Help me make it through the week

Thu, Aug 02, 2018

I’m here so I am, like. I’ve landed. Free as a bird. As free as that Clare fella Colm Galvin swapin’ up all that Galway has to throw at me …coming here thirty year or more, so I am, with me fadder and me fadder’s fadder and me fadder’s fadder’s fadder… though not at the same time like…Sun rises in the capital of culture… ate a clock in the morning like…waking up in a crumpled hape…I’d need Hawkeye to see if I made it home at all last night…smartphone alarm beep beeps into me ear...one hand picks up and smashes it again the wall...not so smart now is it…Radio bursts on…I hear them saying de Valera might be back in the Aras, and Limerick back in the All-Ireland so I think I’ve been hungover all the way back to 1975 like a great big langered Rip Van Winkle in reverse…the head on me like a feckin’ explosion in a mattress factory…’tis Race Week…where am I...recessed lights in ceiling shine into me eyes...discover me pyjamas have a hood in them and me skinny jeans…fell asleep in the clothes again...where am I...not Mrs O'Brien's B & bloody B this year…no an AiryB&B yolk which is basically paying hotel prices for someone else’s scratcher and someone else’s jacks…Not the best for when you’re pissed ‘cos with the AiryB&B like you don’t know whether you’re home, or you’re in someone’s home, or you’re paying to be in someone’s home…jaypers the state of me…went to bed looking like Damian Duff woke up looking like Dunphy...open shirt buttons and spray deodorant under arms one squirt for each oxter and one for the road with a shot for the lads below…and head for the lift…close buttons, push buttons, and fella in the lift mirror does the same…state of me like…airyB&B and a kitchen with nobody’s food left in it…head for the morning chipper…full Irish with bacon rashers and eggs and a free paper…throw back the lugs and dive in...try to walk sober like, wan foot then the udder, repeat...I'm Racingman, I'm wide out…I’m part of Galway. I’m Racingman, the boyoh, unleashed for the week…I walk down the street like Travolta in Saturday Night Fever 'cept without the can o’ paint…shakin that ass..…now I’ve me Vape on me since I quit the ciggies…menthol and rhubarb custard flavour…the state of it. I suck it in and me face curls up into the look ya get when a bulldog licks a thistle…down the square check out paddys ladbrokes boyles get the odds... and ends...too early to go out to Ballybrit yet...sit on bench and look at the fountain knocked on for the week…Arts Festival hippies got their own festival garden for atin’ hummus and talking through their…whole week I'm here for…sit on steps, legs sprawled…then suck at the vape again…not cool at all…like a small Wavin pipe it is…wink at young wan heading to work down town, get scowl but scowl back at her…then I remember MeTwo or what ya call it, so I stall the ogling’…cramps me style though bigtime. Me the man, Racingman... me the man…loads o’ young lads in Conor McGregor suits…Anthony Ryan mustn’t have a confirmation suit left in his storeroom…Reach into arse pocket of me jeans…find a stump of the ticket from Croker last Saturday and a loyalty card for Applegreen…hand shakes but 'twould by now anyways Wednesday... been a long hard week since Croker and all...and Thurles to come... phone dying just two bars...head dying just 25 bars…text from the lads…Pile the money on SlowMotion they say. What sort of name of a nag is that, I ask... Most of me horses have been slow motion here anyway…tip came from the brother in law’s sister, well her first cousin knows the stablehands…says will walk the Plate…need cash...act fast...shaky fingers dance on vomit-splattered keypad at the bank hole in wall...good job don't need numbers 3, 8, 2 as they're splashed pretty bad... cash comes out crisp clean only gives 300 so go to other machine... clean pad, thick wad jammed in arse pocket but switch to front of skinny jeans that are like Glenamaddy 'cos there's no ballroom in Glenamaddy anymore... can't be too sure... cute hoor watching ya catching ya but not me. I'm wide out me so I am, sham ya have to get outa the scratcher early to catch out Racingman…some fecker murdering a guitar in the Square...where's Lee Harvey Oswald when ya need him…I’m in love with the shape of you he sings at me…smart fecker…get the Racing Post...to look cool like…in the know…and the Star...dash into Debbinghams cosmetics section and when the posh wimmen staff aren't looking over, Racingman is lost in a spraycloud of Calvin Kyne, Packie Rabanne, and Ralph Lawrence eau de sweat…lash on the lot of them…the cognac combo….then a splash on ur hand to look like ya know your stuff…spray some on that little card yolk… doubles up as a toothpick…smelling grand...looking good, give the crown jewels a scratch…let me get wan thing straight and all that…ready for the road...ready for the course...hop into taxi...sit in front…legs sprawled…I’m the man…talk the talk…big happy head on me…air stinks of air freshener and stale conversation...he tells me country is fecked...emigrants should shag off home…to Mayo…Brexit. Then he said something about a rising tide lifting boats…knows his stuff this fella…crabbing on about immigrants taking our wimmen, can't get jobs…and he's from Lagos...three ways to racecourse...green, blue,and red routes…an hour later we take a bit of blue and red and he drops me in a cowshit-spattered field near Castlegar church...walk that way he says... the brown route...and I walk...go to ring the boys but smartphone still smarting from batin' I gave it… walk straight...shoes covered in sheeeite…sham says 'any wan want to try the three card trick the three card trick, watch out Char-less the shades are lamping the scene'... don't fall for that not after last year not me cos I'm wide out...Racingman won't fall for that...again...this year...in the gate...meet yer man from home he waves and says he knows for sure Slow Motion won’t have a snowball’s chance in a cat or whatever the saying is I tell him he’s probably right…get card and plastic biro...rip page from card and jam it in raffle drum to win another shaggin' night in another NAMA hotel with afternoon shaggin' tea...sure what would I be doing having me tea in the afternoon...always been lucky, mother said, when I won the teddy bear at the sale of work but she didn't know I stole it then sold it then stole it again…Text the lads but they get back on WhatsUpp app thingy…haven’t used that since the time I WhatsUpped Mixer the story about Murphy’s father and the nurse up the village and didn’t know I was telling’ the whole hurling club like…They’re at the new champagne place they tell me, the Wilson Philips building with Moate written on the side of it…what’s that about and they tell me ’tis the name of the champagne like…Or maybe they couldn't fit Tyrrellspass on the wall...Guard nods at me I nod back 'howya guard' what does he know... probably has a file on Racingman... Maybe a whistleblower will get it for me…the big happy Templemore head on him and eyes red-out from reading Pulse all night…lads say to tease them about the missing breath tests but I told them I will in me ....whole day looking around to see famous faces...no sign of Leo at all at all here. Mustn’t be his scene, this sort of stuff, so it mustn’t…Saw MiggledyDee Higgins and then Gavin Duffy off the Enter The Dragon film on the telly…not a Galway footballer or hurler in sight…all in bed the lot o’them for the weekend…God with the days when ya’d meet Bertie and we didn’t know that he was walking around with all his wages in his pocket…Saw the Lads, roared c’mon ye bollix at them, the boys from home…saw Ted Walsh though…twenty years since he rode her mother...run to the stand... spilling plastic pints down new Next shirt, it'll live up to its name tomorrow…horse romps home..plastic pints go skywards...beef sandwiches all round... grease is the next stain for the Next shirt... Lads have quare wans' mobile numbers… they want 200 notes for an hour of the bould thing...lads laugh when I ask for group discount and take out me Leap card….an hour I laugh, an hour of drinking time wasted...she says for 400 she'll bate me with a whip ’til I cry and give me a happy ending…told her I can get a batin' for nawthing outside the chipper…and if I want a happy ending, I can watch Frozen…and the lads laugh…Am great for the auld repartee, me Racingman. Me head's in a spin...time for food...tuna melt with extra dolphin...staggered up the pedestrianised streets…loose cobblestones with solicitors’ numbers painted on to them…bumps into councillors bitchin’ about 2020 and some palace place…hops into taxi and shows the driver lad the place where the AiryB&B…It’s Lagos man again...more stale conversation...he's up from Carlow with all the other taxidrivers…takes me home to Newcastle via Athenry…he knows a shortcut. Tells me he loves Trump…drives me around town nine times to make sure before I push in door of AiryB&B and I crash on the couch but then there’s a thump and some fella shouting about getting out of his house and then I sees that I do be in the wrong Airy B&B.…but I love it. I love Race Week...and today's Ladies' Day. I better have a bath...it's August.

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So this is what we do best...enjoy

Thu, Jul 19, 2018

It’s Arts Festival time again — our lives are measured by the constant cycle year after year, the Big Top comes and goes silently, and the rich legacy that envelopes us welcomes another layer.

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VTS; Galway's newest family member!

Wed, Jul 18, 2018

Looking for Cuban cigars for that celebratory occasion? Searching for a unique gift? Perhaps the retro look of the pipe is what is wanted? VTS Galway's newest store is the city's one stop smoke shop for these products and much more.

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Amazing value summer sun holidays up for grabs

Thu, Jul 12, 2018

Are you still undecided about booking that summer holiday? Don’t take a chance on the good weather lasting.

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Stay thirsty for saving our future

Thu, Jul 05, 2018

We live in a world in which we tend to undervalue the common, but that perception can suddenly change when it becomes scarce. Hence this week the principle of scarcity is to the fore in Ireland - a product of abundance, one we utilise, not cherish; take for granted, not appreciate, is now taking control of our lives. Yes, we are talking about water and the lack of it.

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Be wowed by the possibilities of the sea

Thu, Jun 28, 2018

If the sea was covered with a sheet of strong glass, and if the skies reflected off it, like they do off the water on a summer’s day, you can be sure we would be out there all the time, slipping and sliding on it, falling on our arses on it, making up strange glass-bound games to play on this strange playground.

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Top commercial and investment properties in Galway going under the hammer at O’Donnellan & Joyce

Thu, Jun 28, 2018

O’Donnellan and Joyce's July Wild Atlantic Way auction is shaping up to be the biggest of the year. This past weekend, open viewings commenced on most of the properties, with all properties to be available for viewing for the coming weekend.

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The importance of focusing on the big picture

Thu, Jun 21, 2018

It has been a strange week newswise. Sometimes it’s as if all the planets align and sagas and dramas that have been playing out for years of a news cycle, cross each others path like ships in the night.

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What will we do now on April Fool’s Day if the Arabs buy United?

Thu, Jun 14, 2018

One of the hoary auld reliables of the newspaper game is when your publication date coincides with April Fools Day. It is the one day of the year when the normal stuff that passes for local news is embellished into extraordinary auld stuff designed to catch the eye, but to be not too good to actually convince people that it is true. I remember about a decade ago, on one April 2, fielding calls from some concerned parishioners of the Cathedral who were shocked to hear our story of the previous day that a Monsignor Faproilio from The Vatican was introducing ATM-style confessionals in the Cathedral, from which you would receive your penance on a small receipt.

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Let Magdalene redemption hasten the day this country delivers for all citizens

Thu, Jun 07, 2018

There has been a lot of talk about journeys in Ireland over the past few months.

But none will have been as traumatic and as poignant as that real journey that was made into Ireland this week by the hundreds of women who were forced to work in the Magdalene Laundries, as if the very act of cleansing would play some part in some sort of savage moral wash.

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All Systems Go: The Benefits of Access Control Systems

Thu, Jun 07, 2018

Technology is fast becoming an integral part of all aspects of life. Having the technology to make life easier allows us the freedom to focus our creative energies on other areas, and this can bring improvements in the workplace, universities, and public buildings.

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Demand for empathy at all-time high as country lurches into another scandal

Thu, May 31, 2018

The empathy of the Irish people has been tested over the past few days, weeks, months.

If it were an elastic band made of heartstrings, it would be twisted this way and that, knotted and frayed, bent and contorted.

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Ballinasloe residents and businesses asked to conserve water

Thu, May 31, 2018

Irish Water, working in partnership with Galway County Council, is appealing to households and businesses on the Ballinasloe Regional Water Supply Scheme to conserve water for the foreseeable future, as demand on the scheme has increased by more than 40 per cent in recent days.

The shortage is specifically affecting water supply in the villages of Laurencetown, Eyrecourt, Meelick, Clonfert, Kiltormer, Clontuskert, and surrounding areas,

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Using Forex trading to deliver that emergency income stream

Mon, May 21, 2018

At the beginning of the year, the Central Statistics Office delivered the promising news that unemployment in Galway had dropped by 12 percent over the past year. It was most likely as a consequence of this that the percentage of people going it alone as self-employed or sole proprietors also dropped, particularly when compared with the rest of Ireland.

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Farewell to a chronicler of our social history

Thu, May 17, 2018

When I started working in Tuam more than three decades ago, I came to the place like someone informed; It was as if I was watching a TV series having already seen the pilot episode. For me, very nook and cranny, every corner boy, every solicitor’s clerk, every waistcoated business owner, every side street had a side story about which there was a yarn or a saga. And for the best part of my many years there, I was enthralled and charmed and indeed shaped by the hundreds of characters who were citizens of the town, but who just as easily might have been characters in any one of Tom Murphy’s plays.

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A weekend of journeys

Thu, May 10, 2018

The weekend used to be a great time for ‘the spin.’ In the days when having a car was a novelty, “sit in, sit in,” would be the mantra, as families would pile into the car on a Sunday afternoon for a drive made with no end in mind, the act of travelling seemingly more important than any pre-determined destination. Weekends became associated with journeys, spins to nowhere in particular, visits from unannounced visitors, a series of movements that kept us all connected, grounded, and with a strong sense of where we were from, and what lay out of sight, just over the hill.

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Public are enraged by the lack of disclosure

Thu, May 03, 2018

It sits there. On the desk. In your bag. In your hand.

With people hoping it won’t ring. And being afraid to use it to ring someone else.

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Will anyone be held accountable for Dunmore foster care lapse?

Thu, Apr 26, 2018

Images of child abuse come to us through grey-tinted windows. In our mind’s eye, they happen in a black and white world, with a smell of cold and talc and warm breath in an Ireland where the rain is incessant, washing down the gutters and the windows, gathering up shreds of hope, carrying them along to a drain where they disappear. And through the glass, just before the net curtains swing back to obscure the view in this miserable world, there is just enough time left for those without voice to witness that washing away.

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If you wait for the right time, you wait forever

Thu, Apr 19, 2018

Weeks pass by in the flash of an eye. There is such order to what we do now, that we become enslaved to the routine so that on Monday you do Monday things, on Tuesday, Tuesday things, and so on, until before you know it, you’re back doing Monday things again.

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A great citizen whose legacy will be felt in Galway for generations

Thu, Apr 12, 2018

A city is a patchwork quilt of faces, opinions, cultures, sounds, smells. It only becomes what it is through the juxtaposition of all of these things. From the difference which it has to other places, a difference created by the choices we make in terms of the type of place we want to live in. I think of this every week when the team and I here at the Advertiser sit down to put together a newspaper that we hope touches in some respect a variety of the issues and areas that go to make up Galway. A pot pourri to match the pot pourri that surrounds us all.

I also think of this every time we lose someone who has made a contribution to what is Galway, to the way we think and approach life. We are fortunate to have have myriad individuals who through their intellect, ability, and drive have gone on to plaster into place one of the building blocks of the city we have today and the city we will have in fifty years time.

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