Sunday 17 December 2017

MOD on Monday: O'Donnells should stop the nonsense and take Vincent's hard-earned advice

Brian O'Donnell returning to Gorse Hill
Brian O'Donnell returning to Gorse Hill
Blaise O'Donnell
Vincent Browne
Simon Delaney

If you wanted proof that the delusion of the O'Donnell family is genetic, look no further than the sentence uttered by Blaise O'Donnell (right), the pampered daughter of Brian and Mary O'Donnell.

"I think what he did was over-the-top and ridiculous and he behaved poorly," she commented of Vincent Browne's recent visit to their home, Gorse Hill. "I would say I don't know how he would have behaved if it was done to his house."

Vincent, of course, turned up at the gates of Gorse Hill with his TV3 camera crew last week, went past a member of the New Land League and onto the property, and beckoned the assembled media to join him. "Everyone come in, this is bank property. Don't be pathetic lads, come in..."

His brush with the New Land League's John Martin has had repercussions, however, as Martin has threatened so sue Vincent, claiming that he was "mentally and physically hurt" by the broadcaster.

For an organisation that is used to confronting banks over loans in the millions of euro, one would have thought that its members would be slightly more thick-skinned, as the "injury" that John Martin is claiming seemed like nothing more than a gentle brush off on the way in, and a grab of his upper arm from behind.

But such is the way of the New Land League, who have seized upon this circus as a way of pushing themselves into the spotlight. And their decision to pick on Browne, in exactly the same way that Blaise O'Donnell has done, shows their inability to grasp why it is that everyone dislikes them so much.

I'm delighted that the broadcaster ignored the idiotic show-boating of John Martin and walked onto the property, because if one person has an inalienable right to comment at length on this story, it's Browne himself.

To coin a phrase, he's been there.

Three years ago, Browne was forced to sell his own home on Coliemore Road in Dalkey, about a mile up the road. It too was a fabulous residence, with views of Dublin bay, which he had bought many years ago, and had increased hugely in value in the meantime.

And having run up debts in setting up Village magazine, he was faced with having to raise a substantial sum to pay off the bank. So what did he do?

Well, he did what everyone should do. He put his home on the market - without anyone holding a gun to his head - paid off the bank with the proceeds, and bought himself a more modest home.

And he did this without any media circus, without dragging the whole thing out through an endless series of court applications, appeals and re-appeals, and without trying to get public sympathy by calling in the New Land League.

Browne did it because, as he said last week "I had to do it. Many of us had to do it - so why don't the O'Donnells do it?"

Amidst the endless nonsense emanating from the O'Donnell family in the last few days, that sentence is one on which they might like to reflect.

Is Neil Prendeville prepared to put Ryanair to his er, unique, flight test?

DJ Neil Prendeville seems quite literally to have the least self-awareness of any man on the planet.

Five months ago, Cork-based Prendeville wrote in a newspaper column of his recently-acquired love for Ryanair, and his distaste for Aer Lingus, congratulating the former by saying: "I love them even more now since they've gone on this major love-in with their customers."

Last week, he again used his newspaper column to slag off Aer Lingus, reminding everyone how much he prefers Ryanair these days, this time using the second-hand example of some friends who recently travelled with Aer Lingus and who he claimed were "treated with disdain".

He harked back to the days when "Aer Lingus used to be the kind and courteous airline," with Ryanair being the rude ones, before saying "who would have believed you'd see a complete reversal between the airlines?"

One would have thought that Neil would be a bit more reticent about offering such gratuitous opinions on the national airline.

He is, after all, known chiefly for a mid-air incident on an Aer Lingus flight three and a half years ago, when he was caught masturbating. (He later put the incident down to mixing alcohol and painkillers.) Considering the fact that Aer Lingus decided not to press charges against him, one would have though that Prendeville would, at the very least, keep his mouth shut in future.

But enough with these anecdotal stories about how Ryanair are.

If the airline is so worthy of his praise, I respectfully suggest that Neil puts his opinions to the test first hand.

Why doesn't he get boozed up, take some painkillers and hop on one of their flights, and then masturbate in full of other passengers?

I'd be interested to see how "kind and courteous" Ryanair's flight attendants are to him.

You could get lucky eventually Simon

No-one can ever accuse Simon "I'll do it" Delaney of being choosy. Having recently appeared in a movie, a TV series, a play, a panto, doing voiceovers and co-presenting last year's IFTAs, Simon has confessed that he would be open to moving full-time to the US, admitting that he and his family would decamp "in a heartbeat".

Despite this, Simon has also revealed that he would love to present a chat show on RTE, volunteering the fact that "(The idea) has been mooted before about doing stuff on RTE". Which sounds to me like it's an absolute sure thing that he'll get his own show. After all, I bought a lottery ticket yesterday, which means I'm guaranteed to be a millionaire by Wednesday...

Absenteeism just makes me sick

It's emerged that some staff in the Property Registration Authority took nearly three weeks off in sick days in 2013.

The Authority's shameful record is followed closely by the Department of Social Protection and the Central Statistics Office, in which the average employee took 13 days' paid sick leave a year, on top of their paid holidays.

Officials have defended the figures by saying that they only relate to 2013, and that changes introduced a year ago, which cut the number of uncertified sick days that employees are allowed in half, will surely see a drop in absenteeism. We will have to wait for those results to be published, and make do for now with figures that are two years old. And I guess the delay in the Department of Public Expenditure publishing the figures can be easily explained. So many of their staff, you see, are off sick...

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