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Home Along the River May 18, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Poetry & Humor.
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An old one, but a nice one all the same …

Home Along the River

by the Rambling Man

“You’ll be alright now, son!” he would say;
My gills as green as the sea being sliced by our bow;
And around the rocky point we would lurch – the tall tower
giving calm to the swell; inching inside her protection,
which could never come quickly enough.

The rocks of Hook draw lines that keep the maddening current in tow.
At Dunmore, the yachts are making for home on the tide.
I stumble from stern to midships, keen not to miss a thing.
The harbour’s form burning it’s place in my mind.

“Call out the bays and the rocks now, son!” he would say;
“Because I don’t want to get lost!”
And I’d jump to attention, glad to be back on hushed water.
Slowly they passed us, the river easing us home …
Hall Bay and then Boyce’s, with Creadan Head to your back.
The hatch patterned seats leaving marks on my knees.

“There’s Dollar and Booley!” I’d shout
Their crowdless beaches a sign that our own harbour was near.
“Can we go digging for treasure?” I’d plead,
until I outgrew the tales of the old folk,
who were rich from ingots found simply out walking !

A turn to the North meant I could command at the wheel …
The diesel engine thrumming a comforting song.
“Keep her straight now, son!” he would say;
“And line up the two towers in your sights” …
Rounding the Barrack, we’d laugh and talk about how
those on the Strand would rather be out here with us.

Tied up and safely ashore, the boat strains ‘gainst the current,
longing to bear us again, home, along the river.

Poster hung outside Anglo May 13, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Ireland & the Irish.
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A poster of considerable size, depicting the villains of modern Ireland was hung from a crane outside the headquarters of Anglo-Irish Bank on St.Stephen’s Green this morning.

The poster, which aims a blow for the people of Ireland at the powers that be (and want to be), lists the figures wasted spent by this government on projects such as NAMA and the monetary black hole of a developers’ bank that is Anglo-Irish …

I wonder how long it will last before someone complains that it is offensive and has it removed.  As of writing, I don’t know who is behind it but it certainly makes a point … (pity they just didn’t press F7) …

The revolution is coming … mark my words … as soon as “Britain’s Got Talent” is finished and we’ve no bread on the shelves !

On the phrase “Paddy Me Arse” ! May 12, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Ireland & the Irish.
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Paddy Me Arse, idiom, adj.

– half-hearted, lackadaisical, sloppy.
– done in such a way as to pass off one’s effort as being proper.
– e.g. That roof is a Paddy-Me-Arse job !

Have you ever pondered on the meaning and origins of the wonderful phrase “Paddy Me Arse”.  It is the one phrase, I think, that above all embodies Gombeen Ireland – a land of milk and money corruption where nobody gets the correlation between their own inactions and the continuing exploitation by government.

So many examples could be cited but you know what ?

Heres some news for the people of Ireland !


We as a nation do not care one iota about what is going on … really, we don’t.  I mean when it comes down to it what are we doing to rescue the country ?  Fuckin’ nothing.  We’d rather watch the X Factor !

We are a Paddy me Arse people, obviously content to have reputations as hard drinking, sloppy, stupid thick corrupt Paddys and be happy about it.

Paddy Me Arse !  Gotta love us !

Golf March 30, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Poetry & Humor, Sports.
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by the Rambling Man

Now golf is a game of very much pain
its like hitting your head with a stick
you swing and you hit and curse when you miss,
sure the game makes the brightest look thick !

From the tee to the green, and to putts most obscene
we weekly subject all our patience
pushed left or sliced right, tis really a fight
not to lose it for lack of adjacence.

But when you hit a good shot, far more often than not
you lose all your anger in seconds
for theres nothing as cool, as watching men drool
when a birdie or eagle them beckons …

So with a good score secured, surely the worst you’ve endured
but your next shot is barely a scuff
and the lie you’ve just found, on scruffy old ground
makes long grass seem like lawn tis that rough !

So you hack and you whack, and damage your back
and grumble all the way to the green
but the ball it pops out, and leaves you a shout
at a putt like you’ve ne’er before seen.

So when out on the links, if your spirit it sinks
just remember the secret to golf
no matter how badly you play, theres always a way
to walk off the course feeling worse !

How much more will we take ? March 8, 2010

Posted by Rambling Man in Ireland & the Irish, Say it like it is.
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I’m angry !

Really fucking angry – steam coming out of my ears, start a revolution kind of angry !  What am I going to do about it ?  Ah, nothin’ really … I’m Irish you see !

Without wanting to get into a full-scale political debate, I want to ask “How much more will Ireland take?”  Not how much can we take, but how much more will we take ?

Suffices to say that if Mother Ireland was a camel, that her back is now well and truly broken by the straws that keep hitting her.  This country has been revealed to be the cesspool of corruption and so-what?-ness (sic) that many feared.

The latest in a long line of stories that would make other democracies (or republics) shit themselves in disbelief broke this morning … the board members from the Dublin Docklands Development Authority have covered themselves in publicity with their caviar, champagne and thousand euro a night hotel rooms.

But I digress lightly from the title of this post – the fact is, that at the end of the day, when push comes to shove, going forward etc. etc. we just don’t give a shit.  We don’t give enough of a shit to change the country.  Bottom line !

The following is all I ever hear in my peers’ political debate : “Ah isn’t such and such an awful chancer” or “Did you see what yer man was doing!” “Terrible isn’t it and the country in the state that it is!” …

Followed quickly by “Sure aren’t they all the same!” or “There’s nobody else to vote for sure!” or “Sure what can we do about it? Aren’t they all as bad as each other!” (or even worse “Wouldn’t you do it if you could get away with it ?”)


“They” might all be as politically inept or financially inexperienced as eachother but that still doesn’t mean you allow the same said inept fools to continue to damage you … if you don’t change Fianna Fáil and the Greens for someone else, they’ll stay where they are and continue to hurt you.  You’ll continue to grumble about it and feel apathetic about it and continue to vote for them because the divil-you-know is better than the divil-you-don’t !  Well electorate of Ireland, you don’t know the fucking half of it with the Divil-you-know that is Fianna Fáil.

Can we wise up ?  Will we wise up ?  Do we honestly give a shit about Ireland and the future of our children ?  Stop blaming it on there being nobody else to vote for !  Stop blaming it on Enda Kenny if you see him as the only alternative !  Blame it on yourselves – on ourselves – for not undertaking our democratic responsibilities enough and figuring out just what we the people want.

Bittersweet March 6, 2008

Posted by Rambling Man in Emigration, General Bloggery, Ireland & the Irish, Poetry & Humor.
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Today we leave Ireland.

I absolutely can’t wait to arrive in New Zealand and get stuck in, but as many’s the times before in this situation, I get butterflies in the airport.

I don’t know when I’ll be back – either to live, or for holidays or for good …

I was sad for a small while yesterday – a good friend had sent me a card and inside was written, as Gaeilge, and by hand :

Go n-éirí an bóthar leat.
Go raibh cóir na gaoithe i gcónaí leat.
Go dtaitní an ghrian go bog bláth ar do chlár éadain,
go dtite an bháisteach go bog mín ar do ghoirt.
Agus go gcasfar le chéile sinn arís,
go gcoinní Dia i mbois a láimhe thú.

Which roughly translates in English as :

May the road rise to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face.
And rains fall softly upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Catch you all on the flip side …

RBS 6 Nations – Ireland v Italy January 29, 2008

Posted by Rambling Man in Sports.
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If Bernard Jackman doesn’t get in the team to play Italy on Saturday, I think I will throw my hat at the whole thing and jump firmly, feet first on the anti-O’Sullivan bandwagon !

Team to be named later today …

* UPDATE – What do you do if a team is playing like shite and gets knocked out of the World Cup in the first round – why, pick them again of course ! *

Ireland team: Girvan Dempsey, Andrew Trimble, Geordan Murphy, Brian O’Driscoll, Gordon D’Arcy, Ronan O’Gara, Eoin Reddan, Marcus Horan, Rory Best, John Hayes, Donncha O’Callaghan, Malcolm O’Kelly, Simon Easterby, David Wallace, Denis Leamy.

Ireland squad for 6 Nations January 21, 2008

Posted by Rambling Man in General Bloggery.
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I finally managed to catch up with the rugby over the weekend and cheered on the Munster Lions as they battled to a great victory over London Wasps on Saturday.

It is with interest that I noted a few not-so-familiar names when the make up of the 6 Nations squad was announced – most, if not all of the World Cup squad make the grade … Eddie O’Sullivan and his back room staff have announced an initial squad of 35, presumably to be whittled down a little further before the competition starts.

Ulster has 5 players in the squad with Simon Best not considered due to injury. Paddy Wallace – in my opinion is lucky to be included, and makes the squad along with other backs Bowe and Trimble. Connaught have 2 players make the initial selection with Gavin Duffy and Jonny O’Connor making the squad – the latter coming back from international exile after a gap of several years.

As expected Leinster and Munster make up the bulk to the squad and Paul O’Connell excepted (injury), most of the names will be familiar to people. Nice to see Cian Healy of Leinster given a chance; there’s a recall for Leo Cullen and Keith Gleeson while exciting prospect Luke Fitzgerald also is included. Personally, I was disappointed to see that Bernard Jackman wasn’t included as cover for the hooker position – Frankie Sheahan makes the squad despite not playing anywhere near regularly for his province.

Jonathan Sexton also makes the squad but I think he got injured over the weekend so Paddy Wallace will probably be the main understudy to O’Gara …

All in all the squad is along tried and mostly trusted lines – one hopes that when the squad is further reduced, that some of the younger players get a chance.

Ireland : 1 October ’07 October 1, 2007

Posted by Rambling Man in Ireland & the Irish.
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I haven’t attempted an “around the country” newsround for quite some time, and with so many things sticking in my mind, when better than now to start again …

Sporting wise, the country is trying to digest the rather shambolic performances of the rugby team, which have seen Ireland exit the World Cup competition at the earliest possible stage for the first time. Rugby giants like Fiji and Scotland march on … it’s beginning to dawn on me that we weren’t actually as good as everyone thought.

News reaches us this morning of the death of Irish born US soldier Ciara Durkin, a Connemara native serving with the Massachusetts National Guard. Ms. Durkin met her untimely end in an incident in Bagram airbase, near Kabul, Afghanistan. It is not yet clear as to the nature of the incident, vis-a-vis whether it was accidental or not, and there is to be an inquiry by the US military.

The funerals of the two tragic firefighters who lost their lives in a Bray, Co.Wicklow fire last week are taking place today and tomorrow. Mark O’Shaughnessy and Brian Murray were killed last week when a roof collapsed on them while attending a fire in the town. Ar Dheis Dé go rabhaid.

The new Minister for the Environment, John Gormley of the Green Party has increased the on-the-spot litter fine for litter louts to €150.  It goes up from €125 to €150 – I don’t know whether the extra €25 will frighten the louts into throwing their stuff on the ground anyway ??  “Litter is the most visible affront to the kind of environment most people want to see and live in.” says Gormley and sure who could argue with that.  It’s a pity though that he doesn’t put more money into policing and enforcing the rules, as and when the incidents happen … the litter in this town of a morning stroll to work is nothing but appalling … every morning …

Around 100 Aer Wingless Lingus pilots have written to their CEO about their interest in taking up one of the 30 new positions with the company based out of Belfast airport.  The pilots, who have been in dispute with management over terms and conditions, have threatened strike action … and want their pay and conditions in Dublin not to be inferior to those in the North.  Recently, however, Aer Lingus found out that Belfast was not in it’s jurisdiction as far as rule making went so couldn’t be held accountable … money does indeed make the world go round.

Construction on the second terminal at Dublin airport has gotten underway today so be sure to add even more time to your departure schedule, lest you be stepping over bricks and all sorts the next time you try to get away for a weekend.  €609+ million the project is costing … must be building it with the most expensive concrete blocks on the planet … looks like landing charges could be on the up too, in order to make some cash for the project.  You can sees plans and progress here … it’s set to open sometime in 2109 2009.

And finally ….

I came across this website which is proving to be excellent for doing up the old family tree – knock yourself out and hat tip to Keith in NZ for advertising this one.

Our forefathers are turning in their graves September 26, 2007

Posted by Rambling Man in Emigration, General Bloggery, Ireland & the Irish.
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What does it mean when you have a leader who has dicky finances – and gets re-elected ?

What does it mean when you have a leader who has severe monetary amnesia – and gets re-elected ?

What does it mean when you build a motorway through a national monument – and a newly elected Green Minister sanctions it ?

What does it mean when you do an opinion poll and people say “Sure I don’t care if he took a small bit out of the country after all he’s put in” – and then on the other hand, give out about hospital beds being closed due to lack of funds ?

What does it mean when you have a tribunal that goes on for years – and never really does anything at the end of the day ?

What does it mean when you have 3rd world roads and high car tax – and you still vote the incumbents back in ?

What does it mean when you have people dying in ambulances on the way to hospital – and you create the HSE to solve all problems ?

What does it mean when you have a people who will believe a big, huge lie much more easily than they will believe a small one ?

What does it mean when you have a country who goes crazy about the Germans making comments about our society – and you don’t study the comments made but blindly become patriotic and defensive ?

What does it mean when you are truly ashamed of some of the nonchalance and disinterested electorate in your own country …

IT MEANS YOU ARE IN IRELAND … but perhaps, not for much longer …