Friday, March 18, 2016

Update 18th March

Friday Night’s Late Late Show and Saturday Night’s Ray Darcy Show a Coalition?.

With all the talk of a ‘grand coalition’ between Fine Gael and Fianna Fail an idea struck me with regard to two prominent RTE television programmes. After trying to stay with The Late Late Show on Friday night and ‘The Ray Darcy Show’ on Saturday night -for analysis purposes- I felt that these two shows and the resources involved in them could easily be coalesced into just the one show. I was prompted into doing this research by an interesting page by Paul Healy in last week’s Roscommon People. I was waiting to  hear George Hook on Friday night. He was well flagged but moderate guest after moderate guest came and went until it was nearly past my bedtime and eventually the last guest came on, George Hook. It could be said that the same happened the previous week with the Healy Reas'. The guests on the Late Late Show started with singer Hozier with a song called ‘Cherry Wine’ connected to the theme of domestic violence. He is a fine singer/ guitarist and comes across as a very decent young man. Amongst the other guests was Simon Weston from the Falklands War which I suppose was the sad tale of ultimate redemption as mentioned by Paul Healy in the Roscommon People’s headline, ‘The Late Late; Where misery is light entertainment…’While the house band is very good I had never heard of the two guest groups Little Green Cars and Aoifa Scott. Tubridy has a habit of saying ‘I liked that’ and ‘Will you come back again soon?’ One is entitled to say ‘I liked that’ occasionally but when the viewer is saying it before the presenter it must be a tad too regular. I remember Cyril Farrell being hooked on saying about Damien Hayes or Eddie Brennan  having  ‘Great pace Ger’ to his companion analyst Ger Loughnane. Then came the black comedian Reginald D. Hunter who I like but he did not get much help from Ryan who was more into biographical detail than humour. Reginald had two good quips that I remember, saying he happy with the Christian name Reginald as it got him ‘past the phone interview’ and asked what he’d do if Trump became US President answered; ‘I’d come live in Ireland’. There were a couple of forgettable fillers. Eventually George Hook arrived. He must have anticipated that Ryan Tubridy was going to give him a hard time but Hook came out swinging on the topic of ‘concussion’ and Ryan hardly got out of his corner.
The show went on from 9.35 to 11.45 i.e. 2 hours 10 minutes including ads. I doubt if there is a ‘chat show’ anywhere which is given so much time and rightly so. In between is the draw with the daft question such as; which of these is the capital of England Paris, New York or London. To answer, one has make a text contribution at an inflated cost, which, as Arthur Daley used say, must be a ‘nice little earner’ for the show’s balance sheet. Just in case you missed the show or wish to see it again it is repeated on Monday night. Apparently it gets high audience figures. How do they actually measure these figures?

On Saturday it Ray D’Arcy. I am not a fan of Ray’s giddy style. He gave a generous wedge of time, nearly half an hour, to Aslan and Christy Dignam. Christy can still sing though even if it is a song I have heard a few times. His other guests were the O’Shea brothers, who, while earnest, were far from riveting. Their dad won 3 All-Irelands with Kerry in the fifties. A  Dublin film maker John Carney was very pleased to be promoting his film ‘Synge Street’. This show has a time slot of 9.50 to 11.10 i.e. 1 hour and 20 minutes including ads. So the time total for two similar shows is 3. 30 minutes. Lucky that there was no appearance by regulars Pippa, Twink or Amanda Brunker.

Now that I have done my research and make my recommendation for a truncated coalition I rest my case and return to the pace and quality of the Graham Norton show.

P.S. For his Late Late show plus other contributions Ryan Tubridy gets €495,000. Of course Pat Kenny was getting €950,000 in 2008. Joe Duffy earns 416 000; Marian Finucane 295, Sean O’Rourke 290 and Miriam O’Callaghan 280. I am a bit surprised to see Miriam at the bottom of the top five. Marian Finucane comes out pretty well for her two (?) radio shows.  

Roscommon continue to turn on the style.

Roscommon continued to  surprise with another vintage display against Donegal on Sunday in Letterkenny. While they are not fully assured of a league semi-final place yet, they are very close. The confidence with which the team is playing is really exciting for us supporters and Roscommon have caught the imagination of sports commentators and observers nationwide. Roscommon led on the score of 11 points to 6 at half time. Despite a Donegal rally inspired by a great effort from a magnificent Michael Murphy, aided by the introduction of veteran Christy Toye, Roscommon finished strongly with a decisive great goal from Cathal Cregg on 24 minutes into the second half showing the way home. Roscommon were convincing winners on the score of, Roscommon 1.19 Donegal 0.17. Once again it was a full team performance with outstanding performances all over the field. My ‘Man of the Match’ would go to Cathal Cregg, not for the first time. His goal was a cracker at a vital stage. Fintan Cregg, Davy Murray, Seanie McDermott, Neil Collins, Conor Devaney and Niall Daly were others to really shine. But as I said it was a total team show with substitute Cathal Compton also impressing in a short space of time. The quality of the point scoring was a joy to watch and the support play was awesome. The attention to ball possession has been a revelation with the quality of the hand and foot passing being such a transformation to what has frustrated us in recent years. I imagine the squad and all involved have to enjoying it all as much as we are. Playing before big knowledgeable crowds against quality opposition with generous media coverage must be very satisfying for all involved. It has to be said that these games are played in a very good spirit where the emphasis on playing the game as it should and could be played which is what is so enjoyable. Roscommon supporters as they travel through the country are feeling the reaction and comment on their side’s quality of play

‘The Car Load’

One of the pleasures of travelling to games is the bond that develops between the regular ‘car load’. The regular car loads from the various towns and clubs are readily identifiable. I first experienced this as a teenager when following Roscommon in ’61 and ’62 especially the ‘broke crossbar’ day. While three of the journeys to recent games have been long for our driver they have been shortened for us passengers by fun stories and anecdotes covering a broad canvass. Of course the fact that the team has been winning and playing champagne football has heightened the experience. Last Sunday was a fine day for a game and the game itself was a treat. The Donegal ambience was welcoming and the service of a shuttle bus was an innovative gesture. The journey home was relaxed with nothing but positivity. To cap off the occasion with fine food ‘under bare Ben Bulben’ was a perfect ending to a grand positive day.

The Roscommon support is beginning to gain momentum so there will be a big crowd in Hyde Park on Easter Sunday for the game against Mayo.
On Saturday Roscommon minors and U 21 team are playing Sligo. Both games may be in Sligo. On Sunday it is back to the bread and butter of club football as Boyle play Elphin in the division one league.

Trump Watch

Reginald D. Hunter-above- suggested that Donald Trump first honed in on Mexicans being a real issue for the United States and he was advocating a wall to keep them out .Reginald also suggested that some Mexican mobster threatened to do the ultimate to Trump and that influenced him, as it might, to veer away from that mantra which he has now replaced it with an anti-Muslim one.

Beware of Scams

There is a famous saying ‘beware of Greeks bearing gifts’. Apparently the origin of this was with the Trojan Horse gift left outside the walls of Troy. A very upset gentleman from Kildare called Joe Duffy on Tuesday to relate how he was robbed of €1000 by two ‘gentleman’ who came looking for a ‘bit of work’. It started with them suggesting that they would clean the clogged gutters for €40 and this multiplied to loose slates and moss on the roof and on the driveway. Anyway Jim made the mistake of giving these people the toe-hold of doing anything. In the heel of the reel, the classic one at the front door while a second explored the house, successfully via the back door followed. He was robbed of €1000 and other personal items.
Senior people, especially living alone, are particularly targeted and it is understandable that they often get caught. It is probable that in the near future there will be cctv cameras on houses as well as alarms. I am a big believer in the ‘pendant’ alarm and I imagine it could be useful in these situations. Also the chain and spy hole on the front door are to be recommended. The reality is do not engage at all if at all possible.

Well done Abbey Community College Ladies

Abbey Community College Ladies Junior team who won a first title when they defeated Colaiste Bhaile Chlair, Claregalway in the Connacht Junior C Final in the Centre of Excellence, Ballyhaunis, last week.
I see it got a good splash in the Roscommon Herald this week.
Well done also to Boyle U 16s’ who defeated Eire Og on Saturday.
Boyle Feile team who will representing Roscommon in the national Feile finals at the end of June will be participating in the St. Patrick’s Day parade.

Aishling Dolan in New Zealand

Hi to Aishling Dolan in New Zealand and a happy St. Patrick’s Day to you. I missed you from my short list recently. Mea culpa.

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