“GO VEGAN – OR ELSE”
Former president Mary Robinson is standing firm on her call for people to go vegan to tackle climate change. The long-standing campaigner, who runs a climate justice foundation in her name, said she was determined to spread her message about the carbon footprint danger. Speaking in to The Hague yesterday, the former UN High Commissioner warned delegates: “You really have to become more energy-efficient – which is why I am determined to continue flying around the globe telling everyone to stop eating meat.”
Half-baked Recycled Green Policies
Fresh PR Leaks (with huge pinch of salt)
From the Gravy Train
Vegetarian Cold Cuts (in a Stew with Irish Farmers)
Rich (pension) pickings (on pig’s back)
Off the Trolley
Steamed-up Sticky (Archive) Pudding
Traditional Eco-Waffle with Fudge Sauce
Making a Mint Tea
A Selection of Whine
DOCTOR IN THE HOUSE
It’s another busy morning in Eoin O’Duffy Memorial Infirmary, aka Blueshirt General, as hospital master Leo Varadkar and his colleagues deal with the combined effects of flu season, Halloween, and the fall-out from a vicious brawl near Áras an Uachtaráin.
Varadkar (seeing yet another patient wheeled in on a trolley): What’s the story with this guy?
Paramedic 1: Severe concussion, we think. He got into a fight with Travellers.
Peter Casey (from trolley): There’s nothing wrong with me. I’m going to be the next president of Ireland.
Paramedic 2: Or it may be an underlying psychiatric disorder. Apparently he’s been behaving erratically for weeks.
Casey: I’m perfectly sane. If not president, I’ll be the next Fianna Fáil taoiseach.
Micheál Martin: He’s clearly off his rocker.
Varadkar: I remind you, Dr Martin, we don’t tolerate language like that in my hospital. Not even from temporary support staff. (He holds his hand in front of Casey’s face). How many fingers can you count?
Casey: Two. And you’re pointing them at the hard-working tax-payer, just like Travellers have done for years.
Paramedic 1 (to Paramedic 2): He’s not wrong there.
Casey: And social welfare scroungers. They’re taking us for a ride too. There’ll be no more of that when I’m leading the country.
Paramedic 2 (to Paramedic 1): This man’s talking sense.
Varadkar (holding stethoscope to Casey’s head and listening): Hmm. It could be just the effects of an enlarged ego.
Martin: Takes one to know one.
Varadkar (to the paramedics): Bring him to the isolation unit for now. Keep him there until we find out if he’s infectious.
Paramedic 1: (muttering as they wheel Casey away): It’s PC gone mad. Oops – I didn’t mean you, Mr Casey.
Varadkar (quietly, to a nurse): You better lock that pair in with him. Whatever it is, they seem to have caught it already.
A bustling corridor, later. Dr Varadkar meets the deputy master, Dr Coveney, who looks worried.
Coveney (handing over file): You need to have a look at this. It’s the pathology report on Mr Khashoggi.
Varadkar (reading): Salmonella?
Coveney: Crown Prince Salmonella. They’re not saying it killed him, but it looks like it was a major contributor.
Varadkar: Well, er, speaking of major contributors, the Saudis have always been great supporters of the hospital. We wouldn’t want to embarrass them, would we?
Coveney: Of course not.
Varadkar: A few stern words will do. Then file that away somewhere safe. Ah, here’s Dr Donohoe, with another file.
Paschal Donohoe (grinning broadly): Have you seen these? Latest findings from Red C and MRBI about this season’s flu viruses. Looks like the big thing could be election fever.
Varadkar: Let’s walk and talk. (As they stroll down the corridor, Varadkar scans the figures). This suggests that, if there was a major outbreak now, certain groups would be more at risk.
Donohoe: Yes. Fianna Fáilers, Shinners and Trots mainly.
Varadkar: Whereas other groups appear to have stronger immunity at this time?
Donohoe: Fine Gaelers and people who get up early, yes. (He whispers) Our sort, basically.
Varadkar: But getting back to these poor, vulnerable groups for a minute, presumably the last thing they need any time soon would be having to go out and knock on doors and shake hands and all that high-risk stuff? So in the interest of public health, we should urge the, er, powers that be to avoid calling an election at this time?
Donohoe: On the other hand, there’ll have to be an election sooner or later. And whenever it happens, there’ll be viruses going round. Only the next ones might be even worse for society as a whole.
Varadkar: Gosh, it’s a difficult moral dilemma, isn’t it?
Donohoe: Not really. The Hypocritic – I mean Hippocratic – Oath clearly argues for an election now. You have to think of the general wellbeing. Or in this case, Blueshirt General’s wellbeing. Let’s face it, that’s what really matters.
Varadkar: All right, let me sleep on it. We need to find out a bit more about the “Casey Effect” before doing anything rash.
The operating theatre, later. Chief surgeon Simon Harris recognises a celebrity patient.
Harris: You’re the man from Dragon’s Den, aren’t you? What has you in here?
Gavin Duffy (face down on trolley): Well, I myself didn’t do anything wrong. It’s just that I got slightly ahead of where public concerns were around the challenges we as a people face (he waffles on for five minutes).
Nurse: And while he was slightly ahead of them, the electorate inserted this. (She holds up an X-ray).
Harris: Ouch. A wooden spoon!
Duffy: Do you think you can remove it safely, doctor? I’m worried it will affect my image as a successful businessman and master communicator (he continues waffling).
Harris: Well, I like your presentation and I wish you well.
Harris: But wooden spoon removal is not something I have much interest in. And I’m not sure the voters want their spoon back in these circumstances – that’s very much a niche market. So for those reasons, I’m afraid, I’m out.
MODERN IRISH SPORTS
Rush hour contact sport that can be played by up to 1,000 players who risk life and limb grappling with addicts, drunks and school tours on the tram. Points and pay outs are awarded for serious injuries for victims who are prepared to go to the courts.
Traditional British folk dance involving a lot of clumsy footwork and awkward hand gestures. Recently revived by members of the DUP, whose erratic manoeuvres along the blood red line of the Northern Irish border are an increasingly common sight.
Temple Bar Paralytics
Weekend youth activity involving multiple groups of stags and hens rampaging through Dublin’s picturesque tourist quarter. The object of the game is to drink more over-priced pints than everyone else. Other activities include synchronized vomiting and fun run-ins (with local garda).
Tyrone Rules Footy
The object of the game is to leave your mark on the faces of the opposition. Even before kick-off, both teams use their physical skills to prevent any actual gaelic football from interfering with the on-field violence. The losing side will be the one with the greater number of players ending up in intensive care.
National Broadband Football
Daily game of chance in which over a million people in rural Ireland compete to get in touch with their current Broadband providing cartel to complain about delays in accessing their favourite porn sites.
(That’s enough Modern Irish Sports – Ed.)
THE JAMAL KHASHOGGI I KNEW
By our Paris Correspondent Mara Larlowe
When my editor asked me for a few thousand words about the Jamal Khashoggi I knew, it placed me in a very difficult position.
Should I write that I first met Jamal Khashoggi in January 1992, when we were both covering the military coup that prevented the Islamic Salvation Front winning parliamentary elections in Algeria?
Or about when he told me there was a young preacher called Osama Bin Laden who had helped to drive the Soviets out of Afghanistan?
Of course he might equally have said “Who are you?” or “I have never heard of the Irish Times.
But now, alas, he cannot.
U2’s BREXIT BLUES
O’NEILL PREPARED FOR DENMARK SHOWDOWN
Republic of Ireland boss Martin O’Neill says preparations are “already well under way” for his side’s crucial encounter with Denmark in November.
“We are using video technology a lot,” the manager reassured. “And Roy now has actual footage of where every player lives and how to get there.
“So if we need to boost anyone’s commitment by calling him a ‘useless prick’, a ‘waste of space’ or maybe just a bog-standard ‘arsehole’, for example, he can go to their house in the coming weeks rather than just ringing them up.”
HSE CRISIS WORSENS
AS WINTER weather conditions set in and hospitals come under renewed pressure, a senior health service correspondent has said that the situation is veering out of control due to the increase in HSE crisis stories.
“There simply isn’t room for the huge numbers of stories that are queuing up to get into the paper,” said one exhausted hack. We are being forced to make some very tough choices as to which stories are most at risk – and many of these are elderly and extremely feeble.”
Over recent weeks, there have been harrowing accounts of health crisis stories abandoned in piles on dingy corridor floors outside newsrooms. Eye witnesses have repeatedly spoken of harassed staff suffering nervous breakdowns after failing to get them on to the front pages.
As he left his newspaper’s offices in Talbot Street last night, one junior reporter admitted that he was on the verge of collapse: “After spending 16 hours non-stop working on a HSE crisis report about waiting lists, I’m absolutely shattered,” he said. “Is it any wonder that mistakes are happening every day and our paper is a complete shambles?”
Remembrance Sunday: BBC One, 10AM – David Dimbleby presents live coverage of commemorations at the Cenotaph in Whitehall. Join her Majesty Mary Lou McDonald, who will lead this year’s service, alongside Lady Liadh Ní Riada of Ballyvourney.
Doing Money: RTÉ One, 9:30PM – One lucky millionaire manages to get his deposit back after a divisive election campaign.
NAUGHTEN CLARIFIES DINNER DATES AND RELEASES MINUTES
Embattled former minister Denis Naughten today launched a four-square riposte to his critics (Vlad) who forced his resignation. “I did not have four dinner engagements with David McCourt,” he insisted.
“It was one dinner but spread over four occasions. First we had the starter. That took about three minutes. A week later we had the main course – five minutes. Dessert – a month later – took just five minutes and then the cheese board on the following night, okay that went on for a full 60 minutes.
“So, yes, technically I did eat the full dinner – but I did not partake in the washing up.
“But let me be very clear on this for once and for all, and let there be no doubt about it; on no occasion did Mr McCourt provide me with a doggy-bag as I left.”
“Eureka! O’Neill discovers miracle insomnia cure in Aviva” – Sports 7
I HEAR YOU NAUGHTEN
(Lyrics by L Varadkar. With apologies to Dave Bartholomew)
You went away and left me a short time ago
Now you’re knocking all day upon my door
I hear you Naughten, but you can’t come in
I hear you knocking, go back to Roscommon
I begged you to go and you said goodbye
And now you’re telling me all your lies
I hear you Naughten, but you can’t come in
I hear you knocking, go back to Roscommon oh yeah
You better get back to your used-to-be
‘Cause your kinda Independence ain’t good for me
I hear you Naughten, but you can’t come in
I hear you knocking, go back to Roscommon.
LEINSTER HOUSE LEXICON
• OPPOSITION (common noun) – Body of docile persons who always agree with the government. E.g. “The Fianna Fáil Opposition is totally committed to wholehearted support of Mr Varadkar’s administration on all issues.”
• Leader of the Opposition (insubstantive noun) – Person who is even more in agreement with the government than his colleagues. E.g. “Micheál is a dead loss as Leader of the Opposition.”
SEÁN GALLAGHER’S 60-SECOND PITCH
Since the dawn of time, this great little country on the edge of Europe has punched above its weight, to be or not to be, that is. The question I put to you now is, do you want your old lobbying washed down? Because it’s a grand day for the drying thank God and now is the time for north men, south men, comrades all, to grasp the nettle and make hay while the sun is shining on our 40 shades of green!
I believe passionately in this great island of saints and scholars and will leave no cliché unturned to bring home the bacon.
Because as your president I believe I can fly and, when I hit the ground running, I will be the wind beneath your wings and will be sucking diesel like there is no tomorrow!
And I want you to suck it up too because together we can Foster & Allen across the world, while continuing to build a ‘new Ireland’ for our children and their genetically modified children and their child-cyborg hybrids, in the generations to come.
Go raibh míle maith agaibh.
MY FAVOURITE HALLOWEEN MOVIES
with Donald Clarke
Galway 2020 Horror
A disturbing tale of what happens when a remote Irish town is suddenly chosen to become European Capital of Culture. Something creepy starts when a curious band of accountants take possession of a spine-chilling budget of €46 million. Overnight, they splash out on lavish admin offices and heavy-duty expenses.
The mysterious disappearance of the project’s chief executive is followed by graphic scenes – including the mass slaughter of several Macnas puppets alongside horrified Druid actors.
In an stomach-churning finale, Zombie management experts go on the rampage in Eyre Square, eating up the remaining phantom funds.
The ensuing orgy of boardroom bloodletting causes a further outbreak of serial resignations until Galway is left as a post-apocalyptic cultural wilderness.
Night of the Brexit Backstop
Trouble starts when a group of mutant DUP politicians go over to the dark side and form an unholy alliance with fellow cult members in a haunted house in Westminster.
Led by Arlene and Nigel, they spend their waking hours opposing the Brexit proposals by trying to bury them alive. Truly horrific.
(That’s enough scary movies – Ed.)
• Finding Joy — RTÉ One, 9pm: Uplifting sitcom in which an under-fire Montrose producer finds a formula for success: “We’ll just ask Amy if she’s free to do a new series.” Predictable.
NÓIRÍN O’SULLIVAN – AN APOLOGY
Some readers may have, in the now distant past, taken inference from reports in this, and indeed all, newspapers that we considered former Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan to be a person of suspect character.
Headlines such as ‘Nóirín O’Shady’, ‘Cop yourself on Nóirín and GO!!!’ and ‘Can anyone ever believe a single word that comes out of this woman’s mouth?’ could have given the impression that we harboured some doubts about the commissioner.
Nothing could be further from the truth! Thankfully the findings of Mr Justice Charleton have confirmed what we suspected all along, namely that Nóirín O’Sullivan is and always has been a paragon of courage and truth; a kind, generous, warm-hearted individual and a beacon of hope for us all.
We hope this clarifies our position and we wish Ms O’Sullivan the very best in her future employments, unless we hear something about her that we can blame her for.
If the proposed 37th Amendment to the Constitution is passed, the following statements will no longer be considered blasphemous:
- There are better sports than hurling
- Amy Huberman wouldn’t be my cup of tea
- No I haven’t watched the ‘Handmaid’s Tale’
- Brendan O’Connor is a bit annoying, isn’t he?
- I just don’t get the Rubberbandits