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Partly sunny
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wind speed: 2 m/s NNW
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sunset: 9:02 pm


Mikey Ryan Debates Covid-19 Related Issues

“I suppose you have no casual unconfirmed reports about any of our local residents?” said Mikey Ryan whom I found social distancing from a thunder shower, in the foyer of Thurles Shopping Centre last Friday.

Arch Bar, Liberty Square, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

“What do you mean”, said I.

“Gossip”, said Mikey, “any local gossip.”

“Not a lot”, said I, “but I was just thinking, I bet you a pound to a penny that there will be a few more businesses closing in Liberty Square, before this covid-19 virus pandemic is sorted out”.

“Well so long as the Arch Bar stays the course, personally I couldn’t give a tinkers curse about the rest”, said Mikey.

“Well I suppose you heard”, said I, “Big Dick Roache the Thurles Town park flasher has decided to retire”.
“Ah no, he’ll probably stick it out for another year, said Mikey, “sure he’s barely gone the 65”.

“Right,” said I, “Well listen, talking about flashers; did you see the online video footage of that European Parliament Member Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan trouserless, scratching his arse? Could that be considered as flashing and could he be arrested when he returns to his Midlands–North-West constituency, I wonder?”

“Not a chance”, said Mikey, “scratching their arses is all that Irish European Parliament Members are expected to actually do over in Brussels”.

But to be fair, all politicians”, continued Mikey, “have been seriously affected by this Covid-19 virus cocooning lark. Most of them are suffering from panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder and phobias. Look at Tipperary Labour Party leader Alan Kelly, (AK 47) suffering from delusions; convinced that he is being “listened too” by the present Fine Gael caretaker government. Now, as you yourself will be aware the chances of that scenario ever materialising is slim, having about the same chance as obtaining Kerry Gold butter from a skunks behind, using a red-hot knitting needle”.

“And then” continued Mikey, “Take a look at that Independent Senator Lynn Ruane one; another flasher, who went into a supermarket wearing only her bra and a sarong”.

“Never heard of Senator Lynn Ruane, but, if I remember correctly that word ‘Sarong’ means ‘a string’. I wonder was it binder twine or shop cord she was wearing?” said I.

“Don’t know”, said Mikey, “but it appears sarongs are some sort of attire normally worn at the seaside. To be honest Lidl Supermarket in Tallaght, Co. Dublin is a fair distance from Dublin Bay.”

“Ah yes”, said I licking my lips, “I remember well, back in the sixties every restaurant worth its salt, used to sell Dublin Bay Prawns, with Lemon and Garlic, whether they came from Dublin Bay or not. Well that was before the Ringsend wastewater treatment plant put these juicy King Prawns on a select diet of raw sewage”.

“Talking about Lidl Supermarket”, said I, “do you think that same is where all the Tipperary drug dealers are buying their digital weighing scales? You might possibly have noticed Mikey that after every drugs raid here in Tipperary, there is always a weighing scales that is seized. I often wonder what will the Minister for justice Charles Flanagan eventually do with all those seized weighing devices?

“Jasus don’t mention scales in front of ‘her in doors’ for God sake” said Mikey, “it was about 5 years ago that I forgot her Christmas present. She warned me then that on January 1st, she would expect a gift to be in the driveway that went from 0 to 200 in six seconds and that nothing less would be acceptable. On January 1st, she woke up to see a gift-wrapped box in our driveway. On rushing down she located, amid the tissue and red Xmas ribbon, a brand-new bathroom scales. I spent the next two weeks in Limerick University Hospital’s department of Neurology, being treated for a suspected skull fracture, brain damage and numerous severe lacerations to the head.

“Listen Mikey”, said I, “That reminds me, I’d better be heading for home. Between ourselves, I have a couple of grand in black economy cash, hidden from Revenue, out in our coal shed and a full carton of black market ‘Old Holborn’ tobacco sitting in the kitchen press. Now if in conjunction with the wife’s weighing scales, same are collectively located, it could result in an embarrassing court appearance.”


Thurles On-Street Pay Parking Required From Tomorrow, Monday June 8th

Local Councillor Mr Sean Ryan.

According to the Thurles Municipal District Council’s Twitter account [TipperaryCoCo@ThurlesMD], on-street pay parking requirements will resume in the towns of Thurles, Templemore and Roscrea from tomorrow, Monday, June 8th 2020.

Parking bye laws, which have totally destroyed every single business; both big and small, in Thurles town centre have remained in ‘token place’ in recent months. However these bye laws have not been enforced by traffic wardens; latter who rightly vanished into isolation; cocooning since our caretaker government’s Covid-19 virus restrictions were introduced back in March.

However do take note, Thurles Municipal District have confirmed that full enforcement of pay parking in car parks will NOT resume until Monday July 20th, 2020.
This statement was announced on Twitter on the morning of June 5th last

Previously, it had been further confirmed by Tipperary County Council’s Mr Marcus O’Connor (Director of Services for Roads), who stated “We will only be enforcing it on the streets and people will be able to park in the car parks for free, until Monday 20th July 2020.”

With regard to other matters raised with our elected Councillors; [View HERE (Thurles Heritage In Grave Danger) and HERE (What Future For 1798 Memorial In Liberty Square Thurles?)], silence continues to reign.

In relation to the 1798 Memorial issue we discussed, one would have expected at least a firm “Tiocfaidh ár lá” (Irish -“Our day will come”) from local Irish republican supporters, who before the last 2019 local elections, were to be found laying wreaths at the foot of this same “Stone Man“. No, not a word, not even an “Up the Ra” from Waterford TD David Cullinane.

There were no protests by the public on Liberty Square either, reminissent of the An Post protest, organised by Thurles Chamber, when the former decided to leave Liberty Square. Such a pity as same would have granted some local Councillors that inevitable cynical photo opportunity, to be loaded onto their social media platforms.

Of course this ‘Stone Man’ could fit nicely on top of the Roundabout at Thurles Shopping Centre, joining its old friend An Post once again; you know the circular intersection I mean, that costly ornamental pile of stones offering no practical purpose and referred to as “The Thurles Town Folly”, which successfully blocks the vision of every travelling motorist.

Who did actually acknowledge the “Double Ditch” issues aforementioned :-

Ms Josepha Madigan, TD, Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Ms Emily Beedham, (LUC) Thurles Renewal Strategy project.
Ms Louise Croughan, Minister Madigan’s Office.
Thurles local elected Councillor Mr Sean Ryan, Littleton, Thurles, (latter pictured above), the only elected member of the Thurles Municipal District Council to reply.

Nothing from TD’s and the County Manager. ✘

But of course the local elections are over since early 2019 and that €17,000 minimum annual income, earned by municipal district Councillors, remains relatively safe in these uncertain times; until sometime in early 2024 at least, God willing.

One hopes now that there will be no sudden rush by those other Thurles elected representatives, latter unable to read their emails, offering us conference calls on Zoom, wearing only a shirt and skimpy underpants, while scratching themselves; following in the new trend set by Ming ‘The trourserless’.


Where There Is A Will, This Could Be A New Way!

Picture courtesy O’Driscoll’s Garden Centre, Mill Road, Thurles. Tel No. (O504) 21636

A humorous photograph taken at the Guinness St. James’s Gate Brewery, back in 1942, but never published because of war-time censorship.

With licenced premises anxious to begin trading again as Covid-19 decreases in vigour and extent, could history be handing us a solution?

One wonders what Mikey Ryan’s view of this would be, if a similar structure was erected outside the Arch Bar, on Liberty Square in Thurles?

It is either the above or wait until August 10th, 2020, when pubs are again listed to open, according to our governments roadmap.


Mikey Ryan’s Health Deteriorating From Cocooning

Mikey Ryan and myself were back again yesterday afternoon; tee-totalling; social distancing; soaking up the Thurles unprecedented spring sunshine; lying out on the banks of the river Suir; like dogs, with tongues hanging out, waiting for today’s double Covid-19 hand-out.

And speaking of canines; this had followed our vain efforts to gain access to the rear of the Arch Bar via Cormack’s Lane, which had been met by the total disapproval of licenced hostelry proprietor Mr Pat Hayes, who with the assistance of his new German Shepherd guard dog, was quick to directed us out onto a more public thoroughfare.

Again, talking of canines brought to mind yet another train of thought, leading me to ask Mikey a question, “I haven’t seen your little woman in Lidl all this week” said I, “don’t tell me she has withdrawn from enemy territory and retreated back to her mother to assist in stirring that auld ones cauldron”.

“No such damned luck” said Mikey, “but in truth she and the fruit of her loins, are driving me to utter despair. I’ll tell you this and I’ll tell you no more; I was so driven by the complete absence of hope last Wednesday, that I went into the Liberty Pharmacy there at No 34 on Liberty Square, looking for medical assistance.

“Well did Kate give you anything that worked”, said I.

“Damned a bit did I get”, said Mikey, as he attempted to remove a piece of Brennan’s bread from between two teeth, using a piece of sedge grass.

Of course I learned from Mikey later, that local pharmacist Kate Kennedy had refused to dispense his request for anti-depression drugs on the grounds that he had no proper doctor’s prescription. “Simply showing me a marriage certificate in one hand and your wife’s passport photo in the other, is far from sufficient to access any such strong dangerous medication”; was, to quote Mikey himself, her instant reply.

“So is your missus isolating completely, or have you strangled her”, said I, smiling.

“Not exactly”, said Mikey, “tempted though I was; no it was agreed in principle that I should restrain her using a short chain, padlocked to her left leg and with the other end welded to a radiator. This gives her sufficient room to access the cooker and the sink in the kitchen. The reason for this is simply to social distance her from the fridge. Sure even she agreed it was the only solution to ‘flattening her curve’, if you know what I mean”.

If Mrs Ryan wanted to lose 10 ugly pounds immediately, she could cut her head off, I thought to myself, (Well you can’t say everything out loud nowadays, as people cocooning get very tetcey).

“Maybe she is suffering from water retention”, said I, “My own wife, I know, suffers from what doctors call ‘excess fluids’ that build up inside her body”.

“In the case of my missus I’m afraid its bloody, dairy milk chocolate retention”, said Mikey.

“Maybe her problem is brought on by stress; does worry of catching this covid-19 virus affect her at all?” said I.

“Well she has never mentioned stress, but strictly between ourselves I think she may have started to show the first symptoms of Alzheimer’s”, said Mikey.

“How did you work that out”, said I, “has she been consulting with her consultant.”

“No, but again between ourselves, she did say to me, only yesterday, that she doesn’t remember what she ever saw in me”, said Mikey.

Then, out of the blue she announced that she wouldn’t mind if I re-married after she’d passed on. Well on one proviso”, Mikey elaborated, “that the new woman I would marry wouldn’t wear any of the clothes presently in her wardrobe”.

“She needn’t worry there anyway” said I, “sure her replacement is nearly 5 inches taller, even with her hair down”.

“Listen, keep your voice down, walls have ears”, said Mikey, “Listen, I’d better be heading home to open the fridge for the wife, fish fingers don’t exactly cook themselves; more’s the pity.”


Red Haired Tawny Miner Bee Returns To Co. Tipperary

A scarce Tawny mining bee, up until 2012 believed to have been extinct in Ireland for some 80 years, has once again returned in large numbers, some to appear on Co. Tipperary soil.

The Tawny mining bee had been last observed by Arthur Stelfoxin in 1925 just outside of Kilkenny and since then was believed to have gone extinct in Ireland.
In April 2012 Roger Goodwilliere reported, confirming he had observed this species in his garden, again in Co. Kilkenny, not far from where it had been last sighted, back in 1925.

Entomologists claim that the added growth of wildflowers, in public areas due to the failure by local authorities, to use poisonous weed killers; influenced by Covid-19 pandemic problems, lending itself to this increase in the bee’s population.

[Privately, Tipperary residents on the other hand believe the Tawney mining bee is leaving Co. Kilkenny, to migrate to the real home of hurling, following Tipperary’s 2019 All Ireland win.]

The female of this solitary species has bright, deep fox red hairs on its thorax (chest), with a more orange to red coloured hair on its dorcal surface (back). Their other ventral surface (underpart), i.e. legs and overall facial area are black haired.

The smaller, thinner male of the species are much harder to identify when compared with the female; as their hair is less dense and browner in colour. They display some long white hairs on their face; a tooth on each side of their mandibles (mouthpart) and without closer examination is passed off as our common honey bee.

They mate, requiring direct contact between the male and female, in spring, after which the male dies.
On a south facing bank or lawn, the female will build, in a short foliaged ground area, a nest with the entrance surrounded by a small volcano-like mound of excavated spoil. Perhaps their solitary existance in your area can be most easily identified from this small, volcano-like, telltale mound, if you are out cutting your lawn this week. Please do not upset it, rather view it as a gift to your garden and any plants, fruit bushes it may contain.

Here her nest will contain numerous brood cells in which she will lay one egg in each cell. Here also she will independently fill each cell with a mixture of nectar and pollen to sustain her larva, who will emerge the following spring after hibernation, long after their mother has departed.

If you are out and about taking exercise in your local park or woodland, enjoying the sunshine tomorrow, (obeying social distancing I hope), do keep an eye out for this stunning red haired beauty, who likes to associate with a wide variety of flowers; including dandelions, buttercups, garlic mustard, sycamore, beech, hawthorn, fruit trees, blackthorn, maple and willow.

Get a picture on your phone if you can and send it to us.

Note: Tawny mining bees are totally harmless and will NOT sting.