The Adulterous Female

Much of the coverage of the Robinson Affair has been focussed on the financial aspects of the story and naturally enough the potentially devastating political implicatons for Northern Ireland. I’ve been trying to watch the story from a different persective, with most of my interest on the infidelity angle. I haven’t been able to get my head around Peter Robinson’s valiant coping mechanisms to the revelations of the affair, mainly because my personal and professional experiences tend toward the usage … Read more

Operating outside the law

Today sees the publication of Judge Yvonne Murphy’s damning report into clerical abuse of children in Ireland from 1975 to 2004. ‘It has laid bare a culture of concealment where church leaders prioritised the protection of their own institution above that of vulnerable children in their care As someone who was bought up as a catholic and who had a close relationship with an Order of nuns from an early age, I find myself very torn about this report. I … Read more

We wuz robbed

Gosh, only in Northern Ireland can a hand ball in soccer be seen as a divisive issue. I have little knowledge and less interest in the subject of the Henry hand job, but what I do find fascinating is the on-line response to it. At one point this evening, I got an invitation to join an on-line petition group to demand a replay of the match. I think there were about 500 names added to the list a couple of … Read more

The real but unpopular truth about policing

Policing in Northern Ireland has been a ‘difficult’ subject for a long time, but there are few hard and fast answers about this subject not just here but globally. Studies tend to defy the scientific method, and what might work in one area may not work half a mile up the road for a variety of reasons. In the past couple of days, we have seen here the emotive side of crime on our streets with a spate of burglaries … Read more

Beware the bullocks

You’d think David Dimbleby would know better. After 15 years of continuous broadcasting on Question Time, the inimitable presenter is absenting himself this evening having been injured by his wife’s bullock. Apparently he was loading the bullock onto a trailer when it bolted and he was knocked unconscious. Happily, his injuries are not serious and he intends to be back next week. Bullocks permitting. He’s done well to have avoided bullocks, given his occupation, all these years. John Humphrys is … Read more

The Diana Effect strikes again

I am probably one of the least qualified people to write about the death of Michael Jackson as I know little of his music, have never watched his videos and am quite undisturbed by his passing. However, I think that his death has been noteworthy in a couple of significant ways. Firstly, I think it is fair to say that this time the internet definitively showed what it is capable of in terms of breaking news and keeping up with … Read more

But would you live beside one?

Listening to the coverage of the attacks against the Romanians over the past few days, there seems to have been 2 points of view. On the one hand, blame is being apportioned to the ‘extremists’, to the small handful, to the very few intolerant people who live in every society. However, there has been a very steady stream of callers to radio shows on both sides of the border who make their very rational arguments that while they may not … Read more

Protest for the travelling people

I hope Moochin Photoman can forgive me but when I heard someone had climbed to the top ofthe Big Wheel outside City Hall last night, I assumed he had made the dash for the best view in town. However, it seems that the man who climbed the Wheel was making a protest on behalf of Tavellers. There has been much indiganation, comment and protest about the plight of Romanian travellers here last week, but what of our own Travellers? The … Read more

Aren’t elephants called Dumbo?

I thought that I had suffered about all the indignities that come with the name Sheila over the years, but I was in for a whole new surprise today! It seems that an elephant named Sheila lived in Belfast Zoo in the 1930’s, and during the war she was evacuated to a home in North Belfast to be cared for. I know, I thought it must be April 1st as well. But as the Zoo start to celebrate their anniversary, … Read more

Now to demonstrate what we mean by anti-social behaviour……

Every now and again, you think you’ve seen it all. Then this: Police at a community meeting in Mayobridge had their squad car set on fire while delivering a talk on anti-social behaviour. Apparently they had been invited to discuss a rise in thuggish behaviour in the area and were on the direct receiving end for their troubles. One would have hoped for a little better from the denizens of Mayobridge, but then again is anyone safe these days? Miss … Read more

Dumbo v. The Parades Commission

There was fierce competition for my favourite story this past while. It was a toss up between the Police in West Belfast who were too nervous to attend a scene following the report of a dead body and the Police who asked an elephant to fill out an 11-1 form for parading illegally in BangorI have been a enthusiastic supporter of the PSNI since its inception, but I am finding them increasingly difficult to defend, when stories like this make … Read more

‘the morning after the night before’ Sequence

I’ve always been a big fan of William Crawley and think he is one of the most intelligent and entertaining presenters on the BBC. Tonight, I’ve just seen his documentary on alcohol, Dying for a Drink and he has risen even further in my esteem. Crawley made an amazing journey in this show, and delved into the very strange relationship we have with alcohol in Northern Ireland. He looked at all sides of the issue: the alcoholics, the abstainers and … Read more

Where are all the women?

I feel a little nervous, dipping my toe back in the murky, dangerous waters of Slugger O’Toole with a bit of blogging. Mick brought my attention to an article in the Irish Times this week on women bloggers, and I must admit I found it intriguing. When I started to read the article, I cringed a little when I read that the authors found fame through lipstick…… so to speak. But I worked my way through it, I found that … Read more

‘A colossal error’

My goodness, what a mess. A junior civil servant in the unhappy liaison that is HMRC apparently showed a little too much initiative last month, and when asked by the Audit Office for the details of all the people in the UK receiving Child Benefit, he or she simply copied the information onto 2 discs and popped them in the internal post. The only problem with the scenario is of course that the discs were lost in the post, so … Read more

Unacceptable silence

It’s been a little like the elephant in the room for me all week. Since I first heard of the fire in Omagh, I’ve checked Slugger every day to see what is being said. I am pretty amazed that it was never mentioned or covered by the site. While I appreciate that much is, and remains speculation at this point in time, we are still potentially dealing with one of the most serious examples of domestic violence seen in Northern … Read more

Been there- got the t-shirt

My knowledge of Rugby is severely limited, but I admit I watch the games pretty avidly. Well, any red blooded woman would! I know enough about the procedings to be aware that things are not going quite as well as they could at the moment. Maybe it was this

Less than perfect drivers

Oh yes! A website to expose the less than perfect parkers and drivers in our midst. Shite is the brain child of Niall O’Keefe from County Louth. The site allows people to expose all manner of less than ideal control of the vehicle. I know the subject of poor driving has come up here numerous times in the past, and I have strong feelings about people who wear caps and drive at 10 miles an hour from Hilltown to … Read more