Local Weather

real feel: 17°C
wind speed: 3 m/s SE
sunrise: 6:22 am
sunset: 8:46 pm


Hurricane Gert Halts Work In Thurles


“You know, nobody really understands complete failure, unless of course it happens to yourself personally”, said a rather reflective sounding Mikey Ryan to his fellow Thurles friend Gerry Grant. Both men were to be found supping pints in the doorway of the Arch Bar, Liberty Square, Thurles; their work having been brought to a complete halt by torrential rain, which had arrived courtesy of Hurricane Gert; latter pushing eastward from the Atlantic Ocean.

“How do you mean”, said Gerry.

“Don’t look, but do you see Patsy McGann sheltering in the doorway of Supermac’s across the street” said Mikey.  “Better known as ‘Silent’ nowadays, due to the fact that he refuses, point blank, to enter into even one single word of dialogue with his fellow man.  Sure, he won’t even bid you the time of day” continued Mikey

“Aye, sad, sure I wonder what happened there”, queried Gerry.

“Ah begod it’s no secret”, said Mikey, “Sure, he used to be a teacher; spent his early teaching years in the Bolivian jungle or some such hole; supposedly teaching backward red tribal natives the English language, and also how to behave in a civilised fashion, in accordance with our practised modern Irish standards. They say he hasn’t spoken one word since he returned here to Thurles.”

Mikey took a mouthful of his beer before continuing, “They say it all started when Patsy took a native Amazon tribal Chief; Waziri, I believe his name was; for a walk in the dense jungle, to teach him the English vocabulary. Patsy was there pointing to a tree and saying to the chief, “Tree” and the chief is looking at the tree, grunting, pointing, before saying “Tree”.  Pleased with the overall response by the Amazon tribal chief, they now walk a little further and Patsy supposedly points to a rock, saying “Rock”.  Again, the chief looks, grunts and points, saying “Rock”.

“As you can imagine”, said Mikey, “Patsy is feeling enthusiastic about the progress in his English lesson. Then, without warning, his vocabulary class is suddenly disturbed by a noisy rustling in the nearby Monkey Brush Vines (Combretum rotundifolium).  Fearing an attack by a colony of Pit Viper Rattlesnakes, they peek over the top of the bushes, to encounter a tribal male and female in, shall we just say, a rather embarrassing and somewhat compromising posture”.

“Patsy now” said Mikey, taking time to swallow another mouthful of beer, “gets rather flustered, but quickly responds, whispering, “See Man riding bicycle”.  Chief Waziri looks at the couple briefly, before pulling out his hollowed, bamboo blowpipe; killing the couple, with two well aimed poisoned darts”.

“Teacher Patsy goes totally ballistic”, continued Mikey, “Yelling at the tribal chief about how he has spent years teaching his tribe to be civilised and how to be Christian in their dealings, one with an another; but now after all this newly learned Irish civilisation he is behaving like a loyal member of the Dublin Hutch and Kinahan criminal gang, returning to his old ways, having murdered two of his subjects in cold blood.

The chief again looks, grunts and points, in obvious anger, “Man riding my bicycle”.

“Ah sheer tragedy all right” agreed Gerry, “but sure I suppose as the song lyrics go, it’s like, Trying to learn from what’s behind you, and never knowing what’s in store, makes each day a constant battle just to stay between the shores.

“Have we the price of another pint before we go?”, queries Mikey.


Life & Loves Of Thurles Native Majella Brown

Mrs Majella Brown, a 70-year-old Thurles woman, having received her free medical card, went to visit her local doctor. Previously she could not have easily afforded the contemptible €65 demanded for the usual 5 minute consultation with her physician, but now thanks to her free medical card, she arrived to the surgery to seek advice on how to revive her husband’s libido.

Having considered her husband’s age and state of health from previous available medical records; the doctor prescribed a well-known product, latter readily obtainable to all medical card holders and known as ‘Viagra’.

“It simply won’t happen, not even a chance”, a dejected Majella informed her friend Betty, in somewhat low tones half an hour later, over a large G & T, in the corner of the Monks Public House, Mitchel Street, Thurles, “Sure it’s me best to get him to take his Type 2 Diabetic tablet in the morning”.

Betty gave Majella one of her renowned knowing smiles, “Not a problem”, said she “Try giving him a Tipperary Viagra”.

“What the hell is a Tipperary Viagra?”, Majella queried.

“It’s Viagra dissolved in his morning tae”, said Betty, with a knowing nod “Believe me I have had the need to used the method meself on a few occasions, on my own ould lad, before he died; God be good to him. Sure, trust me, Majella even without his forbidden use of sugar, he won’t even taste it”.

Having promised to give it an immediate try, Betty called on Majella some days later, for a progress report.

“Well, how did it go?” she asked with a knowing smile.

“Oh faith, it was terrible”, whined Majella, in vocal tones more akin to a hired ‘keener’ (wailer) at a west of Ireland wake, “It was simply unspeakable I tell ya; for the past two days I’ve been totally beside meself!”

“Oh, no! What in the world happened?” queried Betty with a look of tragedy about to set in.

“Well, I did the deed, you know what I mean, just as you advised; but to be sure of outright success on the day, I actually put three tablets in his morning tae, and sure he drank the lot”, said Majella. “Well they literally took effect immediately; he jumped straight up out of his chair, with the smile of an evil Satan on his face; a twinkle in his eye, and with one fierce swoop, with the back of his hand, he resigned the cups, saucers and cutlery; previously laid out on the table; to a flight across the room. He grabbed me from behind, ripped me clothing to tatters, before committing an act of passion there and then, right on top of the highly polished table.  ‘Twas truly the stuff of nightmares, I can tell ya Betty; yes and the stuff of a frenzied nightmare at that.”

“What was so terrible about that?” asked Betty, “Wasn’t the experience good?”

“Feckin hell, I do declare it to be the best experience I’ve had since my late-night drunken encounter in the back seat of Paddy Ryan’s Ford Anglia; way back in the late 1950’s”, said Majella, “but there is one major regrettable drawback which has kept me confined here to the house; sure I won’t be able to show me face in ‘Ryan’s Daughter’ Restaurant, in Rossa Street, Thurles, for many a year to come.”


White Helmets Win Tipperary Peace Award

Syrian Civil Defence volunteers, known as the ‘White Helmets’, are to receive the 2016 Tipperary International Peace Award. The announcement was made today by the Tipperary Peace Convention.

The 2016 winners will formally receive their award on September 6th, 2017, at a ceremony in Tipperary; a further testament to their enormous bravery and hourly displayed courage.

With more than 50 rusty barrel bombs; same filled with nails and explosives, and as in the past sometimes filled with chlorine, landing daily on bakeries and markets in Syria (latter rolled out of the back of government helicopters), together with mortar fire; the ‘White Helmets’ stated mission remains to save the greatest number of lives in the shortest possible time. Their daily activities include search and rescue; the reconnection of electricity and water services; medical and civilian evacuation, and the securing of all ruined buildings.

The ‘White Helmets’ have saved well over 95,000 people, while, regrettably, 192 of their unarmed and volunteer membership to date have been killed. Responding to news of the selection, a spokesperson for the group said: “We are very happy to receive this peace prize because it means that there are still people around the world who support our mission to protect lives, and that the voices for peace are much stronger than the voices for war.”

The Tipperary Peace Convention was first set up in 1983 in an effort to promote peace and reconciliation. The first Peace Award was made in 1984; going to the late Seán MacBride; himself a founding member of Amnesty International.

Previous Winners of the Tipperary International Peace Prize include:-

Some of the previous winners of the Tipperary International Peace Award have included; ‘Live Aid’ organiser Sir Bob Geldof (1985); Mikhail Gorbachev (1988); South African president Nelson Mandela (1989); U.S. President Bill Clinton (2000); former President Mrs Mary McAleese and her husband Martin; late Senator Ted Kennedy and his sister Jean Kennedy Smith; US diplomat Dr Richard Nathan Haass;  US Secretary of State and Democratic Party politician Mr John Kerry; United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, and Nobel Laureate & Pakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai (2012), to name but a few.


Count Your Blessings One By One

Everywhere Cancer appears to be on the increase, and when cancer begins, it produces few immediate symptoms. The signs and symptoms only appear as the mass or lumps grow or ulcerate.

The very moving song hereunder; (first released six years ago; in July 2011), tells the true story of a 38-year-old woman being supported by her husband, while battling breast cancer. The inspiration for this song was Lily Isaacs, a breast cancer survivor and mother of Sonya Isaacs, the songs co-author.

I’m Gonna Love You Through It.

(Written by Jimmy Yeary, Sonya Isaacs, Ben Hayslip.)

She dropped the phone and burst into tears
The doctor just confirmed her fears
Her husband held it in and held her tight
Cancer don’t discriminate or care if you’re just 38
With three kids who need you in their lives
He said, “I know that you’re afraid and I am, too
But you’ll never be alone, I promise you.”

When you’re weak, I’ll be strong
When you let go, I’ll hold on
When you need to cry, I swear
That I’ll be there to dry your eyes
When you feel lost and scared to death,
Like you can’t take one more step
Just take my hand, together we can do it
I’m gonna love you through it.

She made it through the surgery fine
They said they caught it just in time
But they had to take more than they planned
Now it’s forced smiles and baggy shirts
To hide what the cancer took from her
But she just wants to feel like a woman again
She said, “I don’t think I can do this anymore”
He took her in his arms and said
“That’s what my love is for”

When you’re weak, I’ll be strong
When you let go, I’ll hold on
When you need to cry, I swear
That I’ll be there to dry your eyes
When you feel lost and scared to death,
Like you can’t take one more step
Just take my hand, together we can do it
I’m gonna love you through it.

And when this road gets too long
I’ll be the rock you lean on
Just take my hand, together we can do it
I’m gonna love you through it.
I’m gonna love you through it.

Perhaps tonight is a good time for all of us to count blessings; say ‘Thank You’ to our God, whatever we conceive Him to be, and commit to supporting Suir Haven, who do such great work here in Thurles.


Horse Meat Fraud Dismantled By European Cops

The Spanish Guardia Civil, the oldest law enforcement agency in Spain, known as the benemérita (reputable); in co-ordination with Europol, have dismantled a crime clique in Europe, trading horse meat unfit for human consumption.  The operation was carried out in co-ordination with Belgium, France, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

In Spain, 65 people have been arrested and charged with crimes which include animal abuse, documentation forgery, money laundering, perverting the course of justice, crimes relating to public health, and holding membership of a criminal organisation.

The discovery, in 2013, by Irish authorities who detected beefburgers containing horsemeat, led to investigations into discovering the origin of the initial contamination, where the anti-inflammatory drug phenylbutazone (often referred to as “bute,” a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) used for the short-term treatment of pain and fever in animals), was found in the meat.

Meat companies, frozen food companies and fast-food companies were affected by the investigation, which led to the identification of a Dutch citizen.

It took until the summer of 2016, for Guardia Civil’s Environmental Protection Service to initiate ‘Operation Gazel’.  This investigation led to the detection of fraud, involving horse meat from Portugal and northern Spain, labelled as “not suitable for consumption”, being processed in a unnamed facility and from there being sent on to Belgium, latter country being one of the biggest horse meat exporters in the E U.  This deceit involved the criminal organisation forging animal identification microchips and other documentation.

Guardia Civil was able to track down the Dutch businessman related to the Irish beefburger / horse meat case in Calpe, Alicante, in Spain, and later arrested in Belgium.

Co-ordinated by the Federal Police, the Federal Food Agency in Belgium and the Guardia Civil; bank accounts and properties were either blocked or seized, together with five luxury cars.

Results of samples, taken from slaughterhouses and facilities, concluded that the destination of the horse meat in question was mainly destined for countries outside of Spain.