A Page For Ireland
An ode to Dublin, the city of the Junkie -
Dublin, in fairness to it, is not a bad place. Trouble is, it's wasted on the Dubs. On one side you have horse-riding junkies causing
havoc and on the other there are the 'Doirt roiding' rugger buggers and huggers. And they have the cheek to give out about culchies taking over
their city, ha ha sad cases. As Jesus meant to say - 'Blessed are the culchies, for theirs is the kingdom of Dublin'.
Anyway, time for a bit of 'West Brit' bashing - have a look at the Southsider Maths Test. Just to show I'm not a complete bigot - here's the equivilant Northside exam. For a couple of weeks
every year, the Man Utd slaves (aka Dublin Football fans) have a couple of days out on Hill 16, their hallowed piece of Croke Park. A recent judicial ruling has stated that this terrace
will have to become all-seater in conjunction with the developments in Croker. This will have massive implications for the Dubs who enjoy rubbing up against each other on the terracing.
Oh yes, Meath, another shower of hoors. The Royal county, ha, ha...thats a joke if I ever heard one. The county that the genetically modified Jawn Brutal calls home. Their football team has been quite succesful for
over ten years now, all the time being managed by herbalist, Sean Boylan. Some samples of the core ingredients in Mr Boylans potions can be found here. Good and all as he is, sometimes his potions have failed to last the required 70 minutes. The Meath team of the late 80's - 1990's was known to include a few(!!) 'hardmen'.
For real insights into what make Meath men thick, I'll point you towards the website of that bastion of good taste, Navan Man. Meath fans are famed for their wit and indeed their beer guts and enjoy a healthy rivalry with their
near neighbours, Dublin. Wanna read a Meath joke.....Click Here!
Offaly, the county of the sitdown protest. Offaly folks took on the mantle of the suffering one lovely Saturday in August 1998
What caused this to happen? what outrage could possibly provoke these normally sheep loving people into a rioting crowd?? what
sequence of events could possibly have occured that would cause these people to take a course of action that would be more
appropiate to the Garvaghy Road, Tianenman Square or Belgrade?? Well to be honest not many people know. It was something
to do with a ref blowing a whistle early, which left them off the hook as they were losing anyway. But they made their point,
Offaly people are like that.
Why are Offaly people strange?
The Faithful folk are however justifiably proud of their fine hurling team. These players demonstrate great wristwork when they have a hurl
in the hand. This is a trait they share with the majority of Offaly males, whos wristwork has been carefully honed by years of self-abuse,
aided by copies of the Farmers Journal and the Stars sports pages. Members of this team are involved in restoring their own form of law and order
to some of the more dangerous towns in Offaly - like Edenderry.
Apart from invading pitches, it's an established fact that Offaly people turn into
real party animals when they head to Dublin for their days out.
Crazy, fun guys!! Former Tipperary manager - and all round nice guy - Babs Keating had a short stint in charge of the Offaly hurling team in 1998.
A little known fact is that Offalys greatest player of all time was an American - they called him the King.
Offaly related question : What happened next?
Kilkenny - or as it's described on the tourist trails 'the medieval captial of Ireland' which is a fitting tribute to a city that hosts Langtons niteclub - a real throwback to the dark ages. A little known fact is that the Franks Sinatra song 'Chicago - My Kind Of Town' was actually written about Kilkenny but everytime he tried to sing
it in the marble city he was drowned up by shouts of 'Its a city, not a town'.
Waterford people are a very bitter lot. But the truth remains that if Ireland was a dog, then Waterford would be its arse.
Many people from this strange corner of the island are obsessed with the Wicked Gerlock from the West,
a man who's said to have evil powers and sends his minions out to wreak havoc on the
decent people of Munster and indeed Ireland every Summer. One would wonder about this obsession when you consider other outrages perpretrated against these docile people by the likes of Limerick, to name but one.
A further interesting anomoly in the psyche of Waterford people is that in reality they really want to be from Clare, in fact the Waterford hurlers are currently described as Clare-lite, a sort of low-cal take on a far more sophisticated product. The current head honcho in the Waterford scene is in fact a
with a facial hair-do that would make the Village People proud. Sad really.
When you have finished laughing at their hurling team, here are another couple of Waterford jokes to keep you going.
But the best description I've ever heard regarding the Waterford hurling team came from the beardy socalist Kevin Cashman (currently writing for the Sunday Tribune). 'The Black and Tans in white' is how he described their appearance in the 1989 Munster final. Several Tipperary players would probably agree.
A Waterford persons view of Ireland
Waterford Fans : test your knowledge of the Munster Hurling Final '98 with this competition and win a prize!!
An obsessive (probably) Waterford fans page.
Mayo, a county where men are men and sheep are afraid:
Mayo have made many appearances in Croke Park in recent years but
1996 had to be on of their finest.
Mayo may not have won any All-Irelands in the 90's but they do have to be favourites to win the 'Worst GAA Related Song Ever' (and god knows there have been some terrible GAA songs) for their 'Mayo, Maaayyooo - Sam Maguires coming back to Mayo-oo' effort - you know the one, you'll be singing
it to yourself for the rest of the day. After their dismal showing in the 1999 All-Ireland football semi-final the Mayo County Board have made this press release unveiling their plans for the future.
For those interested in Mayo news I'll suggest the
Mayo GAA Site is the best place to start.
Leitrim, for all you need to know about Leitrim - click the link. Sad, isn't it?
Galway, the city of the tribes : what a pity then that the only tribes to be found in the environs of Galway City and
County are the hoards of New Age travelling crusty bastards over here to
take our jobs and our women. Sorry, strike that.....those crusty bastards are only here to draw the dole and smoke drugs.
Not that I have a problem with that, but wouldn't be better for all of us if they would take a bath once in a while?
Clare : a county plunged into darkness in 1998 amidst claims of human rights abuse, witch-hunts, shadowy committees and even shadowier councils.
The people of Clare are a very misunderstood lot, they love their music and by god they love their hurling too, as one famous son
of the Dalcassian said. The pride of Clare at the moment is the
Clare hurling team,indeed at 12:00pm each day the people of Clare
pause from their work and turn to face their Mecca, Cusack Park, Ennis (or Innis, as the natives call it). This call to prayer is signalled each day by the
propaganda organ of the Clare Regime, Clare FM. The Clare hurling team has divided opinion up and down
the country, emotions ranging from deep hate to crazy love. Still they have a lot of influential fans all over the world.
While most GAA followers know that the GAA was founded in 1884 - there is an element of the Clare support who think hurling was invented in the Summer of 1995. And these are the people who usually
get the tickets for the big matches, while the long suffering supporters have to pay big money to the touts for the priviledge of a shite seat in the Nally Stand.
The undisputed king of Clare is Ger Loughnane. Loved and loathed in equal measure, Ger is a unique creature in the often bland world of pre-match interviews and post-match comments. Click here for
some of the more entertaining Loughnane outbursts. Loughnane will take almost any measure to guide this Clare team to glory including unconventional injury recover practices.
After the antics of 98 the conspiracy theorists in Clare had enough ammunition to keep them boring us for at least 10 years.
On a more socio-economic note, there has been something of an influx of refugees into the Clare area in the last numbers of years. Many of these have come from the Balkans,
Kurdistan and more lately Limerick. Since the Limerick contingent has arrived there has been a marked rise in crime.
Clare Hurling Fans : Enter the Competition and win the respect of the GAA world!!
Limerick - you're a lady. Yep, thats right but what kind of lady?? Most likely the kind of one you'll pick up in Copper Face Jacks after a day of beer we think. Limerick has many famous landmarks including King Johns Castle, the Treaty Stone, Teds Niteclub and Soooppeeerrrrmmmmaaacccsss. Its also equally famous for its rugby heritage (even the knackers play rugger in Limerick, mostly because if it was left to the posh wankers on the Ennis Road and Dooradoyle, Limerick would be lucky to field a single front row), kamikaze hurling teams and a team of mechanics in the world of Formala 1 motor racing.
Limerick is notoriously known as 'Stab City' and it's widely believed that William Shakespeare visited the city whilst researching his play Julius Caesar. Limerick people are very touchy about the 'Stab City' title and rightly point out that shotguns, pistols and crossbows are now regularly used in assaults in the city - this Celtic Tiger,eh? Before making Star Wars, it is rumoured George Lucas considered setting it in Limerick - here's an early outline of the characters that would have appeared in the film. Limerick people tell you that that their city has turned the corner
and is now a vibrant young metropolis and point to their achievements in the arts world to prove this.....for example 1) the Pulitzer prize winning Angela's Ashes....a book about a boy wanking is way though puberty in Limerick, 2) Richard Harris.....token drunked paddy abroad and 3) the Cranberries......like do we really need to spend £15 on an album of a screaming Limerick woman when we can walk past Supermacs any night of the week for the same priviledge??
Tipperary, don't get me started on this pack of feckers. Why does everyone hate Tipp so much?? well for starters...arrogance, Michael 'Babs' Keating,
Michael 'Stroke' Lowry and the awful toilets during the Feiles in the early '90s I could go on and maybe I will. What are Tipp people arrogant about anyway, 2 All-Ireland Hurling titles in 25 years? Or perhaps because
Tipp is known as the Premier county. A favourite son of Tipperary is one John Leahy, a man who could tell Roy Keane a thing or two when it comes to tackling
fellow boozers in bars. However you'll find Semple Stadium in Tipperary and for that we are grateful. Tipperarys hurling team this year (99) have showed a lot of promise but their age old handicap of perceived arrogance coupled with poor media relations will probably lead to their
undoing yet again. As mentioned before many Tipp fans have this bizarre superiority complex when it comes to hurling and tend to be very bitter towards non-traditional counties getting a day out in the sun - an example of which can be found here. However if Tipperary hurling is your thing
you're best bet is to check out the Tipp Hurling section of Ed Donnellys site.
Cork - the second City or the 'real' capital if you listen to any unbiased Cork person. Cork people are known for their genorosity, in fact copper wire was invented in Cork by two men fighting over a penny. Another invention that has its routes in Cork is double glazed windows - discovered
by a Cork couple who didn't want the kids to hear the ice-cream van. Cork has undergone something of a GAA famine in recent times but that may change this year with both their hurling and football teams going great guns. These teams have some fine individual players but its their interviews
with the press that bring a smile to most peoples faces. With Cork fielding two relatively inexperienced teams in this years All-Ireland finals one wonders will they be affected by brown-trouser moments that have affected fellow Corkonians in times of pressure - most notably to Sonia 'Slut' O'Sullivan in Atlanta '96. To see the outcome of the 1999 All-Ireland hurling final, click here. While most of us know
that Cork men are really Kerry men with shoes, apparently there are subtle differences between the various strands of Cork GAA supporters.
Some movie titles that didn't quite make it past the the directors cutting room
The GAA Film pages
Unsung heroes of the GAA World
A section to honour the people and institutions that make the GAA match experience a unique event.
No 1 : The Commentators
Yes, for inane ramblings and useless statistics look no further than the commentary box during any intercounty GAA match.
If you like your GAA served up to you in smooth, refined tones or perhaps a slightly more excitable, higher pitch then tune
into RTE on match day for the clash of the titans - Ger Canning V Marty Morrissey.
On a more local level Tipperary man Eddie Moroney has been making a name for himself with his unique style.
Rumours that he is engaged in talks with RTE to cover this years All-Ireland football final are unconfirmed at this point. However,if he does come on board expect a
hike in your TV License fee - talent comes at a price.
No 2 : The Umpires
There are few jobs less demanding on the GAA circuit than that of the umpire. They say a
referee needs eyes on the back of his head (especially if Meath and Dublin are playing),
an umpire just needs the more conventional two 'just above the nose' variety. Despite the
low requirements needed it never ceases to amaze the ordinary fan how wrong umpires can be at times. We've all seen square-balls, wides signalled as points, points signalled as wides, wides not signalled at all, blatant pick-ups and various off-the-ball incidents (some involving flick-knives and broken sherry bottles - Meath and Dublin again) which the men in the white coats as a rule seem to ignore. Much to the dismay of the hardcore GAA traditionalists, sponsorship has raised its ugly head again. The GAA are currently considering a proposal from Specsavers to sponsor the match officials.
They have already put forward some subtle changes in design for the famous white coats.
No 3: The Pundits
The true professionals of Gaelic Games - the former and sometimes current players who write their ghosted columns analyzing and deeply probing all aspects of the GAA world. The pundit king in GAA circles at the moment has to be Pat Spillane. The former Kerry
supremo can be found haunting the back pages of the Sunday World - along side the 'Bored Housewife' ads - and also on 'The Game on Monday' - RTE's cleverly titled Monday alternative to the Sunday Game. These GAA columns always seem to lack a certain 'bite' or 'substance'
- in fact they're nearly always singing from the same hymn book. It generally goes along the lines of : "We really respect Offaly\Kilkenny\Clare\Tipp (delete as appropiate). Their record over the last couple of years speaks for itself. But we're reasonably confident and we've brought in
a few of the U-21's who had such a good season last year." - sound familiar??
The rectify this, we can exclusively publish extracts from the Pat Spillane diary - an account of the inner workings of a GAA pundit.
No 4: The Fights
What weekend would be in the GAA calendar would be complete without some talk of a 'schamoozle'. While the GAA tries to play them down as isolated incidents and the meeja tries to hype them up, most GAA fans sit down and wonder what all the fuss was about. Still, it brings a smile to the face when one reminices of the times that things got 'a little out of hand'. Remember the recent classics - Wexford manager JJ Barrett giving the ref a bunch of fives in a league match this year, Clare V Waterford 1998, Meath V Mayo 1996, Dublin V Offaly Leinster U-21 final 1997, Galway V Tipperary 1989 etc, etc. Anyway, to honour such occasions, here is our shrine to 'Unfortunate Incidents'.
No 5: Boggus Gaaga - the lowly club official. This was posted on the GAA discussion board and is well worthy of a place in this Hall of Fame.
No 6: Up to Dublin for the Big Day
Up on the Saturday, make the way out to the friends in Rathmines (engineers in UCD). Down to the Portobello for the beer, the
crack, the beer, the women, the beer, the Sunday morning hangover, the beer, the "oh shite what did i do with me ticket" midday panic,
the beer for 3 hours before the match, the "oh will i sell me ticket and stay on the beer" problem, the match, the "oh shite i wish i didn't
drink so much beer so as i wouldn't have gone to the jacks and missed that goal", the post match beer, the sing-song, the beer, the take
the piss out of the losers, the beer, the 11pm drunk decision to go to Coppers, the beer, the shite where are the taxis, the beer, the pick
up a slapper nurse, the beer, the Monday morning hangover and then back to fecking work on Monday afternoon and have to face into
another 90 hours over the next 7 days. Posted by Speed Bump on the GAA discussion board - with a few minor alterations
No 7: Boyo Redneckus - the arctypal GAA supporter. While not as prevelant nowadays, in these crazy times of Celtic Tigers, breakfast TV and foreign holidays, we feel it is only fitting that this giant of the GAA circuit be rightly recognised for his contribution to the wonderful association. So, Boyo Redneckus, This Is Your Life!. This was posted on the GAA discussion board by Irish Wildlife.
Computer Humour Alert.
If GAA Personalities were computer viruses......Click Here!.
A classic GAA picture. This man deserves his medal
Spot the ball competition
A new feature : the Heroes and Villians of Irish public life. If you feel you know someone who deserves a place in this who's who guide to Ireland, feel free to drop us a mail, citing the reason you think such a person should be mentioned here.
Anyone But The Banner Boyz is currently compiling a set of 'alternative' Irish links - if you have any worthy nominees for this list, mail me.
Do you have anything to share with 'Anyone but the Banner Boys'? Well share it!
Sign the Guestbook. You know you want too....
If you have comments or suggestions, email me at T.R.Dallas@usa.net