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Birds go on the rampage

Tyranny takes many forms. In Dalkey it takes the form of Bono's pet peacock, who was "on the rampage" this week. Those were Joe Duffy's words on Liveline as the weary citizens of Dalkey vented years' worth of peacock-related frustrations.

Apparently the diminutive rock idol's feathery pet has enjoyed the run of Dalkey much like the king's deer in medieval times ("Make way for his lordship's peacock!" I imagine rustic locals saying, as they nervously watch it peck its way down the street). The serfs aren't willing to take it anymore.

Susan, who has been in the rock peafowl's nefarious thrall since it turned up in her garden a few days before, bemoaned its sense of entitlement, its tendency to spout poo, and the fact that it was above the law ("This is the peacock, not Bono we're talking about here," she confirmed).

"I rang the gardai," said Susan, "and they were aware that Bono's peacock was flying around and I said what shall I do with him? And they said 'whatever you want. We're fed up with Bono's peacock'."

Soon Liveline was inundated with people who were at their wits end thanks to wayward poultry and Bono's bird in particular.

"Sinead . . . I believe you're driven demented by peacocks," said Joe.

"Demented, Joe," said Sinead, who outlined the bad behaviour of some squawking peafowl she had known (I'm going to take a stab in the dark and say that they were owned by Bob Geldof, Twink and several members of Six).

Eddie from Dublin Zoo called to give his two-cents on peafowl delinquency. Joe, however, kept returning to Bono's peacock, as though it were a special case. When a caller informed us that she had fed a rogue pea-bird wild seeds, Joe asked earnestly: "Would that be right Eddie, is that what you feed Bono's peacock on?"

Joe also said: "Susan, you just want Bono to take his peacock back." And, plaintively: "How can Bono stop his peacock from wandering?" These are sentences that I can confidently say have never been aired before on Irish radio and which brought me great pleasure.

I was hoping that the conversation would expand to include other troublesome rock-poultry, but sadly Joe moved on to celebrity solicitor Gerald Kean who wanted to buy a gun, not due to fear of Bono's peacock (a reasonable anxiety), but due to a fear of human criminals (Bono's peacock in a man-suit?).

All in all, I hadn't enjoyed Liveline so much in ages. More rock-star poultry related antics, please. Actually, was that The Edge's duck driving past in that unlicenced taxi? I think it was. Get on the case, Joe!

This week many presenters had asked could they take the class outside. Ryan Tubridy went to the zoo (where it was revealed that the elephants were plagued by -- drumroll -- peacocks). John Murray took a bunch of people out on a nice mountain stroll and Matt Cooper and Anton Savage spent The Last Word's motoring slot bombing around the city on electric bikes ("It sounds like Brokeback Mountain on bicycles," texted one listener).


Earlier Matt interviewed presidential candidate Michael D Higgins, who courted the youth vote by name-dropping Jurgen Habermas, recounting his concert-going days with his silk shirt "open to the navel" (Aggh! I've gone blind!) and avoiding a question about whether he had "inhaled".

On Wednesday's Ray D'Arcy Show comedian David McSavage sounded a little like he had "inhaled". He paranoiacally second-guessed Ray's motivations after Ray observed he was blushing.

"It shows something I didn't want to show and now I feel vulnerable and I think you feel superior and you're looking down at me slightly," said David.

He later explained how to do a Mary Robinson impression, outlined his support for David Norris, and, after an innocent inquiry about hair dye, revealed that he had separated from his wife.

Ray is a good interviewer, although about an hour earlier he sounded like he'd "inhaled" himself: "I wonder what those pigeons are thinking. I'm looking out the window and two pigeons are looking back in at me."

Hold on . . . does one of those "pigeons" have wraparound shades, a sense of entitlement and a very favourable tax bill?

IT'S BONO'S PEACOCK! Call Joe Duffy!