Friday, March 21, 2008

I'm off to sunny Cavan

As the old joke goes: First prize in tonight's draw is a week's holiday in Cavan. Second prize? Two weeks' holiday in Cavan.

Pah, slag us off if you like, I'm off to sunny Breffniland for the weekend and I'm looking forward to it. I haven't darkened the border of my home county since Christmas, and me and the old sod have some catching up to do. By old sod I mean my place of birth and not my father or anything, by the way.

There's surely a pint of Smithwicks down there with my name on it. Well, there would be if I was called Smithwick McSmithwicks but I'm not. Anyway, I'll be drinking alot of it this weekend and generally holding court and regaling the awestruck locals with my tales of bodice-ripping derring-do and gadding about in the big shmoke.

I like Cavan. It has a reputation for being a backward backwoods backwater where common pastimes include inbreeding, rolling dwarves down steep hills, Satanic masses and the little known sexual practice of smearing one's lover in black molasses before rolling them in hundreds and thousands and licking the whole lot off. But I think it's just eclectic. Indeed, Cavan is a cultural mecca of sorts. Well, ok, agricultural mecca, we do have alot of piggeries and chicken farms but the world of Denny convenience pies would be a lesser place for our absence, so think first before you pass judgement.

Nightlife options are extensive. You can go to the pub or the off-licence, or hop onto a 15-seater minibus to the dishco with about 50 other people, and spend the 20-mile journey with your face mashed into the arse of the person in front of you who had tried to sit on your knee but couldn't because your knees are somewhere behind your ears and it's touch and go as to whether you're getting them back.
Otherwise, the pubs are functional spots in that there'll be a bar with drink behind it, usually someone to pour it, and somewhere out the back a toilet with, occasionally, toilet roll. As the ad on the radio says, what it lacks in excitement it more than makes up for with its complete lack of excitement. And the fact that you'll still get a pint at 1.30am, wa-hey! Plus, something shloppy and greasy in the Chinese chipper afterwards, by which I mean the food as opposed to some wanton hussy of dubious morals, and parentage. Then again, a few Cavan marriages have been founded on the steady rock of a last-chance teriyaki-trembler up the lane outside. We're nothing if not classy.

My Mum will tell me I'm going to the gym too much - "You could turn round twice in your own trousers" is a particular favourite on these visits - and so she will sneak into my bedroom and surreptitiously feed me burgers and chips whilst I sleep, or continually pop up like Mrs. Doyle from behind the settee with trays of sandwiches that would buckle a horse at the knees if he tried to eat them. I think I'll scoff a few Easter eggs to stay on the right side of her.

With Dad, unpleasantries on the weather will be exchanged as a preamble, and then it will be on to matters sport, and the state of Cavan's football misfortunes will be discussed. (Cavan football is such an irrelevance in the rest of the country so it's great to get home and give the doughty topic the airing it deserves with like-minded individuals, i.e. people as bitter and twisted as I am about how shite we are. I don't even blog about it, that's how bad it is).

The full McDanger clan will be out in force for the long weekend and the mobilisation of the entire brood is an impressive sight when we all gather with offspring in tow. We're a productive bunch. Every time I go home I discover a new niece or nephew that looks about three or four years of age, so I guess we either have longer gestation periods than the average human or else we lose a few kids down the back of the sofa for a few years until they get hungry and come out to puzzled looks, whereupon someone remembers that brother McDanger's youngest hasn't been seen since Christmas. 2005.

Oh it'll be fun. I'll be back when I wake up next week.
Thursday, March 13, 2008

A few more of my favourite things

Right, I think it's high time I rattled off a few more items for my occasional series about things that I like. Another anti-rant is long due. I actually quite like doing this because it's more difficult to write about things that you like. Well it is when you're me anyway.
Anyway, I feel very chipper and dandy today. And if I could think of another positive emotion that sounds like a children's comic book, I'd probably be feeling that as well. But Chipper and Dandy will have to do for now, because if I said I was feeling Judy you'd all be worried.

Hear this, people. Barcelona is the absolute shit. And I mean the absolute shit. I reserve my highest, no wait, my highest praise for this city and everything in it.
I spent a week there with Miaow Cow two summers ago and I'd go back every year if I could. I was never so happy in all my life as I was then, gambolling along the buzzing, burning Ramblas every day and chugging down quantities of tapas and beer. I ate like a horse and drank like a fish for the entire week, and it was a damn awkward dual impression to carry off at a dinner table I can tell you. I think I put on about two stone. There was definitely a bigger arce in Barcelona by the Friday, put it that way. In fact the only downside was returning to Dublin and having the local shortcomings in even sharper focus than usual.

It's all there in this place though. The crazy, curvy, mental Gaudi architecture everywhere (that man was tripping, seriously), the fantastic food, the superb transport system, the history, the endless amounts of things to see and do, the weather, the Nou Camp and of course La Sagrada Familia that just blows my socks off every time I think about it. I scarcely have a pair left by now so I'm switching to suspenders. Hang on, basque and suspenders anyone? Sorry.
So yeah, Barcelona, it's alright so it is. Just get on a plane and go. No! Hang on, read the rest of the post first, and then go.

The gym
It's the best natural high there is. Just get in there, run the blue screaming bejesus out of yourself and head off home with the endorphins chasing each other around your happily knackered body like kids at a wedding reception. Brilliant.
Scobies simply wouldn't need drugs if they'd just go the gym more. Or if they'd go at all. It'd be a fair old reversal of trends to see them loitering in doorways trying to score a gym pass so they can get in there and crank out a couple of squats to keep the buzz going and stave off the DTs.
As in: "Stor-eeeeee bud I fuggin' need to gerrus to the fuggin gym for a fuggin spin class aller dis fuggin lactic acid has me itchin' for a burn. Girrus a fuggin protein shake will yeh Charlo I can't be atin' dem fuggin kerbs all the toime."
And stuff.

I'm a total gobshite when it comes to cars. I borrow more money than I should to buy cars that I shouldn't, and I'd borrow more still if I could and it constantly annoys me to realise that I can't. I'm very pragmatic and sensible in almost every other way, but cars are my ultimate folly. I have my current wheels for about a year and a half and already I'm browsing car websites, dreamily pondering where and how I'll do my next splurging of a ridiculous wedge of money I don't have. I'm falling for racy Alfa diesels if you're wondering. Despite knowing the horror stories about Alfas. See? I'm insane.
Between repayments, fuel, tax, insurance, repairs and so on, when you think about it, owning a car is one of the stupidest and least cost-effective things a person can ever do. It'd make more sense to set up a business for training blocks of cheese to herd eels.
I can't believe I've been blogging this long without mentioning all this actually. Oh well, I'm out of the closet now. Or garage, whatever.

The humble badger gets a fierce bad rap for TB, and for smelling bad, but I'm here to say that I think they're alright and we should leave them alone. I've never spoken to one or had a pint with any of them or anything, I just look at avuncular, bespectacled old badgers on childrens programmes and think, you know what, anyone dissing badgers wants a good kick in the hole, pun intended. Most of these people have never spent any time at all with badgers or their families, yet they're willing to denounce them as pests and torture them. For shame!
I'm going to give all my nieces a badger each next Christmas, and what's more, they'll bloody well like it.
And anyway, if TB and smelling bad were reasons for exterminating something, large parts of Dublin would have been levelled in the 1900s. And there'd have been uproar.
Badgers. You've always thought they were cute and wanted to cuddle one, admit it.

The girl on the floor below
There's a young wan that works for another company in our building and she has the most perfectly crafted bottom I've ever seen. I check out alot of booty in the course of an average day, usually the same ones three or four times, and her one, and the way it'd look at you, is unrivalled.
I see her outside when she's having a smoke break. She always has her bottom with her, she brings it everywhere. It's pert, chunky, nicely rounded and you get a good wigglesworth when she walks. You'd be finding excuses to follow her about if it wasn't for the barring order.
Sometimes though I get bizarre horror notions that maybe, underneath the tautened jeans she paints on every morning, she might actually be hiding a secret, disfigured bum. Like, what if despite the outward appearance of perfection, she was actually packing a big portwine stain on one cheek? Or a covering of soft downy hair all over her bum, or maybe even a tatoo of Groucho Marx or something? But sigh, the higher imagination is better than the cynical mind and always wins.
Her name? Round here, we speak of her only as Tremendarse.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A first Easter card...

Happy Easter! Just be aware, due to global warming, Good Friday will be on a Tuesday this year.

That will be all.

Love and bunnies,
Sunday, March 09, 2008

Ye olde meme

I'm terrible slow sometimes. It seems Grandfather McHeadrambles tagged me some time back in 1798, probably on just about the only day that I didn't happen to read his blog. I think I was going through one of my shit-the-boss-keeps-looking-over phases at work or something. So I completely missed it altogether and only found it there now because I tripped across it on my technorati profile that, unlike Grandad's blog, I never look at.

Ah well. Better late than never I suppose.

Here's how the whole thing works:

Post this on your blog . . .
+ Link to the person that tagged you and post the rules on your blog.
+ Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself.
+ Tag 7 random people at the end of your post, and include links to their blogs.
+ Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
That’s all there’s to it . . .
Oh, and have fun.

Seven random and weird facts. Hould on to your britches boys and girls, here we go:

1. Until I was about 19 I never knew that the accepted vernacular for haemorrhoids was 'piles.' Nobody wanted to correct me because they thought it much too funny to hear me say shit like "That fella walks funny, he must have a bad dose of heaps." Or, "That feckin' dog is dragging his arse around the floor behind him trying to scratch himself. He clearly has loads, bless him."

People laughed at me for years and I never knew.

2. The first time I got drunk was at aged 14 on five manky pints of Heineken that my sister's foxy friend bought for me. I barfed like a geyser.

Do geysers have carrots in them?

And no dice with the foxy friend either, unsurprisingly.

3. I really, really, really can't for the fucking life of me understand this poker on TV phenomenon. It's the stupidest craze to take hold, ever. A bunch of shades-wearing assholes sitting around a table playing cards and a breathless commentator talking over it about the flop and the blinds and other shit, and they put it all on TV and some people actually watch! I'd rather eat my own face.

4. The first CD I ever bought was August and Everything After by the Counting Crows. I still listen to it regularly, probably more than the piles of other CDs - or heaps, loads, whatever - that I've bought since.

5. When I was 12, I promised my friend I'd buy him three Mars bars if he'd eat a raw onion and five mushrooms. He accepted the bet and scoffed the lot.

I then told him I hadn't any money.

6. My maths teacher once found me rolling cigarettes down the back of his class and gave me a two-page essay to write as punishment. I kinda got into it though and instead wrote him a five page one that he found so amusing he vowed to find a reason to punish me similarly in the near future. He never did though.

Catch me that is.

And he took me skins and tobacco as well the fucker.

7. The single moment in film history that made me laugh more than any other, ever, was during the spoof Oscar ceremony in Naked Gun 33 and a turd, when they showed a clip from "Mother Teresa, the musical."

It basically showed a very nimble and unusually spry Mother Teresa capering and dancing through a shanty village and jumping over hurdles, singing "I love food, I love food."

I damn near wet myself and still couldn't stop laughing even after rewinding ten times. Once I start laughing at something, I just can't stop until I get something akin to a mild asthma attack and that usually stops me alright.

Anyhoo, that's quite enough septuple randomistical weirdnesses. Here's the magnificent seven I'm now tagging with this.

Radge I bet I know all of them already. Especially that one with the sheep and the baby oil, eh? Hilarious!

Baino There's only one thing worse than being tagged Baino, and that's not being tagged.

Rosie I have to pay you back for your fartfelt tribute and this might take your mind off things when you get back to blogging, hopefully soon.

K8 I can't get back at Grandad, therefore I will hurt the people nearest to him instead, but only because Sandy can't read and write yet. Mwah ha hahahahaha!

Kath With one stipulation: only one revelation can be chocolate-related. Carry on.

Susan You left your calling card here on Friday so I know you're out and about again. It's high time you got yourself back in front of a PC young lady. (With a comma deliberately left out after PC, just to throw you and get you scratching your head about an episode of The Bill.)

Adullamite The bike? Hearts? Tea cakes? Less be avin ye!

And Heron, you needn't be sniggering, if you didn't have a sports blog you'd be on this too.
Friday, March 07, 2008

I'm gone all technical

It only took me about four hours and alot of screaming, roaring and hissing obscenties, but I finally managed to register my own domain name and get my blog working.

So, is now alive and kicking. is owned by some other spoilsport it seems, as are moodogblog, moo-dog, moodogsblog, moodawg and basically, any other semi-intelligible version of the blog formally known as So I took an executive branding decision, took the helicopter view, got all my ducks in a row, decided to be proactive rather than reactive, and went with, cos' let's face it, there's no other fucker out there would call himself that and the domain was bound to be available. And so it was.

When I cool down and relax again after going through this technical equivalent of the fucking Krypton factor, I may branch out further and take a run at a word press version, although I expect I will quickly lose patience there as well and keel over on to the floor in a paroxysm of rage complete with a big furiously purple head and foam coming out of my mouth. Sorta like Barney the Dinosaur, The Ecstasy Years.

Anyway, I'm here, I've arrived. I feel a bit giggly now. Good night.
Thursday, March 06, 2008

It's an ill wind...

Aha! I know now why I was sick. It turns out that, far from being on the threshold of my eternal reward as feared, all I needed was a simple, honest-to-goodness fart to set me right. Several farts in fact. So for two days solidly, I've been farting. And yea, I hath saw that it was good and believed stoutly in my oaken heart. And lo, on the third day, I doth return to work, and with apologies to those who read with a lisp, you know once I get out the olde English that I doth not fucketh about here.

Now, I'm not considering a career in medicine or getting ahead of myself or anything, but I don't think it's stretching it to say that the humble fart as a panacea for minor ailments may well be the breakthrough discovery of our times. It worked for me, so it must be true.

Future visits to the doctor will be interesting if he has to drape me across his couch and start working my trailing leg like I'm a water pump, just to get me back on the straight and narrow.

You might snigger, but I've studied the matter at close quarters. Confined to bed with a queasy stomach and the irreconcilable condition of feeling constantly hungry but being unable to eat, my innards rose up in sympathetic rebellion and simply farted themselves back to good health. Amazing stuff. I think my stomach was wondering had my throat been cut, and decided to cleanse itself from the inside out to get things back to the ten square meals a day situation it normally enjoys.
It was fascinating how my body could heal itself in such a manner, although the bum symphonics got to such a pitch and frequency that at one stage I was genuinely worried I'd fart myself inside out, and be found dead and crumpled in the corner like a deflated sex doll, my mouth coincidentally contorted in a large 'O' of terror.

I shouldn't have worried. My intestine clearly knows what it's doing and so it just parped and trumpeted along like an intermittent tuba solo for two whole days, until it could fart no more. I went through the full repertoire - the deep basal farts, the high-pitched squeaky farts, the farts that sound like a zip being pulled up really quickly, the pfffffft-y gaseous farts, the pop-pop-pop farts, the splutter farts that tail off and sound like an old tractor labouring up a hill, and even the odd really strange-sounding randomer curveball fart that sounds like you're under water or farting into a tin bucket or something.

Finally though, at about 18.43 yesterday evening, while watching Hymen Wye on the telly, my guts convulsed for the last time and expelled the last of the virus, a little wheezy, almost apologetic effart that sounded like a set of bagpipes exhaling in some forgotten cupboard. I rose to my feet and smiled, for then I knew I was cured. I walk tall among you now, rid of the flatus that bound me.

And no, they weren't smelly.

And what the feck is Milco doing back in Hymen Wye in the first place?
Tuesday, March 04, 2008


I think I'm a bit ill today.

I'm off me grub, which is definitely an ominous portent, in much the same way as you'd be concerned about your dog if you offered him a steak dinner treat and he fussily turned away and starting licking his groin instead.

I've got no jokes either. I tried one there above about the dog and his dinner, in an effort to underline how fundamentally in love with food I am and therefore indicate how not being able to eat is a sign that all is not well, but it didn't really work and I'm not really bothered about changing it either. That's a bad sign too.

There's something amiss alright. My stomach feels empty but I can't eat. I'm sleeping like Rip Van Diesel but am still knackered and nodding off at my desk while I'm typing this. My brain is fogged up and I feel like I'm seeing the world through that frosty glass they use for toilet windows.

Worst of all, the hot wan in the office is wearing something awfully nice today and I can't even be bothered sneaking sly glances at her. It's all terribly confusing. I never get sick, I'm normally healthy as a horse. I think I was last under the weather back in 2001, and hangovers apart, have barely sniffled since.

All things told, and I'm not one for over reacting, it's quite possible that I'm going to die. If there's no blog for a while, you can assume the worst.

Now I'm fucking off home before I collapse.