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real feel: 13°C
wind speed: 7 m/s SW
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sunset: 9:59 pm


Potholes Of Ballycahill, Co. Tipperary

You have all heard of the Cliff’s of Moher; the Doolin Cave; the Aillwee Cave; the Tipperary – Mitchelstown Caves and now here in Co. Tipperary a new tourist attraction has been developed by Tipperary Tourism; welcome to the “Potholes of Ballycahill, situated near, Thurles, here in Co. Tipperary.

No brown directional signposts have been erected as yet, but one such heart-shaped hole can be found coming up to the 80k speed sign, found when exiting this most picturesque of rural village. (See photograph below.)

It was right here that last Friday a motorist, travelling to Limerick, seriously damaged a front brake disk, resulting in one his front wheels heating up to such an extent that it buckled, forcing him to abandon his vehicle.

Meanwhile on the direct route from Thurles to Templetuohy, again here in Co. Tipperary; local residents appear to be filling their own tourist attractions after dark, much to the annoyance of local County Councillors.

Same Councillors are aware that if our young people, forced to emigrate for work from the area since 2008, were attracted to return home on holidays from abroad, they could claim evidence of higher tourism figures visiting the Premier County.

Ah Yes, Tipperary, the Place, the Time.


Mikey Ryan Proves Existence Of Thurles Golf Club Leprechaun

No Optical Illusion

“Sure, maybe you can explain this!”, said Mikey Ryan.

We were above in The Arch Bar, in Liberty Square, here in Thurles, last Good Friday night, when Mikey proudly produced his new Smart Phone to show me a photograph he had taken earlier in the day.

“Begob Mikey, where was that taken?” inquired I.

“Back of Thurles Golf Club, heading out to the Mill Road / Littleton junction”, replied Mikey.

“It looks like the father and son of T. Junction signs”, said I laughing, “Don’t tell me that council signs have now begun breeding like Japanese Knot Weed. Sure, in July of 2017 didn’t Tipperary Co. Council engineers employ a contractor to spray roadsides where Japanese Knotweed is found, and are we now going to have to spray road signs as well.” 

“Well by the look of things certainly these signs could take a lick of water, but wrong answer,” said Mikey.

“I bet is it something like the continuous yellow line regulation”, said I.

“What do you mean?” said Mikey.

“Well here in Thurles a single yellow line means you can’t park there at all”, said I, “while above in Dublin they have a double yellow line, indicating that you can’t park there at all, at all.  Sure anyway, isn’t it offering a double health & safety warning to our over taxed motorists”, I continued.

“Do you remember Mikey”, said I, “that unfortunate Borrisoleigh girl that got severely injured and trapped, following a nasty car crash at that same T junction last year. Pumping blood, she was, before the paramedics arrived on site”.

“Remember it”, said Mikey, “sure, I came across it minutes after it happened and called the AmbulanceThe paramedic said to the girl: “You’re going to be OK, I’m a paramedic and I’m going to ask you some questions; tell me what’s your name?”.
“Mary Ann McBride”, said the girl:
“OK Mary Ann, was this once your car?” asked the paramedic.
“Yes”, said Mary Ann.
“Now tell me, where are you actually bleeding from?”, said the concerned paramedic.
“Actually, I’m from bleedin Borrisoleigh”, said Mary Ann.

“Anyway”, said Mikey, “the next thing you are going to tell me is that the County Council sign erector was too feckin lazy to remove the second sign; but you’re never going to guess the true reason for both these T junction signs, so I’ll better tell you.”

“Look, it is actually obvious when you think about it”, said Mikey, “One sign is for small people and the taller one is for adults. Now do you believe me when I told you that a leprechaun was living in the woodland, just across that Mill Road ditch, close to the 16th hole on Thurles Golf course.”

“I think I’ll have an early night”, said I, “Goodnight Mikey, Goodnight Pat.”


Mikey Ryan Calls HSE’s Actions Into Question

“Mikey, have you ever noticed that all women’s problems start with “MEN”, well as a general rule anyway? said I after much reflection.

Mikey Ryan & myself were above in the The Arch Bar in Liberty Square, for the first time ever, of a Good Friday night, when I broached; well what I considered at least, to be a very debatable question.

“How do you mean ‘Men’; I’m not sure I fully understand your question?” replied Mikey.
“Well, women suffer an awful lot from the MENopause, MENtal illness, MENstrual tension, they are well noted for often behaving like MANiacs, and are forever visiting GUYnaecologist, not to mention undergoing HISterectomies”, I replied, “Now, if that don’t indicate an overall male influence on women, then what does?”

“Tell me, this and tell me no more; talking about medical problems”, said Mikey, “But is it me or is it that feckin Health Service Executive (HSE), that has gone totally mad?”

“I’m not sure I understand what exactly you mean”, said I, truthfully.
“Well, in the strictest confidence”, said Mikey in a low tone, “Paddy, that’s me 85-year-old father, went over to the Doctor on Wednesday last, for his half yearly check-up, to be told he would need to supply a sperm count, as part of his physical examination”.
“The doctor gave me father, Paddy, a bottle”, continued Mikey, “Telling him to take this container home and to bring him back a sperm sample tomorrow.”

“Well, the very next day me father made the return trip to the Doctor’s Surgery and gave him back the bottle; unused and as clean as a whistle. Needless to say, the Doc wanted an explanation”, continued Mikey.

My father explained, “Well, doc”, said he, ’twas like this, first I tried with my right hand; nothing. Then I tried with my left hand; still nothing. Then I asked the wife to assist. She then tried, first with her right hand, then with her left; still nothing. She tried with her mouth; first with her teeth in, then with her teeth out; result still nothing. Sure I even called in Mary and her sister Kay from next door.  They tried, first separately and then together, first with both hands, then using an armpit, and sure Mary even tried squeezing it between her knees, but still nothing.”

The doctor’s complexion turned sickly pale, before seeking confirmation, “Your telling me, you actually asked your next door neighbours”, he queried in disbelief. According to Mikey, his father replied, “Doc, I’m sorry to say it, but it’s a fact; and despite all our efforts, we still failed miserably to remove the screw cap off that feckin bottle.”

“Give us the same again their Pat”, said I, “I think it’s your turn to do the honours this time Mikey; am I right?”


Mikey Ryan Wins All Ireland Poetry Competition

Got a call from Mikey Ryan last Tuesday morning, asking; nay demanding, that I support him for the All Ireland Poetry Competition finals, that were held above in The Arch Bar on the same night.

Now normally I don’t go drinking on Tuesdays, what with a nagging wife, wage cuts, the increase in the price of fags, and my overall delicate balancing of weekly payments. But Mikey appeared desperate, and herself in-doors, agreed (reluctantly I hasten to add) to lend me a tenner, (making it a point, that interest would be due, including reimbursement in full, next pay day).

Confirming my attendance over the phone, I learned from Mikey that his opponent was a fellow called Oscar Cumberbatch, a resident of Dublin 4 and a postgraduate academic degree student (Ph.D), from Coláiste na Tríonóide, (Trinity College), College Green, Dublin 2, who was being sent to represent County Dublin for the Title.

The Judges on the night, who spoke with distinct English accents; I later discovered were English Professors from the University of Cambridge, flown in by the Fine Gael Minister for Education & Skills, Mr Richard Bruton T.D., especially for the evenings National event.

I learned from the Judges later, when they were introducing the two contestants, that Mikey, (if you don’t mind), was from the townsland of Monacocka, (Translated from the Irish, the Shitty Bog), and was actually representing County Tipperary.

The format for the evening was simple, both contestants were given 60 seconds to come up with a short-handwritten poem entitled “Timbuktoo”. They were then obliged to read their poem before the jam-packed room of supporters in The Arch Bar, while the judges conferred to decide on the overall winner.

The 6o seconds up, Oscar Cumberbatch was invited to tender and recite his short poem first:-

“Along the lonely desert sand, slowly moved the caravan.
Men on Camels two by two, their destination, Timbuktoo.

The Dublin supporters who had arrived in large numbers by rail, went absolutely wild, yelling support and applauding their champion Oscar.

Mikey Ryan was next to the microphone to recite, as the judges pleaded for absolute silence:-

“Tim and I a hunting went, found 3 girls in a canvas tent.
Now they were three and we were two, so I Booked one and sure Tim Booked Two.”

Faith, the Dubliner’s knew immediately they were bet, and departed from The Arch Bar like lightening for the last train home, even faster than Cork supporters, when beaten by Tipperary in a Munster Hurling Final.

“Give us a small one their Pat”, said I, “And a small one for our champion, Mikey, no splash just water.” 

” Sure, where Tipperary leads, don’t Ireland follow”?


No Golf For Mikey Ryan On Paddy’s Day

“You are probably aware that scientists have recently discovered a food that can cause major grief and prolonged suffering; up to 60 years in some cases, after it has been consumed”, said Mikey Ryan. “It’s called feckin wedding cake”.

We were above in the Arch Bar, and Mikey had just arrived, displaying a bright red swollen jaw. “Was it the result of a sudden precipitous assault by his ‘little woman’ or was it simply a transitory mouth abscess?”, I wondered. Mikey’s above statement was the reply I received when curiosity got the better of me and, I queried the possible reason for the swelling.

In a low verbal murmur, Mikey explained what really had happened. I appears that he had attended a once off marketing lecture above in the Tipperary Institute (LIT), and to use his own words he had “hugged a young one”, without giving her fair notification of his intentions.
The surprised lassie had stepped back exclaiming “What was that for?”
Mikey had smiled at her, exclaiming, “That’s what I call Direct Marketing!”  The lassie, a former Black Belt in East Asian martial arts, had then retaliated, soundly striking him with a sharp shot to the jaw.
“What was that for?”  said Mikey, rubbing a painful cheek.
“That’s what I call Customer Feedback”, said the offended damsel, before walking away.

“Well did you manage to go golfing on Paddy’s Day”, said I, changing the subject.
“No”, said Mikey, “Sure when I woke up on Saturday morning I said to the little woman, Petal, would you brew us up a mug of coffee?  Well you want to see the look on her wrinkled phizzog as she screeched : ‘Sure that’s your task’.

” Now as we all know there are certain jobs that are best undertaken by women, coffee brewing being one of them, so my natural reaction was the simple question, how in the name of God, do you make out that coffee making is my task?”, replied Mikey
Sure, isn’t is written everywhere in the Bible’s New Testament, you ignoramus”, she screeched again.
“The Bible says absolutely nothing about who’s supposed to brew a mug of coffee, in fact the opposite,” said Mikey, quoting “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands”. (N.B. Husbands should please note Ephesians Chapter 5, Verse 22.)

Of course, according to Mikey, the little woman just reaches out and grabs hold of a bedside Bible (she had acquired same in the bedroom of a certain unnamed hotel, while on their honeymoon, together with one glass ash-tray, two bath towels and a kimono-like  dressing gown), and starts flipping through the pages at random, “See here, and here, its everywhere, read it for yourself;  “Hebrews, Hebrews, Hebrews; which reminds me, today might be a good day for you to show your face in Church again, before you go making any stupid plans to go golfing or such like”.

“So”, said Mikey, “now you know why we call our spoken language the “mother tongue”; because the man never gets to put in a word edgeways. Sure, you know yourself, women are like our potholed rural roads; the more the curves, the bigger the danger, if you know what I mean; so, I conveniently forgot the golf and having attended 10.30 am Mass in the Cathedral, I stayed in to watched the Rugby on the TV, instead.

“Right”, said I “So it was rugby for Paddy’s day for you. Tell me what would you call an Englishman standing in the London Marriott Hotel, Twickenham, holding a bottle of Champagne, after an England versus Ireland rugby match?
“I haven’t an iota” said Mikey after a brief pause.
“Faith the English Rugby Manager Eddie Jones knows”, said I, “Sure what else would you call him, but a feckin Wine Waiter”.

“You know”, said I “Snow White was returning out of the Thurles Shopping Centre on last Saturday morning, heading back to her cottage in the woods where she lived with those seven dwarfs.  Then in the distance she sees a trail of smoke in the sky, and as she gets nearer, she realised that her little cottage has burnt to the ground. Now fearing the worst she begins searching deeper in the surrounding woodland for her seven dwarf companions. Suddenly she hears a lone voice chanting, “England for the World Cup, England for the World Cup, England for the World Cup”; so, you can imagine her relief when she realised that now at least ‘Dopey’ was safe.”

“Does Snow White really exist then?”, said Mikey. “Of course she does”, said I, “Ask any child, sure isn’t she living beside the Leprechaun on Thurles Golf Course, that you told me about last Friday“.

“Give us two pints there Pat please”, said I.