?

Log in

Cén scéal?

Just as promised, right on time, here we have them, the shtories.
Now, people have asked me again and again what the point to all of this was, well, there wasn't much of a point, and who needs one?
The idea just came to me to do it absolutely ages ago (maybe a year?!) when myself and my mortal enemy friend Niamh were swapping 'ghost' stories to scare the shit out of one another because it turned out our family actually had loads. Then I thought, sure why not do something on my blog about all of this? Get a load of peoples stories for other people to get a kick out of.

So the more I thought about it the more I liked it and that's when I thought I'd send out some mails. Which you got. I didn't want to limit it to just freaky stuff because not every family has a rapport with the spirit world. I just wanted to hear whatever people had. And in Ireland, a nation known for storytelling don't you forget, there was some good ones! And I'd just like to thank again all of the punters that took the time to write back to me. I actually do have a couple more that I'll include later.

So without further a-jew here we are now.



Right so here's the sceal... I must have been about 1 or 1 and a half. A pleasant child to say the least. I enjoyed the simpe things in life; lego, cars, transformers cartoons, anything colorful really.. until........

One day my mother was cleaning the living room when a knock came to the door. My mother, in good faith, left me sitting on the living room floor playing with my lego, self etc. While at the door my mother was drawn into a conversation with our caller so left me for a slightly longer period than first intended.
To this day my mother still says she was interrupted from her conversation to the sound of what can only be described as "gargling" (Now i know what you're thinking folks, i had become a raging homosexual at a ridiculously young age. Well that wasn't the case)

My mother returned to the living room to find me sitting on the floor drinking a bottle of brasso! and not only did I drink it, I polished the whole thing (no pun intended).

So I was rushed to the emergency room (poison control unit) to have my stomach pumped, given a few needles and put on some funny syrup to make me better. My mum was always given a quiet word in the ear by the doc not to be such an incompetent biatch and take care of her children properly. I left hospital a couple of days later and i was right as rain.

Two weeks later we had the long awaited arrival of our spanish student (we'll call him neil for conversation's sake) A few weeks before Neil arrived, he had been on the receiving end of some pretty bad burns to his leg and foot. He was well on the mend but needed to treat his wounds with an ointment to help reduce the risk of infection. Because Neil was staying with us for a period of weeks, he brought a supply of ointment to cope with the demand and for fears he couldn't purchase on this fine isle, 'cause lets face it, Ireland is pretty shit.

What Neil didn't know was that i was a mischievous child and pretty much anything i got my hands on, i tasted (that one's for the ladies) So i think you can imagine where this story is heading now. I got my hands on Neil's ointment, popped the "child proof" cap off of it and started chugging.!! Thats when i started to feel off and began to puke pink stuff, even though the ointment was a clear liquid. So off i went again to the poison control unit, where i may as well have had my own room at this stage, and i was treated by Ireland's finest in stomach pumping (seems to me all them guys do these days is pump blue WKD out of 17 year olds, but that's a different story) I was on the road to a full recovery once again but you don't visit the poison control unit twice in a matter of weeks without raising a few eyebrows.

My parents were approached by a number of individuals from The Department of Social Services for "a chat". They were taken to seperate rooms and quizzed on why they were basically trying to murder me. At that stage the Garda were involved as a precaution and both my parents were refused access to my ward where i was flaking out with all my pals and staff from the poison control unit.

Anyway it all worked out alright in the end. Social Services realised it was a classic yet very serious mistake. My parents were allowed to see me in the hospital although them eyebrows never did come down from alot of people, and Neil returned safely to Spain. Although I think he lost the leg in the end. Nah i'm kidding, he was stabbed in an alley after a concert in Madrid.


- Brian Sheridan



Here's an interesting story about me and my brother Ciaran.
We were mad about the programme Gladiators when we were younger, and imitated them all the time. Well one saturday evening we got one of our dressing gown robes and took the thing you tie around your waist to keep them closed ,and tied it to the top of the stairs as a rope. So I'm there holding it , and the next thing i remember is waking up in hospital, with these nurses checking my blood pressure, and hearing beeps and bops.
Turns out my brother Ciaran pushed me down the stairs while i was holding the rope, i managed to keep hold of the rope, swung over the banisters into my hallway, and got my arm stuck behind the radiator. I missed Halloween, i had it in the hospital, and i remember meeting this girl there, i think i was about 6 at the time
thats my story

P.s. - Ciaran wrote a letter to The Star newspaper and got 10 pounds for it about the situation, and how sorry he was.


- Gerard Lenehan



My dad was in the army for 26 years like, so he had a rifle in the house for years.... one night him and mam were asleep and heard noises downstairs. mam woke dad up so he could go downstairs and deal with the burglars. so dad got up, grabbed his gun (which wasn't functioning anymore, but it'd still scare the bejayziz outta ya) and went downstairs... he heard someone havin a gawk through all the presses in the kitchen, so he kicked the door in and pointed the gun square in the face of...

My sister, who was 7 at the time, and just went to get a glass of water...

He got rid of the gun...


- Graham Healy



When me and my mate Colin were about 6, another one of our mates, Duke, his brother got a new SNES console (it's a gaming system for those who aren't aware). We thought it was the greatest thing ever when we were allowed play it one time. Like pretty much was the best thing that had entered our lives by far up til then.
I used to get minded on my road by a woman at the top of the road when my parents were in work. I was being minded by her on this particular day I'm about to speak of. So me and my fellow 6 year old mate wanted to play the console - REAL bad. Like nothing else was on our minds, possessed men if you will. So we called for Duke but noone was in. So basically we thought "shit how'll we play it?". I remembered his back door didn't have a lock so we somehow got out his backgarden and entered his house, somewhat illegally.
We went to the sittin room but he'd put it away. Back in the day there was usually only one telly and ya couldn't just leave yer console connected to it so ya'd put it away after ya used it. We went up to the brother's room, he'd'a been about 11 at the time. We started to basically thrash his room lookin for it - not maliciously just as an eager 6 year old would do. So we found it and brought it downstairs and tried to plug it in. We weren't succeeding as shit wasn't as simple as it is now - also we were 6 or somethin mad young.
Here's where the dick hit the fan. When we had entered the house by the unlocked back door we had set the house alarm off. But it was one'a the ones that only the bell outside the house rang. As kids we didn't really take notice of it as it wasn't sweets, or a ball, or cartoons. But everyone on the road (parents and children and the like) had gathered outside the house because they could see two figures running around the place making a mess frantically doing something trying to move the TV. It wasn't clear we were two innocent kids as there was only that foggy kinda glass beside the front door to look through.
So someone had called the ma of the house and she'd come home to find us and everyone was relieved but man we were in so much trouble. Pretty much more we'd ever been in in our lives
.

- Ross O'Farrell



(1)
My bro was doin grinds once for his leavin, when my ma was goin to pick him up she parked a bit down the road, but my bro didnt know and got into the wrong car. he threw his bag in the back seat and sat in the front. he only noticed it wasnt my ma when he sat down. idiot..


(2)
My uncle Gerard was livin in America before i was even born, the people were so gullible that he told girls that he was part of the IRA and was on the run. he has a scar on his face from havin surgery as a kid and told them someone cut him with a knife. the house he was stayin in was down the road them the amityville house, and he was arrested cause him and his mate pretended to have guns in the back garden where the grass was mad high, just jokin with people, but he was questioned then about being a part of the IRA, obviously he wasnt, but then he was let out they had his name.

He was out one night and everyone was drinkin, so they drove home which ya can get away with, they were stopped, and out of a megaphone his name was called, the police had their guns out and everything, they thought he had a gun, his mate got out and said he was my uncle, and my uncle then legged it! After that, he had a domestic with his then girlfriend (who had my long lost cousin) and she broke his arm, but he got arrested AGAIN, and they put him in the back of the truck. Anyway, there was a teenager there and he asked him,''Why are you here?", the kid says "I got bad grades in school and my parents didnt like it so i killed them". Crazy Americans.
I dont think hes allowed back.



(3)
So my aunty is a hairdresser and does the usual going to peoples houses. And she'd hear some stories, but this is the best one ive heard.
One day she was at her friends house doin her hair. Her name is Louise and she was talking about her friend, who my aunty doesnt know. Anyway, her friend was on a skiing holiday but wasnt the best at skiing. So one day she went out, her first day trying it, and went on the lifts. She got off, but as she did her bottoms came down, but she couldnt fix them because she was already skiing down the slope and couldnt stop! So she was there, skiing down, showin off.
If that wasnt embarrassing enough for her, the next day she went to the ski lodge and went up to the bar. There was a guy sittin there with his arms and legs in casts. So she says to him "Jayzus what happened to you?" and he says "I seen this woman yesterday goin down the slope with her trousers around her ankles, I laughed so much i was skiing down the slope, couldnt control myself with the laughter and skiing, i crashed and now I'm in casts" She never admitted that it was her going down the slopes with no pants on.

- Michelle Doyle



Right so my Granddad never knew his dad! My Great Nan had him when she was in her 30's and was single (this was 1940's Inner City Dublin). Recently my uncle had been looking into the family tree, and he hits a dead end there obviously, but at a closer look we realised that my great nan worked as a maid to a Priest in town (let's just call it 'District 9'!). She worked and lived in the church, but never married! Makes me wonder sometimes! Papa don't preach!

But it gets juicier. A really good mate of mine who i met in Waterford was telling me all about her family and it turns out her mams side of the family grew up on the same street as my dads, and they know each other! Then she went into detail about her dads side. They lived in 'District 9' too. Her great uncle was a Priest and he lived at his parish. There are only 2 Catholic churches there! So it's possible we're distantly related because of that priest!


- Mr. X.



I can't think of anything utterly brilliant at the moment, but I figured I'd regale you with the Kathleen May incident until I remember something better. It's a cautionary tale of how I made my first ever nemisis at the tender age of 3.

It was the night of my grandmother's 50th birthday and my mam had organized a surprise party for her. I'd known all along but somehow managed to keep my tiny dribble drowned mouth shut about it, probably because my dad threatened to lock me in the pidgeon loft if I told anyone what was going on and pidgeons don't BLINK, alright? That's not normal, and massively unsettling when you take it upon yourself to look them in the eye until they do and they just DON'T.
Anyway, I vividly remember what I was wearing that night because it was a pair of those velvet leggings with the little hooks that go under your feet and a white shirt that had this bad ass little chain of jewels that fastened between the collars - in short, I was looking well to say the least. I remember throwing celebratory shapes to every Michael Jackson song that was played that night, culminating in a rendition of the moonwalk that ended with the splits and left my grandmother in tears. Of pure joy, I assure you.

ANYWAY. Toward the end of the night (my night anyway, it was about quarter to eight which I remember because I was excited about being allowed stay up to watch Eastenders when we got home) I was helping my uncle clear away some of the plates and stuff by very helpfully eating the remaining crumbs of icing. And this BITCH Kathleen May ...

I should probably give you a bit of backstory on the wench. She's lived across the road from my grandparents since they moved in, so for roughly a thousand years. She's one of these religious do-gooders, always volunteering to give out communion at mass like she's auditioning for the fucking X Factor or something, and she ran this thing every easter where she'd sell little knitted chickens with creme eggs shoved inside them? Dodgy from the off, but even worse when you know that I was made to knit those things as soon as I was old enough to hold a pair of knitting needles and count stitches. She basically ran a Catholic sweatshop. And she always gave out stale fruit at Halloween, what kind of person does that? So yeah, I didn't like her to begin with, but I'm a fair person, even as a three year old I was willing to give her the benefit of the doubt.

Until that faithful night.

Upon seeing my adorable angelic self eating UNWANTED icing off a plate, you won't actually believe what she did. She grabbed me by the wrist (my tiny, chubby, cherubic wrist) and SLAPPED me. Hard, too! Who does that!!!!!!!!!!!! Who slaps a THREE YEAR OLD? For eating LEFTOVER icing??? A beautiful, precious, talented three year old wearing jewels and velvet leggings????? No person at all, I tell you. A monster and nothing less!

Nineteen years later, we remain firm nemisi. She still tries to give me stale fruit every halloween, I somehow forget to leave enough space between stitches for a creme egg to fit up her chickens and if her house gets soundly egged at least twice a year, well I wouldn't know a thing about that at all, officer.

God I hate that woman.


- Tracy Murphy



I think I had ADHD as a child but it went undiagnosed so I apologise in advance for these stories.
So the first story happened when i was 4 and goin to playschool and ya know how u get the first day where they bring u down to the big school and u get to stay there to prepare you for goin to proper school. So im there anyways with all these little dopes from class and i decide im madz, so the teacher goes out the room for a second and when she comes back in im standing in her chair tryna write on the board and teach her class like i seen her doing, but i i couldnt write so it was just me dribbling on myself and doin scribbles on the board in front of everyone. she came over to me and took me down off her chair and told me ma to watch me coz i might have learning issues.

The second was when i was the ripe age of 5. My mother signed me up to Irish dancing classes in the local community centre. So as i was going somewhere new and exciting, my little five year old brain decided that I better look my best so i legged it into my ma's room and stole her nail varnish and lipstick and hid them in my bag.
So me ma drops me off at the community centre and I leg it to the jacks to prepare myself. took the nail varnish and lipstick out and began to make myself gor-geous. but as i was only five i didnt have the steady hand it took to apply nail varnish properly so i painted my whole hand, and half the community centre bathroom, the same applied to the lipstick, smeared it all over my face "like i seen my ma doin".
So i come out of the jacks, thinkin im a bleedin ride and the teacher takes one look at me and the jacks and he goes mad. calls my ma and tells her never to bring her daughter to irish dancing again. and thats the story of how i got banned from the community centre aged 5.
So fast forward a few years and me and my ma and my brother (i was about 10) were goin to kilnamangh shopping centre coz that was the place to be back then. so im on my FX rollerblades and my eclipse jeans (coz its 1996) and im comin home. so we stop at a traffic lights at the top of kingswood and we're waiting to cross so i stopped and took a rest at the railings. So i kinda kneeled into the railings inbetween the gaps and me legs got stuck, and i was on rollerblades so i couldnt get out! So i started screamin for me ma and she and my brother tried to help me get out but they couldnt so my ma had to call the firebrigade and they had to come all the way down, stop traffic on the road and pull the railings apart so i could get out.the whole traffic community got a good stare that day, i was scarlet.
anyways, u prob think theyre ridiculous but they were funny at the time. and i have plenty more where that came from - i was an insane (or just downright unlucky) child.


- Emma O'Neill



The best I can do is remember a time that my mother was saying goodbye to our next-door neighbour at the front door and while that was going on I pulled the teapot down on top of myself from the cooker, with the sweeping brush. When my ma heard me scream she ran into the kitchen in a wild panic but slipped on/in the spilled tea. All the while my two sisters were in tears laughing and my ma was fuming at them. She covered me in Savalon and I've lived to tell the tale.

Slightly off the point, but I always thought it was hilarious that my friend's granny called Whoopie Goldberg 'Whoopsie Goldstar'.


- Richie Dunne



When i was younger I had, like most teenage girls, posters of various pop atists on my wall in my bedroom. For some strange reason i had it in my head that whoever was on the poster had microscopic cameras in the eyes of their picture and could look at you whenever they wanted. For that reason and that reason alone, when i was going to bed or getting changed i used to put blue tac over the eyes of the posters so that Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera could no longer perv on me.


Here's another one about me being a cunt.

When i was five my aunt told me i'd "forget my head if it wasnt screwed on", of course i hadn't a clue what that meant and i took an utter spazzer! I thought she was really offending me so i 'ran away'.....got about 10 houses down the road and knocked into the neighbours (who were complete arseholes and my aunt hated them) anywho i proceeded to tell them all about my aunt and how she BEATS ME and i even showed them bruises on my legs (that i got from being a clumsy child not from her hitting me). Needless to say they were horrified and told me to stay in their house while they went to discuss the issues with my aunt. She ended up coming down to the house and dragging me out, i got a crack on the arse for that one! hahaha good times man! :D


- Danielle Cleary



Right well I've known the last few days what family story I'd be tellin ya but just never got round to it.

There's two stories actually, both short but sweet, both happened when I was a kid I think, both involve my brother and both are completely true! The second one is the main one but the first was hilarious.

The first one happened when we shared bunk beds in the box room. He was on the top bed and decided to stick his foot down the side at the wall to annoy me. So I grabbed his foot, start pullin it and before ya know it he was stuck between the top bed and the wall! He literally couldn't get out but i was laughin so hard at how his legs were just danglin there ha ha ha ha ha. I eventually had to get my Ma and Da, who also found it hilarious, to get him out ha ha ha.

The second one was crazy. Me and Martin got out of bed, got to the landing, looked down the stairs and were like "What the hell?!!!". To our suprise there were two SHEEP at out front door!!! Ha ha ha ha. They were in the garden just starin through the porch window. We opened the door and just stared back at them in shock. Imagine openin your front door and findin two sheep there. Eventually they left and we never heard of them again. Ha ha.

- Derek Ryan



Okay so this is one that I'll have to post a link to, it's a quite haunting story that my friend Paul had published on trueirishstories.com. It's really quite something when you sit back and think about it after giving it a read.

http://www.trueirishstories.com/2010/03/bean-sidhe-by-pol-mac-reannachain.html



And last but not least, the very real and very strange ghost story that got this whole thing goin'.



My mother went to stay in my aunties house in England which used to be a small village school in Nottingham in the 1940s. My mam and my auntie stayed up late one evening chatting and mam went to her bedroom and heard Eileen creaking up the landing to the bathroom. Mam waitied but she never heard my auntie go back, but she thought no more of it . Throughout the night she heard the same creaking stumbling noises, and mentioned it to my auntie the next morning.
Eileen told her when they first moved in they were terrified and could hear the very same noises, About a year after they bought the house Eileen saw two elderly men staring at the house in her front garden and she went out to talk to them. Turns out they had been pupils in that school, after a while Eileen mentioned the creaking metallic noises that you could hear on the landing in the middle of the night. They werent surprised at all and told my auntie bout the little girl with metallic callipers on her legs who had been in the school with them and died there. She was a boarder that was made trudge up and down the landing in bid to strenghten her calves....


- Niamh McClelland

Tags:

A leave of absence

I'm writing a short message here to say that I'll be gone for a while.
Obviously over the last while I haven't wrote a whole lot but just to make it official there is good reason behind that and it will continue for another few weeks. I've plenty of things to say but I've had to see an Optician recently in regards to my eyes, they're suffering basically and I need to give them a solid break, or at least as much of a break as I can give them considering most of my college work is done on my laptop.

If I'm to do half as well as I'd hoped in college this semester I'm basically going to have to change my lifestyle for a while, and unfortunately this means much less regular visits to the land of blog. However, I can assure you that my return will be nothing less than spectacular, I cannot yet give you an exact date as to when that will be but expect nothing less than a fireworks display, an air show, and a reunited Led Zeppelin performing at the wine reception.


Hasta luego.



Okay so I forgot to do this earlier, but here I've posted links to some of my friends blogs that whoever has come across this one (my own I mean) may also be interested in. They're nothing alike, in any way, but I suppose the same could be said about their personalities. Which, I think you'll agree, makes these blogs and life in general more interesting. Unfortunately none of them are blogs written by drama queens dying to show you their knockers, so lads, don't hold your breath. I did and I passed out.

col_22 - I'd imagine the people I know that read mine would like this.

philforest - I'm not sure he writes much anymore. But if it's a semi paranoid rant about some conspiracy or other that you wanna read about then Phil's your man.

Theboywhofoundfear - Last updated in 1962. Which annoys me, because I enjoy when he writes.


There ya are now my lovelies.

This is something that I've been thinking about for quite a while.
There's a few pieces of music I listen to often enough that have this effect on me that I feel like I'm somewhere else.
A piece of music that I listen to that unfailingly provokes images of a certain place in my mind. And I was wondering does anyone else have any other examples that are different to the ones I have below? Because honestly I'd love to hear some.

Now I don't mean like, you know, that you remember things like being in the Plaza when you hear Usher on the radio, or being in the doctors office getting your Syphilis treated when you hear the Kings of Leon. I mean a place around the world that just captures your imagination every time you hear a certain piece of music. A city or a country, perhaps a place you've never even been to, but to which a certain essence of seems to just come out through the music.

Here's three examples of pieces that to me seem, perhaps inspired by, or just strongly related to the places in question.
All of these examples have obvious associations with particular films, as the music was used to bring alive the shots of the cities the scenes of the film were set in. So the connections aren't exactly incidental. But there's something so obvious and fitting about those connections that I can't look at, or hear, one without the other.



First off is 'Rhapsody In Blue' by George Gershwin. A Jewish composer from Brooklyn who's music was used throughout Woody Allen's crowning achievement (well as far as I'm concerned) 'Manhattan' (which is a movie, he didn't build the city!). I guess I don't really have to say it, but everytime I hear it, I think of Manhattan.
Not exactly the modern day Manhattan either, more the one from Gershwin's time, in the 30s. 'Rhapsody In Blue' is probably one of the most special pieces of music ever written, and nothing else could possibly be more perfect to hear while looking at such spectacular shots of The Big Apple itself. It's like the music is trying to sum up the city, it's hecticness, it's constant shifting, it's beauty. I've always wanted to go to Manhattan, and it's things like this that completely and utterly glorify it in my mind.
I urge anyone reading this to listen to 'Rhapsody In Blue'. The soundtrack to 'Manhattan' is one of the few I've ever bought. The link that I've put up here isn't the exact one from the soundtrack, which had Gary Graffman on piano backed by the New York Philharmonic and is absolutely perfect. But this is the best one I could find, and despite the video quality it's pretty much fantastic. The pianist is unbelievably talented.

Rhapsody In Blue (Part One)

Rhapsody In Blue (Part Two)



I thought to myself, what photos can I find that sums up this imagery?
Nothing came close to what I wanted to show you.

So here is the opening of the movie Manhattan. Nothing comes close to it. The shots of Central Park, the city lit up in black and white, the (either The Mets Or The Yankees?) baseball stadium with the subway passing at the bottom of the screen. It's utterly magnificent. 'He adored New York City'. How couldn't you?
Manhattan Intro



Second is a piece not on the same level as something like 'Rhapsody In Blue' but I love it nonetheless.
Air's 'Alone In Kyoto'. Which, if you know me at all, is the beginning of my very e-mail address.
Here again we have another film association. My favourite ever film in fact, 'Lost In Translation'. Where this piece of music is played during a scene set in the place which inspired it. Kyoto, Japan.
Air are French. Kyoto is not in France. But. I think this is important. To westerners, even at this day and age, I think that Japan still seems like it's on another planet, something with similarities to where we're from and where we live, but still something completely different and far away. And it is. And what I like about this piece of music is that it's not played on conventional Japanese instruments or anything, it's more a musical imagining of that place from a western point of view. If you get me. And I think it's beautiful.

Alone In Kyoto















Last but not least is Yann Tiersen's music from the film Amelie. Gorgeous film and gorgeous music.
I bought the soundtrack to this movie also, and I remember being in Belgium last summer with friends, and in the house we stayed in we had the CD playing quite a bit, especially by me when I was doing the cleaning up!
Despite the fact we were in a French speaking country that time, we were not in France!, where this film and the music from it was made. And despite my not overly enthusiastic opinion of France in general, hearing this music only reminds me of how magnificent the country, and of course, the city of Paris, can be. Paris, a city of such culture and grandeur that when James Joyce left Zurich for a business related seven days in the city, he ended up staying for twenty years.
Paris has a lot of problems. But I will not deny it has a great charm and it is beautiful. This music, as sad, choking even, that it is, will always supply me with the images of the Paris that encaptivated James Joyce.

La Valse D'Amelie (Orchestre)

La Valse D'Amelie (Piano)









Toddlerus Maximus

Here's a big load of photo's of me as a nipper!
Last month when it was coming up to my 21st I asked my dad to find a photo of me as a kid that I could use for the invitations, he brought out a massive bag of them, and this is what I found. I'd never even seen these before up until a few weeks ago. I couldn't believe the sheer amount of photos that we have of friends and relatives, bags of them, thousands, and none of them are in albums or anything, they're all just thrown into plastic bags!

I never actually got any invitations made in the end. I got too preoccupied scanning and cataloguing as many photos as I could onto the home PC. Which led to a million different problems and many monotonous hours in front of a scanner.
But hey presto, here's a big bunch of them. Complete with background info and quotes from a time when I was even more fucking mental than I am now. Hurrah!


Here's me looking rather dapper in my kickin green jumper and precise colourful shoes back when I lived in Crumlin. Behind that wall in the background was, as far as I can remember, a big field with lots of trees and one solitary house (or cottage maybe) smack bang in the middle of it. It looked kinda spooky, like the witches house in Hocus Pocus or something. And I had to try get to the top of that wall to see it, which I could do because I was a great little climber.



That's me, my cousins Carolyn and Chris, and Anto 'pelvic thrusting his way to the top', as he said himself.



I'm two years older than Carolyn and there she's already taller than me, the BITCH. At least I can play racket guitar miles better than she can.
How'd ya like that Car!
Anto's not exactly one for knowing the direction of the audience.



Look at his big smiley face.



There's me doing my Jimmy Page impression.
And Col doing his Buckethead impression.



And that is my dad. Kindly allowing me to add screaming backing vocals.



I once saw David Longstreth from the Dirty Projectors wear the exact same jumper.
I think.



And there's me doing a bit of an Alan Partridge impression.
It's amazing how clearly you can see the shed. That entire shed is now covered in different bushes and wallclimbers and plants and it's not visible to the eye at all. A lot of people didn't believe me when they were sittin in my kitchen and I said, 'You know we've a shed down there, and it's actually pretty big'. I've had to go down into it a few times to prove its existence.



'I'm waiting for my man, 26 dollars in my hand'.  



I included this picture to show you my cousin Chris as a baby. Aul Curly Sue there.
The reason for that is because, if you can find me an uglier child, I will personally throw up all over the place.
He might be living the dream in Australia right now, but I can find solace in the fact that I was never that ugly as a child. Even if I'm not half as good looking as he is now.
Redneck head on him.



Me and Anto had those grappler toys for years.



What I found funny about that Randy Pausch video I posted a link to a good while back, the one about 'Achieving your childhood dreams', was that he actually had a picture of himself 'dreaming' as a child. And I'm delighted to say I have one also. I look lost in my thoughts already, at the age of maybe 3 or something. That's one of my favourite photographs of me ever. My friend Michelle loves it because of how biiiiiiig my eyes are.



'Yeah, yeah, call me, yeah'.



I love this one because it looks like I'm going mad having a dance or something and reefing whatever things I can find around the room.



Keep your cake, I want snots.



Eskimo Tom.



There's me looking achingly shy. Which I guess I was to a degree, like every kid.



I'm taking my caption from Facebook because I reckon if it ain't broke don't fix it.
'Me mot was a rotter and I got physically sick at the sight of her'.



'You think you can keep me on this baby leash for long?
Oh boy you are naive,
As soon as you ain't lookin,
I'm bailin,
I'm gettin the fuck outta here man,
And there will be mischief'.




Look at me big happy faaaaaace!



Here's us in primary school on a field trip, can't remember where that is. It's funny because I still pose the same way in photos now!
That's Saul with his gob open and lookin simple. I suppose this photograph is testament to how long I've known him.
That's Fiona to my left. Who was in my class most of my life, even through to third year.
It's probably obvious enough, but i school I was the class clown, always lookin for laughs and getting into trouble, and then gettin hidin's off my ma when I got home.



Another total favourite of mine.
That's my da holding my bro who looks fresh out of the oven there.
And there's some of my old pals from Crumlin. Me with my arm around that girl (who's name I can't remember) that looks like I'm trying to get stuck into.



When I found this picture I couldn't believe it.
I'm not one for arcades, I can't remember going into them much as a kid, but when I was in Italy a couple of years ago I had this real knack for the car games in the small on-site arcade, I even got the highest score. This maybe explains that a bit. I mean, I actually have no idea how to drive.



Me quiffin it up like a happy Morrissey.



That guy in the background is thinking - 'How the hell did I lose to that kid?'.



Howeya girls!



There's me having an aul hug of Santa.



And there's my dad trying to feed me to a dog.



'And if the dog doesn't eat ya, this horse will'.



Here's me in my happy Luftwaffe days.



I think that's when we had bunkbeds.
Anto used to sneak up to my bed the little bollox!



Back to Crumlin.
The guy on the left is the kid on the right from the photo earlier. I think his sister legged it away because of my advances.
That in the middle is Christopher, only pronounced 'Christ-off-er', which is slightly different but reeeeally weird. I can't remember where he came from but he was my best friend when I lived there. But Jaysus we used to batter each other!



Now there's a haircut that you could set your watch to.
I don't think this is my first day of school, surely I'm too old there am I?
That's the school right behind me, it's a one minute walk and I was always late, and that's my next door neighbour David beside me. He still lives next door. He's camp and slow and everyone slags him. I still say hi to him despite the not so great relationship we had growin up.



'Seriously, does anyone wanna switch seats?'.



I saved this photo as, 'Mank baby'.



That's my confirmation day, and my old school teacher Ms. Allen. She was really nice.



'Da I know how to play would ya piss off'.



'We're going streeeeeeaki.... Ah shit there's ma'.



You wouldn't believe what you figure out about yourself when you see kiddy pics. When I was young I wanted to be a Paleontologist. Fancy that. Maybe it was just because I had a jumper with a dinosaur on it. Wearin slacks.



If Buddy Holly hugged Easter Eggs that's what he'd look like.



'Come on, I'll take yas all on'.
The pure concentration going into my dribbling.



As a kid I jumped into a lake in St. Stephens Green in town that was heavily polluted just because my ball fell in. I spent two years in and out of hospital because my lungs were that damaged. In that picture I can sense my utter urge to dive into that lake.
I was a wild kid. I drove a tricycle down a main road when I was three years old. That was after I'd climbed a 6 foot high fence to get into my front garden to get on my tricycle. I also jumped out of a car because, again, my ball fell out. I split my head open trying to kick a ball while cycling a bike at the same time. I almost died quite a few times. And I mean that.



But they all lived happily ever after.




Social interview

Nothing much to write that hasn't already been written.
Basically, here is a conversation between me and my friend Tracy that took place a few hours ago. She's a friend of mine from college, and lately there's been a few conversations between the two of us that I kind of thought I should do something with. Because they were brilliant. I guess once two Philosophy students get into it there's just no stopping them. Anything that's interesting and challenging we're on like white on rice. God bless our cotton socks and pure lul hearts. So, without asking for anything in particular and leaving it entirely up to her. I got her to compile a set of questions to fire at me that I'd just have to answer on the spot.

And here it is.



Tracy says:
TOM MARDY, THIS IS YOUR LIFE.
Do you think someone who'd had the exact same upbringing in your exact situation would have the same opinions and ideas that you have?

Tom says:
Well I'm glad you didn't start off with anything too taxing
Yes I'm fine thank you
Hmmm
Do you mean the exact same upbringing, as in, my parents?? Or, in my area?

Tracy says:
Everything. Literally everything that happened to you as a kid, they'd have had the same parents, everything. They'd have your life.

Tom says:
I can't imagine anyone else having the EXACT same life as me, right down to my parents, and having such vastly different opinions. I mean everyone's different, right down to their DNA so yeah, I guess there would be differences, but I doubt that if I was a staunch Fianna Fail type guy, they'd be a Sinn Feiner
I suppose my brother would be a good example of someone who's had a similar upbringing as me, and he is a very similar person to me. Or at least he is similar to me now, not when I was 17. He's been able to learn from my mistakes and can use the best of my knowledge also, regarding things like movies, music, football teams! etc.

Tracy says:
So you think that who you are is a direct result of the things you've experienced? You don't think people can be born possessing certain qualities, or capable of things that can't be changed by their upbringing?

Tom says:
I absolutely believe in all 3
I don't think humanity could ever be that easy to figure out. As in, one of those categories was the absolute truth of everybody
You of course, learn, as you grow older don't you? And how much you learn can certainly be affected by your upbringing. Such as in really poor communties people might not have the opportunities to learn as others do, and therefore they probably don't grow as much. I guess it's the more you know the more you grow. Eh, if you can excuse the accidental poetry
And then there are definitely people that are born with certain abilities. Einstein didn't study more to become a genius. He was born with a gift. It's even said after he died, the coroner took out his brain when he wasn't allowed, and discovered that part of his brain was bigger than a normal persons. Maybe that allowed him to see so much more
And also, Lionel Messi, he has a natural ability, he's been brilliant since he was very young, some people have natural ability at things. Others don't. I haven't much natural ability at anything. At least not extraordinary natural ability. Took me 5 minutes to learn how to play guitar. It took me about 2 minutes to lose interest however

Tracy says:
Annnnd are there any things about yourself, ideas or beliefs you hold, that you think you'd still possess no matter what your upbringing had been like?

Tom says:
Probably not. I mean I'd like to think so. It's like what you said about some of the more staunch Christians in the world, they say they have 'Natural faith'. As in they were BORN with it. I mean not to get too into that but, eh, I don't really think that's possible. I doubt if the person that said that, had they grown up in like, Haiti, or something, would be saying the same thing at all
I don't really even get why I said, 'I'd like to think so'. Maybe sometimes, it's so hard to figure out who you are, that you wished some parts of you you were born with. I guess then you'd have a foundation for who you are wouldn't you? And you could make decisions, based on that foundation. That would be easier for people maybe. Staunch Christians anyway.

Tracy says:
Yeahh, it'd definitely be nice to have certain basic notions about yourself, things you knew were absolutely true, something you'd always possessed. If environment and upbringing lend so much to the ideas we hold true though, does that make it alright for people to think really terrible things? Because it's just how they were raised to think?

Tom says:
No I don't think you can justify criminality as a result of upbringing. Not everyone has the given opportunity as everyone else, but that isn't to say they haven't got it in them to change that. I guess that's why everyone loved Slumdog Millionaire. The story of the underdog's success. Okay that's not to say everyone can just be on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire and make a fortune
But people have at least got the potential inside them to at least not be CRIMINALS. Some people just prefer that way of life and they couldn't be bothered trying to turn things around for themselves any other way

Tracy says:
But in the case of most serial killers and things, they don't have the mental capacity to know that what they're doing is wrong, sometimes they don't even have the ability to stop what they're doing. According to psychology. Do you believe that?

Tom says:
To a degree. I mean I think the easy way out for a lot of serial killers is to plead 'insanity' is it not? Doesn't make them all insane. Might still make them fucked up but I know plenty of fucked up people that aren't insane. And it works both ways, some people can be born with natural gifts or intelligence, or both (Da Vinci), others can be born with screws lose. To put it mildly
I guess, you might not be born with particular beliefs, but different people might have different capacities to understand things. Though I don't think it varies tooo much. I mean for every Einstein there's a Ted Bundy, then about a billion people in between

Tracy says:
And in the case of people who are fucked up to the point that they're a danger to everyone around them, what's the solution? If someone committed a load of murders, would you see it as acceptable to sentence them to the death penalty? What's the alternative?

Tom
says:
The death penalty is an odd one, to me if you are a danger to everyone around you it makes no odds to me if you are dead or behind bars, as long as you're unable to harm that's fine by me. I guess the government might think 'This guy should be dead because he has the capacity to do so much bad things', but then they'd also tell you their prisons are immaculate and noone could ever escape
So I don't see the benefit of killing the guy exactly, but then again, I'm prone to massive anger, if someone killed my family I don't think I'd be happy knowing the guy's behind bars. I'd probably want to kill him myself let alone wait for a trial, a sentence, a suspended sentence, a hearing bla bla bla. I'd probably be happier straight away with him dead.
Though I guess, I have learned quick fixes don't fly so well

Tracy says:
But here's my issue with life imprisonment. It costs LOADS. So you have this lad that is never going to get out of prison, is never going to contribute to society positively, sitting there costing the education and health systems money. Why not just kill him?

Tom says:
Well, that is a good point
It's hard to come back from right away, but I guess that's what makes the question so difficult, if you thought about it more it might not be so easy. Such as, who gives you the right to play God? Can a government that's supposedly a Christian one ever justify killing someone? I mean thou shalt not kill and that crap you know? It makes economical sense, maybe not 'spiritual sense'
I guess you might say that's a point humanitarians could make, 'Organised religion is holding us back, if we could kill all the insane more kids could go to school'. Not exactly a catchy slogan, but it's worth thinking about

Tracy says:
But it's not just killing someone who's insane. It's killing someone who has already killed others, someone who has been sentenced to life in prison, someone who'll never have a life outside of prison again. What's the point in keeping them alive for that?

Tom says:
None. There's none. You're completely right. However, that's you being right in the case of the current system. What if it changed? What if, instead of the insane serial killers were just locked up? They were given jobs, manual labour type jobs, that could cut the costs somewhere else? Maybe you could give one of them the job of cleaning all of the dirty blackboard erasers in schools?
One guy just banging erasers together for 40 years or so

Tracy says:
So people who've been sentenced to life in prison just become property of the state then?

Tom says:
Well yeah, I mean they already are. May as well give them something constructive to do. Not constructive for them, something God awfully annoying for them, but helpful somewhere else

Tracy says:
So if someone commits a crime bad enough, they can be completely stripped of their freedom and basic human rights?

Tom says:
Yeah. Isn't that already the case of a life sentence? No more freedom. Basic human rights I think should stand. I don't think wardens should be given the right to beat the living crap out of them everyday. Feed them clean them and make use of them, that would be good. Then give their organs to someone that needs them when they die. Although, it could end up being like Snake's hair in The Simpsons

Tracy says:
I agree, but I think people would have an issue with putting them to work for the state. Sitting in prison getting degrees online and cybering with weird american women is a far cry from being put to work. But I think it's a good solution. A harsh opinion, but a necessary one. Are there any opinions someone can have that automatically make you think they're someone you want nothing to do with?

Tom says:
Absolutely
But you'd be surprised, I knew a born again Christian in college, he was a guy in my Spanish class named Sean, from South Africa, he whole heartedly believed the Earth was 6000 years old. But it didn't bother me. I thought, that is fucking ridiculous, you're kiddin me!  It was like, I don't agree with him at all, but this is all he knows how to be, you can't change him, so why bother trying?
I mean as much as I think that's all full of shit. To the point that you sort of believe people can be brain washed, and as much as he had the POTENTIAL to piss me of, he never really pissed me off, he barely ever talked about it. He did have a mate however that told me I was definitely going to hell because I didn't go to church every Sunday. He can fuck off

Tracy says:
So it's only when other people's beliefs encroach on your own that you're not into it?

Tom says:
Exactly. Sometimes peoples reactions to what I say genuinely amuses me, it's like, from their point of view I'm saying 'If you listen to shit music, I think you're a cunt'. But in reality, I really couldn't care less. I don't cry because Britney's ahead of Animal Collective in the charts. I really don't care. I mean I might have a bit when I was younger
I do honestly remember looking at the charts one day when I must have been 15 or 16, and this new record I liked was at like number 10 or something on the list, and I thought, 'Oh no, these guys must be so offended, after all of their hard work, they're behind to THIS?'. And that made me feel sort of, sad. But then I grew up. And I don't think even I'd mind being behind Britney in the charts
I don't think I'd mind being behind Britney at all to be honest

Tracy says:
So would you say that individual happiness is more important than overall success?

Tom says:
Yeah definitely. Individual integrity too. Selling out purely to get some cash doesn't really win you any points in my book. I'm not against people making money, I think Grizzly Bear cracked the charts when they released their record this year. But rarely is success and quality in proportion with one another, in any walk of life
Take Christianity for example, it's a religion yeah but a business too, and it's had a remarkable amount of success considering the sheer depth of it's falsities and problems

Tracy says:
Hmm. So what do you think it'd take for you to be truly happy? Would it be down to you, or would it depend on others too?

Tom says:
It always depends on a lot of things. 'True happiness' is a myth. I spent a lot of time in my life striving and striving for things I'm not even sure exist. People concentrate too much in looking for happiness rather than just being happy. I mean, what is it, 'There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way'. I mean it's not that easy. But you'd be surprised how much it can work, if you're not afraid to let it to
I don't expect ever to be truely happy. What, I'll have, the perfect wife, I'll have genius kids, I'll have accomplished everything I ever wanted, I'll be a huge success, even if that means I'll have no money, but spades of artistic integrity, I'll be adored, I'll live in Brooklyn and I'll be able to see Manhattan from my window. No. That's just not going to happen. I just want to make the best of what I can. And be the best I can be, knowing I'm doing that makes me happy enough. It's not possible for me to be Einstein but it's not as if that means I should give up whatever I'm doing. Do what you can do. Then have 6 cans, space out and listen to Deerhunter. The best thing you can do in life is make it easier for you to be genuinely happy

Tracy says:
Do you think you deserve to have all those things that would make you truly happy? Aside from whether it's possible or likely.

Tom says:
Yeah. Why not? Am I a murderer? Do I do cruel things to people, act like an asshole to everyone? I think anyone that's just got a good heart deserves those things. Noone's perfect, that's no excuse to be a dick, but there's no reason you can't still be perfectly happy. Or satisfied

Tracy says:
No, I totally agree. I just wondered whether you were one of those people who get all gracious when it comes to saying they think they deserve to have the things they want.

Tom says:
Na, call it my upbringing I guess. I never got the best toys for Christmas. I left that to my more well off cousins. I couldn't care less

Tracy says:
It's interesting though that you're that straight forward about it, and yet the other day you said you could see yourself ending up a martyr for a cause you probably wouldn't even always believe in. Is commitment a big deal to you?

Tom says:
Yeah well I can be my worst enemy. Happiness is fantastic but I still probably would do something drastic if it meant everyone I knew and loved could be happy, I mean I wouldn't be a martyr to make people in grand form a bit happier, but if everyone was miserable I'd happily risk my existence to change their fortunes
And I guess, by saying maybe it would be for something I probably wouldn't always believe in, I'd still have problems with it but I'd do it anyway. But, I've problems with nearly everything. I don't think any of that is down to commitment. I think I can be very commited to something but that something doesn't have to be perfect. Just what I can believe in to a big degree

Tracy says:
And what's the biggest ideal, the one thing that you believe in most? Like, if you had to write a one sentence discourse on how you try to live your life, what would it be?

Tom says:
You know. It's never really changed. It has and always will be - 'Don't be a dickhead'
You wouldn't believe the amount of times I've said that in my life
I mean by dickhead I mean, evil. That's just my way of putting it. You can be disagreeable but not, you know, a murdering pirate os something

Tracy says:
Elaborate on that. What constitutes being a dickhead?

Tom says:
A whole scheme of things and none of them good. But it's simple, don't be cruel to people.
Even the ones that you might think deserve it. 'Forgive them, even if they are not sorry'. And that lark. My thoughts on that whole question are really quite simple and basic

Tracy says:
Is being cruel ever really that straightforward though? What if someone unintentionally hurts someone else?

Tom says:
Yeah well of course nothing is that easy. You can hurt someone accidentally but, there's varying degrees of hurt and varying degrees of intention

Tracy says:
On that note, do you think it's possible for anyone to really truly know someone else?

Tom says:
Hmmm
Well, again it depends, psychology has thought us that even the most eleborate difficult personalities can be opened up, looked at, and figured out. So for the vast majority of people I think, yeah, of course you can know someone else. But people are changing constantly, they might even go through drastic changes, I mean that might have happened before you opened them up to look at but it can also make people impossible to predict. So it's hard. It's definitely hard. And that's me talking from the point of view of what's possible in psychology. In real life it's ten times harder. And a lot of it depends on how much that person wants to reveal about themselves and how you interpret that. Have you ever found someone told you something about themselves and you thought? 'Yeah right'
People are always trying to fool you. Even in the smallest little ways, sometimes in big ways. But sometimes I think you can come pretty close. Sometimes, however, you can be dreadfully fucking far off

Tracy says:
Assuming someone was to be totally and completely honest with you though, and it was up to you to ask the right questions and to approach getting to truly know them the right way. What actually constitutes knowing someone? The length of the friendship, the shared experiences you've had? Having the same opinions so you can actually understand where they're coming from?

Tom says:
This is what makes life so interesting. The fact when it comes to people there is no formula for anything. What psychologists do is try to find a formula I guess. To explain why people have certain traits and what that means in the bigger picture of them as a whole. What constitutes knowing someone might be all of those things combined, plus, how much you WANT to know them
Sometimes people can make assumptions to make it all easier. One could say - 'You're an idiot but you're a friend of a friend so when you're out and I'm out I'll just stay agreeable and that's that'. Of course that person doesn't really know the other guy because he hasn't tried, and isn't bothered to either. But I guess if you really wanted to know someone you look at all of those things (Experiences, length of friendship etc.) and put it all together and you can see who that person is to at least the best of your ability. People almost always show their true colours, for better or worse, in the end. So I guess length of friendship is important. But, people can change can't they? Unpredictably, you can yourself, I can, and it might not have made any logical sense from who you were before. But I suppose, it can too.

Tracy says:
How successful do you think you are at letting others see who you really are? Is who you are different from who you'd like to be seen as?

Tom says:
Straight off I'll say much more successful than I was say, two years ago, maybe even a year ago, or 6 months ago! There's one thing I find really interesting in life when it comes to people. And it's just something of an off hand comment my mate made that had me thinking about it so much. He said, and not even to me I think I even read it on his Facebook!, when asked the question 'If there was one thing you could change about yourself what would it be?' and he said something like 'The constant changing'. I've thought so much about that that I was even tempted to write a big spiel about it. What interested me was how much I felt the same way. So I asked myself, why do I feel like this guy one day and another guy the next? And I suppose to some degree every day you are a little different

But what I wanted to say to him when I figured it out a bit (I think) was that, we are ALL such complex personalities and life can be so unpredictable and crazy, that there is different sides to ALL of our personalities
And that might not even be a bad thing. What struck me was that he clearly considered it a negative thing because I completely did too. I thought, I'll be so much happier if one element of my personality was just my entire personality until the end of my days. But we're too complex to be one dimensional. And I figured, why is that such a bad thing? Why not embrace it? If you trained your natural way of being, to be quiet ALL the time, or be energetic ALL the time, it might make you feel more, at least safe, but it's impossible to stay in one state of mind. Even for a day. I mean, really the difficulty is, how do I naturally switch from one to the other? Sometimes you start talking and getting excited and it makes you uncomfortable because you think, God I was quiet earlier, why couldn't I just have stayed like that? And it genuinely bothers you. But I think. Fuck it. You're not bi-polar if you just wanna go crazy an hour after you were sitting on your arse doing fuck all and being quiet and moody. Even if you surprise yourself just fucking go with it! Don't be afraid. If you're worried how that'll go down in the minds of those around you it doesn't feckin matter!

You're not changing you're just showing another side to you and EVERYONE has many sides to them. Just go with it and show who you are no matter if that's moody or overly excitable, in the same couple of hours. That is who you are. Show it. And I do. And that is why I say I'm better at showing who I am now than ever. Because I'm not concerned with being uncomfortable as a result of how different you can be from one minute to the next. 'And I'm a million different people from one day to the next, I can't change, no no no'. It seems so. But you're just one person. It might feel like your millions but you're just one. And you gotta embrace every side of you, because it's more natural
I think what can bother my friend and me, is that by 'constantly changing' it can make it harder to know who you are. If you were one way all of the time it would be easy. But people who are one way all of the time are a bit fuckin boring. And he and I certainly aren't.

Tracy says:
So by accepting the fact that you're constantly changing, and committing to those changes in every form they come in, you feel you're better at showing others who you are, because you don't try to hide any side of yourself from anyone?

Tom says:
Yeah. I don't feel uncomfortable. I don't question myself as much. I don't think, why am I like this right now whereas an hour ago I felt totally different? I did and he might still too but the best way of showing who you are is just to let it all out. And if people don't like you then who fuckin cares. At least you know when you're showing yourself properly who your real friends are. Who'll still stand by you if you're being unpredictable? It might not be bad at all. Might make you more interesting. You'll at least be more natural
I mean with me I can go from strict student to stoned out of my mind laughing my head off at dramatic chipmunks in probably about 10 minutes. Do I care? Not really

Tracy says:
That's a good outlook to have, I feel. You explained it really well. Do you have anything else to add?

Tom says:
No. I mean I told you I had thought a lot about it but I never really focused it enough to figure exactly what it was I wanted to say. Maybe more will come to me and I could elaborate on it again. But right now I want to hit the boozer and get some cans

Lust For Life

An interesting bit of news reached me last night. I won't say what is because, well, sometimes instead of being explanatory, I just prefer being cryptic as fuck. And why not. IT'S MY JOURNAL. Also to be honest, it's not very important. It just reminded me of something.

I first heard this song last summer. I heard the opening lyrics, got pissed off, and didn't listen to it again for about three, maybe four months.
Then I kept hearing from eeeeeeeverybody about how great Girls were. So I went back, and even though it had made me very uncomfortable the first time I heard it, almost instantly I realised something that changed my opinion of it so drastically that I must have listened to it 15 times that day, and of course, that was - he's being sarcastic.

And it is my favourite song of the year. And I've never actually had one of them before funnily enough.

Lust For Life




Lust For Life


Oh, I wish I had a boyfriend
I wish I had a loving man in my life
I wish I had a father
Maybe then I would've turned out right
But now I'm just crazy, I'm totally mad
Yeah I'm just crazy, I'm fucked in the head
And maybe if I really tried with all of my heart
Then I could make a brand new start in love with you


Oh, I wish I had a suntan
Oh, I wish I had a pizza and a bottle of wine
Oh, I wish I had a beach house
Then we could make a big fire every night
Instead I'm just crazy, I'm totally mad
Yeah I'm just crazy, I'm fucked in the head
And maybe if I really tried with all of my heart
Then I could make a brand new start in love with you









Thank you Christopher Owens.

Tags:

My fear of flying knows no bounds

Well I'm pissed off.

No, really, despite my naturally cool as a cucumber persona, I'm noticably angry today.
This is because my plans for today went cock up as a result of one thing, the weather - and the filthy ugly bastard of a headcold it gave me.
I feel like I fell off the back of a lorry and was knocked unconscious, was left to lie in the howling wind and rain for 24 hours, and put back in my bed by some anonymous punter, who dried me off, and left me to wake up a few hours later to the feeling of having fell off the back of a lorry and left lying in stormy weather for an entire day.

So on a how good I'm feeling scale of 1-10, I'd give myself a 3. But, I don't wanna cry my whole life through, yeah I wanna do some laughing too. So come on come on come on and laugh with me.
I'm sitting here in the darkness, (despite the fact all the blinds and curtains are open and it's half two in the afternoon) listening to Girls (Album) and thinking of how to approach the subject matter of the title I've given this post.


Well I'll tell ya, I'm absolutely terrified of planes, and even though I'm not scheduled to be on one and haven't been on one in ages my fear just seems to be increasing by the day without anything having changed. It's got to the point were I'm genuinely fascinated by it, I mean why is my fear growing? Why am I starting to have dreams about being on a plane? How in gods name was I not afraid of them as a kid?? Was I some super child? Did I have crazy death defying adventures that the memories of disappeared when my knackers dropped?

All of these questions I'm going to studiously look at..... nnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnow.

I had a dream. Not about equality. About being in a cylindrical tube with wings. In ancient times they called it a 'plane'. Now I've had dreams about being on a plane that crashed, my brother died from hitting his head on the seat in front of him, it was very sad. His limp body fell on me and my dead brother was lying across my lap. Not cool.
I had a dream the other night about just simply being on a plane, just sitting on one, terrified. So in my dream two scenarios played out, and both were about me trying to cope with being on the plane. The first one I took drugs. I thought, I'll just get ecstatically happy and I'll be alright. BAD idea. It heightened my senses to a phenomenal degree and I got hysterially afraid! I could feel the fear!
The second time I thought, man just take your tablets for your headaches they knock ya out good and proper! And then I thought, you dipstick, just take the valium like you did last time! Because last time I was on a plane that's actually what I did, and it worked because I fell asleep. But I was still afraid until I did so I guess, in my dream I was trying to find something more effective for controlling my fear than valium. How I got drugs onto the plane I don't know.

So that was my dream. Now another thing that might sound a bit weird. I've noticed over the past couple of years, that when I see a plane, I follow it with my eyes until I absolutely cannot see it anymore, and the whole time I watch it I hope for it to drop out of the sky.
Yeah! It's fucked up! I've never actually brought myself to be able to say it, I actively try to ignore it and say to myself, 'You headcase what are you thinking!'. But last night in the height of my thinking about my fear of flying, I figured out why I do that.
I look at planes, and hope they suddenly drop from the sky, to validate my utter terror of them. Because with my own two eyes I cannot imagine seeing anything more terrifying, than a plane glide through the clouds, and suddenly come hurtling towards the ground. I sub conscously wish it would happen so I can say, see! They're not fucking safe! I'm never getting on one of them things again!

But what makes me so afraid?

Well I don't think it's simply because I expect it to crash. I suppose in a way I don't expect it to crash. Probably less planes crash than cars.
But I've been caught up thinking about why then I'm still afraid knowing that. Talking to some friends last night I realised that I essentially have a fear of being in the sky in something I have no power over. I mean, I wouldn't mind being a bird, if I was a bird I'd control what I'm doing, I wouldn't even think about being up there, I just would be because that's what I am and that's what I'm doing.

So I was talking to Ross, a man much more regularly on planes than I, and to my surprise he told me that planes were starting to get to him too. The sheer idea of all the shit that's going on, it's scary. But he said he was eased by the fact that so many planes have perfectly safe journeys, more than cars do, and he'd crash his car before he'd be in a planecrash. I said the difference was you've control over your car, you have no control, no power of what's going on on a plane. He again found comfort in the fact the guy flying the plane probably has more experience flying planes than he does driving his car, and said that you've got to travel (I agree with this), if ya die ya die (Suppose so), and that he'd enjoy a plane crash experience if noone died (The man is certifiably insane).
As far as I'm concerned, screw the pilot's credentials! Doctors have credentials but they still kill people! It only takes one screw up or one thing nobody can control and you're fuckin dead! Powerless to do nothing but live out your final moments in utter terror!

Eh, sorry if I've given you reason to be brickin it the next time you're on a plane! I remember being on the plane to Belgium with Daire and I was so afraid it made him afraid and he's on a couple of planes ever few weeks nearly!

So that's my phobia, or at least what I understand of it. I get a cloudy feeling in my chest thinking about being on a plane. Even when I'm sitting in my kitchen. I think my fear of flying has developed so much I think it's taking away from some of my other fears! I used to be much more afraid of spiders, yet now when I see them, I still freak out but I go for them, I remember a few months ago I seen a spider running across the wall that it gave me such a fright I got angry and punched it dead. I just squished it with my fist! Die you horrible dickheads! And no Laura Ryan - they ARE NOT CUTE, before you tell me they are!

Sometimes I think, is it possible to kill every spider in the world? Cause I would man. I'd kill them all. I'd sent them all on a plane and have it explode!


Okay so I'm done talking about this for now. It's like 2010 in two days isn't it? Brilliant! I can't wait. I'm looking forward to going back to college, I'm doing less Archaeology and more Philosophy. I've tuesdays off, but a hectic wednesday.
Then I'm still hoping to go back to South East Asia in the summer, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos. I'm so looking forward to it! I mean I don't know how I'm going to afford it but I don't care! I'll be there somehow. I'll be on wild adventures again, to live life on the edge and have mad experiences, have stories to tell everyone, and meet more characters like Andy, Kev, Jules and Gabbi! To see the beauty of such countries, and to see it when you're head to toe covered in filth! To see millions of stars again while lying on the roof of a building shmokin a banger! It all seems like such an experience that I'll be brave enough to get on the plane when the time comes.
Hopefully.







Anyone seen Avatar lately?

It's a pretty cool movie, the special effects and the great big colourful landscape it creates is some spectacle it's true.
As you watch the hero slowly but predictably betray his home planet in favour of the more natural world of the giant action-smurfs, you kind of wish he had've taken you with him. Already I'm seeing Facebook comments along the lines of 'Screw this place I wanna live in Pandora', and really I wouldn't blame anyone for preferring it. But, what's more precious I feel is an incredible reality rather than an incredible fiction, and our planet Earth can be pretty fucking awesome. 

Sunday I was flicking through the television (a rarity, like a Dingiso) and I happened to catch the beginning of a documentary called 'South Pacific', it straight up blew my mind. Some of it was so unusual and unique I thought I was tripping balls as a result of some post-Avatar false reality hallucination, 'Right, so you're telling me that lad there is a giant Panda who lives up a tree, only he's not a Panda he's a Kangaroo??', I'm not making this shit up!

So essentially what I did was I found the episode of the show online (not as easy as it sounds) and downloaded it, I then watched it again and the few parts I'd missed (I think they were edited out actually). Then, because I'm off college now and not in a very Christmassy humour (sue me), I investigated some of the creatures and saved some pics so I could show you here. I'm not one for technology, I only give something attention if it captures my imagination in some way. That's the God's honest truth, if something captures my imagination I'm aaaall for it, if I'm not interested, I'm very not interested. And in this case I'll take strange wonderful animals over an X Box hands down.

The info here will be short. I didn't go too mad finding info, and most of what I'll be writing was said in the documentary.



New Guinea


So essentially what the main point of the documentary was, was that islands, especially in the South Pacific, play by their own rules when it comes to evolution. When you think about it it makes sense, none of the creatures we know and are familiar with in the west would not have been able to make their way to distant remote islands by themselves, which would be the same story for creatures on distant remote islands coming to us. So there's a lot out there we haven't seen. And this, to me at least, is massively intriguing.

We'll start with New Guinea, which is the worlds largest tropical island, apparently. It's near Australia but not too near, and the point was made that the further you get from the landmass, the more unusual the animals. And New Guinea has an animal that is just about as unusual as they come. As New Guinea is full of forests, and has no monkeys, the trees are up for grabs. And high in the mountains lives a dude that is extremely rare and only recently discovered (in 1994) to Westerners. The Dingiso.


 

Dingiso

This big cuddly muffin, winner of the Panda lookalike contest, is actually a Kangaroo! And he lives up in the trees. It's critically endangered unfortunately so pictures of it are rare and only a handful are left on the island of New Guinea. Even getting these shots were incredibly difficult to get for the team that were sent to film it. The local tribe, the 'Moni', that live in the mountains, are guardians of the Dingiso and consider Dingiso land sacred.

A proposal was put forth to the locals, and after a big debate the crew, with the help of the tribe, set off up the mountains to get some shots. Only 3 men on the entire island had seen one, and it was two weeks before they had any luck.
When they reached the (also sacred) area up the mountains that the Dingiso were known to inhabit, they weren't even allowed say the word 'Dingiso' or the name of the lake, which I think was called 'Wutidi', in the centre of it. On reaching Wutidi lake the tribe leader broke down into tears! And the emotion from the tribes people that went with the crew was fairly heavy. To them the Dingiso is seen as an ancestral spirit, and rarely had they ventured up to where they lived.

So the circumstances that they eventually found the animal was rather bonkers. On something like the 12th day when they had near enough given up hope, in the middle of the night there was a load of shouting that woke the crew up and caused some alarm. The tribe leader had found one, and captured it! And had it in a bag on his back!
The crew were horrified, and so are you when you see it! You're kind of thinking, what fucking way is that to treat a sacred animal! But, the tribes people knew exactly what they were doing, and when they let the Dingiso out of the bag the creature wasn't scared at all, and the next morning they brought it back to where they had found it and the first thing it did was scurry up a tree to eat leaves!


 


And when searching online to find some pictures I came across these.
Tree Kangaroos (which is what the Dingiso are called generically) are found not only in New Guinea but in Queensland, Australia also. And here are some pictures, I don't know anything about them and I'm not sure there is a lot of info on them but they also eat leaves and are hard to find.


Tree Kangaroo

Different colours, babies and adults.

     

   

   


New Caledonia

Located South East of Australia, New Caledonia was part of the landmass that was cast adrift 60 million years ago.
And on it lives it's own unique animals.

 

One of which is the Kagu.


Kagu

If you watched the documentary, the first thing you'd do when the Kagu is introduced is laugh your head off. The run on it is hilarious! I think because it's right after the Dingiso you're expecting another big animal, and when the camera is on the forest and this crackpot bird legs it by it's really quite funny!

The Kagu is a flightless bird (as a lot of island birds are) and travels around like Usain Bolt. By leggin it. Intruders on their territory are chased away, literally, and the closest relative to this type of bird is apparently the Sunbittern of South America, which is 7000 miles away. The Kagu eat insects from the soil to survive and as there is no onland predators they're quite safe to do what they want. However, aerial predators can be a problem and the adults extend their wings as a way of scaring evil birds away from their young.

Kagu chicks are camouflaged! So they're hard to spot in the leaves, and it's difficult to feed them as getting worms into a tiny beak causes one hell of a logistical headache.


 

 

Solomon Islands


Could be good for a nice relaxing holiday, if you're fond of needlefish.

 

 

Needlefish

Now there's nothing all that spectacular about needlefish. What's much more interesting is how the natives catch them to eat and survive.

Essentially, the natives use spider webs. Yes. Spider webs.
When the camera rolled over a massive spider filled web I thought I was going to drop dead where I sat, the horror.
What they do is they get a stick and wind a big intricate web around it. Then, as they have no rods, they attach a piece of string to a kite. They then bob the lure (the stick) just below the surface of the water, the needlefish then bite the lure and as their mouths are too narrow (they cannot be caught with a hook), and their teeth small and pointy, they get caught in the web. Once one is caught the weight of the fish brings the kite down and the fisherman knows one has been caught. And they catch fucking loads doing this. Genius.
I wish I could have found better pictures.

 

Monkey Tailed Skinks

Then there's Monkey Tailed Skinks.
This is what a normal skink looks like -



And this is a Monkey Tailed Skink.
Which is mad weird. It's fifty times heavier than your average Skink, and it's entirely vegetarian so it's pretty harmless. Like Guinea there's no monkeys so it rules the trees. And the most interesting thing about these bad boys is it forms social bonds with other Monkey Tailed Skinks, which is veeeeeery rare in reptiles. They watch the football together. And drink Fosters.



Hawaii

I never really considered Hawaii to be an interesting place, more like a resort for cheap chicks and well off doctors on vacation.
But, in truth, Hawaii's a pretty exciting place.
First of all it's a lot bigger than I thought it was, a lot. And it took me ages to find the less holidayish pics of it, and more the massive outback forest region that's home to lots of cool things. I found these on a guys blog that was one of the greatest blogs I've ever seen. When I get a chance I'll write to him and ask him can I post a link to it. It's got some amazing pictures.

The thing about Hawaii is that for a long long long time it was incredibly difficult to find or get to. Only one new species was introduced to Hawaii every 35,000 years! But as they said in the documentary, a land of 'Milk & Honey' was to be found for those that got there, and not in a sexed up late 90s Beck way. It's full of awesome birds (actual birds).


 
 

 

I'iwi (pronounced e eewee)

This is a native Hawaiian bird. Which is really colourful and cool.
It was blown to the shores of Hawaii 4 million years ago.
At first it's finch like honey-creeper descendants had smaller beaks. But through time it's beak developed and adapted to it's surroundings so it could get the nectar from flowers.

 

Maui Parrot Bill

This is another native. It has a strong hooked beak for getting grubs inside of wood. Yum.

 

The thing about Hawaii is, once it was so hard to find that, as I said, only one new species was introduced every 35,000 years, nowadays it's 50 a year. There's not a lot of indigenous life. But a hell of a lot of tourists.

Here's some outside birds and a lizard, they have savage names! -


White Rumped Shama (India)



Red Billed Leiothrix (China)

 

Northern Cardinal (North America)

 

Japanese White Eye (Japan, obviously)

 

Jacksons Chameleon (East Africa)
He's just chillin'.

 

Indian Mongoose

This little wanker was brought in to control the introduced rats that were becoming rampant around the island. Of course the total gobshite who decided that was a good idea forgot that rats are nocturnal, and this fella hunts by day.
So the hungry Mongoose began decimating the islands unique birdlife.
Very clever guys. Round of applause.




New Zealand

Eh, only like the most stunningly beautiful country in the WORLD.

Usually the Pacific Islands are small, low and uniform. But this breaks the trend in the greatest of ways.
It's got a great diversity of unique creatures and it's forrested valleys, turbulent rivers and glacier topped peaks make for some unreal scenery. It's obvious why it was picked for the shooting of The Lord of the Rings. It's about 5 countries in one.
It's 1000 miles long and has a mountainous spine rising 1 and a half miles high.

Some of it's cooler creatures I have below.

 

   

 

Fiordland Crested Pengiuns


What a creature this is. This is a penguin, that is completely unique to New Zealand, and it lives in the FOREST.
No joke.
It lives in the forest! And runs around like it owns the place!
Savage looking thing. What a hairdo. Penguin style revolutionaries.

There's no predators in the forests so they're safe from harm. And they go back to the stream once a day to get fish to feed themselves and their young. The young don't first swim until they're 3 months old and stay in the forest until then. The streams are used as a transport system around the forest. They are very clever little wobbly things altogether.

      .... what are you lookin at?

Alpine Parrot
'Kea'

They're called 'Kea' because of their call.
They live higher than any other parrots and they're apparently the most playful birds in the world.
When looking for pics of them I came across a guys family holiday blog that had pics of the parrot nibbling at his trousers.
I like them. I wouldn't mind being an Alpine Parrot.
Kea! Kea!


 



Short Tailed Bat

Because New Zealand is 1500 miles away from the nearest continent, it is far beyond the reach of most mammals, and besides marine mammals the only other mammals to make it over are bats!

Horrible things aren't they? The one on the left looks like he's doing a Jacko impression. Hoooooooooooo.

The reason why I included this is because interestingly, bats essentially evolved from mice, and hunt things that fly a lot of the time. However, this particular bat hunts for things on the ground. So in a way it's a backwards evolution!

.... Well I thought that was cool...


 

Kakapo

I think this is a really interesting creature. It's a parrot, a nocturnal one, and it has whiskers so it can feel it's way around in the dark.

It weighs 4 kilos and is the heaviest parrot in the world.
It's one of the most successful herbivores in New Zealand. Like our rabbit.
It can't fly because it's too heavy.
As a result, it climbs trees.
It gets around by running, like the Kagu, with an even wobblier run.

In 1899, the explorer Charlie Douglas said - "They can be caught in the moonlight by simply shaking the tree or bush until they tumble to the ground, like apples".

Their favourite food is the seeds of the Remu tree, and this fuels their reproduction! Kinda like booze for us!
They only reproduce when trees produce a bumper crop of Remu seeds. And this is only once every four years, but, they can live for over 100 years!

They have a reeeeally unusual call, more like a frogs than a parrots, but to me it sounds like when Homer was blowing into the jug in the Simpsons, only much bassier. And that is a pretty accurate description I think! And during breeding season it booms non stop for 8 hours a night for up to three months. A female will only respond if there are plenty of Remu seeds. The useless skanks.

Unfortunately these are also very endangered, less than a 100 survive out of the 100s of thousands that once did. Kakapo chicks get a helping hand from captivarians, and their numbers rose from 51 in 1995 to 91 now. That explains the final pic. I think they're Kakapo's in temporary captivity.


   




Australian Possoms

Wankers. Like the Indian Mongoose. They were imported for their fur two centuries ago and soon after reached plague proportions. As a result they've stripped many many trees of their vegetation and are taking apart the forest.

Pricks. Unlike the Kakapo, which are indigenous, these are unwitting (to be fair) immigrants and are far more numerous than the Kakapo. There are 70 million of them. However, there is a war going on against them. Traps and poisons have been scattered throughout New Zealand to keep their numbers down. Die you baaaastaaaards!



Tane Muhata


So the people of New Zealand are indirectly responsible for their own forests downfall.
They brought in those poxy possoms. Buuuut. The good news is that they're working hard to make amends, conservationists are working hard to protect and nurture the trees and help the forests out.

They collect them Kauri seeds and plant them so new trees can be cultivated and the forest returned to its original stature.
That there is 'Tane Muhata', the tallest tree in New Zealand, it is immense.

Yeah, this part is almost scarily like Avatar...



Giant Moa

These were birds that once existed in New Zealand.
It looked like an ostrich but it was taller than an elephant! How sick is that!

   




Easter Island


One of the greatest mysteries and oddities in the entire world.
Easter Island is a terrific story. I'm pretty sure it's owned by Chile but it's the most remote island in the entire Pacific Ocean.

Easter Island is 13 miles long, 7 miles wide, and surrounded by 1000s of miles of ocean in every direction. The first people to ever reach the island only got there less than a 1000 years ago (which sounds like a long time, but it isn't in terms of how long there have been people), and now it's a fairly strange and desolate place. But it wasn't always so barren. Apparently when the people that lived there were still alive it was a complete paradise, rich volcanic soils nourished a forest of giant palm trees! It also had many of it's own unique creatures and it's cliffs were home to the largest sea bird colonies in the Pacific. So it was full of life and colour and vibrance. However, that's all long gone now.
But, there still is one thing about Easter Island that makes it very interesting.


 


Moai and the Rapa Nui

What Easter Island is most famous for, and what we have all seen at one point in our lives, is the great big stone monolith figures that are dotted along the coast of the island. These are called, 'Moai', and unless you're a robot, you'd have to be pretty damn amazed by them.
I think they're so dramatic and unusual. And knowning how long ago they were created just sort of adds to their wonder, there are 100s of them.

They were built by people called the 'Rapa Nui', and it's thought they created the statues in the likeness of chiefs or ancestors. However the knowledge of these people has to be pieced together from archaeological evidence and the relics that remain.

The rise and fall of the Rapa Nui is a legendary story. It is not exactly clear what happened to them, and a lot of it remains a mystery. What is obvious though is that each clan or tribe on the island were all trying to outdo one another, by building a larger monument than their neighbours. I guess as some sort of sign of power. A large amount of wood would have been needed to transport and erect these huge stone figures, and as they were all trying to outdo one another, by building so many statues, the forests eventually vanished.


   

This was obviously a disaster, there was no wood for boats, which would have been their only way of escape, and also vital for fishing, so food resources plummeted. As resources dwindled the island, naturally, descended into madess, and it was essentially a case of every man for himself. As you can imagine, this would not have been pretty, and war broke out all over the island. Many of the giant statues were pulled to the ground, which may have been acts of sabotage between the tribes. Evidence suggests that when the resources quickly vanished, people were forced to turn to cannabolism! Sick!

 


Of course, this remains a controversial version of the story, and poses some questions, like, why the hell did the Rapa Nui not do anything about their own downfall? They hardly sat around and thought, "shit, look, we've no trees left, what the fuck do we do now? ........ Let's riot!".
There's a more reasonable explanaition - RATS. Those top grade WANKERS. There is new evidence that suggests that they weren't alone on the island, that rats followed them, and had a plague impact (like rats could have any other impact). It's thought that rats would have eaten the Seabirds, the wild birds aaaaand most importantly, the nuts of the giant palms so that the trees were unable to reproduce, making the Rapa Nui powerless to their own downfall. Fucking hairy Japanese bastards.

So, to summarise, if anyone asks you what happened to the people of Easter Island, just say - Rats ate them.
 

 

 


So one way or another, the Rapa Nui fell. Their whole society crumbled. And why this is so important is because it typifies how precarious island life is. Like the endangered animals mentioned earlier, it doesn't take a whole lot for life on islands to be destroyed, animals or people. The Rapa Nui weren't the only island society to fall, but, none other than the Rapa Nui left such dramatic reminders of the past. As can be seen by those terrific monuments.

Some Rapa Nui did survive! Which I think is insane altogether, but also a good thing obviously. Though I have no idea how. All I know is there are people living there now, and trees have been planted in an attempt to recreate the forests of the past. Though all of the unique wildlife is long gone. The island is a huge tourist attraction and the remaning Rapa Nui entertain lots of tourists every year. I personally would love to go there but it would be one hell of an expensive trip!






Okay so I'm finally finished. This took me a long time to do!
But I wouldn't have it any other way.
If you enjoyed this, it counts as your Christmas present!
I hope you did enjoy it. The world is one weird and wonderful place.
Screw your Pandora James Cameron!



Thanks for reading.
- Albert Einstein


Right. So I'm not really one to exaggerate how good my day in or night out has been. You won't hear me saying "OMG best night EVER!! LOLZZ soooo drunk LOLZZ" after all I've done is got locked and stumbled around the Plaza. Maybe I just wasn't present at the best night ever, and if that is the case I'm just so, so disappointed I wasn't there. I missed out... Shucks.
So believe me when I tell you that (rather accidently) the weekend just gone was one of the best I've ever had. Have a bit a that!
I definitely believe the better nights you have are the ones you didn't have any plans for, and a buzz appears out of thin air. And pretty much every night on the weekend worked out like that.


Like most weekends. It began on Thursday. I remember having a ridiculous amount of energy that day. Which was weird and a bit uncomfortable. I'd been to the gym and smashed my body around for about two hours that afternoon and still by ten o clock at night I was pacing around my house. I'd played guitar for a while working on writing a solo piece (and broke the nails I'd been growing for fingerpicking, shit) and still, even with the aches I had (my very arse hurt) I really felt like I needed to get out and do something.
I text a few people and ended up in the pub with Karen and Amy. It was about half an hour before last orders when we got there and still we had about three drinks each, so naturally the initiative was 'let's find more drink' when they booted us out. Back to Karens. Coors light, Metallica and incoherent nonsense talk was the order of the night. And GLOW STICKS!
I'm the green.
Come on Ireland.



Friday was even better because I decided I'd take it easy and listen to music. This had me in good form. I'd asked people to give me 'recommendations', which I'll talk about again, and some of the music I got was fucking SAVAGE. So I was hoppin between records on the headphones and at one point I quite literally just decided to dance around my kitchen.

So just as that was gettin old, my mate Sean knocked in to get a book off me to use for 'studying' for our Archaeology exam, which was yesterday, did we study? No. Will we pass? Just about. We have similar jambag qualities. I believe Sean to be possibly the most naturally intelligent guy I know (along with Mur). Like me, Sean is a study-the-day-beforehand kinda guy, we both panic and do just enough to do well, but it's mostly our natural intelligence that gets us by. He got 80 points higher than me and I would actually say he done less work than I did. That gap is how much smarter than me I think he is. And before anything intelligence is how I judge people. Especially now. Not their LC results, I know a few people that got 500+ in the LC that are complete airheads. And likewise, people that got fuck all marks that are very, very clever. I think the LC can be interpreted in terms of hard work, luck, and natural ability. And therefore, especially at 17, it's not the best way to judge anyone really. Just maybe a bit in this case.

So Sean sat down and was too tired to get up again for about an hour and a half, naturally it was friday so my ever present need for cans kicked in, and I demanded he came to Ahernes so I could get drink. He did too, and suddenly himself, myself, Karen and their chum John were sitting on the couch I'd been on almost all day, and having the fuckin buzz. I didn't really need to go very far did I? Now that's some good shit. I wasn't as energetic as the day before I can tell ya that. But man I love the laid back chillin with some cold cans buzz.

Funny shit went down that night. There was Sean talking dirty gay man talk to strangers (to him to least), that were ringin John, and didn't realise it wasn't their mate talking to them for about 5 minutes. Which is a bit worrying considering what Sean was saying to them in all honesty -

"Sean - Can I talk to Eve?
*Eve gets on the phone, assuming John's on the other end*
Eve - I know where you liiiiiiive.
Sean - I know where your bum is"

And the conversation continued as if this was the most normal thing to say in the world, and that was when it was still relatively PG. I wish I could put the video up. How he made us laugh so much without himself laughing actually astounds me. Sean could be an actor. In gay chat up prank call movies, which the market has been crying out for for years.
Then there was a bit of ghost story tellin a la Graham Norton in Father Ted, which somehow, at Christmas, seemed highly relevant. And of course Karen's revelation that my mother wasn't the woman she thought was my mother for years, which I found highly amusing because she was so convinced, and I had no idea who she was talking about when she was explaining to me who she thought my ma was. I would love to find that woman, and then trade her for my actual mother (just kidding).

The second pic is Sean attempting to replicate a 'bananacock' (it was somehow relevant), but I think it looks a bit more like the Little Mermaid.



The next day I found my headaches were coming on strong again and when Aar and Leno knocked into to me in the evening I was kinda edgey. They asked me to the pub but I was having none of it. "Ah go on I'll get ya a pint". So pub it was.

Now there has been a lack of decent Ahernes buzzes recently. But this was the best there'd been in a LONG time. I intended to go for just one and I was adamant, but when we seen Baz and Colum just leaving the pub there was much cheering as they decided to head back in with us, and I don't really know how to explain it, maybe it was the Christmas in us, but I've never had such a laugh doing something so completely predictable. Pub. Pints. Banter. Doesn't sound all that much? But what the fuck time did we get home at?! Must have been 4 in the morning? Such was my conviction that I wasn't gonna be there for long I didn't even bring my keys. And had to throw stones at my ma's window for ten minutes before I got in! And how the FUCK did we all end up bating each other in the middle of the road? I honestly remember heading into the jacks, casually taking a piss (as ya do), before not one but two mates burst in, and instead of being annoyed it all just seemed hilarious somehow. Like there was a fucking rave in the fucking JACKS. I think we thought we owned the place that night!

Baz and Aar.



Doesn't look as freaky as it does in person but Leno can do fuckin weird things with his face.
Oh lord! The guy from the Goonies impression! ha ha. Man that was good!



And the next day it just wouldn't end! Back to the pub in the afternoon to watch Arsenal beat Liverpool at Anfield after a fucking BULLET of a goal from Arshavin!

No girl's worth the wank at 21. And Ste's sort of finding that out now I think. He was in bad form. AND HE'S A LIVERPOOL FAN.
So I decided I'd cheer him up. And we bought 8 packets of Jammy Dodgers and played Tekken and watched funny videos on YouTube all night. I'd never eaten so much of the same biscuit. Attention people. JAMMY DODGERS ARE 49 CENT A PACK IN TESCO.



And we also watched the Match of the Day highlights! WHICH DIDN'T IMPRESS STE.



GET IN YOU BEAUTY.



Right here this has gone on long enough.
My camera has no USB so I can't put up the actual good pics I have.
Loads were taken on others cameras so I'll put them up if I get them.
Now I've to go study for my Philosophy exam.
By going to see Avatar.