By Landan Seamy
Local Spy Sean McGrinny has warned that jealous scoundrels and vagabonds from Armagh may be using the new Pokémon Go craze to cause mischief in Tyrone.
Pokémon Go is a game that uses your phone’s GPS and clock to detect where and when you are in the game and make Pokémon “appear” around you (on your phone screen) so you can go and catch them. As you move around, different and more types of Pokémon will appear depending on where you are and what time it is.
“I first heard of Pokémon 2 weeks ago” said Sean “when I returned to my car and found a man standing pointing his phone at it as if he was taking a photo. I thought he was a traffic warden so I lost my temper a little bit. After two passers-by picked him off the ground he explained to me that I had parked beside a PokéStop.
I did some research and started to get evidence that some people could be using the game as an excuse to get up to mischief. For example, a few days ago my next door neighbour was out sunning herself in her bikini only to find around 20 to 55 men pointing their iPhones at her. She started screaming for help but the only passer-by started to point his phone at her as well”.
Sean warns residents along the Tyrone border to be on their guard as he suspects that the Pokémon craze is leading to a large flux of Armagh people into Tyrone. McGrinny explained that there appears to be a sinister “trainer” somewhere between Tynan and Caledon.
“He helps people to get a Pokémon egg on their phone and after explaining that they need to walk about 10 miles for it to hatch he then lets them loose near the border with Tyrone and many of them accidentally wander across. It’s crazy”.
Sean suspects that the Armagh trainer is helping to incubate Tyrone hating Pokémon.
“I took my phone with me to Croke Park to check how many Pokémon were on the pitch. Some of the people around me were annoyed but I wasn’t deterred. Although they were wearing Donegal jerseys they sounded wild like Armagh people so I ignored their protests and just kept pointing my phone at the pitch. There were Pokémon everywhere.
Probably the worse incident involved the first yellow card issued to Sean Cavanagh. Most level headed people just know that Sean Cavanagh would never have started a quarrel with Lee Keegan but what only I know because my phone was directed at them at the time was that it was an Armagh trained BulbasaurPokémon that walked over to Lee Keegan and slapped him on the face. Lee Keegan didn’t appear to notice the Pokémon (probably because he didn’t have his mobile with him at the time) and assumed it was Sean who slapped him and pulled him to the ground. The rest is history”.
Sean concluded with some advice for Mickey Harte
“Whilst we must maintain our relentless efforts to defeat the bias of the southern media we must also recruit some Pokémon trainers who can defeat any Armagh mischief. If we build our own Pokémon army Mickey will probably win another 9 or 10 All Irelands”.
“A good quality free taker would be helpful as well” ended Sean.
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“.
Government officials have confirmed rumours that all living teachers who worked in schools between 1940-1990 in Tyrone are to be quizzed over language they used within classroom walls to describe pupils with ADHD, numeracy and literacy problems as well as those with minor learning difficulties.
The news comes after successful entrepreneur Paul Kelly (41) from Caledon sued St Judas’s PS for labelling him ‘deadly thick, like a plank‘ in a school report in 1983. Kelly was diagnosed as having ‘mild literacy problems’ recently and maintains his father ‘bate the lugs off him’ for being what his da called ‘slow in the head’.
“I used to write my ‘B’ and ‘D’ back to front, hinting I was on the dyslexic spectrum. Today I would receive extra help. Back then the Master called me ‘Kelly the Gob’ because that was how I spelt God. And it wasn’t just me. He called my numerically-challenged brother ‘fingers’ because he couldn’t count over 10. It really was inappropriate. We slashed his tyres in P7 but he deserved it. I’m earning more now than that bollocks ever did.”
Others have come forward with evidence of amateur diagnosis on school reports. Fergal O’Hanlon, a NASA rocket engineer from Loughmacrory, revealed he was told in 2003 that he had ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) as a child, causing his inattentiveness at crucial times during the school day. His report from 1977 remarked: “If Fergal continues to jump around on his seat during morning quiet reading time, I nail his useless feet to the floor. Otherwise, working well.”
“I couldn’t help myself. I had undiagnosed ADHD. The Master would get the heaviest lad to sit on me as punishment. Even that was wrong – him calling the lad ‘Fat Frank’. It turns out he had a glandular problem later in life which was why he couldn’t shift the weight as a youngster. I want compensation. And see that ‘quiet reading’? It lasted until his hangover cleared.”
Officials also announced the collection of brown pennies for ‘black babies’ was being looked at.
A Dungannon-based traffic warden has started employing the use of the ‘vanishing spray’ currently being used by referees at the Brazil World Cup, which marks where defenders have to stand during a free kick. The spray disappears after a few minutes.
32-year old Fergus Devine, who courted controversy earlier this year for frequently conducting victory dances around cars to which he had issued parking tickets, began using the spray last Saturday, firstly on cars, and latterly on pedestrians.
“You see some of them cars edging forward at the lights, waiting for green”, explained an unrepentant Devine. “That’s where my spray comes in, see? If they think they can start moving just because the light changes to amber, they can think on. Drive over my wee white line and they’ll get a ticket slapped on their windscreen pronto”.
Complaints were made not just by drivers but also by pedestrians who have attracted Devine’s attention, including Caledon’s Clodagh Rush, who was accosted by Devine coming out of Lowe Butchers on Dungannon Square on Monday. She explained,
“He stopped me and started spraying my shoes, the clift. Said he was giving me a warning because of ‘dangerous overtaking’ coming out of the shop. All I did was squeeze past Mrs Donnelly who was having trouble managing her zimmer frame and bag of mince at the same time. He made me stand there like an eejit for five minutes until the white stuff went away”.
“Aye, it’s deadly stuff is right”, proclaimed Devine. “There’s too many of them pedestrians eager to jump about the road like they own the place. It’s only me that’s allowed to do that. I’ve had the training. If they don’t want to wait for the wee green man then they risk getting my aerosol all over their tootsies. They’ve been warned”.
Asked where he had procured the spray, Devine said,
“I got it off a pal of a pal who lives in England, Wayne I think his name was. He came back from Brazil with a suitcase full of the stuff. Don’t know what he was doing over there, but apparently he said there was no way he was coming back empty-handed”.
56-year old Fergus Faloon also incurred the wrath of Devine having come out of Dungannon Library ‘without due care and attention’, by walking and eating a Twix at the same time. He now faces a ‘two-booksale ban’ at Dungannon Library, but plans to appeal.
More than a few ginger mono-brows were raised in the county this week with the announcement of the itinerary for this year’s Brantry Fleadh.
Previous festivals in the area have seen performances from the likes of The Sands Family, Beoga and Four Men and a Dog. However, the organisers of the 2014 event have plumped for a more eclectic and diverse line-up. Speaking through the medium of ‘mountainythranness’, steering committee chairman, Crannóg Clougherty (89) told us;
“To be totally honest, the incessant diddley-deeing was doing our fecking crusts in. With that in mind, we have booked James Last and his entire orchestra to headline on Friday night, ably supported by Scottish hardcore street, crossover thrash, punk outfit, The Exploited. Sunday’s main attraction, by way of winding down, will see eight hours of whale sounds and distorted synthesisers performed by space rock combo, ‘Spiritualized’. We’re particularly excited about their intention to play their ‘thinking man’s techno’ version of The Sugababes standard ‘Freak Like Me’.”
The committee have yet to confirm the line-up for the main day of the fleadh but they have agreed to allow a limited number of street sessiuns during the afternoon as a sop to the dangly ear-ring and wheaten waistcoat brigade. However, Crannóg did go on to hint at his hope for the evening’s main gig to be the biggest thing The Brantry has seen since that incident with Sean O’Neill and goat from Caledon.
“Yes, I know it mightn’t be easy but I haven’t given up on reuniting The Beatles for the first time in forty-five years!”
When challenged on how this would even be possible, Clougherty winked at our reporter and produced a handgun containing two bullets.
We put it to the almost-nonagenarian that the radical overhaul was merely an artistic reaction to the fact that no Tyrone teenagers have been appearing on British television talent shows for over three months.
“I object to that! I’ll have you know that in mediaeval times, The Brantry was renowned for its woods, loughs and rebellious inhabitants. Nowadays, we’d be better known for our rebellious inhabitants, loughs and woods! If there is one thing which I’d accept did influence our change of direction, it’s the fact that, despite continuing protests, our area remains the only one which is denied a capital letter on the list of tags on the Tyrone Tribulations website.”
A Caledon man is being treated for what is believed to be post traumatic stress disorder, after venturing into his wife’s handbag to get a Polo mint.
59-year old Fergal Coughlan, a gas-lighter from Caledon, was travelling back from mass with his wife Nellie on Sunday morning when he asked her for a sweet, who instructed him to ‘go into the left hand bit’ of her handbag.
“Jaysus, it was tara boys”, said the distressed Coughlan. “One minute I was asking for a wee sweetie and the next minute it was like falling down thon wormhole in Alice in Wonderland. Remember Mary Poppins’ handbag? It was like that, except with more stuff in it. I’ve seen things that’ll stay with me til I go to the grave”.
Coughlan claims he found a pair of pliers, a half-eaten Marathon bar, a balaclava, a ticket stub for ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’, a verruca sock, an old photo of Kevin McCabe, some paper clips, and a packet of unused strawberry-flavoured condoms.
“I’m disgusted and affronted”, remarked Coughlan. “What on earth was she doing with a Marathon? She doesn’t even like chocolate. And it was covered with mould. It must have been there for years. The nuts nearly broke my teeth it was that bad”.
Coughlan also claims he found half a brick, a pair of castanets, three Betamax video recordings of Starsky and Hutch, a radiator bleed key, ten unused, ripped-up pairs of tickets for Gareth Gates, and a pound of mince.
Commenting on her husband’s traumatic episode, wife Kitty told us,
“He needs to grow a pair. A woman needs all sorts of bits and bobs. Be prepared, that’s my motto. And anyway, he went into the wrong bit. When I said ‘left hand bit’, I meant left hand bit at the front outside, not the inside at the back. The clift”.
“And after all that?” said the despondent husband. “No feckin’ polo mints”.
The world-renowned author J K Rowling is close to purchasing the whole of County Tyrone as a Christmas present to Scottish actor Robbie Coltrane, as a thank you for playing the part of Hagrid the giant, in the Harry Potter series.
The author, estimated to be worth a staggering £10 billion, decided to splash out once she had made the choice between snapping up the County, the new Peter Andre album, or a signed picture of Malachi Cush.
“I’ve always loved Tyrone”, said the author, “I was going to keep it for myself and use it as a sort of garden feature, but I know Robbie will be thrilled to have it instead. But he lives in London, so I’m going to have my people fly it over so it sits somewhere just outside Surrey. I’m sure Tyrone people won’t mind. It is a little island off the east coast of Scotland, isn’t it?”
The purchase, believed to run into a four-figure sum, came as welcome news to cash-strapped Tyrone council management.
“This is mighty”, said local Councillor Enda McMann. “We’re up to our arses in debt and this is a class way of helping out the County. Jaysus, we were nearly having to auction off the Council’s Philomena memorabilia collection. Imagine that? As it is, we’ve had to sell the Council’s fleet of chauffeur-driven Lamborghinis. Yep, it’s that bad. We might have to sell a couple of the yachts next”.
The news was greeted warmly by many residents. Benny Sloan from Caledon said,
“I’ve always been a big Harry Potter fan. Them fillums where he says, ‘Are you feelin’ lucky punk’ and then shoots up the place is pure class. I love Clint Eastwood. If Robbie gets Tyrone, maybe Clint’ll get Armagh”.
However, not everyone was happy. 57-year old Oonagh Trainor from Eglish said,
“This spells disaster. Literally. What if them Dementor boys turn up, eh? Do you know what they are? I’ll tell yiz. They’re among the foulest creatures to walk this earth, that’s what they are. They feed off human happiness and create depression and despair to anyone near them. How would we tell them apart from some of the ones from Stewartstown?”
The purchase of the County is to remain a secret from Coltrane until Christmas Day, during which time Rowling plans to either wrap it in 1,300 square miles of Christmas paper, or alternatively cover it with a gigantic cloak of invisibility.
Management at Dungannon & South Tyrone Borough Council fear an epidemic of sick workers following news last week that the council staff have an absenteeism rate amongst the highest in the 26 Councils in the North.
Head Councillor Liam O’Donoghue said,
“This has to stop. We’re far too lenient with staff with some of the daft excuses they’re coming up with. I fully intend to deal with the situation, firmly and decisively, just as soon as I get back to work after I bit my tongue last week. It’s really sore you know. I was off on Friday and I could scarcely concentrate on watching the entire Godfather trilogy. It was that bad. Ouch”.
Staff however have protested that the absences are legitimate, and that the Council should be more supportive.
Brian Guthrie, a red tape winder from Caledon said,
“I know I was off all day yesterday, but I tried to get out of bed and my duvet wouldn’t let me. It’s the truth. People think that they climb into bed and the duvet warms them up. Mine doesn’t. It’s the other buckin way around. It’s me that heats the duvet up, and the damn thing knows it full well. It would only let me go once the central heating came on. Narra escape boys, narra escape”.
Marty Murdock, from Galbally, was also off sick at the beginning of this week.
“I couldn’t face going to work on Monday. Jaysus, I had the tara sweats and my head was pounding. I won’t go into the detail but I was in trouble at both ends. I was in Tally’s for a few hours the night before and I think it might have been a bad salted peanut or something. That must have been it, because I didn’t eat anything else. Or I don’t think I did. To be honest I can’t remember a thing”.
Joe McSorley, a scribe from Edendork also had a sorry tale of woe.
“Killeeshil lost to Emyvale on Saturday night at the Junior Championship Final. Do you know how hard that can be to recover from? I couldn’t face it. No wonder I was off on Monday and Tuesday. It would be even worse if I was a fan or I actually liked football”.
Other reasons for staff not turning up at work include life-threatening paper cuts, sore hair, getting lost on the way to work, not being able to decide what to wear, and being kept captive inside their house by a swarm of midges.
An Aughnacloy woman was given the job of looking after the UK Queen this week in hospital as the British monarch battled bad wind and irregular bowel movements. Belinda Gildernew, an employee of the King Edward VII hospital since she was dismissed from Craigavon for slipping patients a ‘drop of the hard stuff’, maintains the head of the royal family wasn’t grumpy at all and was ‘some girl for the slaggings’.
“To be honest I wasn’t overly excited when I was given the briefing. I thought she’d be too old for a bit of banter. How wrong was I? As soon as she heard my accent she was ‘Paddy this’ and ‘to be sure to be sure’ that, all in good taste. I told her where I came from and I was astonished when she asked if Sean Douglas still played for Aghaloo. I really underestimated her knowledge of the lower leagues in Tyrone.”
Gildernew was sad to see Windsor leave the hospital yesterday as it meant she had to go back to cleaning the arses of patients who weren’t all that much craic at all.
“Ah I’ll miss the oul bint you know. She’d obviously done a bit of research on the Gildernews overnight using a special computer because the next morning she was fit to slag me about the fight we’re having with the Hughes family over access to a field near Caledon. There was one scary moment though when I dropped my guard and told her about my uncle who tried to blow her up in the 80s. Her faced dropped and she said she’d have me hanged in the tower for treason. I nearly dunged the togs. She then broke out laughing and told me to ‘have a titter of wit’ and sure it was all water under the bridge. She said her and Philip even listen to the Wolfe Tones before weddings.”
Belinda says she told the Queen she’s welcome down the Monaghan Road any time apart from Saturday mornings as they’re normally dying with the hangovers.
Bonfires blazed well into the night in Caledon as news spread regarding the purchase of a computer by someone near the Iron Bridge. The little plantation village, which is still inhabited by some of the Pictish tribe from northern Scotland, had until now resisted all forms of modern communication including mobile phones, electric showers and kettles.
Recently, though, tribe leader Cecil McCreight expressed fears that Caledon might be wiped off the face of the earth if they didn’t promote it or even make people aware of its existence, especially those “middle-class fcukers” in Dungannon and Armagh.
“Yea, it was a tough decision but the majority of the tribe as well as a few natives agreed that it was time to buy a computer. Sometimes I head into Clogher or Dungannon (spit) and I’d say to people on the streets ‘hi I’m Chief McCreight from Caledon’ and all I’d get is a blank face or sometimes a punch in the bake. It’s time to put Caledon on the map.”
Thousands descended on the home of the person near the Iron Bridge as the delivery van arrived shortly after noon, the first such vehicle to drive through Caledon safely. Previous transport companies had lost fleets of lorries by taking a wrong turn through the village only to be torched and destroyed by the suspicious locals. Local juggler Barney Norris told us:
“Jaysus I’m deadly excited about this. I’d heard that you can see bare women from all over the world. I’ve never seen a bare woman before apart from the streaker at the Caledon Heathen Carnival in 1988. She was my aunt so I sorta didn’t look.”
Excitement levels are expected to reach a crescendo today when someone works out how to turn it on.