Thursday, September 11, 2014

The Scottish Referendum / All-Ireland Hurling Final / Sheepdog Trials / Boyle GAA Ladies

The Scottish Referendum 

The Scottish people go to vote on Thursday September 18th  of next week on whether to remain part of the United Kingdom or to vote for an independent Scotland. It is the most important vote that the Scottish people have ever or will ever cast. It is a vote that will affect generations of their people. Thus it is a huge responsibility on each voter. As such there should be a major turnout of voters. While the Yes vote has made considerable ground in recent times the possibility exists that when it comes down to voting Yes with all its imponderables  people will shy away from such an enormous decision and vote No. How would You advise a Scottish voter if asked? 


Rollercoaster of an Amazing  All-Ireland Hurling Final

The drawn All-Ireland final between Kilkenny and Tipperary has been widely viewed as one of the greatest finals ever. This was a game that had everything. It was a rollercoaster ride from beginning to end as first one side and then the other seemed on their way to All-Ireland glory. The drama went down to the last puck of the ball and those of us present watched with bated breath as the sliotar bore down on the Kilkenny goals from close to one hundred metres distance. The reaction from behind the goals in the Davin End seemed to indicate a score. However in the end it was decided by technology as Hawkeye decided that the last gasp Tipperary free was just wide and the 82,000 attendance, plus I imagine the huge television audience, exhaled, some with disappointment, but most probably feeling that a draw was a fair result that  gave the mouth-watering prospect of another chance to see those two powerhouses of hurling go head to head again in three weeks’ time. Hawkeye has paid its way for the GAA. There was no celebration or displays of disappointment as supporters looked at each other knowing it was not necessary to articulate their feelings. It was understood by most that they had been privy to something special, something that they would remember for a long time, a game that would go down in the annals as one of the great ones.
It was just amazing to see the quality of scoring on Sunday as players got the sliotar and instinctively struck and cracked the ball over the bar. It is statement of its own that there were no wides between the 44th and 72nd minute of the game, twenty eight minutes. It is something that teams could score 3.22 and 1.28 and still not win. It is said that 1.24 of the Tipp total came from play. If that is so it is an almost incredible statistic.  It was hugely physical but yet hugely sporting. For a period the duel between Richie Hogan of Kilkenny and Tipp’s Seamus Callanan was like an epic tennis game as ace followed ace.  While I am not a twitter devotee I have been shown the reaction of people who saw the game of hurling for the first time through Sky 1 in England. While we know the greatness of the game and perhaps it is an indulgence that we are curious to see foreign reaction to our national treasure. The reactions varied from the confused to the dazzled and I quote just one; ‘the skills on show in this hurling final are outrageous and slightly insane’. This classic game said it all about itself. 

Call Centre Charges Plus

I see a report this week that highlights the potential extreme costs involved in using Call Centres to obtain telephone numbers. I wrote a note about this here a good while ago. I got to know of it at a cost to myself when I checked my phone bill. Many bills now are not paper records but online so the possibility of something like this getting through the net is perhaps greater. I hope that people make themselves aware of this practise especially more vulnerable people. With the high tech savvy people there are other ways of getting telephone numbers or so I am told.  The only real safety net is avoidance.
Another slightly related topic are the television quizzes on major shows. A question such as; What is the capital of France? Is it Delhi, Paris or London? This of course is not a real question but just a hook. It may be a requirement of the process. However if you look at the inflated costs of the phone or text entry it is easy to see that they are self- financing and more.     

International Sheepdog Trials

I mention this event because it takes place near the village of Creggs which is the next parish to my own native parish of Fuerty. Apparently it is going to be a major event and there is an expectation of 20,000 visitors including 6,000 international visitors. The publicity blurb also suggests that it is ‘The West of Ireland’s Largest Agricultural and Lifestyle Event’. Certainly it is going to be the biggest event in the history of the Creggs region. With the weather looking good for the week-end, for those with an interest it promises to be a worth considering. I am sure there are ways of finding out more about it on modern and traditional media sources. 

Boyle GAA Ladies

Boyle Ladies have a big game on Saturday at 5 p.m. in the Abbey Park against Western Gaels in the intermediate ladies semi-final. Your support would be welcome.

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