Category Archives: Uncategorized

I’d much rather be me

Been singing this song in my head for two days, thanks to a little revisit to this lovely video by Amy and Jamie.

Confessions of a potty-mouth newsreader

The last few days have seen some of my best friends, and some of the nicest work colleagues ever, come to the end of their time at Phantom 105.2. Some are choosing to leave, some aren’t, but it can safely be said that the likes of Pure Morning, Sunday Morning Coming Down and The Lounge will hardly be seen again.

Phantom 105.2 is my old alma mater, I read the news there and talked nonsense on the radio for four years. We had some laughs up there on North Wall Quay and forged some great friendships. The Phantom upheaval this week has got me thinking about my own time on radio, and in particular the times I made a complete balls of it.

  • Tax cunts: It was the early shift, I was tired, I was reading some guff on the news about tax cuts, but instead I said tax cunts. I hoped and prayed that nobody had heard, but of course they had. All of them. And boy could they not wait to send texts about it.
  • Stephen Hunt will be shit: There was some match or other on and Stephen Hunt was obviously playing. Reading the sports news is bad enough what with your Cesc Fabregases and your Dirk Kuyts, and I was determined I wasn’t going to called Stephen Hunt ‘Stephen Cunt’ (as you will already know, I had had some difficulty with the C word in the past). So, instead of reading ‘Stephen Cunt will be fit for tonight’s match’, I read ‘Stephen Hunt will be SHIT for tonight’s match’. Perfect.

Thanks for nothing Stephen Hunt

  • Bollocksballscross: There’s a place called Hacksballscross in Co. Louth. I know this because there was something dodgy going on there once and it was in the news. But I, feeling rather tired and emotional one morning had failed to pre-read my news script. I saw this word ‘Hacksballscross’ coming as I began to read the story live on air. My eyes flicked down to it. Was I being punk’d? Did that say something about bolloxes or balls or something? Before I knew it, the world was upon me. ‘BOLLOCKSBALLSCROSS, CO. LOUTH’, I blurted out. I believe I went on to say it again later in the story. A consummate professional ladies and gentlemen.
  • I can hear your heart beat: Before my time at Phantom I worked as a newsreader at KFM in Kildare. One of my duties there was to record the death notices, thus providing the highlight of many an aul wan’s day. After each news bulletin was read live on-air the feed from the news booth microphone was supposed to be turned down, so that anything being pre-recorded in the booth wouldn’t go out live on-air. So one evening, in I went to record my death notices, beginning with the solemn intro of ‘KFM has been informed of the following deaths’. On I went giving out funeral details and flower requests. When I had finished I swanned out of the news booth only to be greeted by a sea of stricken faces. I had been reading the death notices live on air over the beautiful strains of Chris Rea’s I Can Hear Your Heart Beat. It took about two minutes before anyone realised. Somewhere a recording existed, but I pray that it has now been destroyed.

  • And finally, why don’t YOU try to say the line ‘Berhard Langer got a hole in one‘ live on air without sniggering and see how easy it is.

Money talks, but it don’t sing and dance and it don’t… run

An email into my inbox this morning from the Irish Cancer Society reminded me that we are now firmly in ‘mini-marathon’ season. I was instantly gripped by a bad case of ‘the frighteners’ as I realised that I was eating a packet of crisps for breakfast and had paused in the middle of reading Clint Eastwood’s Wikipedia* page in order to get my eyes around Gmail for a few minutes.

(*Did you know Clint has had seven children by at least five different women and has been known as a ‘serial womaniser’? Did you also know that one of my favourite pastimes is reading random Wikipedia pages? Celebrities, serial killers,  20th century wars and addictive substances are my favourite topics)

Anyway, I have indeed signed up for this year’s mini marathon in Dublin city on 4 June, and I have even sent away for my sponsorship pack from the Irish Cancer Society, but that, dear readers, is all I’ve done. And what with this being the week of the fourth anniversary of my darling dad’s death from cancer, I may as well admit to sponsors and potential sponsors that I will not be running across the finish line, being a smug bastard about some kind of personal best. Instead I will be wheezing across with the oldest of the old ladies, mortified about my red face and hoping I don’t see anyone I know.

But please, don’t let that put you off sponsoring me. I will be carrying out this ten kilometre feat after two nights at the Rory Gallagher Festival in Ballyshannon and one night at the Forbidden Fruit Festival in Dublin, and I will still be at the start line, all guns blazing. (I know, I know, I’m hardly saving the world or anything, but hey, it’s for charity. I’ve even sponsored myself)

This is me the last time I did the mini marathon after three days of solid partying in Ballyshannon. I drove from Donegal to Dublin like the wind and made it to the start line with minutes to spare. Can you detect how smug I am? Insufferably so.

This is me the last time I did the mini marathon after three days of solid partying in Ballyshannon. I drove from Donegal to Dublin like the wind and made it to the start line with minutes to spare. Can you detect how smug I am? Insufferably so.

I am disappointed in myself that I’ll be doing more walking than running on 4 June, especially after starting the Couch to 5K programme three times in the past few months, only to be beaten by the crippling self doubt that I will ever be one of those people who ‘goes for a run’. You know the ones? With the bouncy ponytails and the expensive looking leggings and the iPod strapped to their biceps? That will be me NEXT year. I promise.

Soon, this will be me

In case you’re wondering what my mini marathon playlist will consist of, wonder no more:

  • Pat Benatar: Hit Me With Your Best Shot
  • Robyn: Dancing On My Own
  • LCD Soundsystem: All My Friends
  • Azealia Banks: 212
  • Neil Diamond: Forever in Blue Jeans
  • Florence and the Machine: Shake it Out
  • Marillion: Kayleigh
  • Kelly Clarkson (SHUT UP I LOVE HER): What Doesn’t Kill You
  • The New Pornographers: Challengers
  • Paul Simon: Graceland

Please, Click here and give what you can To the Irish cancer society…

Feets

It’s been a tough few weeks round my way. Christmas is always a little bit hard, and seemed that little bit harder this year. I headed to the other side of the country this week for the wedding of one of my oldest friends, which was lovely. It was so nice to see a friendly face around every corner of the hotel, as a lot of us had made the journey to the celebrations. Now that the wedding excitement is over, there’s New Year to get through, and then the daunting loom of 2012. A friend said to me recently that she though 2012 would be ‘my year’, which is a challenging yet exciting thought.

Watching another one of my friends walk down the aisle was again bittersweet, as weddings remind us of families, lost loves, old friends, nostalgia, romance, someone to depend on and best friends. As happy as I am for my old friend, it’s strange to see how much our lives have diverged since we used to be at school.

The happy couple

Fun with old friends

Gorgeous Genevieve

First dance

While she prepares to embark on her exciting new life as a wife, best friend, partner, team-mate… and most likely mother, I’ve been taking pictures of my feets…

Hogs and Cons

My Big Fat Irish Civil Partnership

I usually tend not to comment too much on issues I feel I may be ignorant about, but I have worked myself into quite the rage over Fine Gael Election 2011 candidate Lucinda Creighton’s comments that (and I’m paraphrasing) the primary function of marriage is to procreate and raise children. She has said that while she supports the Civil Partnership Bill, she feels that marriage is the preserve of heterosexual couples. So, to borrow a saying from many others who have already commented on the issue, she thinks all people are equal, but some are more equal than others. Lucinda Creighton, by the way, is the Fine Gael Spokesperson on Equality.

I glanced at thejournal.ie’s Facebook link to their poll on the issue earlier, before getting into the car for a 40 minute drive, and spent those 40 minutes getting into a state where it would be normal for some teeth to be gnashed.

How can it still be possible that the ‘institution’ of marriage is still so inextricably linked to Catholic, or even Christian ideals? I put the word institution in inverted commas because I don’t like calling it an institution. I think it makes it sound like a old fashioned, cobwebby practice, based on old fashioned, cobwebby traditions.

As I sit here, I’m finding it quite difficult to decide which point I want to make first, or how to even make those points. In my eyes, marriage has two functions:

1: It allows two people who are in love to make a commitment to each other. It also allows then to make that commitment known to their families and friends, and to celebrate that commitment any way they see fit.

2: It has a legal basis when it comes to property, money and in some cases, children.

With those functions of marriage in my mind, I struggle to see how any politician or government has the right to legislate on who can enter into a marriage. Why is there a difference between a ‘marriage’ and a ‘civil partnership’? I’ll tell you why. It’s because a large number of people still associate marriage with the Church. I can’t say the majority of people associate it with the Church, because I don’t have those figures, but I would say that it is a large amount. I probably have seen it that way too in the past, but because I’ve seen friends get married outside of the Church, in Humanist ceremonies etc, and because I believe that people of any sexual orientation should have the right to be married, I’ve stopped thinking that way.

I will be attending a wedding in a few months where the ceremony will take place in a registry office because the bride has been married before, and therefore is not allowed to have a ceremony in a Catholic church, because the Church does not recognise divorce. But, because marriage is a civil contract, it doesn’t make even a smidge of difference that the ceremony won’t take place in a church. She’ll still be married at the end of the day, albeit without having stood in front of a priest.

Therefore a marriage (ie a civil contract) and a civil partnership are essentially the same thing. Only they’re not, are they Lucinda Creighton? Because people still like to think that couples are ‘married in the eyes of God’.

I think I’m so angry because I don’t see why somebody who wants to take a seat in Ireland’s house of power, who wants to stand for the human rights of the people of this country, and who claims to speak for equality, would make such a personal, and probably religious-based statement on such a senstive topic. Yes, she’s entitled to her opinion, but it is her own, personal opinion, and one which I believe she has now made an election issue.

I’m also angry at the continued hold the Catholic Church has over so many aspects of Irish life, from schools to marriages to lifestyles. Again, people are entitled to their opinion, from the most devout of Catholics, to those who just hold on to a little bit of faith (but I’m afraid I can’t reconcile myself with those who hold the opinion that evolution is a myth. I just can’t get my head around that one). But when that opinion threatens to continue to influence the running of a country and the treatment of ALL of its peoples, then it is WRONG.

I’ve never paid much attention to the religious affiliations of Irish political parties, although I must admit that my ears pricked up when I saw it mentioned that Eamon Gilmore had ‘come out’ as an Atheist. I always thought it was such a shame that to be the president of the United States, you have to constantly tell the citizens how mad you are about God, whereas here in Ireland, you rarely hear politicians use the G word or refer to their religious beliefs.

Now though, I realise that that was my own ignorance, and that it’s still there, an unneccessary and oudated undercurrent. Thanks Lucinda, for bringing it to my attention.

Postcards from Italy and Beirut

Sometimes I get a bit frantic and worry that not enough people are aware that this song exists. It’s just SO beautiful and moreish and makes we wish I was one of those waifish, naturally tanned beauties who can frolic around wearing fur gilets and flowery dresses, barefoot on the grass.

See here for more on some of my favourite songs

Crafty Bitch

In 2009, for my birthday, My Best Friend Who’s a Boy (aka Himself) gave me possibly the best present ever. He gave me a craft box. I had long dreamed of having a room in a house devoted to felt, pipe cleaners, sequins, glue and high quality paper. He couldn’t give me a room, but the box was the next best thing.

Personalised. Fancy.

Helpful

The box contained the holy grail of lovers of craft carry-on: a multicoloured joy-fest of every Sharpie imaginable. Sharpies have the ability to turn even the most stoic of people into sticky-fingered scribblers, so you can imagine my glee.

My cup runneth over

I have always loved art and crafts of all types, but not having studied Art as a subject in any capacity at secondary school, going on to pursue something creative as a career wasn’t really an option. I haven’t given up though. I make ridiculous, amateurish, but love-filled cards for Christmas, birthday and special occasions, and I pour over the work of those who have made a career out of sticking, gluing, soldering and chopping. A graphic design course is not a complete impossibility at some stage in the future surely? I might not make a career out of it, but I might pitch up outside one of those hipster-tastic flea markets with a pram-full of handmade ridiculous cards and bellow at people to buy them.

Making up for never having pipe cleaners like those smug bastards on Bosco

If YOU want a one of these magical creations, just ask. I’ll probably make you one, hand deliver it, and only ask for a curlywurly as payment.

Card cat iz in your envelope, giving you smilez

Happy Easter