Tuesday, March 24, 2009


Why can’t I write when I want to? 

Why do I keep seeing flaws in my story even before I get a word on the page?

Why did I take the brush and destroy a reasonably good painting, just because it annoyed me?

Why do I want to cook loads of things at a time – enough for the next four days, when all I need is just one meal for right now?

Why do I lie in bed when I have loads of things to do, staying there until it is just too late to get even one thing done, then moaning at myself all day?

Why do I not go to bed when I’m tired, and hang on until I

a) can hardly get upstairs or

b)get new life and sit up till 2am watching something stupid on TV?

Why will I not do my homework for meetings etc when I have time instead of waiting until the last minute?

I am a mystery to me!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


(Found this from some time ago….and they’re still going on – thought I’d give it a whirl!)

Tribunals sit for years and years
Confirming our most awful fears
That those elected to take charge
Were making their own fortunes large
By marketing their eloquence
For bye law rulings that were dense;
And making sure that they got more
For a successful Section 4.

Bewigged persons buzz round
Sometimes claiming to have found
A case in nineteen forty nine –
A legal case, not one of wine –
That said a witness was a fraud
Because he kept his loot abroad.

Our hero first was Gogarty
Who had the nation roar with glee
As he told how he met with Ray
Without discussing actual pay.
When he asked if he would get receipt
For payments that had been discreet
Was told that he was out of luck
(The very words were, “Will we f**k?”)

Charlie Bird reported well, ‘e 
Told us nightly on the telly
The ins and outs of this and that
Of all the cats that got so fat.
While RTE with Vincent Brown
Provided the best show in town
With actors playing Liam and Ray
‘Negotiating’ in their way
For money that we now repent
Was not in our best interests spent.

A meeting that took place (or not)
Disturbed the tribunal a lot.
Amnesia hit their brains collective
Until a counsel found defective
A statement made by Bert the Boss
Saying he was at a loss
To deem an hour of chit and chatter
As if it was a serious matter.

On and on Tribunals go
Round and round and very slow.
And all the guys that made the loot
Do not seem to give a hoot.
They know that they’ll get off scot-free
The sufferers are you and me.
It seems that if you want to screw
The Law or Inland Revenue
for loads of money – you’re in luck
‘cos nobody really gives a damn!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Playing the Gee-Gees

It’s been a long time since I placed a bet on a horse.  I was quite a punter in my time, having been reared in Co Kildare, (where they would bet on two flies crawling up a wall). nurtured on Naas Races and Punchestown and weaned painfully off the gambling by a severe shortage of money when  I moved into my first flat.  Luckily I preferred eating & drinking more than the excitement of the chase and found that if I didn’t buy a newspaper and read the runners of the day, I wasn’t tempted.

But I have this friend, you see, who simply loves Cheltenham.  His pleasure in the famous festival is infections and yes, I fell at the first fence.  I badgered him for tips and he duly obliged with a list for day one.  My consort was agreeable enough to go to the Bookies for me.  Being royal, I don’t carry money, of course  so he wasn’t surprised to have to foot the bill.

Somehow or other my tipster friend made quite a few bob on the day, but it cost me lots.  I suspect he did more serious research after parting with information to me.  Nothing daunted, I harassed him again for the second day – this time I made sure not to get the list till just before the ‘off’ for the 1.30 and sent His Majesty the King off again – protesting this time, but I waved my sceptre at him so he quickly put his crown in his pocket along with some small change.

I had a wonderful afternoon watching the wonderful animals pounding on the green turf, seeing Ruby Walsh stand in the stirrups in celebration of yet another win, imagining the  pop of champagne corks as owners and trainers bubbled with excitement.

But there’ll be no champagne in my kingdom tonight.  Only one of the recipients of my regal approval showed in the first three – and he was doubled with an even slower equine specimen.  The contents of the Royal Exchequer are sadly depleted and I may have to declare a recession.

I wonder has my friend any tips for tomorrow?  Must send him a royal text……

Monday, March 9, 2009

Next Time Around…

I’m definitely going to be a Consultant.  I don’t care what it takes, I’m going to do it.

Went to see one today.  Took €200 from me without batting an eyelid. Well, that’s a lie, his secretary who was the one who insisted I pay, batted plenty.  And carried out all her business with each customer in a clear loud tone in a rather small room.  We all know exactly how much each person paid, and whether they had cash or visa.  I reckon that for the forty minutes I was in the room he pocketed at least €800.

The actual time with the great man was maybe 10 minutes.  He was a leg man and didn’t think much of mine.  Maybe if he’d been a boob man things might have been different.  Anyway he wasn’t impressed with my legs and said maybe he might treat them in a few months.  I got the distinct impression that he thought I’d be dead by then and wouldn’t have to bother.   Just as well, the treatment could have been very expensive and probably wouldn’t have worked anyway.

I had to pay another €4 to get the car out of the car park, and of course forgot to pay at the machine inside so had to make a second wobbly journey into the premises.  I told you I was losing my mind, forgetting everything.  (And thanks for the suggestion.  I did look behind the couch, no sign of it there either, but I did locate that missing gerbil).

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Detective Work


St Anthony used to be the ‘main man’ for finding things when I was a child. He was particularly reliable, it was said, if you paid him, and indeed, in most churches there was a box with his name on it where you could remit your donation or bribe.

I’m afraid I hadn’t much faith in the powers of this early M. Poirot. Firstly I was too broke – or perhaps too mean – to pay for things that were lost. When you’re young there are very few things important enough to worry about their loss for more than a few hours. At one stage I used sell raffle tickets for the holy detective, but that didn’t improve his willingness to search for free for things that I had been careless with – maybe my fecklessness put him off too.

With maturity I obviously treated my belongings with greater respect and it was rare enough that I had to trouble the dear man for any favours. Things didn’t seem to have the same propensity for disappearing when I was in the whole of my health and in the prime of life. Training myself to look for things where I had last seen them proved valuable, so the occasions when I scrabbled frantically for keys or rings or letters awaiting posting were few and far between. My formula was rather like one of those problems set in primary school.  Add this and that and take your first thoughts from it.

With children flown the nest and consequently less 'important' matters needing urgent attention, I have discovered that my ability to locate mislaid minutiae is diminished. Often I have no idea where I last saw the missing object – because I don't bother thinking of anything at all most of the time......until I need to post that letter or take the car out. Mobile phones are the greatest offenders in the ‘going walkabout’ stakes, I’ve realized, especially when they have been carefully switched off to conserve energy so can't be called to heel by the tapping in of a few digits. I have also discovered that objects can be like chameleons – mutating into invisibility when missing, then reappearing in a place that I know I have already searched fruitlessly. My car keys do this regularly at noon on Sundays – just the time I am due to leave the house to go to Mass. The solution to that particular problem proved simple enough. Take off one’s coat, put the kettle on and make a cup of coffee. It was magic. The keys reappear right there on the table beside me just as I have completely abandoned hope (and thoughts of going to church) and am ready to enjoy the caffeine boost. Conscience, I am sad to say, doesn't always win as I make a choice between the two alternatives.

I have lost faith in St Anthony’s ability to find really difficult things. I mean, I know for a fact (and for many years) that he is no good for restoring lost virginity so why should I think he can find unimportant things like keys and phones? But I’m thinking of turning again to him for help. Because sometimes I think I am losing my mind. Tranquilizers would only make my situation worse, and medical science hasn’t yet progressed very far in the mental restoration field.

St Anthony might be the only one who can help me.

Friday, March 6, 2009


My Blog is being aggressively rejecting.  I have tried to post a few but they disappear into cyber-space and do not appear on my page.  So if you have been condemning me for laxity, I plead innocence.

The gremlin first of all hit my pc, freezing the cursor and refusing access to Emails – my life-line of communication with the outside world.  My Engineer is busy studying for his Leaving (and playing his Xbox) so hasn’t had as much time to place at my disposal as I would like.  The fact that he is financially comfortable for the past few weeks may have something to do with it.  Oh, wait till the recession hits him and his tune (heavy metal) will change rapidly.  In the meantime I am considering bringing in re-enforcements.

While relieved from the chore of Blogging I have a) painted myself into a corner, so to speak – walls and tables bedecked with half-completed efforts, decreasing in quality as the days went by and my arms grew tired. and b) sowing scallion and courgette seeds in small containers that lurk on the windowsill but show no sign  yet of  sprouting slivers of green.  My what wonderful salads I am going to present to my non-vegetarian family in April and May.

My novel is no further advanced but I have an idea for a ‘Forbiden Love’ 1500 word entry for Saggart.  this unfortunately may have to be scrapped as the plot took a sad turn towards un-healthiness.  I blame peer-pressure.  I once was a nice clean-minded person.  that was a long time ago, I fear, the the deterioration increases in fortnightly leaps into the sordid. Last night I had a dream which included several experiences that I have never even read about, never mind had happen to me.  I think the Pinot Grigo may have had something to do with it.

I need advice.  should I a) change my friends b) cut out the vino or c) thank my lucky stars for inert brain activity?