Louth GAA were quick to throw cold water on the rumours that Leinster rivals Dublin were caught training by the fresh photography skills of new manager Mickey Harte.
Harte, who took up the reins of managing the Wee County at the end of last year, managed to fill free time in recent months by taking up photography and was spotted around pitches frequented by Dublin squads in the past, albeit trying to snap pictures of curlews and other birds that reminded him of home.
However, rumours that he took photos of Fenton and Cooper training are way off the mark according to Louth committee member Gerard Sludden:
“I know for a fact that Mickey did not take them photos. He uses one of them instant camera things and wouldn’t have the zoom capacity clearly used in the leaked photos. Listen, if we beat Dublin this year because their players have been jailed over this it’s their fault. And Louth are rising anyway.”
Harte will begin his tenure in charge of Louth in Division 4 which also sees one of his 00s players Enda McGinley in opposition in charge of Antrim. Rumours that Harte was seen near Casement Park taking photos of murals has been brought to McGinley’s attention.
News leaked from the Ulster GAA offices are suggesting that if Tyrone achieve a highly unlikely victory over Derry in Omagh in the preliminary round of the Ulster Football Championship, their quarter final tie against Antrim will be played at Windsor Park in Belfast, home of Linfield and the Northern Ireland soccer team.
Due to the long grass in Casement Park, Antrim have been frantically searching for an alternative venue for their home fixture and were reportedly considering playing the game around the back of the Andersonstown Leisure Centre on a concrete surface.
Heroically, Linfield FC have stepped in to save the day and have offered to let out their pitch for three hours at 6pm on Saturday 25th May for £300 an hour as long as the anthem is played by a flute band and that any national flags are restricted to the Ivory Coast or Italian ones.
Cross-community guru Alastair Jacobs admitted that this may be the greatest single world event in recent times, rivalled only by the fall of the Berlin Wall or the Mandela presidency.
“For Linfield and the IFA to open up their hallowed ground to the gaels of Tyrone and Antrim is an emotional gesture. GAA fans will get to taste really good burgers and stuff.”
Unfortunately, the Ulster GAA Council have been asked to provide their own goalposts. Unable to do so, Ulster officials have asked players and umpires to use their imagination.
A Brussels official has confirmed in a leaked document that if any of Antrim, Armagh, Derry, Down, Fermanagh or Tyrone are to lift the All Ireland title in the near future, under a hard border the Sam Maguire Cup will have to be left with border officials on the way up home until the next time the team crosses back over heading down to Dublin.
Contingency plans have already been put in place if this unlikely scenario occurs, with a replica Sam Maguire to be picked up in a shop outside Newry, made out of tin foil but spray-painted to look shiny from a distance.
A world border expert from Berlin, Hans Gertruff, has already advised all of the aforementioned six counties to say nothing to their supporters in case it takes away from the homecoming celebration.
“In the highly unlikely event of this happening, I have also advised those counties to refrain from drinking out of the replica Sam Maguire as it will probably start leaking never mind the horrible tin foil taste. They should also come up with excuses as to why they forgot the trophy when they visit primary schools and all.”
When asked about other possible suggestions as to how the six counties could get around the Sam Maguire hard border scenario, a Dublin GAA official broke into a hearty laugh which lasted over five minutes before he needed his inhaler, finally adding ‘you needn’t worry’.
County On High Alert As Four Pomeroy Men Named In Starting 15, Fulfilling Revelations 13:11 Prophecy
Religious leaders have appealed for calm after it emerged that four Pomeroy players have been named in the Tyrone senior starting team to play Antrim in the McKenna Cup in Armagh tonight.
Although manager Mickey Harte has been known to make last minute changes, he is coming under acute pressure to bench at least one of them by doomsday merchants within the county.
Panic was widespread last night when Pastor Evan McGenical from Greencastle announced that in the Book of Relevations there is a reference to the ‘four horned men from the mountain that’s just a hill’ and how they would ‘come forth and massacre the men from the city’, a prelude to the Second Coming himself.
Pastor Genical added:
“I know Mickey isn’t one for the Revelations but he surely sees the warning signs. I know nothing about GAA and gaelic football but even I think it’s unusual to have even one Pomeroy man on the squad, never mind four of them starting. This could be the end for Tyrone in general.”
Sources have confirmed that Armagh ground staff are considering heightening the Red Hand fear by playing the music to The Omen when Tyrone make their way onto the field tonight.
Despite the Lough Fishermen’s Co-operative Society’s three month fishing ban on all scale fish in Lough Neagh, starting on March 1, an Ardboe fisherman was this morning caught with 200 pollan under a pile of coats on his 26 ft GRP fishing boat with a Perkins 6 Cylinder engine, Borgwarner Gearbox, 64Kw, dual control winch with gantry.
When initially questioned by the bailiffs, the 79-year old man explained that he just was out for a sail when the fish started jumping in, probably because they’d seen other fish get in the boat when he was legally fishing before the ban.
Gaffer Wylie added:
“I believe they thought it was the fashion to get in the boat, maybe seeing their parents or cousins being fished in by net a month ago. I tried to stop them but there was no shifting them. Pollans are a stubborn fish and started beating their heads off the floor to knock themselves out. There was no point throwing them back in after that. Sure they’d just drown.”
Bailiff McIlhatton revealed he found the explanation highly unlikely but had no proof it didn’t happen as there were no rods or nets on Wylie’s boat by the time he arrived over, although he was almost sure he’d seen the fisherman throw equipment overboard when spotted a quarter of a mile out.
“This is the second time I’ve been hoodwinked. Another Maghery fisherman was caught with 800 trout in this boat and he maintained the fish loved his singing so much that they jumped in, and as he had his eyes closed singing he didn’t notice. They also, miraculously, knocked themselves out. Us bailiffs need faster boats. By the time we get over, these men have their stories sorted and gear ditched.”
Flame-haired Maggie Duffy, a new bailiff from Antrim, was stood down this morning from her job after it emerged that the sight of a red-haired woman was considered very bad luck by Lough Neagh fishermen.
By Landan Seamy
Imagine the thrill of lying in bed on a windswept December night listening to the hair raising howls from the moors as the wolves hunt their next victim. If local conservationist Pat “the wild man” Devlin and his 11 friends have their way this is what the future could hold for parts of Tyrone.
Pat and his team say plans to bring wolves back to Caledon and Benburb are “at an advanced stage”.
“People claim that we have not thought this through”
“but we have watched all the Jurassic Park films and know how things could go wrong so to be on the safe side we have chosen 2 areas with sparse populations and with absolutely no players on the Tyrone county squad. Both places are practically in Armagh anyway so I don’t see what all the fuss is about”.
Pat is convinced that there’ll be no disaster anyway.
“Whilst the cynics just see problems I just see benefits for the local economy. Just think of the euros and dollars pouring in. If some of that money crosses the border to Armagh then good luck to them. People have asked me if I’ll be introducing lions and tigers next. That’s just pure ignorance. Those animals never lived in Ireland. The gist of my plan is to return, to their natural habitats, the animals dispossessed by Cromwell”.
Pat has met with some opposition from local farmers and mothers with young children.
“I can understand their concerns” he sympathises “but they’ll just have to get on with it”.
“People say he’s crazy” added Sean who like some of the other 11 is actually one of Pat’s sons.
“But when has a madman ever influenced 11 others. As my father keeps reminding us 12 is a respectable number. Jesus had 12 disciples; Jacob had 12 sons; Christmas has 12 days and the 12th is one of the biggest days in the northern calendar”.
“And on that last fact” interrupted Pat,
“if our fellow county men don’t stop moaning I’ll take the idea to Paisley’s country. It’d actually save us all a lot of time for once we rescue the wolves from the zoo we’d practically be in Antrim already”.
When pressed to state when exactly the wolves are to be “returned” Pat smiled and tapped his nose before saying “plans are an at an advanced stage but if I gave you an exact date the big noises in the zoo in Belfast would probably try and stop us“.
By Fr Riddle Lynn (guest journalist from portglenone.wordpress.com)
As a result of the unpleasantness which inevitably arises in the Portglenone area, at the very mention of the topic of Antrim and Derry, we decided to ask our readers to tell us what they felt were the 20 most influential things ever to have come out of County Tyrone.
We received literally some replies, most of which were either unprintable or illegal and one involving a goat which, quite frankly, was not even physically possible. Our Pointless Statistics Team once more got on the job but when they were finished, they put together this table of results in offending order;
20. West Tyrone Constituency Boundary: The relatively new parliamentary area has been cleverly passing itself off as France for some time now resulting in its attracting thousands of tourists expecting to see Eurodisney and The Eiffel Tower. The disappointed pilgrims are forced to make do with an electricity pylon in Urney and Eurospar, Omagh.
19. Cranagh: The village adjudged by National Geographic Magazine as ‘the furthest you can go out of the way before you start coming out the other side’.
18. Paul Brady: The curly, surly ginger, singer/songwriter and professional ‘Bosco’ impersonator who brought us the classic refrain;
I wanna take you to Coalisland
And count the off-licences per man
And in the evening when the sun goes down
We’d rip the ATM from the local filling station
17. Making Pat Spillane Puke: A classic reversal of the normal pattern of Pat Spillane making everyone else hurl their fadge.
16. The Place Name ‘Sandholes’: Deriving from the Old French ‘Sans Houlles’, meaning ‘Without Arse”, the area is credited as the home of the design of cheap supermarket denim which reduces ‘buttock protrusion’ in male wearers over 35 years of age.
15. Splash: The popular Saturday night, light entertainment programme where fading celebrities imitate their own careers by falling unceremoniously from a great height without being touched in an attempt to garner advantage which is scarcely deserved. The format is based on the career of Brian Dooher. (Apart from the great height bit obviously)
14. The Carnteel Road: By an amazing freak of geography, motorists travelling directly from Aughnacloy to Dungannon will pass the end of the Carnteel Road on no less than 14 occasions.
13. The Place Name ‘Orritor’: For the sheer joy of positioning a district which sounds like a body cavity in close proximity to another called ‘Sandholes’.
12. Sir James Cricket: A comedian who has sustained a 40 year career with an act based entirely on a humorous tea-towel which my mother brought back from Westport in 1972. Don’t come here.
11. Benburb Sunday: A day where children up to the age of 12 were rounded up by monks and made to pay to slide down a hill on a carpet of rough hardboard resulting in semi-permanent scarring of skin tissue on the thigh and elbow.
10. Dennis Taylor’s Wiggly Index Finger: Widely regarded as being amongst the finest of the gargantuan-spectacle wearing ball potter’s eleven fingers.
9. Penfold from Dangermouse: No list would be complete without the pint-sized, sidekick, cartoon-moaner and his hilarious catchphrase; “Carrickmore Gaelic Fudball Club”.
8. The Amazing Disappearing Letters ‘T’& ‘W’: Used to such wonderful effect in the pronunciation of places such as ‘Cookson” ‘Stewarson’ and ‘Twincamton’.
7. Eugene McMenamin’s Unfeasibly Black Eyebrows: The Strabane based MLA holds the distinction of having been balancing two ‘Granny Grey Beard’ caterpillars on his forehead since 1984.
6. The Red Hand of Ulster: Yeah, thanks a bunch for that!
5. The Carland Bypass: The wonderful decision to remove the one corner which broke the utter monotony of driving between Cookstown and Dungannon.
4. Eponymously Titled Products which are now Defunct: Tyrone Brick, Tyrone Crystal, Tyrone Power, Tyrone Moderate Alcohol Consumers.
3. Consilio et Prudentia: Although also the names of two Late (possibly ex) (possibly Latex) Nuns from Loretto convent in Omagh, this is actually the irony valve straining motto of the county translating as…wait for it…no I’m serious….”Wisdom & Prudence”.
2. The Untimely Demise of Tyrone Tom’s Red Shorts: The ill-thought out decision to use the Greencastle man’s iconic shorts as an agreed alternative to the Union flag on Belfast City Hall.
And of course topping the list
A 2-second blast of thunder left most of East Tyrone on high alert throughout the night with police reporting 1340 calls from worried homeowners. PSNI officials also admitted they spent a couple of hours driving about looking for the noise before the Met Office in Belfast informed them that the sound was actually thunder.
The blast, which occurred around 10pm last night, was described as something close to the sound of a nuclear bomb according to Dungannon pub-owner Jamesey Sloan:
“I’ve never heard anything like it. There were boys running all over the town screaming and shouting about the war being back on and about heading to the bunkers. Women were crying and wailing, saying rosaries in the middle of the street. It was like a film.”
Meanwhile in Ardboe, thousands of residents got into their boats and rowed for Antrim on the other side of the Lough. Patsy Coney remarked:
“Ghost oh boys it was tara. We thought maybe the Sperrins were falling down or something so we all sailed East. A couple of boys swam it. The clergy were handing out Last Rites all over the joint.”
PSNI spokesman Herr Steinburger admitted there were a few red faces in the force:
“Yes, we got caught up in the whole excitement. We had 400 officers out in jeeps looking for the noise. When you add in the 200 or so vigilantes also out searching for the noise there was chaos on the roads. We thought it came from a poitin barn in Stewartstown but he said he’d made all his Christmas batches months ago.”
BBC Weather confirmed it was just one short blast of thunder and warned locals not to go clean mad again tomorrow when hailstones are predicted.