Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from September, 2010

Town or City?

I live in a sleepy little town that qualifies as a city. There are certain criteria you have to meet in order to be a city, and Galway’s status as a city has always been debatable. Nevertheless, it is historically known as ‘the City of the Tribes’, and if you happen to be around Eyre Square, in the heart of the city, at around say 3a.m, you may spot various tribes engage in combat outside Supermacs ( a Galwegian fast food outlet specialising in contemporary Irish culinary delights). But city or nay, most people have heard about Galway. There’s the races, who hasn’t been to the races? Then there’s the Arts Festival; there’s Cuirt, the international festival of literature; Baboro is a festival for kids; there are at least two Oyster festivals with a film Fleadh thrown in somewhere in the middle. More recently there was the Volvo Ocean Race and on foot of that there have been a good few boat festivals attracting polo shirted men in deck shoes accompanied by leggy blondes with an attitude.…

Man and Bird Flu

I’m sick. It’s not all that surprising considering that I’ve spent the past week living with two sick teen boys. The kind of teen boys who think that the coffee table is the bin for germ filled tissues and that the place to send a sneeze is across the room, especially when I’m in the firing range. But despite all that, I just didn’t expect to get sick because after all, I’m the one who has to mind all the sickies, so who the hell can run to the chemist and get overpriced paracetemol, a forest worth of tissues and a few dozen movies except my good self? But damn, it looks like I too have gotten the ‘man flu’. I call it that because I understand man flu as meaning you have a bit of the sniffles and you’re going over the top about it. Well truth is, women can get the man flu too, and I’m one of them. I’ve coughed and sneezed a few times, my throat is a bit sore and I do have a certain amount of aches and pains, but I’m so precious about myself and such a man when it comes to illness that …

What Fear Does

A few weeks ago when I heard noises downstairs at 5 o’clock in the morning, the kind of noises that didn’t sound like that of a child getting a drink of water or the wind blowing through the rafters, but more the kind of noises you hear when someone is in the process of packing your valuables into a bag and making away with them; I froze to the spot. Well that was the first thing I did. Then I ran downstairs in my pyjamas hoping to take on whatever number of strung out junkies might have been ransacking the place. As I don’t have a great track record in speed, I only managed to get a glimpse of them drive away with anything of value that I ever owned. It was only afterwards that I wondered what the hell I would have done with them, or what they might have done with me, had we had a face to face confrontation. It's a bit like a dog chasing a car. I mean, what would it do if it got it? So I’ve been thinking about fear, and the fight or flight instinct and what makes people afraid of …

The Jedward Thing

Fortunately for me, I am one of those altruistic, non-judgemental, non-opinionated people who see other peoples spin on life as an interesting and enriching complement to ones own beliefs and values. Not. So I’m trying to come to grips with living under the same roof as a pre-teen who is a Jedicated Jedwardian. Now, if you have not yet come across Jedward, let me explain in brief: identical twins who are famous for singing out of tune and acting and looking about 12 years old when they are, in fact, about to turn 19 next month. If I were to use one of my pre-teens favourite derogatory comments to describe them it would be ‘so gay’, but apparently they are neither so gay nor even gay, well at least not in the eyes of my pubescent daughter. When they first appeared on X Factor, they cited one of their reasons for entering the competition was that they wanted to meet lots of girls who'd be their fans (they said it in between saying the word 'like' repeatedly), and indeed that h…

What To Wear?

Having decided to take my progress as a writer seriously, I recently returned to the day job. It takes a bit of getting used to, but most jobs are the same really. You have stuff to do and you have to do parts of it with people who are neither family nor friends. In some cases they become one or the other or both, but mostly they just get on your nerves and you end up spending more time with them than you do with your own family and friends anyways. The thing that’s been bothering me though, is this: what to wear? I just can’t help it, but whenever I wear formal work clothes it throws me back about thirty years to when I had to wear a school uniform. It’s the same principle really, you’re made wear uncomfortable clothes that look stupid but send out the message that you belong to some organisation or other. Well it’s not exactly a uniform in this job; I’d actually like it if I had to wear a peaked cap and a traffic warden’s outfit. There’s something sexy about those kinds of uniforms, …

First Day Of School

My little boy just started school last week, so I’ve been through the usual: going all mushy about how tiny he looks in his school uniform, standing at the school gate in tears, worrying about him being bullied, lonely, upset or overlooked by some crabby teacher. Will he get lost in the big school building and will other kids talk to him at break times? So I made some excuse to go into the school on day two, said I wanted to pay for some scheme or other that isn’t really due until Christmas, and I managed to catch hold of the school principal in the corridor. She knows me, I already have a child in the school, so I just mentioned that she should keep an eye on my little fella and be nice to him and all that.
I did feel a tad upset when she more or less told me to get over myself, but I suppose she has a point considering that this is his first day of secondary school, and he is thirteen after all. Thing is though, I never really had a cry when any of them started primary. They were fo…