herald

Sunday 24 September 2017

We're broke and still love the pub... So what's new?

DID the new Lonely Planet Guide really say everything good about Ireland can be found in Cork?

But sure they knew that, boy. They're only saying that because the Queen sooooo preferred Cork when she was here. Red alert to Dubs -- there'll be no living with them now.

Yes, we know: Irish by nature; Cork by the Grace of God etc, etc. My home county of Tipp was completely shafted here. Corkonians might think the best thing about Dublin is the M7 to Cork but you've got to turn off at the Horse and Jockey, and not stay going. Only complete langers would do that.



Powdery

The same book, out this week, says 'Kilkee's wide beach has the kind of white, powdery sand that's made the Caribbean, well, the Caribbean.' You might have to be on some white powdery' stuff to agree with this contention? I've been to Kilkee and while it's very nice, it's no Caribbean.

We're also suspicious of praise apparently, and tend not to believe anything nice that's ever said about us. What about the Troika? Sure we're like lap dogs begging for a pat on the head and to be told we're doing a good job. We "wallow in false modesty like a sport" and are fond of the "peculiar art of self-deprecation". Haven't they met Bill Cullen? Doesn't he look in the mirror every day and say... 'You're great!'?

We're "fatalistic and pessimistic to the core" and "shrug our shoulders and just get on with our lives". That's the 'yerra feck it' routine. Your head's hanging off you with a brutal hangover, the wife's shacked up with a younger buck and the kids think you're an ignoramus.

Yerra feck it. Sure the fella next door has gout and has to watch the amount he drinks, so he's in a much worse position.

We're also told that the boozer is centre stage (see above). Despite being broke we're showing "no sign of letting up" when it comes to "the country's most popular social pastime". Sure we'll go for just the one, again.

Another Lonely Planet gem is "many Irish unconsciously pepper their speech with curse words, which are intended only to be emphatic". Did a Yank pen this book? That's the nation that packs a pistol while going to get a litre of milk but think it's unacceptable to declare "Christ he's puked on bleedin' shoes after a serious bender".

Remember just a couple years back the guidebooks were telling us we were too urbane. That was when we were in love with double decaf lattes and the Celtic Tiger was getting manicures in thermal suite spas. I guess this year's edition more or less consolidates our position as being full-time obsessed with how everyone else sees us. For a change.

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