Why do we make people invisible?

Thu, Jan 26, 2023

I suppose I am not unique in thinking that the times when I have been the most lonely in my life have not been solitary, but those when you are among crowds and invisible. It is the sensation you get in large cities, when you are invisible in plain view.

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Stretch in the evening gives us hope

Thu, Jan 19, 2023

It was Emily Dickinson who wrote that ‘hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul - and sings the tunes without the words - and never stops at all.’

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Let us not force our politicians to avoid public engagement

Thu, Jan 12, 2023

I don’t think that our politicians should have to alter their footwear in the morning to ensure they are wearing something comfortable to enable them to make a quick getaway.

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Let’s be having you for Galway’s big century

Thu, Jan 05, 2023

When Galway was on the cusp of becoming an EEC city fifty years ago this month, it had yet to attain the cultural and technological economic status that has defined it in the interim, plucking it from being a large provincial rural town to a city.

Over the next decade after EEC membership was attained, Galway benefited from the presence of many exceptional characters on the political, the cultural, and the economic front. Even on the religious and sporting fronts, the region was well blessed with larger than life characters whose presence ensured that this neck of the woods punched above its weight in terms of prominence.

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Playing it by year — who knows what 2023 holds?

Thu, Dec 29, 2022

They say that an optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves. So it will be for many of us this weekend when we bid a glad farewell to another year and welcome in the latest instalment — another chapter in the book of life.

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Look after the little things this Christmas

Thu, Dec 22, 2022

Look after the little things in life. Because one day the time will come when you realise they are the big things. And there is no better time to find this out than at this time of the year.

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And with that, a quarter of a century flew by

Thu, Dec 01, 2022

It had been more than 24 years since I spoke to Martin Costello of Corofin, until I saw him again yesterday. The last time we spoke, was in the kitchen of his home where I documented the heartache he was feeling at the horrific killing of his sister Eileen Costello-O’Shaughnessy. I remember then, as a young reporter, seeing the impact that grief could have on a person.

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Time to mind those who mind us

Thu, Nov 24, 2022

They say that tyranny and anarchy are never far apart. Especially if we continue to turn a blind eye to the growing trend of the acceptability of grievous assaults on our emergency services.

It is only a few short years since front line workers were being rightly lauded for the actions they took to ensure that society could operate in unfamiliar times. When the hospitals were out of bounds, when we were advised to isolate, they played a key role in keeping society operating.

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A woman you don’t meet every day

Thu, Nov 17, 2022

They say a society grows great when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit.

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Over there — the challenges facing the EU in these times

Thu, Nov 10, 2022

It’s Wednesday evening and I type these words in a quiet corner of the Berlaymont in Brussels. Outside the evening is a grey November, not quite frosty yet, but winter is on the way. And perhaps a sort of winter is on the way for the institution in whose building I am working.

I am here this week in a group of regional journalists from Ireland. Each of us from farflung arms of the country. Each of us accustomed to testing the waters of our respective regions. And each of us trying to do our bit to understand why the European Parliament does not rock the boat of the Irish public in the manner that Dail Eireann or the City Council Chamber does.

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Winter is here when the market lands

Thu, Nov 03, 2022

I always notice that temperatures in Galway seem to drop by about ten degrees when the Christmas Market is upon us. I used to think that those Siberian stallholders brought the cold over with them when they unpacked. As if a cloud of winter chilliness would escape from their crates of goods and envelope us all in a coldness, sated only by the mulled wines and the hot treats of the stalls.

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Summertime, wintertime, and more drinking-time

Thu, Oct 27, 2022

It is perhaps appropriate that on the week that is in it, the end of summertime and the beginning of wintertime, that legislation should provide us all with a new time — drinking-time.

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Galway needs to take a long hard look at itself

Thu, Oct 20, 2022

I’m a great believer in taking a look back to the past to understand the present and plan for the future. To see if a culture pervades that will enable you to set targets, to develop and to progress.

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Passing of a mayor with a glint in his eye

Thu, Oct 13, 2022

Cities and places are the products of those who live there, who shape the communities, who by their deeds and actions influence the way things get done. Galway, having had its own makeover from a provincial trading town to a city of affluence and attitude, is a patchwork quilt formed from the colourful threads of all those who have come here and made an impact.

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We all need heroes like Browne and Crean and Weekes

Thu, Oct 06, 2022

There was a strange juxtaposition in Galway Port this week. The Marine Institute’s shiny new super-bád, the Tom Crean purred its way out of the harbour, ready to shimmy its way down to Kerry where it will be officially unveiled today.

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Abuse of match officials a symptom of changing society

Thu, Sep 29, 2022

When I started out in this game, and even as a kid, there were certain pillars of society that demanded and were given authority and respect. We were all taught to respect the guards, teachers, priests, nuns, the elderly, the doctors the vulnerable...the list went on.

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A budget that matters more than most

Thu, Sep 22, 2022

By this time next week, we will all be fully au fait with the yins and yangs of the Budget which will be revealed in the Dail on Tuesday afternoon. It is probably safe to say that of all the budgets that we have experienced throughout our lifetime, this is one that will grab the attention of almost all of us.

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The cool caress of the winds of change

Thu, Sep 15, 2022

Of course, there is nothing permanent except change itself. It is the law of life, it is that which adds to the yins and yangs of existence.

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The need for art to hold up a mirror

Thu, Sep 08, 2022

Societies are imperfect entities. Composed of unequal parts, of unfair power struggles. They are misshapen, with nooks and crannies into which the most horrific of injustices can be visited on those who are afraid to come into the light.

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A place that is welcoming to all

Thu, Sep 01, 2022

Over the next few weeks, Galway will one again thankfully feel the rush of fresh blood through its veins when thousands of students come here for an experience that one hopes will be a positive one, and will help them forge a link with this city that they will hold for the rest of their lives.

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