Monday, May 31, 2010

The Fitzbollix session

Against all propriety, against every impulse to stay home and recover from the previous two nights of nonsense, against everything my liver holds dear I went on a series of little sessions yesterday with a man they call Fitzbollix.

Fuck, it was glorious.

The Bank for two pints and for fish and for chips.

The Stag's Head and the seat beside the window, the best in the house, listening to an earnest man trying to get the ride from his Brazilian friend at the next table. His attempts were hamfisted, saying the least.

Then the darkest corner of The Long Hall when we knew this Smithwicks experiment would not end soberly for us.

The Long Stone beer garden.

John Mulligan on Poolbeg Street and then, finally, to a pub on the quays that I'll never know the name of. It's on the north side, just up from Horrible Monstrosity Liberty Hall.

It's early the next day now and I'm out of paracetamol, but I'm comforted by the fact that I said the funniest and most disturbed thing I'll ever utter in my lifetime. It was something to do with things crashing into things.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

The burner

Last night, a stag party for the old housemate. Kehoes then a restaurant called Venu then outside McDaids, I think.

Anyway, as I waited for my monkfish (edible but hardly transcendant) the brother of the man in question came up to me.

"How would you like to send Ronan Keating a text message?"

"WOULD I?" I responded. "In case I'm not being clear, I would, yeah."

I'm not sure how he got the number, with the amount of drink taken I'm having trouble recalling the finer points, but he called it out to me.

I texted: 'We're right behind you boss. Fair play and God bless.'

Sorrily for us the message wasn't delivered. Fucker must have changed up.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Post 600 - Another 50 Good Things

The 2010 version. Reasons to be cheerful and all of that nonsense. There may be some duplication from the earlier list, but I've done my best to be new. Here we go...

1) Thomas Newman soundtracks.
2) Messi.
3) The actress Eva Birthistle.
4) The Goat Street Cafe.
5) Stringer Bell.
6) Jameson Irish Whiskey.
7) South William Street.
8) Men Behaving Badly on ‘Dave’.
9) The Frontline.
10) A well worn hat.
11) Ampersand Seven dot Blogspot dot Com.
12) The Long Hall.
13) The tree in the back garden that I only noticed yesterday.
14) Chili.
15) Text exchanges (with Neuroskeptic) equating footballers with Wire characters.
16) Lurkers.
17) Dusk.
18) Guinness.
19) The Stag’s Head.
20) Leffe Blond.
21) Leffe Ruby.
22) Leffe anything.
23) Hilariously monikered Honduran footballer Georgie Welcome.
24) The last five minutes of a lecture.
25) Toss’d Noodles, CHQ, Dublin.
26) A vibrant fart.
27) Vera Farmiga.
28) Milk.
29) Millie Clode, Sky Sports News enchantress.
30) Walking in Grangegorman.
31) The Grand Canal.
32) Tatsuta Age and Suzuki sashimi.
33) Twenty Major dot Net.
34) Tracksuit bottoms.
35) Ian Holloway interviews.
36) 'Let The Great World Spin.'
37) Fictional temptress Connie McEldowney.
38) Fourtet.
39) Chancing My Arm.
40) Nearys.
41) More red wine horizontal.
42) The snooker.
43) Milleens cheese. Smelly sensational.
44) Chunky chocolate flapjacks from Marks and Spencer.
45) Pedantry.
46) Judi Dench. Not like that.
47) Red Lemonade.
48) 'Easy Riders, Raging Bulls.'
49) The Twix.
50) Fish Tank.

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Why the fuck do people insist on putting the letter 'z' at the end of words that normally end in 's' or 'se'?

You see this kind of thing all the time on Twitter or Facebook.

For instance: 'Can someone pleaz tell me what bus to get to Blackrock? Have a hair appointment. Direction needz.'


'My dog just had puppiez. Needz to get a new kennell.'

Worse again, the supplementing of the already cancerous 'lol' with an 'lolz.'

Once again I find myself all ired up at the single stroke of a keyboard, a bastardly placed character where it shouldn't be. It'z just moronic.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

What fresh hell is this?

If this saves any of you from a cinematic fisting this weekend I'll have done my job.

"Bad puns, fashion porn, domestic handwringing, contrived plot points, idiotic dialogue and offensive stereotypes. What's not to loathe?" - Richard Roeper.

"Some of these people make my skin crawl. The characters of Sex and the City 2 are flyweight bubbleheads living in a world which rarely requires three sentences in a row." - Roger Ebert.

"The most depressing thing about Sex and the City 2 is that it seems to justify every nasty thing said and written about the series and first feature film." - David Edelstein, New York Magazine.

"Sex and the City 2 is two of the worst movies of the year." - The New York Post.

"I'd rather sit through Sex And The City 2 than sit through Sex And The City 2." -

= =

Some other things I'd rather do:-

Spend a Saturday night in the Mater Hospital's A+E waiting room.

Drink a nice hot cup of Christy Moore-brand sweatsoup.

Have Jedward perform live in my bathroom while I have a shite.

Follow Twink on Twitter.

Watch every Eurovision 'Song' Contest from the last twenty years back-to-back-to-back-to...

Spend six minutes alone in a room with Eamon Ryan.

Go dogging with Ronan Keating.

Be forced, Clockwork Orange-style, to watch nothing but that fucking Magnum Gold?! ad for 18 straight hours.

Give Bono a back massage while singing the hits of Neil Sedaka.

Make the sex at Anne Robinson.

Run bollock naked up the crack of Brian Cowen's arse.

Eat eggs.

Work as a showbiz reporter for the News Of The World.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Where's Billy in all this?

"The Republic of Ireland could have been preparing for the World Cup if it hadn't been for THAT goal by Thierry Henry..."

Three pints tonight.

Just the three but I figure I've heard this intro wrongly on Sky Sports News, checking for the score from some game of heads and volleys in Ballsbridge.

I pause it and rewind it and, yep, there it is.

"...THAT goal by Thierry Henry..." spake from the shouty gob of Scotch tit Jim White.

It's the newscaster's cocksuredness that irks me.

Not only is he referring to 'that' goal, but he's referencing 'THAT' goal, the one that denied Ireland the chance to lose on penalties in Paris last November.

Well, I'll see him caps lock for CAPS LOCK, raise him his 'THAT' for my 'IT WAS WILLIAM GALLAS WHO SCORED YOU HORRIBLE GOBSHITE!' and take my ire out on the nearest punching cushion.

This is the caps lock of MY pedantry, the tipping point of months of hearing about Henry's goal.

Composes self.

It was Gallas.

= = =

I turn over to The View and see a lad called Manchán Magan calling something shit.

Really? Manchán?

Fuck off, world.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Reset button

"Today I will buy my first colander."

It didn't cross my mind, this thought, when I crawled from the scratcher at half ten for a day completely unplanned but somehow you join the dots between morning interwebbing and standing at the checkout in Dunnes Stores, 'Foggy Dew' in one ear and the teller in the other, asking for five of my europounds.

I got soundtracked through the city's garden party ambience by The Dubliners, by The National, by Neil Young and by Mylo.

I've looked on the town with gloom recently and a mind cluttered with thoughts of having to be in too many places for too many chorish things, the word 'should do this' and 'should do that' framing my annoyance at every little thing, every small sound and each bad habit come to the fore purely for my irritation.

Hence my week off, some time spent away, and fuck if it didn't work because I couldn't have cut a more relaxed figure, browsing the kitchenware section for things I'd probably forget to use.

Instead of tramping my way around in a fugue of my own thoughts I took in barbeque smells on South William Street, fine looking women wearing sunglasses too big for their faces, an abundance of Barcelona jerseys. I counted a thousand pregnant women, they seemed to be everywhere so I wondered textually, "am I getting broody or is there a baby boom?"

I moved out of the way for buggies and old men, saw a young girl pause a moment outside The International Bar before heading back for more. I thought about a pint or a glass of wine but went for a coffee on George's Street, scribbling words purely to look artful.

I caught the eye of an older woman before I realised she wasn't that at all and I cursed for the first time when I thought my music player was on the fritz. Reset button.

I bought music by Jonsi but decided not to play it for a while, Sigur Ros sound perfect for football promos and winter but not this day, the least glacial of the year.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The headless horsemen

A midweek weekend.

Hills and mist and Leffe and "Spaten Munchen Boy!" and my first time eating halibut.

Twelve-year-old single malt Bushmills.

A rocking chair.

Steak cooked as per maternal instructions.

Rain and more hills.

Mussels in breadcrumbs.

Twitching from internet absence. Football news on the mobile phone.

Two pints of stout as it should taste.

Clonakilty black pudding.

Rashers and a wall decorated in menus.

A yacht in the distance, probably not Abramovich.

A screaming baby left alone in the back of a car - this did not stand.

Two hours spent reading 'Easy Riders, Raging Bulls.' William Friedkin is a bollox.

The Crazy Horse Saloon.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mind the Super!

I'm hoping Herc and Carver come screeching around the corner for their evening dose of 'rip and run' but, instead, the most I can expect is Terry from Athenry to give them - these revelling studenty fuckers - the old...

"...would yis mind keeping the noise down a bit, lads? The fucker next door wants his beauty (read: staving off death) sleep and yis are being a bit loud and ye should really keep the music... Is that a keg? Sure I'll come in for the one. Don't tell the aul super on me, wink, nudge."

I've had it done to me or, more to the point, we had it done to us back in the 32A days. Some crank of a neighbour telling the guards on us, importuning us to turn down the Gloria Estefan mix-tape and to stop burning skateboards in the front garden, so I figure my time has come.

My time has come.

Listening to these wankers shouting through the styrofoam walls in the minor hours, some girl called Gráinne screeching every time Florence And The Fucking Machine sings that song offof Sex And The City, cutlery used as defence weapons, bottles crashing against cement floors, a boy called George that they all pretend to like, the one that cries and laughs indistinguishably, the caterwauls and scrapes and their marketing projects waiting for another night.

I've been listening to shit like this for three years and fourteen days so I, well, I cracked and rang the 'joy, or the station house aside it. That was an hour ago and there's no sign of a dimming so I reckon Terry - our friend the guard from Athenry - has moved on to the Jagermeister.

What's the rub, the tipping point?

That I didn't pre-empt this with a drowning.
That I didn't see it coming, this end of college hoopla, and fix myself with several drams of Jameson or a bottle of something called Valpolicella.
That I have no drink in the flat save for the potent mixture of licorice and vodka made for me by the ex and, good fuck, that's years old at this stage and I can't stomach aniseed.
That I'm on my fifth cup of tea and the piss is running out me unbid.
That my youth passed away from me the second I made that phone call tonight.
That I'm so lonesome I could dial.

Still. Still, I'm at the start of my holidays and on Monday I'm going to the quietest place on this island to quietly judge the young from afar. That'll be nice. I'll outdrink them too.

= = =

Fógra: I only put in the line 'That I'm so lonesome I could dial' because I liked its metre. No need to 'aww' and 'ahh' and tell me I'm delightful.

I know I am.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

A summer loving torture party

I'm an unmodified fanboy when it comes to The National and I'm done with apologising, I won't casually shrug them off and I will profess to relentlessly stalking them on YouBox ever since the Cherry Tree EP.

I'll namedrop their obscure earlier releases and call the neophytes all sorts of names, the way I used to do with Pearl Jam or Elliott Smith or, well, Gene.

They may be decried for speaking to awkward adolescents masquerading as unsettled thirty-something men but, fuck it, that's probably me.

That's mostly me seeking the furthest corner of the canteen in work so I don't have to make the silly talk with men I've never cared for, men and women who blow on all day about screengrabs and OBs and malfunctioning servers, women and men who haven't learned my name through ten long years of awkward nods over coffee.

"Are you using that milk?"

If there's any other music to nail that particular hum and drum I'd like to hear it because I've been talking up these boys for way too long now, and it's not like they're going to get to play Whelans again.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Grunt journalism

The other night, RTE broadcast their latest in the 'Arts Lives' series. Colum McCann, the writer of 'Let The Great World Spin,' was the subject.

As with most books that leave some kind of scar on me, it took me a couple of months to get through. I fought with his words, they annoyed me in their brilliance, every night for half an hour before falling asleep, every night through next door's parties and the fucking of furniture overhead, through January and February and into March.

I've never been one to finish a book in one sitting, not a novel like his anyway. They form too many images for me and set my mind to wandering to the point where I have to go back and take it all in again. I won't waste a sentence, hence the slog and the fact that I'm not as comprehensively read as I'd like to be.

He's an engaging person living the life he seems to deserve in New York. Bastard. He wears suits in all the right ways and grows stubble that doesn't stop. Bastard. He has a wife and kids and plays basketball, spends days in libraries and finds poetry in squalor and hookers and all sorts of random miserabilia. Enviable bastard.

The thing that struck me most, though, was not the excerpts from his work or his trawling of Manhattan. Not the speaking engagements or the classes he gives to others who want to be him, and not his Upper East Side idyll.

No, the thing that got me was the calendar.

He produced the 2010 version and said he'd been writing them for years, ten years producing this standard calendar like the Bank Of Ireland version that used to hang on the wall in 32A, seven thousand years ago.

"I needed the money," he said. "I suppose I just kept doing it. Kept writing these calendars. I'll probably stop now. The thing is, every single thing I've written in my life has me where I am now, even the most pointless piece of grunt journalism is a stepping stone."

I'm paraphrasing as I type this from memory alone but it does me good to think that I'll look back on the College Basketball synopses, on the previews of Fulham v Bolton, on the endless dirge of racing results, on the knee injury flashes and pulled Achilles tendon detailings, on the managerial sackings and the clicking and unclicking of random text mania, on the drudge of the copy and paste, and I'll figure that all of the above...

...actually, no, I'll never think it was worth it.

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Film Two Thousand And Radge

Good Radge Hunting.

The Radge On The River Kwai.

O Brother Where Art Radge?

Punch Drunk Radge.

Radge, Where's My Radge?

The Radges Of Madison County.

Radge Does Dallas.

Vanilla Radge.

28 Radges Later.

Radge Fiction.

Looking For Radge.

Radging Amy.

The Radge Of War.

The Fog Of Radge.


Conversation(s) With Other Radges.


Mystic Radge.

The Radge Lieutenant.

(500) Days Of Radgery.

The Radgefather.

Radging Bull.

Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Radge.

Moby Radge.

Radge Dick.

= = =


Radge Of The Conchords.

Radge Feet Under.

One Foot In The Radge.