politics.  With anyone.  For starters, they don’t want to hear it – especially from some clueless Southerner.  It’d be patronising to pontificate on a situation I’d only ever seen on the Nine O’Clock News as a child.

But this self-preserving vow of silence becomes difficult to maintain once ‘The Silly Season’ comes around again and the whole city goes on lock-down.

Like most naive Southerners, I was under the impression the Orange Order marches only took place around the twelfth of July.  However, upon my arrival in Belfast last summer, I discovered they go on right up into September and, occasionally even beyond.  Every single weekend, in multiple locations across the city.

Some are genuine ‘Expressions of Culture’, and just involve a load of aul’ fellas in suits and sashes marching up a road banging drums and singing songs.  Others however, carry a far more threatening air, when it’s made very obvious their connection to paramilitary groups, with big letters painted across their drums, and their packs of drunk marauding supporters.

So all this week big mounds of timber pallets were being built a hundred-foot high, in multiple locations across the city – both in the city centre, and in Loyalist estates.  Perched on top of these massive mounds of pallets are tricolours and posters of Sinn Fein politicians, ready to be set ablaze on the night before the 12th. 

This highly charged atmosphere feels especially threatening when you’ve a southern accent. This is clearly much more than an ‘Expression of Culture’, as the Orange Order continually attempt to justify it as.  It’s a show of force.  And the vast majority of people – Catholic and Protestant, want absolutely nothing to do with it.  A sizable proportion of the locals leave the city for at least a week, and head for Donegal or Galway.  Shutters go down across the city as businesses close – some for the whole month of July.

As those marchers paraded past me on Thursday thumping their drums, what struck me was the age demographic.  While some of the marchers were staggering frailly towards their pensions, the majority were much younger than me.

Teenagers born post-Good Friday Agreement, decked out in sashes, aggressively thumping drums.  Totally unqualified for their hardline opinions – innocent young heads filled with romantic notions of a fight. Unfortunately, those same innocent young heads appear to have no room left in them to comprehend the brutal realities of that misplaced romanticism – those brutal realities us sheltered Southerners saw on the Nine O’Clock news for decades.

When I first arrived in Belfast a year ago, none of it made sense to me.  All this flag-business, this almost-sexual obsession with a piece of coloured cloth.  But Belfast has this way of making you acutely aware of who you are.  It’s a city obsessed with identity, and it’s frighteningly contagious.

Maybe it’s just this city confronts you with scenarios alien to the cosy Vintage Week world of Midlands Ireland.   Or anywhere else for that matter.

Your polished veneer of aloof detachment becomes quite difficult to preserve while watching a flag burn on-top of a pile of pallets.  In this city it’s impossible to be oblivious, so the key is not to get knocked over by that initial wobbling dart of identity.  It’s like meditation – allow the thoughts to enter your mind, but make sure the thoughs leave again fairly quickly  – preferably before you join a paramilitary organisation.  It’s important to keep yourself balanced.  Centred.

Grounded.  And over the course of my year here so far, Belfast has become my favourite place I’ve lived – and I’ve lived in so many cities I can’t remember them all.  It feels like home, more so than anywhere else I’ve been.  Belfast has a vibrancy that’s missing in Dublin, a definite friendliness, and an urgent sense of mischief.

But what I like about it most is it doesn’t take itself too seriously. You won’t find too many perfectly-bearded eejits with retro headphones and Yugoslavian bicycles from the 80’s poncing about eating paninis up here!

It’s a city on the rise, a city in recovery.  But in order for this rapid rise to continue, and Belfast to become a true European city, the annual summer push for polarisation needs to be resisted at all costs.

And that means getting rid of ‘Displays of Culture’, such as burning flags (of any colour) on top of stacks of pallets.

Nicky Larkin, July 2015

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Which Do You Prefer – Weddings or Funerals?

The wedding season approaches again, and my friends are busy getting married again.  Different friends than the ones who got married last summer; that’d be just weird.  Old friends, decades old.  School friends.  I’m really looking forward to seeing everybody again, it’s been six months – longer in some cases.

Weddings are usually seasonal.  People hold off for the weather I presume; I’ve never been involved in one myself.  Obituaries, on the other hand, are big business all year around.  I’ve had my fair share of them.  Hail, rain or snow…there’s never a bad time for a funeral.  And we fucking love them.

But try explaining this strange, unspoken preference for darkness to light to a non-Spud-Head friend.  You sound cruel.  Psychopathic even.  Sociopathic, at best.  But after five years living in Ireland, an Italian friend of mine said he still couldn’t understand our national obsession with obituaries.

It was beginning to bother him. At lunchtime in work, he’d watch his colleagues flick straight to the back pages – for a quick scan through the deaths. My Italian friend wondered why they were so eager to see who’d croaked it?  It made him paranoid.

But then my Italian confessed he’d never been to an Irish funeral. Immediately I understood his confusion.

An Irish funeral is like a U2 gig.  It’s a unique experience you can’t fully comprehend, until you’ve actually been to one. The sandwiches, the hip-flasks, the mumbling, the keening, the shitty weather, the tears, the bus back to Offaly…

Plus, like a U2 gig, funerals have advantages over weddings.

You don’t have to be invited. You don’t have to bring a present either.

However, our Paddy-preference for despair runs much deeper than superficialities such as free drink and endless wailing.  Funerals provide us with a sincere sense of ‘one-up-man-ship’ that’s simply unavailable at weddings.  Because there’s nothing we Bog-Merchants love more than seeing somebody ‘with ideas above their station’ getting a good land for themselves…

Whether it’s a sparkling new Beamer get a fresh scratch down the side, or some pony fancy-shirt wearing millionaire getting crucified for tax-evasion, there’s absolutely nothing we relish more than witnessing someone getting ‘taken down a peg or two.’  Or three, if possible.

And the more publicly, the better.  Obviously.  Similarly, we grin through gritted teeth at lottery winners, and we do our utmost to embarrass the groom on his wedding-day.

I don’t know whether this Irish love of begrudgery is unique to us, or whether there are other peoples who revel in this same darkness, people who also shunning the light in search of that special sort of divilment craic?  There must be.  Unfortunately, our neighbours to our immediate east have their ‘stiff-upper-lips’ wank – so you can’t really tell what they’re thinking.  Plotting our downfall, no doubt.  They’ve been too quiet for too long….

Our neighbours to the west definitely don’t share our cruel preference for pessimism.

When a Yank sees success, he gets all ambitious and speculates that someday he’ll be that guy.  We have a more pragmatic, realistic approach.  It’s really quite different. When an Irish person see similar success, we speculate that someday we’ll get that fucker.

And by going to his funeral, getting tanked on his liquor, insulting his relations, and scoffing all his corn-beef sandwiches, you kind of are getting the upper hand on that fucker.

Plus there’s no greater physical expression of ‘one-up-man-ship’ than standing over a coffin, leaning down at a corpse all caked in makeup, draped in rosary-beads, and decked out in his best suit.  As if he’s off to mass.  Which I suppose he technically is.

This more realistic/pessimistic style of ambition appears inbuilt into our national psyche, no matter how many cycles of boom and bust we endure. There was perhaps a brief moment of attempted change, when we were up to our guts in cash and cocaine around 2004.

We began buying self-help books on success – obviously all written by those optimistic fucking Yanks. We also started doing yoga around that same time too.
But then the model died, it all started to fall apart, and we quickly reverted to our old begrudging, gurning ways.  Stick to what you know, and all that….

Now we’re busy cutting deals with higher powers to ensure our existence.  Sitting in Rooms, listening for answers.

As for this wedding; I’m looking forward to it.   I’ve had my fill of funerals.  I don’t like surprises.  At least you get decent notice of a wedding.  And I’ve got the tickets…

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Smoking at My Granny’s Funeral

I first smoked at my granny’s funeral. I don’t think she would have approved.

Not that she was a Holy-Joe; my granny. Not at all. The woman liked the odd 60 fags-a-day herself. She used to pass around fags to her kids after dinner on Sundays back in the day. The weekly treat – but only if they’d had been good at mass.

I’m talking proper kids. Not teenagers. A load of children sitting ’round the kitchen table, smoking fags on Sunday afternoons. And then my granny had the nerve to get scaldy – ’cause her grandsons were smoking out in the garage. At her funeral. A bit hypocritical, if you ask me, considering her fag-peddling antics to children, fifty years previously!

Except I don’t think my granny was overly concerned about her grandson’s smoking out in the garage at her funeral. For a start she was dead, plus she was pragmatic. Laid out in the sitting room she was, under a big stitched picture of Jesus getting thick with some fellas at a temple.

It could’ve been Jesus, or maybe Moses. I never enquired, it was none of my business either way – Jesus or Moses. Both grand fellas by all accounts, either of them deserved to be stitched on a rug hanging on walls in ‘aul wan’s houses.

I’ve no problems there. But whoever it was – Jesus or Moses – he had a fierce scorpy temper on him. Judging by that big stitched picture hanging over my dead granny.

A load of beardy lads in red and beige dresses, getting thick with each other outside a fancy building. Losing the heads altogether they were. All stitched onto that big rug. Hanging on the wall of my dead granny’s house.

She wasn’t the last – my granny – there was one more straggler a year or two after, one more funeral, and then that was it. That whole generation of us dead.

No grandparents left. It’s a strange feeling. I can only imagine the day your last parent dies, and its just you, that whole generation of you is now also gone – and your generation are suddenly the oldest ones left.

But the problem with funerals I find, is there’s no ticketing system – no invites. It’s a fucking free for all, especially in country towns.

Also, it’s a well established fact that there’ll definitely be endless hard-liquor and ham-sandwiches available at all times throughout the wake at a country funeral. It’s like Turkish Airlines – free liquor all the way, but a woeful safety record so you can never be sure exactly what way things will turn out.

But the thing about Turkish airlines is their main clientèle are usually Muslim, so they don’t end up getting shafted by a bunch of booze-hungry Spud-Heads.

No such luck at my granny’s wake, we didn’t know any Muslims. Just half the town in your granny’s front room, all shaking hands with you and saying how sorry they are for your troubles – as if they’d something to do with the death themselves – the big guilty half-jarred heads on them.

Even the nuns looked guilty. Frantically doing their holy mumbles. Muttering away, feeling beads. My granny wouldn’t have been into that craic at all. She wasn’t mental.

But she had no say in the matter. Once again, ticketing issues and a lack of invites can’t be ignored as a significant problem here. I feel this needs to be addressed at committee level, the next time rural funeral logistics are on the agenda.

Because once those pious-fucking nuns get the whiff of a funeral, the mumbling hordes come banging down doors, out on the hunt for misery and sandwiches.

They never said anything of significance at funerals, those nuns. Just muttered prayers and thousand yard stares. They wouldn’t even have enough craic in them to have a cup of tea.

Anyway, you wouldn’t be able to say the rosary properly if you were holding tea, you’d be fucked. Spilling it all over your frock with all that frantic blessing yourself like a Holy epileptic.

Eventually the muttering nuns get to a point where you’re all supposed to join in with the muttering. Everybody somehow knows the lyrics; it’s like a fucking Garth Brooks song.

You don’t really have a choice in the matter, you just somehow know those fucking lyrics, they’re implanted somewhere in the darker corners of your brain, waiting to jump out when needed. Bored (or beaten) into you by those Presentation Brothers, ready to recite at funerals.  And on New Years’s Eve in Donegal.

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