Saturday, January 10, 2015

Paddy McDermott Month’s Mind Mass : Boyle Celtic’s Big Game : Driving in Winter : Drugs in Sport

Paddy McDermott Month’s Mind Mass.

The Month’s Mind Mass for Paddy McDermott takes place on Saturday next January 10th in Boyle Church. As I said on his death Paddy was one of the finest contributors to Boyle GAA ever and this was replicated in his many other  Boyle community contributions. At the recent AGM of Boyle GAA, Vice-President Barry Feely, who would have known him longer than anyone else there, paid him a deserved tribute. In it he referred to the fact that Paddy was an outstanding player, held most of the officer positions within the club at one time or another and that there was no job too big or too onerous for Paddy to carry through. It is on the shoulders of people like Paddy McDermott that the GAA is built and has become the great organisation that it is.

Boyle Celtic’s Big Game

Boyle Celtic take on St. Michael’s from Tipperary, the holders, in the last 32 of the F.A.I. Junior Cup in Boyle on Sunday next at 2 p.m. This is the most prestigious competition that the club can partake in. I see that four of St. Michaels players are on the Ireland team and they are obviously a quality side. The Boyle team too are a quality side and play a really attractive style of football. They have had a great run in the last couple of years. Any one of their panel of players can turn in a ‘man of the match’ performance on any given day such is the balance and depth of the team’s ability. One of the largest crowds to attend at Boyle Celtic’s ground is expected and hoped for on Sunday. So I wish all connected with their efforts well.

Driving in Winter

I have done a good deal of driving this winter and a number of things have lodged in mind. I am aware that the road death statistics has risen in recent times and that three vulnerable groups  have been identified. These are cyclists, walkers and motor bike users. There has been a welcome surge in cycling in a very short time. Some cycling practises, especially in urban centres, have been dangerous such as cycling on footpaths, breaking red lights, jigging forward through lines of cars stopped at lights and then finding themselves in peril when the lights turn. On country roads there is the danger involved for motorists that passing by cyclists can be. There is the old adage that says ‘where there are rights there are also responsibilities’. Ireland’s roads are not very cyclist friendly I imagine and little provision has been made for them. This is in contrast to many European countries. 
During my driving I came across a number of instances where road walkers did not make any effort at wearing high visibility clothing and presuming that they were visible to the car driver. Coming on a person with dark clothes on a narrow country road, as I did, is a shock to the system. Then there is the scenario of a car coming in the opposing direction at the same time. 
An item that cropped up regularly was the lighting on cars. Quite a number had defective lights the most significant being the outside right light which made one wonder what was really coming towards you. Having a defective light can pretty easily go unnoticed for a time but it is not rocket science to check them out from time to time.
Another item that came onto my list were the crawlers i.e. one and then a second car going at minimal speeds and the test to one’s patience that this scenario presents regarding  passing out. Personally I tend to let a car, which is obviously going faster than I am, pass, by just pulling in and allowing him the space to do so.  
I feel I am not articulating these issues very well here but I am sure you get the gist of my musings and will have your own experiences.
As a slight postscript we are so lucky in Boyle town to have some very safe footpath walking circuits such as Abbeytown/Maple Drive and Carrick Road. Another option is Abbeytown/ from the first Arch to the Wooden Bridge and in via Lower Deerpark and Sligo Road. These are being widely used these nights as the new year resolutions kick in.    

Drugs in Sport

What are the issues that will come to a head in sport in 2015? One issue that is not going away is performing enhancing drugs in sport and the grey area of ‘enabling’ medication.  A book by a former French player Laurent Benezech has brought the spotlight onto the game of rugby. I listened to a very good debate on the issue between Paul Kimmage and Victor Costello on R.T.E. Radio sport on Sunday afternoon last.  Paul suggested that the rugby authorities generally and  particularly in Ireland, were not rigorous enough in their approach to the problem and challenged how the changes in the physiques, weight and the power of players were being achieved. In an interview the great Irish rugby player of the fifties Jack Kyle said; “In our day our skill was in avoiding getting hit”,  while today putting in the HIT is one of essentials of the game. This is similar to the tactic beloved in U.S. football of ‘sack the quarter back’ . Perhaps rugby at club level is pretty benign but personally I would not encourage people into the sport. I wonder what the injuries statistics are in rugby?  Are there performing enhancing drugs in Gaelic?  I remember a product called, I think, Creatine cropping up a number of years ago. Is there much testing in Gaelic?


It was nice to see a former student doing well recently. On the R.T.E. programme depicting the rebuilding of St. Mel’s Cathedral Cathal Cregg featured prominently with his company supplying and installing the very impressive columns for the nave. I have seen Cathal feature before in historic restoration but this must be a real highlight and proud moment for him and his company.
**While Christmas is well past now the best piece I read over Christmas was Kevin Hickey’s Facebook Post on his shopping experience pre-Christmas. This might carry a slight health warning for the squeamish! 
Also there is the re-publication of a fine piece by Christy Wynne in the Roscommon Herald titled ‘Happy memories of times past’ in this week’s Roscommon Herald’ page 39. This gives a detailed account of the lead up to Christmas when Christy was a boy which is a while ago.
It was good to meet those home for Christmas at the successful GAA Quiz one of the Christmas nights.  
I do not know if anyone has copies of a Connacht GAA publication called ‘Into The West’, Vol. 4 Issue 9 for Sept./Oct. 2013. If anyone comes across a copy I’d be interested.
I wish all readers here a good 2015.

Forest View,
Co. Roscommon
Mob: 086 816 3399

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