Haughey and Dignam: life imitating art?

From the 100 anniversary, the Economist wonders if Bloomsday is not a better experience than reading the book itself. Though as Kevin Cullen notes Charlie Haughey’s funeral may be a case of life imitating art.He talks to Senator David Norris: ‘‘At the end of the day, Charlie was a great Joycean,’’ Norris said in a telephone interview from Dublin, where he is a senator and lecturer at Trinity College. ‘‘I am quite confident that Charlie would never have dreamed of canceling Bloomsday. You can’t cancel Bloomsday. That’s like saying you can cancel Monday or Tuesday. And on the 16th of June, in Dublin, it will always be Bloomsday.’’

Indeed, Haughey was, like many Dubliners, one for keeping the day every 16th of June. A reporter once observed Haughey in a southside Dublin pub, having imbibed considerably more than the one glass of burgundy that Leopold Bloom consumes at Davy Byrne’s pub, recite from memory a long passage from ‘‘Ulysses.’’ Mr. Haughey’s companions cheered lustily, and he bowed gallantly.

Norris noted that Haughey died on June 13 and will be buried on June 16, as did Paddy Dignam, a character from ‘‘Ulysses’’ whose funeral is the focus of Chapter 6.

Mick is founding editor of Slugger. He has written papers on the impacts of the Internet on politics and the wider media and is a regular guest and speaking events across Ireland, the UK and Europe. Twitter: @MickFealty