Thursday, May 8, 2014

8th May, Tony Conboy's Oblique View

Boyle Streets League team from the early 60's.
Front: Gerry McGlynn, Barry Feely, Austin Beisty
Back: Jim Maughan, Johnny Beirne, Cormac McConnell paddy Conlon

Well, as the Norwegian commentator espoused all those years ago, when Norway beat England, our 'boys took a hell of a beating' in the U21 All-Ireland Final at Tullamore. I doubt anyone saw this coming. We were blown away in that first half and seemed to suffer from stage fright. It has to be handed to the Dubs they put in a helluva performance all over the field as they raced into that match winning half-time lead of Dublin 14 points Roscommon 1 point. Then as the half-time whistle blew the Dublin team reacted as one and buzzed to their dressing room as if the result was still in doubt.
As spectators we were watching in disbelief. This was not the team we saw against Cork in Portlaoise. There was a suggestion of that during a short period in the second half with a three goal flurry.
Personally I still believe there are many fine players in this team. Allied to those of the last couple of years and those from what should be competitive U 21 teams to come in the next two years, all should combine to form the core of a competitive senior team for the next decade or so.
While last Saturday was very disappointing and showed up deficiencies hidden until Saturday, a month will heal that disappointment and we will follow with hope as we always do. They were beaten by a very good side who were well organised, knew what they were about, moved with pace and took their chances with aplomb which Roscommon had done in Poartlaoise. Anyway they say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger or as Gerry Dodd used say in the Pantomimes 'words to that effect'. 
Boyle Seniors, short a number of important players had a good draw with St. Croan's in Boyle on Monday. My 'Man of the Match' was former county player Seanie Purcell who continued where he left off last season. Also well done to the ladies U 16s' on their league win.

"Now Folks"

Christy Regan, an iconic figure of Boyle, passed away last weekend. Christy will have left an invaluable archive of images on film. He was a most genial affable gentleman and as I listened to his son Enda give a brief outline of his life and times it showed the many strings, literally, Christy had in his bow of life.
Taking photographs is not an easy job. It has its pressures. Even I who have tried to get a recent record of Boyle GAA teams, I know the difficulty in asking a team, keyed up for a game, to pose for a picture and then when it is snapped seeing a couple of stragglers still emerging from the dressing rooms. Christy did his work with grace, courtesy, patience and good humour with his catch call, for me was 'Now Folks'.

'I wanna tell you something, try it sometime'.

I caught up with the section of The Late Late Show dealing with a new book on the culture of entitlement of a political era of a short while ago. The book is titled 'Tom Gilmartin; The Man Who Brought Down a Taoiseach and Exposed the Greed and Corruption at the Heart of Irish Politics'. The Taoiseach in question was Bertie Ahern. It was just incredible stuff with the cast of Pádraig Flynn, former Taoiseach Charlie Haughey, Ray Burke and Liam Lawlor. One views again with disbelief the clip of Pádraig Flynn on the Late Late Show where he enunciates regarding the health of the Gilmartins and of his own difficulties(!) in keeping houses in Castlebar, Dublin and Brussels; 'I wanna tell you something, try it sometime'. I wonder are books like this, and there have been a few about those times, read in university economic or sociology classes. They might even be suggested for a Leaving Certificate reading list. It was something that a senior man had to struggle through years of Tribunal hearings to help unravel that endemic corruption and feeling of entitlement.

Water Charges:

I may have referred to this previously but I really feel an injustice in the probability of having to pay for water while we cannot drink it from the tap. This will be the case from October. I wonder how accurate that the suggested 'average' water charge of €240 will be the norm, if it ever is. I believe that this estimate is an illusion and with time the real cost, for many, will be closer to double that as the behemoth of the Water Board gets in its stride.

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